Saturday, August 14, 2010

Web Site O' Teh Week

MetaFilter says it could become as addicting as ... wait for it ... MetaFilter.

My fav:
Neoliberalism has unshackled public culture from the chains of innovation, freeing it to be bland, nervous, artistically moribund, and commercially limp…

Or maybe:
Loose regulation, poor women, and wads of cash combine to form a lively market in human eggs in Cyprus…

A gold mine is what it is.

Tvxtg! Fast!

Google CEO Eric Schmidt said we now create 5 exabytes of data every two days, an amount equal to all the information created from the dawn of civilization through 2003.

UPDATE: Anonymous wants to know what the connection is. Franklin (who Tara later "kills" — her success is questionable and fans apparently want him back) is just contributing his bit to the bytes, so to speak.

Roger Ebert Speaks

I was asked at lunch today who or what I worshipped. The question was asked sincerely, and in the same spirit I responded that I worshipped whatever there might be outside knowledge. I worship the void. The mystery. And the ability of our human minds to perceive an unanswerable mystery. To reduce such a thing to simplistic names is an insult to it, and to our intelligence.
From this piece on Christopher Hitchins.

Friday, August 13, 2010


Georgia Boscolo, the 24-year-old daughter of a gondolier, becomes the first Venetian gondoliera in 900 years.

In National Costume

One of Andrew Sullivan's readers responds to a previous post about the lack of color photography in the early period of photography and that the dominance of black-and-white distances us from our view of the past.
Bashkir woman in national costume, 1910, Sergei Mikhailovich Prokudin-Gorskii
And s/he sends a link to a little treasure trove from a pioneering Russian photographer.
Seeing this, I am inspired to ask, what would a photograph captioned "American woman in national costume, 2010" look like?

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

So Ted Stevens Is Dead. So, Let's Eat

I'm not dead and I have this great recipe to share because there is no news, repeat, no news today. So far.
So, okay, I ran across this fantastic recipe at Slate, and I have no memory of why I was even there. And the Chinese-American chef who gave it talked about spilling his mother's homemade ginger-scallion sauce on the chair and wanting to eat the upholstery every time he sat in it.
Luckily, he had some sauce in the refrigerator and could just go add it to noodles or something. It's good on rice. It's used to dip BBQ in and also on poached chicken.
So I finally made the sauce last weekend and it was a pain because a) I don't own a food processor (Goodwill, do you hear me? Habitat?) and b) I sort of fudged on reading directions.
It's a simple recipe and I thought he said just salt the hell out of the processed ginger and scallions. He sort of did, but he also recommended tasting it as you went and making it "just a little too salty."
I just dumped too much salt in thinking everything would be fine for the double batch I was making. It wasn't so I had to make another single batch because that's all the ginger I had left and even now it's too salty.
But it's really, really good.
I made a quick Thai instant noodle thingie for lunch and it sucked so I grabbed the sauce from the refrigerator and cautiously put a little bit on them. It was good, so I put more on. Then more. The noodles disappeared. I wish I had more. Oh, wait, maybe I do.
Send some to your kids in college, tell them it's great on Top Ramen, just forget the other crap in the package and only cook the noodles because Top Ramen DOES have way too much salt.
Here it is:
Ginger scallion sauce
Makes 1 cup; a little goes a long way
Active time: 5 minutes
1 ounce ginger, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch chunks
1 bunch (about 4 ounces) whole scallions, cut into 1-inch lengths
1/2 cup oil, preferably peanut or corn (Avoid olive oil and definitely no canola, which, when heated like this, smells like a fish. And not in a
good way.)
Whirl the ginger in a food processor until it's finely minced, but not puréed (meaning stop before it gets liquidy and pasty). Put it in a
wide, tall, heatproof bowl, several times bigger than you think you need. For real. The bowl matters. Use a cooking pot if you have to,
because when that oil gets in there, the sizzle is going to be serious business.
1. Mince the scallions in the food processor until they're about the same size as the ginger. Add it to the ginger.
Salt the ginger and scallion like they called your mother a bad name and stir it well. Taste it. It won't taste good because that much raw
ginger and scallion doesn't really taste good, but pay attention to the saltiness. You want it to be just a little too salty to be pleasant,
because you have to account for all the oil you're about to add.
3. Heat the oil in a pan until you just start seeing wisps of smoke, and pour it into the ginger scallion mixture. It's going to sizzle and
bubble like a science-fair volcano, and it's going to smell awesome. Don't stick your face in it. You wouldn't stick your face in lava,
would you? Give it a light stir with a heatproof spoon.
4. Let cool to room temperature. Keep it in the fridge, for whenever you want to be one spoonful away from deliciousness

The chef's name is Francis Lam and I'm going to make the ratatouile, no the eggplant pasta first. Anyway, follow him here.

Monday, August 9, 2010

One Of Those Days

today was. You know, where it suddenly becomes clear that exactly nothing is clear. What's the opposite of momentum? Oh, yeah, intertia.
In that spirit, I offer Comment O' Teh day from MetaFilter's Vonnegut thread:
I wish Vonnegut were a professor of science. "Alcohol, it's what happens when little creatures called yeast binge on sugar until they suffocate in their own shit. And so it goes."