Smoke & Barrel, Steve Martin, and Sushi

26 04 2010

I had a lot of fun this weekend.  Friday, Garth and I went to The Smoke & Barrel to see the OneUps and MC Frontalot.  This is the first time I saw the OneUps do any hiphop type stuff (versus more jazzy renditions of video game songs).  What impressed me most about MC Frontalot was the energy in everyone’s performance.  They were almost constantly jumping around while they were playing and singing.  It was both impressive and engaging.

Saturday Kes, Jason and I went to the Walton Arts Center to see Steve Martin’s concert.  Since it was banjo-oriented we weren’t sure if he would be super serious, but he worked in some bits between songs that were quite funny.  Even though we were in the back row of the balcony, we could still see really well, which impressed me.  Previously, Kes and I have mostly just been to radio plays at the WAC, and so have sat near the front of the floor.

Sunday, I relaxed a little.  I put together the desk I bought, and set it up as my entertainment center.  It works really well, and the shelves look nice.  I like the height, but it is about a foot taller than what I was using previously, so it will take some getting used to.  If nothing else, everything around the television looks a lot more neat and organized.

Today, Kes and I made sushi.  Kes has made sushi once before (and I helped roll) when we had a “sushi party” a couple years ago.  (It was fun; we ate sushi and watched The Twilight Zone.)  This was the first time I really made any of the ingredients (sushi rice, mostly).

I thought it turned out pretty well.  The fillings we used were egg (with a little soy sauce), imitation crab, avocado, and carrot matchsticks.





Food and Books

8 04 2010

Unfortunately, I’m already not meeting the goal of a daily post.

Update on lunch:  everything kept very well, even the avocados.  No pictures of today’s lunch.  I had some Progresso clam chowder and French bread.

I used my pressure cooker for the first time today.  I cooked a batch of pinto beans, and am attempting to mash them like I’ve been shown in the past, but am not having much luck with the mashing part.  The cooking part was a lot less scary than I expected.  Kes did his best to find the safest pressure cooker he could, and it seems pretty good so far.

For dinner, I made chicken curry.  I just used an S&B medium hot curry brick, carrots, peas, potatoes, chicken and water.  Not too complex, but I like the taste.

Reading-wise, I’m a few chapters into the first Dresden Files book.  I’ve read this far before, but never got to finish it.  I’ve always liked mystery books, and adding a dash of the supernatural is definitely appealing.  I think some of it is a little overly silly (did he really have to name it the “Nevernever?”), but on the whole, I’m enjoying it so far.

Since I didn’t get to finish re-listening to Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows on CD on the drive to and from my parents’ house, I’ve been listening to it off and on.  I had forgotten how depressing it is.  I also discovered that JK Rowling is fundamentally against publishing her works as ebooks when I went looking for a written copy for my Nook.

It sounds like Rowling’s dislike of ebooks is a mix between her love of the physically written word (apparently she wrote all the Harry Potter books in longhand), and her fear of pirates.  Regarding the latter, I would have to say I agree with a lot of people that if you deprive the market of a legal version of something it’s clamoring for, the demand isn’t going to disappear, and her decision has likely driven more people to piracy than if she had just allowed ebooks of her works to be released.  Regarding her reverence of the physically written word, I think that’s pretty cool.  I remember seeing pictures of her handwritten copy of The Tales of Beedle the Bard.  I do think it’s a little short-sighted not to publish ebook versions of her work nonetheless.  After all, there are audiobook versions of her work, and that’s certainly not handwritten (yes, I know reading aloud, different medium, etc.).  Anyway, I would like for there to be [legal] ebook versions of Rowling’s books.





Healthy Habits

6 04 2010

Kes moved the stationary bike to the living room today.  It has been in the spare bedroom, which made it even more difficult to work up the gumption to use it.  To celebrate, I rode for 20 min while Kes watched Arrested Development.  I’m still working on developing/keeping healthy habits, so hopefully having it in the living room will be one more motivation.

On the unhealthy side, I nearly always eat processed food for lunch.  One way I’m trying to be healthier is by trying to eat less processed food.  In pursuit of that goal, I have packed both breakfast and lunch for tomorrow (I go to work early enough that it’s easiest to eat breakfast at work rather than at home).

Breakfast:
Quesadilla: 1 whole grain “soft taco” tortilla, small amount of low fat cheddar cheese, thin spread of pesto, and chopped chicken breast

Lunch:
noodle dish:  about 1/3 brick of ramen noodles soaked in water until softened then tossed in about 1/4 teaspoon sesame seed oil, cubed chicken breast, peas, and minced garlic
salad:  baby spinach, button mushrooms, with a side of basil parmesan vinaigrette
fruit side: avocado (I originally planned on having a clementine orange, but I didn’t realize we were out)
treat: mangorind candy

This is also a test to see if/how much the lunch degrades by the time I eat it tomorrow.





Delicious Food, and A Challenge

16 03 2010

Delicious Food
Kes decided he would make bao today, and has been working very hard on it since I got home from work.  I stopped by Harps to pick up some garlic and cabbage for the filling, and thought I’d pick up some spring rolls to go with our meal.  There were instructions for baking the spring rolls in addition to frying, so I tried the baking route this time.

IMG_0270 IMG_0262

A Challenge
Disappointed that my previous post did not refer to Thomas Hobbes’ Leviathan, my friend Tanner challenged me to listen to the audiobook and write a review of this work.  I’ve read excerpts for philosophy classes, but have not consumed the work as a whole before.  This will be very different for me to judge as an audiobook since LibriVox‘s audiobooks are all read by volunteers, not professionals.