CSGL – Blowing This Taco Stand

So, I’m going on a little vacation to Northern England. I’m leaving this weekend. It’s sort of a solo trip, except I’ll be staying with and kicking it around with my aunt who lives there.

I’m going to be flying into Manchester, and spending some time there on my own, and then spending time around Yorkshire. I’m going to go to many pubs, many curry houses, and walk through many gardens.

There will be photos. All the photos.

And when I come back . . . . big changes.

I’m very excited for the next month or so. More to come.

100% Official – Not Dying!

I officially, 100%, no question or doubt have beaten the pre-cancerous condition I was diagnosed with last April.   To celebrate, I’m going to go drinking tomorrow evening after work with as many friends as dare to show up.  That it happens to be Amateur Drinkers’ Night is an unfortunate coincidence.

If you want the where and whens, email me and you can come have the booze with me.


I Survived Pi

So, yesterday being 3.14, Kayphore decided that she would like to have some friends participate in a bit of healthy competition of baking, and have us bake and bring a pie to her place for sampling, conversation, and drinks.

I had never baked a pie in my life.    I decided I wanted to try a caramel apple pie.   And then, because I am an over-achiever, I also decided to make a banana chocolate cream.  Of course, I went the super cheating lazy route and I bought my pie crust.   If you take issue with that, well, all I can say is Suck It.

My Pies
My Pies

I would definitely call this a learning experience.  If I had it to do over again, I would have used about half as much caramel in the caramel apple.   It was just way too gooey.   And I learned that when you’re making a pie with pudding, you only need the small box.   So, you know, good to know.

At any rate, there were a total of 10 different pies at the party, and I sampled them all.   I have to say, that was a bit rough on the system.    We weren’t even taking full slices, but about three slivers in, I was already full.

The Carnage
The Carnage

All in all, it was a very delicious day, but I’m glad that Pi only comes once per year.  I still have a bit of a headache.   I went to the gym this morning to try to help burn off some of those excess calories, too.

Oh, and I didn’t win any prizes, either.   Lame.

The Girls all Sugared Up
The Girls all Sugared Up
Pali Loves Pie
Pali Loves Pie
Kayphore Loves Pie
Kayphore Loves Pie
Zabba Loves Pie
Zabba Loves Pie

Oh, but I did end up taking home a sock monster.  His name is Bob.  He’s my new companion.

Man my head hurts.

Just sayin’.

For Science!

I have been cooking a lot lately.  I don’t know if you’ve noticed.   It’s actually for science.   

I’m trying to save money.  Stay tuned for the big reveal about what I’m saving for.    So, I’m trying to see if the theory that I will save so much money if I make my own food is true.   I sort of think that maybe that might not work out, since buying for one is a lot more difficult than shopping for a family.   It’s hard to buy just enough, without it going bad, and I can’t buy in bulk.

Also, I’m trying to see if I lose any weight if I eat less “restaurant food”.  I have been about 5-10 pounds heavier than I would like to be, which isn’t that big of a deal, but I’d like to get that back down.   So, we’ll see how this goes.  

It’s hard to say how much money I am or am not saving, however I can say that I’ve lost a couple of pounds already.   

Of course, for other reasons, I also haven’t had any beer in the last week, so that might be responsible, too.

Anyway, with that said, here’s some pictures of a quiche I just made.

Of course, that’s for tomorrow.  I’ll let you know how it tastes.

Just Kind of Cheerful

Do you ever have those days?  The days that start off unremarkably.  Alarm goes off.  You open one crusty eye.  Realize that the sun is up, The Clash are on your iPod, and it really is time you should be getting in the shower.   And then, the next thing you know, you’re in  a great fucking mood.   For no reason.   No reason, whatsoever.

Yeah . . . I’m there.

All day, just kind of with a light, effortless smile on my face.   Even when work got a little challenging, I was still cheerful.   

Sunny, even. 

I have no idea where this good mood came from, but I sure hope it lasts.   There’s nothing better than being alarmingly happy.

Just sayin’.

Atrocities of a Vegetarian Nature

There are certain dishes that I should not be able to make vegetarian versions of.   In some cases, even I must admit that it just seems wrong.   And yet, it is possible, and so I do it.   And I am not ashamed of myself in the least.   Regardless of how I have spit in the face of the lords of meat dishes, I cannot be anything other than fully satisfied with myself.

(Is the Jane Austen voiced narrator in my head showing?)

Anyway, all of this is brought on by the fact that as I am typing this, my room is being filled with the scent of vegetarian shepherd’s pie.   Yeah . . .I know.   A thousand Englishmen just screamed out in abject terror.  

It’s a layer of vegan meatballs.  (I know, right!)  Peas, carrots, and green beans.    Vegetarian brown gravy.  (Eeeeh, gads)  Topped with garlic, cheesy mashed potatoes.

And what’s worse, all those things either came frozen, powdered, or boxed in some manner.  

Go ahead!   Verbally flog me!     

But I probably won’t be able to hear you over the sound of my own chewing.

Just sayin’.

Playing Games

I’ve been mentioning this soccer team, but I haven’t really explained what it’s all about.   It is the source of many good laughs and more than a few bumps and bruises.  

It all started around Thanksgiving time, when Pedro gave me a  call to recruit me.  He explained that he was starting a team that would play in Alameda.  It’s a coed 30+ league.  I thought it sounded like an excellent way to meet new people, and to meet new beer, as there is a beer pub at the sports facility.  Oh hell, let’s face it, I wanted to meet men.  I told Pedro as much.   

So, our season began in January, and I’ve been having a very good time with it.   I love to play, and am remembering my competitive streak.   The first game was very difficult, and I was huffing and puffing and miserable.   The next few days were terrible.  I was sore and stiff all over.  It hurt to sneeze or cross my legs.  Oh, but it was all worth it.   Of course, we had our asses royally handed to us.

In fact, we have yet to win a game.  We tied last week.   It was as close as we’ve come.  Perhaps this week will be the one. 

So, on Friday evenings, I go and run about and get kicked Everywhere.    It’s the most fun I’ve had in ages.   Even when it hurts and I’m out of breath and smell awful.    At least there’s beer in the end.

Just sayin’.