Wednesday, July 08, 2009

My dinner with me.

So, this is tonight's supper. Tuna was on sale ($4.99/lb) and I got a mucca slab. I sliced a zuke and a summer squish into thirds--lengthwise--sprinkled on some salt, pepper and italian seasoning, spritzed 'em with olive oil and put 'em on the Forman. I took the tuna out of the fridge, mopped up the leftover olive oil and seasonings on the veggie plate and put that on the grill as well. I'm sure I overcooked the tuna (I want to make sure if I get sick from eating undercooked fish that it happens in a restaurant, so's I can sue somebody!)--it was better than delucious. The veggies were gooey-crisp and fab-U-licious. If I hadn't seen "Big Night" a few years back, I woulda put a few shavings of Parmegiano on the veggies AND the tuna, but as per Tony Shaloub's crazy chef from the aforementioned fillum, no cheese with seafood. I threw a lump of butter on the fish, veggies and rice (I loves me some brown rice that has overcooked just enough to have a nice little crust on the bottom--yum,yum) and then poured the olive oil and red pepper flakes, what had been bathing the olives I had for an appie, over the veggies and rice. A nice glass of Aniston Bay, Cabernet (the one I mentioned last week) and I was a happy guy.

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Them pesky furriners

This is a comment that I posted over here: http://scienceblogs.com/dispatches/2009/07/stalking_dr_isis.php#comments ____________________________________________________ Adrienne: You live in a housing development with lots of foreclosures, rundown properties and roach infestations. This is the fault of immigrants, legal or otherwise, who got mortgages from banks that they should not have been eligible for? Uh, you think maybe the bankers might be culpable-as well as the assholes in congress who gutted banking oversight legisation like Glass-Steagall? Why do you suppose "illegal day laborers" piss outside? Is it because they are not allowed in the library or are they animals? If it's because they have no manners than the most expedient course would be to arrest a few of them for public urination or provide some outdoor toilet facilities. You say you can't translate your housing boards documents into spanish? And you don't speak spanish, apparently. I don't know how large a community you live in, but if you've got enough "illegals immigrants", as you like to call them, in your area, there must be at least a few of them who speak passable english and can read same. Have you tried working with them instead of your stupid, lazy, filthy, unamerican neighbors? Actually, I think you do "viscerally" hate those immigrants that you think are somehow "less" than your grandparents were when they came to this country. It's not a reasonable reaction, it's a "gut" reaction and one that you buttress with your facts, figures and complaints against certain members of the group. You ask: "Pssst- here's a question for you. How do large numbers of people coming into the US from *one* area of the world and speaking a single language (not the English language)--and one country in particular--make the US more "diverse"?" Think Germans, Jews, Poles, Italians, Greeks, Russians, Armenicans, Serbs, Scandinavians, Vietnamese, Lao and Khmer (not an exhaustive list). Of course many of their children learned to speak english. In fact, quite a few of them have gone on to have children and grandchildren who are white enough, bright enough and speak the language well enough that they can get theirs and say, "I really, really don't HATE those ignorant, filthy, funny talking people; but none of THEM should be allowed in my country." You can cherry pick and quotemine all of the sources you like. I'm quite sure that if one digs deep enough they can find quotes by someone else with a pedigree of liberalism, like Barbara Boxer whose stance on immigration (as characterized by your quote) is in diametrical opposition to Ms. Boxer's. Cesar Chavez was a great man but hardly a saint. You say: "And yes, I will admit I first became interested in this issue when I started being negatively affected by it directly. But the more I've researched it, the more I've come to realize how deleterious large scale illegal immigration is...to the environment, to the native-born poor, to the economy...the list goes on and on." How, exactly, have undocumented immigrants affected your life? Please be specific. Speaking of environmental impacts; it appears that Mr. Bush's backyard fence is creating some horrific problems for various desert flora and fauna that had no idea that they were either mexican or U.S. residents. IF we could get rid of all the "illegals" then who would do the scut work that is so frequently their lot in this life? Who will clean the toilets at the ballparks, pick up garbage, work at the McDonalds in the "bad neighborhoods, fight our wars--today's native born, white americans? How much do you think trash collection, Big Mac's and tickets for sporting events and concerts will cost if we simply get rid of all of the "illegals". Working for lower wages, paying lots of taxes (sales, mostly) and spending most of their income--because they really have no choice, undocumented workers represent a huge cash bump in the U.S. economy. IF they could be magically swept off the board, do you really think that nothing else would change, and change in ways that you might term as "adverse"? When I worked in Boston, a local chain of coffee shop/cafes was staffed, almost exclusively by foreign born workers. Many of them were Guatemalan and Colombian. Most of them also worked as cleaners in the same high rises from which their clientele descended to get their bagels and coffee. They were unfailingly polite, generally quite cheerful and extremely industrious. I spoke to them (their english language skills were not always great but we managed) about their families and their living situations. They were so happy to be here, for the most part--and they seemed always happy to work on their language skills with me or others who took a moment to chat when their work permitted. One young man became a manager of another store in the chain and when he finished his shift, he would come to the store in my building, pick up his wife and then, together they would go and pick up their children who attended a private, catholic school. After that, they would go their second job, cleaning offices. Lazy, indifferent, uneducated or unkempt--they were none of those things. You seem to view the people you think of as "illegal immigrants" as a horde of invaders. I prefer to focus on the individuals that I meet and interact with. You say that these people have an adverse impact on your life. That has not been my experience in about 95% of the encounters that I have had. I wish I could say the same for native born U.S. citizens. I know you don't care what I think. Likewise, I don't really care what you think. Neither of us is ever going to convince the other that their position is reflective of anything except their own prejudicial thinking. My prejudice on the subject of immigrateion tends in the direction of inclusion, yours tends in the direction of exclusion. Posted by: democommie | July 7, 2009 8:36 AM ___________________________________________________________ I don't think that people really understand how much of a difference it would make if we had the lower end of our service economy jobs either paying much more per hour or simply not being filled. I don't think that most young native born americans are lazy--although they do seem to have a WEE sense of entitlement. I'm quite sure that most of the "illegals" are not lazy, stupid or criminal (aside from any immigration laws they might be breaking). Tell me I'm wrong, but please don't tell me I'm wrong because some of the "illegals" are not good people. We just went through eight years of having a complete moron run this country, a native born complete moron, along with his cabal of native born fellow assholes.

Sunday, July 05, 2009

This is why I have a blog; so's I can do what I want.

I decided to put a few photos up today, because I can. the photos are mine, they are copyrighted and you can download them if you like. Please leave the copyright info on the photos. The photo of the truck in front of the silo and the photo of the farmstead and the flag were both taken near my hometown of Omaha, NE, 3 or 4 years ago. The photo in the middle is one I took from a friends' back porch. He lives on a ridge, at about 1,800' above sea level, approximately 8 miles SE of Half Moon Bay, CA. When the "marine layer" is burned off you can see the town and the coastline going up toward San Francisco.

Thursday, July 02, 2009

That was my dinner. Some nice polenta with basil, peccorino romano, a little butter a little cream cheese, salt and pepper. Served with a saute of peppers, onions, 'shrooms and zukes, and some nice little strips of top sirloin in au jus. I'd suggest a Domaine Weinbach 2003 Gewurztraminer Altenbourg Cuvee Laurence or perhaps Domaine Tempier 2007 Bandol Rosé. In any case I had a Yuengling, that wonderful chinese sounding beer from Pottsville, PA--it was AWESOME!! For dessert? An ice cream sammich! Not too shabby for a single burner hot plate, eh?

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

I loves me some summer

It's summertime and the livin' is, well frankly, life is a bit difficult, what with the economy, crazies running way too many countries and the continuing lack of any true governance by most of the government in this country--but I digress. I loves me some summer, because it's warm and sunny, first of all. Secondly, there are items of produce now available--other than cabbage, onions and assorted root vegetables--that were grown within a days drive of my local supermarket. The farmers' markets in CNY fall along an arc of pretty good to spectacular. There are, within twenty-five miles of my house, a LOT of small farms that have wonderful "truck" crops as well as a substantial number of medium to frikkin' huge orchards. Strawberries were slow in coming (both May and June were not conducive to them setting fruit, until about two weeks ago) but now they're being picked and I expect to see some excellent ones at tomorrow's market, after the warm weather of last week. Can the good sweetcorn and tomatoes be far behind? I loves me some summer, because it's baseball season and I loves me some baseball. My beloved RedSox contributed a bit to the history and lore of the game last evening, by blowing a nine run lead over the Baltimore Orioles to lose 11-10. On the one hand I think it's unsettling that the bullpen couldn't hold the lead, otoh, it's a GAME!! I know it's how the players, managers, coaches, agents, sports journalistas, talking heads (no, they are not the same thing), concessionaires, team mascots, souvenir hawkers, sports bettors, ticket scalpers, parking lot extortionists and sundry other professionals make their livings--but it is JUST a GAME!! But, hey, enought about my summerloves. Howzabout yours? Whoops, I forgot one. Al Franken IS the winner of the MN senatorial race.