Thursday, September 12, 2013

Thoughts of the day

Columbia is the 14th best university in the world.

Edifying Commentary article by Max Boot about Generals David Petraeus, Stanley McChrystal, John Allen, and James Mattis. When GEN McChrystal ran JSOC in Iraq, he "ate only one meal a day, slept on a cot, and exercised relentlessly even in punishing heat and dust." That's praxis.

I conclude that the only realistic way to regulate the amount I eat is to regulate the portion size of the food I prepare to eat. I'll stuff myself with most of the bachelor stew or meat sauce I prepare in my 120 oz capacity Mirro, which should last me 3 days, over the same time period I might eat a pork chop and a bowl of rice.

Garlic is a cooking combat multiplier.

Salted pork fatback is interesting. It tastes like too salty bacon. Useful for extracting grease.

I bought a 17.91 lb package containing 2 pernil pork shoulders on sale for 88 cents a pound (regularly $1.39/lb). Assuming the pernil pork shoulders freeze well, I'm pleased with the purchase. The meat tastes good. The 17.91 lb package was the smallest on the shelf, and I now regret not choosing a heavier package. I imagine the additional weight is from more meat for the same amount of bone in the lighter package I bought. I hedged on the size in case I didn't like the flavor, as happened with the .99/lb beef liver that took me a long time to use up, or of another reason to dislike the meat. I also was concerned about not having enough room in my freezer, but there is. An additional half pound, pound, or even two or three pounds wouldn't have been that different in terms of storage. It was a hassle breaking down the shoulder into roughly meal-size portions due to the connective tissue. I cut up about 2/3 of 1 shoulder and froze the rest. For my 1st meal of pernil pork shoulder, I gorged on 3 meals' amount of baked pork, flavored with seasoned salt and garlic, and rice in 1 sitting.

Resolved: No more hot dogs. The name brands (Oscar Mayer, Ball Park) are better than Bar S, but still leave some weird after-feeling. Real meat doesn't do that to me. The Applegate beef hot dogs I bought on sale ($1.99/12 oz) are interesting, though. They're tougher to bite off, more like old-fashioned cured hot dogs than normally soft hot dogs. They taste okay and no weird after-feeling.

I experimented and found that adding sour cream or yogurt to Duncan Hines milk chocolate brownie mix dilutes the already relatively weak-flavored brownie flavor without a noticeable change to the texture. I haven't experimented with evaporated milk this time, although with my past addition of evaporated milk to brownies, my impression was it thickened the brownie texture without changing the taste.

Latest bachelor stew. Made using the 120 oz capacity Mirro. 14.75 oz can Icy Point 100% Natural Fancy Alaskan pink salmon; 18.5 oz can Progresso Traditional Italian-Style Wedding meatballs, carrots and spinach in chicken broth; 15 oz can Western Beef mixed vegetables, 15 oz can Libby's whole white potatoes; 2 cloves diced garlic; some diced yellow onion, some diced salted pork fatback; seasoned salt, pepper, salt; cooked white rice with Best Yet frozen mixed vegetables. I'm not a fan of the Western Beef canned mixed vegetables. I think the potatoes would have worked better with the bachelor meat sauce, though they were fine with the stew. I forgot to try the stew with spaghetti. It was one of my most expensive concoctions yet all the added stuff didn't make the stew taste better, which says there is a point of diminishing return for adding flavors.

Pizza bannock. Crust made from about 2 cups Western Beef all-purpose enriched, bleached, presifted flour, about a half tablespoon of baking soda, 1 egg, and water. Filling made from Hunts pasta sauce with mushroom, Best Yet crushed pineapple in pineapple juice, 1 clove chopped garlic, some diced yellow onion - premixed before spreading on crust. Topping was 1 strip chopped up Shoprite turkey bacon, salted and crisped in Mirro before sprinkling onto filling on crust. Cooked in the Mirro with medium-high heat until crust was brown (dough had yellow hue due to the egg), about 20 minutes. After cooking, spread on Hood sour cream. If I had thought to do it beforehand, I likely would have added collard greens as a topping - oh well, different flavor. PS: Needed more salt.

A day of good eating. First meal: A bowl of white rice. Broiled crisped fatty pork shoulder, seasoned with seasoned salt and garlic, and sour cream and hot sauce for dipping sauce. Bannock made with salt and vinegar, no baking soda, topped with embedded chopped garlic and fatback grease spread, cooked on the griddle pan. Stew of Best Yet canned pineapple chunks and pineapple juice, Best Yet canned Italian-style stewed tomatoes, Best Yet frozen collard greens, chopped onions, and dollop of salted pork fatback grease, seasoned salt, cooked in the Nesco. Snack: Duncan Hines milk chocolate brownie made with the Nesco in the 1 quart mixing bowl. Second meal: I made a tasty soup with the Nesco in the 1 quart mixing bowl using Best Yet Italian-style canned stewed tomatoes, Best Yet frozen collard greens, chopped onions, 1 clove chopped garlic, salted pork fatback grease, 1 link Shadybrook Farms Italian-style turkey sausage, leftover cooked white rice, black pepper, and seasoned salt. Of course, I scarfed it down like I gorge on my bachelor meat sauce and stew.

Should I make my own bachelor soup? I've been buying 18+ oz canned soups for 1.25-2 dollars on sale and then augmenting it. I made a pretty good soup last night (see 'A day of good eating.') and I'm improvising another soup now. The key is the broth or stock. Soup: Yam, garlic, onion, salted pork fatback, turkey sausage, collard greens, carrot, rice, spaghetti, seasoned salt, sesame oil.

Decent meal: Using the Nesco and the 1 quarter mixing bowl, pernil pork shoulder cooked with carrot, garlic, onion, collard greens, seasoned salt. Eaten with sour cream and hot sauce dipping sauce, white rice. I should have finished off the pork in the toaster oven to crisp the fat. 2 pieces of roasted pork skin that were still more chewy than crispy; I should have cooked them longer. For dessert, Duncan Hines milk chocolate brownie mixed with Best Yet chunky peanut butter. The chocolate flavor of the brownie was diluted by the peanut butter, but it was okay.

I doubled the amount of meat in my latest bachelor meat sauce from .5 pound to 1 lb or the full package. (It had a sell-by date of April 2013, but it was fine.) The doubled amount of meat made a difference: the meat sauce is significantly richer, meatier. I also doubled the amount of directly added rice from .5 cup to 1 cup. That was too much; the rice is dominating the dish and I wanted to feature the pasta. A .5 cup of rice is enough to add body to the meat sauce. I used the Mirro. The ingredients were 1 package ground chicken, 1 box frozen whole spinach, 1 can of corn, 1 can of crushed tomatoes, 3 cloves garlic, seasoned salt, and leftover mustard and barbecue sauce in white vinegar. I learned that a wooden spatula is no good for scraping the burnt crust on the floor of the Mirro. The crust wasn't that hard yet it chewed up the edge of the spatula.

Update on bachelor cookware. Type and capacity (1 quart = 4 cups = 32 oz): 15 cup Mirro-matic aluminum frying pan, 6 cup (to the lip for the lid) Salton rice cooker, 6 quart Nesco roaster oven, Toastmaster basic burner, set of 1/2/3-quart nested Farberware Classic stainless steel mixing bowls, Proctor Silex toaster oven, Sharp Carousel microwave oven, T Fal square griddle pan, Maverick Henrietta Hen egg cooker, George Foreman grill, Regal 5 cup poly hot pot, 9 cup Sunbeam electric frying pan.

Chow.com and its youtube channel give food tips. Laura in the Kitchen and her youtube channel offer "over 600 simple & delicious recipe videos".

The UC Davis Postharvest Technology center provides useful info on produce, ie, fruits and vegetables, such as how to store them.

Thus Spake Zarathrusa is taking me forever to read because it doesn't stick. The stuff is distilled MGTOW, and it's apparent Nietzsche is writing from true life experience. He realizes that we are essentially social in nature and hunger for the love of woman. He doesn't explain away our social and dyadic nature. He just says we need to burn it out in order to transcend our human weakness to become the Superman.

Grantland story of NBA prep-to-pro bust Korleone Young. Excerpt:
Where is Korleone Young now? Right where he started, still trying to get started. "I just like to hide from people, really," Young said. "I didn't want to face a lot of these questions I got to face. I took myself into a shell, like a hermit … " "I've hurt myself a lot by running, hiding. I'm still dealing with my own depression. I just can't face it."
If I emerge from my MGTOW bachelor state and resume social activism, the front-running candidate cause is Positive Masculinity. My passionate activist response to 9/11 was SU4V/SU4A, Ivy ROTC advocacy, and MilVets on campus. But our social problem lies deeper in our social fundaments. For a solution, we need to drill through current-event politics and even their premises. We have to get at our basic social culture of principles, norms, and values that, in turn, drive real effects. Righting our society starts with restoring men.

A realtor.com commercial with a theme of hesitation uses at its first scenario a young boy who hesitates to ask a young girl to dance but then musters the courage to approach her. He's rewarded with her relief and inviting indicator of interest. The commercial fit my recent musings, inspired by Moonrise Kingdom, about the proper time in a boy's life to activate his dyadic program and my life-altering wasted opportunities with Dora.

Aisha Tyler, despite marrying at 21 or 22, waited too long to have children, and is now infertile at 42 (turning 43 on Sept 18). Reaction from a red-pill woman blogger, Margery and the Man. Also recall the regret of Sarah at Trying to Grok for delaying children despite, like Tyler, marrying young enough.

Margery says Commitment > Love. I agree with her concept except where she contrasts commitment versus love, I consider the difference to be a mellow, durable love versus the passionate spark of being in love. As she says, it's not either/or.

Laura Doyle's Four Reasons Marriage Eludes Professional Women makes sense. Excerpt: "If you’re quick to pay your share of the dinner bill on a date, he will get the message: You’re not interested in him. If you were, you’d let him treat you. That was implicit in his offer to go out[.]" That's true in my experience. When Traci and I went out while I was still hopefully naive about her lack of spark, Traci was adamant, even defensive, about paying for her meals. Her determination for me not to pay for her gave me pause at the time, and it turned out she was giving me the message described by Doyle.

Summary of President Bush's actions to address the financial crisis of 2008. Bush was a conscientious president.

This report on President Obama's speech at the UN General Assembly helplessly frustrates me and points to why, despite my emotional response, I'm trying to turn away from my poli sci-IR interests. Once again, Obama claims the same liberal foreign policy goals and justifications as Bush but then disclaims Bush's definitive liberal strategy, especially with Iraq, that rationally matched means to ends. It's as though Obama is purposely setting up our foreign affairs to fail.

Why a false narrative must be countered immediately in an activist contest. More on the conscious replacement of the truth with The Narrative.

Aaron Alexis, the Washington Navy Yard shooter, appears to be another irrational 'black swan' schizophrenic killer.

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey is pretty good. The story is linear and expository, but that's normal for the introductory first part of a planned movie series. The first movie lays the foundation and the pay-off is in the second and/or third movie. The second part of the The Hobbit series, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, will come out in December 2013. An extensive behind-the-scenes vlog by Peter Jackson.

The Artist is okay. Director Michel Hazanavicius's notion to reacquaint modern audiences with the silent movie style was effective. The look of the movie reminded me of Citizen Kane, which wasn't a silent movie. Jean Dujardin was good as George Valentin and deserving of his awards. For a non-dancer, he danced well; his body control carried him. The female lead, Bérénice Bejo as Peppy Miller, was pretty good but her dancing was noticeably weaker than Dujardin's dancing. She looked like she nearly stumbled a few times in the final scene.

Zero Dark Thirty is good. It's tightly made and serious, sober, and fairminded about its subject matter. I cried while watching the depiction of commitment, clarity of purpose, (self-destructive) sacrifice, and selfless service of American operators who did the harder right that needed to be done. Like Kathryn Bigelow's breakthrough film Hurt Locker, Zero Dark Thirty is notable for its gritty, detailed realism. As I did for Hurt Locker, I hope Zero Dark Thirty is not too accurately realistic. A significant improvement of Zero Dark Thirty over Hurt Locker is a tighter plot that doesn't resort to jarring absurdities in order to heighten the drama.

CBS, which owns WFAN, agreed to a 10 year deal with the Yankees to broadcast their games on WFAN starting with the 2014 season. There's no word yet on the new radio home for the Mets. WFAN has carried Mets games since the start of WFAN in 1987. Bob Murphy and Gary Cohen were a great radio broadcast team. Howie Rose has been pretty good, too. Bob Murphy's virtuoso play-by-play of Mets games on WFAN was a sonorous part of my childhood. Update: The Mets radio broadcast for the 2014 season is on WOR 710 AM. Their TV broadcasts remain on SNY (cable) and WPIX 11.

Eric

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