when I look back on my ordinary life

The lesson is: save early and save often! gmail sorta crashed up my browser (it really can be a firefox killer) and I lost all the fun and wit of my post. For a moment you think, “F_ck it, I’m not gonna bother posting now!” – but of course I come crawling back 30 seconds later, besides, it’s been a while since I had my usual long rambling posts about what the hell’s happening with me. I did need a little bit of a break from it, I’m not sure I could be a daily entry kind of person. Not that much really happens, and while commenting on stuff in the news is interesting, it’s not as if people haven’t already seen it. And some facts people have seen not only on the news sources themselves, but posted and re-posted in a million other blogs because they assume that you won’t know about it yet.

But according to the outline of the previous post in my head, I’d spent a few words on the journal versus livejournal thing. I took the “linkback” off of the posts that go over to LJ because while some people didn’t mind clicking off, there were plenty of “LJ people” that were a’scared’ed to leave the warmth and security of their /friends page and … I’m not sure really. Seemed like a lot of my comment sections were for other people to talk to each other in unrelated topics to the original post. And there’s already something out there for that… e-mail, instead of me getting a little *ping* everytime someone says something to someone else.

Still, first and foremost, this is still for me, a diary. A public diary, sure, but I’m not really forcing it peoples’ faces as much as they see it lying around and know that it isn’t necessarily private if they want to flip through a few pages. I do write some things purely for others to read, but a lot of why I write is that I want to look back and realize “Oh wow, I guess I did do something then.” David Sedaris has a passage where he writes about realizing the mortality of his mother, and while he writes a journal, it’s more along the lines of “Had steaks with mom.” and he wanted to be able to look back and think, “what steaks?” “where?” – just to have more detail while also avoiding the standard “my life is such shit, you’re the only one that understands” angst entries.

My recent retail therapy has consisted of clothing, books, and a new printer. The printer blows my old thing out of the water, however it was 8 years old. My family treats printers like Hondas, we rarely get them new and we use them until they fall apart on us. The new one is USB/Ethernet/Wireless capable and spits out sheets so fast, it’s hard not to squeal over it. It also has the PictBridge thing, but I rarely print direct from the digital camera. While it wasn’t an “out of the box” set up to wireless functionality (you have to plug it in via USB or Ethernet first), it still took less than 10 mins to get it going, it took longer to peel off the protective plastic sheeting from around the outside.

I’ve finally put my jeans through the ringer so much they’re starting to vintage themselves, unfortunately one pair decided that the best place to fray and rip would be right under my left ass-cheek, so it’s time for new ones! I have some on the way from American Eagle along with t-shirts, and some tees from Threadless (they were having a sale). I had to break down and admit that my waist size is not what it once was and go up in my search. Which was good in that I can find more availability in discount buys, but still a little depressing. If I go back down, will I have to invest in stronger belts…? Probably, yeah. Damn, more shopping.

One of the books I picked up recently was The Best Light Recipe, from America’s Test Kitchen. It’s not a diet cookbook, which I don’t think I can stomach any more of. In fact, in the foreword, Christopher Kimball says that he didn’t even want to publish the book, since most light recipes taste horrible and he’s more a fan of common sense and portion sizes. But he challenged the cooks to make him a light cheesecake recipe that tasted good before he’d ok work on the book, and they did! I’ve started small, literally, since many of the recipes don’t make much, something I like. Over the past few weeks, I tried their recipe for hummus, which isn’t bad, replaces a good portion of the tahini with water, but still comes out as smooth, I think a little less lemon juice next time though as it’s got quite a bite. But that could also be from my extra garlic thrown in — and there ain’t no one that can stop me! The fresh tomato salsa recipe was much tastier and that took only 3 days to vanish from the fridge between snacking with chips and and a brunch omelette.

My next cooking excursion (experiment?) will be a triple chocolate mousse cake, fingers crossed. It’s the first time I’m trying something like this and it’s to bring to a small dinner party and this ain’t no light recipe, but hopefully it will be fun to make.. and eat! I’ve got a neighborhood wine tasting tonight, so the cake is tomorrow’s project, but if I have time I’ll swing by the store before heading home tonight to pick up ingredients. There’s a lot of fussing with egg whites and whipping them into stiff peaks, and while I’m fairly familiar with the phrase “stiff peak” – my experience with it has very little to do with egg whites. Pictures forthcoming, should it turn out nicely. The beauty of it is there’s only one baking step, the rest is chilling, so I’ll be able to use the oven for dinner and not worry about not touching it like when I make cheesecake.

I’m sitting here listening to Jamie Cullum and flashing back to the concert. It’s still like one of those experiences you find hard to put into words. The 930 Club really is the perfect venue for concerts, with general admission you have the option of getting right up in their face or keeping a little distance but still being really close to the artist. Jamie plays “not yer father’s” jazz, he drinks Guinness onstage, he’ll back up and sing a note he didn’t quite hit, then blames it on his smoking, he gets the audience singing (the entire club doing 2 part harmony was pretty amazing), he jumps around the stage, starts banging on his piano for percussion or plucking the strings inside by hand when he likes. And almost every song had a great instrumental break that just went on and on and you could tell that the band was just having fun with it. He played for over 2 hours, and I found it hard to believe some people were leaving even before the encore! I’m only a little bit sorry I didn’t buy a CD there for him to sign, but it would have been late and cold out, and I know my ride wasn’t willing to wait that long. In her words, “Don’t be silly, you don’t even know what to DO with a CD anymore.” Not true, but given that I buy most of my music online, it was apt.

With the new season is coming the re-evaluation of what’s fun and what isn’t. There are some regular things that I might ease off of, or stop doing completely. I played poker with friends and acquaintances this past Friday after a nice Happy Hour at Halo and while I walked away with more money than I came with, I feel like I could have easily found more fun blowing my $20 at Halo or heading over for Bear Happy Hour. On the 5 W’s scale, the what and why were winners, the who, where and when were at about 1/2. I’ll be the first to admit that there are some people that I have unresolved issues with, but generally I’m polite enough to keep it under wraps in public, or at least around those that are completely unrelated to it and might be made uncomfortable by it. And when I’m trying to have a good time, I surely don’t need it in my face, even when it’s poker where, sure rattling someone is part of the game, but attempting to go for the jugular isn’t cool, especially when you keep trying after you miss.

Poker is just a particularly bad recent example though, there’s bowling and gaming and other things that will see different involvement when the weather changes and it’s more fun to get outside on a weekend, or arrange something more easy-going on weekdays after work. I also need to start saving up my money for the beach! I got a savings account with Bank of America’s Keep The Change, but I still need to squirrel away some dollars and cents on my own so I’ll have money to throw around when we get up there.

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  1. September 25, 2006

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