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Kitchen Sentimentality on Fire

Posted on February 22nd, 2021

Dave!I don't have many of my mom's possessions left. The only thing I really want are the photos from our trips together, and everything else is just... stuff. The majority of her things were donated, given away, or trashed (if they couldn't be donated or given away). I held onto a few things which had sentimental meaning to me, but it's not much else because I'm not a very sentimental person.

A few things I held onto simply because they were useable and it would be wasteful to toss them. Mostly stuff from the kitchen. Some pots, pans, bowls, utensils, and pot holders were saved. One of those potholders was a Bialosky Bear "100% Loyal and True" brand that my mom didn't use for decades, instead hanging it up in her kitchen. Then the last time she moved she wasn't interested in hanging it for some reason and started actualy using it. And since it was in great shape, I started using it too.

This past week I was moving a skillet off of a burner when it sloshed on the potholder, causing me to drop it on the hot-hot burner. The thing was scorched instantly...

Holding my mom's Teddy bear potholder all scorched and burnt.>

I don't know if it's because it finally dawned on me that this was yet another reminder that my mom was gone... or that all the pieces of her left on this earth are disappearing... or what... but it was pretty upsetting. So upsetting that I went hunting for a replacement on eBay, but couldn't find one since it was made in the early 1980's.

So stupid. Had I thought about the possibility of this happening before I started using it and how it might affect me, I could have saved it. Oh well. Not much I can do about it now.

It did mean my having to buy new potholders. This time I went for fancy silicone things that can withstand absurdly hot temperatures up to 600°F!

My two new silicone potholders all pretty and red.>

No worries about staining them, I think. Just toss them in the dishwasher after you're done cooking. Nice. But not the same.

Since I had to order potholders, I went ahead and addressed another thing that's been driving me insane in my kitchen... the fact that the boxes that Reynolds uses for their foils and parchment are COMPLETE AND TOTAL SHIT and fall apart minutes after opening them...

A Reynolds Wrap parchment box completely blown apart.>

And it happens to their signature foil as well! Rage-inducing. In fact, it was so rage-inducing that the next time I went to the grocery store needing foil I ended up buying a different brand entirely in the hopes that they didn't have boxes which fell apart. And, while I was at it, I could buy the Safeway Signature Select brand and save some money too! It compares to Reynolds foil, because it says so right on the box...

A Signature Select box of foil saying Compares to Reynolds.>

Except... no. It really doesn't.

This "foil" it super-thin, really hard to get ahold of in the box, and it doesn't crumple and conform like Reynolds foil... almost like it has plastic in it or something. It's fucking awful, and in absolutely no way "compares to Reynolds." But on the plus side, the box is built like a damn tank and doesn't look like it's going to fall apart any time soon. Which begs the question... why the fuck can't Reynolds built boxes that are worth a shit if they charge so much more money for their stuff? If a cheap-ass imitation can build a decent box, why can't they?

This lead me to try a more rugged dispenser/cutter that arrived on Friday so I could buy Reynolds stuff, take it out of their shitty boxes, and put it into something that will actually (assumably) stay together...

A plastic wrap dispenser with parchment inside of it.>

It's kinda meh. I mean, it works, but it's got some problems. First of all, it relies on your wrap/foil/parchment being wound onto a big cardboard tube. You then stick pieces in the tube on both ends which sit in the dispenser. Except since parchment isn't on a tube and it wound down to a small coil, you can't fit the pieces into it. This makes it more difficult to control the cutting, which is a little frustrating while you're getting used to it. I can manage now, but it's still not ideal. What's really a problem is that it's not a square box which can be stacked. I stack up my wrap/foil/parchment up in my pantry, but this has to go in a drawer somewhere.

So I'm not sure what the solution is. I guess once I get my wood shop set up in my garage I can try building something that goes around the shitty Reynolds boxes to make them tougher?

Food for thought, anyways.

Food which can be cooked up to 600°F thanks to my spiffy new potholders.

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Sweet Cats and Disinfectant

Posted on July 20th, 2018

Dave!Jake has adapted to living at my place a little better than his sister. Where she's still nervous and runs away from anything and everything, Jake is a little more adventurous. Front door opens? Jenny runs away and hides. Jake will watch... from a distance... to see who it is. If it's me, he runs up for butt scratches. If it's not me, he will run and hide with his sister.

It's sweet.

But he's a sweet cat. Just look at that face...

Jake!

Jake!

   
Except...

My cats haven't been on the kitchen counters since I started letting them in the kitchen nearly a year ago. I was so grateful to not have to keep disinfecting my countertops. Then... for whatever reason... probably chasing a fly or whatever... here we are...

Jake Busted!

Time to pull out the scrub brush and cleaner, I guess.

And speaking of cats named Jake... Fake Jake is still around.

Yesterday I was testing my lawn sprinklers so I can figure out why parts of my lawn are brown. Little did I know that Fake Jake was wandering through when the sprinklers activated. He was Not Happy. I decided to show him some love to cheer him up...

Jake!

Jake!

Jake!

And now?

A new season of Trial and Error is starting! Woo hoo!

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Well Hung!

Posted on September 1st, 2017

Dave!A while back I talked about adding more National Parks Posters to my collection because they were on sale for a price too good to pass up. When they arrived, I took the opportunity to re-frame everything, then relocate them from my storage room to a wall on my stairway.

It was a good plan...

Dave's National Parks Poster Plan

At least it was a good plan until the new frames I ordered showed up.

Re-framing, wiring, and hanging a dozen posters is a lot of work.

Too much work. Especially when you have to be precise when wiring and even more precise when hammering in the hangers so that everything will line up once you start hanging. It took days of nights to get it all sorted.

But it ended up being worth it because the end-results are magic.

It's tough to get a shot in my narrow stairwell, but you can get an idea...

Dave's National Parks Posters!

Dave's National Parks Posters!

   
I think I can squeeze in two more... but I worry about the frames ending up too close to the handrail. I guess we'll see once I've visited more parks.

Oh... and if you want to grab some of Rob Decker's beautiful National Parks posters for your own home, they're on sale over Labor Day weekend at his site, so now's the time to do it!

And... speaking of hanging... I finally found a print I like for my guest bathroom that fits in with the Robert Lyn Nelson underwater posters I've already got in there...

Sea Creatures!

Kind of nice to have artwork and photos in my home that are by somebody other than me!

   

Ultra Mega Super

Posted on November 15th, 2016

Dave!Last night was Ultra Mega Super Moon night. As usual when celestial events are going on here, it was rainy and overcast. Fortunately, I can still bask in the glory of last year's Regular Super Moon that happened on a rare clear night.

Today was more of the same. I've been buried in work and struggling to see daylight just as I was struggling to see the moon last night.

And speaking of things I long to see... have you seen the trailers for Moana? Some of the most gorgeous computer animation I've ever seen. There have been several clips released already, all of them jaw-droppingly beautiful...

The hair dynamics are beyond amazing...

And THE WATER!!! HOLY CATS!

It doesn't hurt that it looks funny as all getout...

And it's got a chicken in it...

Moana is in theaters on November 23rd.

   

Relief

Posted on November 11th, 2015

Dave!After months of stress from waiting...

I just don't know what to do with myself now that it's over.

Get drunk, I guess.

That seems to be my answer for everything though.

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Davolution

Posted on May 16th, 2015

Dave!The little photos that accompany each entry on this blog are 15 years old today! Thanks to my friend Meagan for creating the custom-made photo booth that made it all possible.

I should probably update them one of these days, but I can never seem to bring myself to get rid of something that's been a part of Blogography since it began in 2003...

Oldblogography

There were originally 25 shots. I whittled them down to 17 for my blog. An 18th image was added of me flipping the bird in late 2003 when I found out I desperately needed one...

Dave! Dave! Dave! Dave! Dave! Dave!
Dave! Dave! Dave! Dave! Dave! Dave!
Dave! Dave! Dave! Dave! Dave! Dave!

Last week when I realized that the 15th anniversary of Meagan's photos was coming up, I pulled all the photos of me posted to this blog and arranged them in ascending date order.

A whole lot of Dave can be found in an extended entry...

→ Click here to continue reading this entry...

   

Workicide

Posted on June 2nd, 2014

Dave!I came back from Tampa too soon.

Or not soon enough.

Despite driving 2-1/2 hours directly from the airport to work and then putting in six hours at the office before going home yesterday, I was still swamped today. I was so buried that I ended up working from 4:30am to 1:00am.

Needless to say, writing in my blog is the last thing I want to do after 20-1/2 hours of work.

Nuthin'

Well, maybe not the last thing.

But close to it.

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Knitting

Posted on May 8th, 2014

Dave!My drive to work is only five minutes long.

Coming and going each day I see more ridiculous crap on the road than should be possible in such a short commute... and yet, every day I am reminded that nothing is "impossible." People wandering all over the road because they're busy talking on mobile phones. People driving off the road because they're texting. People driving at insane speeds for a residential area. People driving half the speed limit and not giving a shit that they're backing up traffic. It never ends.

And today I saw a woman KNITTING WHILE DRIVING.

I shit you not.

She was all "knit one, pearl two" with her hands and somehow steering using her forearms pressed against the wheel.

I need to get a mountable video camera and start a YouTube channel.

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Rabbit

Posted on December 10th, 2013

Dave!Last night when I finally got home I had a heck of a time getting any sleep, despite being completely exhausted from a week of travel. One would think that I'd have a residual dose of Eastern Time Zone to speed me to Dreamland but, alas, no dice. I probably managed two hours of actual sleep, at most.

Tonight appears to be more of the same, which is unfortunate given that I've got a very long day ahead of me tomorrow. No matter what I do, how many remedies I try, doctors I see, pills I take... sleep just isn't in the cards for me any more. It's as if my insomnia was only playing around with me for the past decade, and now its decided to get serious.

Which means I'm undoubtedly going to end up seing more doctors... perhaps even a sleep specialist... because the excuse of "Maybe your body doesn't require much sleep!" doesn't play when you're getting less than two hours a night. Four to six hours? Maybe. At least then I wasn't tired during the day. But today I was dragging so badly that I ended up slamming a "Five Hour Energy" drink to get me through it. Which I don't usually do, because they throw off my sleep routine. But what difference does that make if I'm already off?

One of the doctors I saw several years ago believed that over-stimulation is the driving force behind so many people having insomnia now-a-days. We're constantly busy... constantly occupied... constantly connected to the internet... and constantly overwhelmed with information that winds up our brains and makes sleep difficult. This sounded logical, so I stopped all television/computer/electronics activity after 6:00, and spent the next four to five hours each night reading a book until I was ready for bed.

I tried it for two months.

And it didn't make a lick of difference.

Even when I added a cup of Sleepy-Time Tea to the deal.

But I did get a lot of reading done, so there's that.

And it was probably a better use of time than falling down a Wikipedia rabbit-hole while trying to remember all the Whoopi Goldberg movies you've seen.

Which has been what's occupied the last two-and-a-half hours of my evening.

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Grey

Posted on November 27th, 2013

Dave!First there was "Black Friday."

And now, because the holidays simply aren't consumer-driven enough, tomorrow we're getting "Grey Thursday," formerly known as "Thanksgiving." Stores will be opening up for "pre-sales" so people can go shopping instead of having to spend time with their families. This has sparked a massive outcry from a lot people who think the holiday is sacred or something.

Personally, I don't give a shit. I try to be thankful for everything I have every day and I don't need a day set aside to remember to remember. My plans for tomorrow are to fly out on a work trip, which is nothing new. I've worked on Thanksgiving for as long as I can remember... even in the good ol' days of big family dinners and Thanksgiving celebrations.

But that's my choice, and I'm not alone. Most people I know who work on the holidays just arrange their celebrations and family time around their jobs. This includes people who work at hotels... restaurants... gas stations... and other service-oriented businesses that typically stay open for Thanksgiving. It's just the way it is, and has been for a very long time.

But now that Wal-Mart and Target doing it, people are losing their fucking minds?

A hotel clerk works on Thanksgiving and fuck 'em. But a Wal-Mart cashier works on Thanksgiving and the world is ending. I'm trying to wrap my head around the logic there, but am coming up empty.

All I know is that so long as our society continues to respond to the consumerism of the holiday season, retailers are going to accommodate them. There's money to be made, after all.

And this being America, that's something to be thankful for... isn't it?

   

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