Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Cooking For Engineers - an awesome site for you scientific big brain types.

Cooking For Engineers is a really well done recipe/cooking/advice site for people who need science to cook.  The posts are well written, amusing, and informative.  I whole-heartedly recommend it.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Okay, I'll stop tinkering with HYR for now...

I've updated my feeds and all that good stuff.  It's broken into three columns (from left to right) blog, HYR related stuff - including all HYR radio stations, and the final column is made up of links to sites that kick ass.

Thank you for your patience.  Hope you guys are having a good weekend.

Looky Maw! I reckoned me some CSS!

There's gonna be some construction and assorted good stuff going on over here at HYR.  I learned a few tricks so I'm gonna be tinkering with layout and backgrounds.  As always your patience is much thanked and any suggestions/tips and or tricks are always welcome.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

An experiment in rice, pending reviews, and assorted gibberings from the oubliette.

Waiting for student loans sucks but on the upside I've been continuing experiments in rice.  Today's experiment was particularly successful and with a few minor tweaks should become a staple dish in my home.  Ready?

Rice with pho paste in particular bo bun Hue paste (which is my long standing favorite variation of pho).  I know paste is kind of cheating when making pho but I am trapped in East Texas without easy access to Vietnamese restaurants.  Besides I'd bet you good money at least half of the pho you get in restaurants comes from paste so nyah.  All I did was add about a tablespoon-ish of paste to about two cups of water (hot water) while I was toasting my rice.  E voila!  Bo bun Hue flavored rice.  The only thing I wish is that I had lime juice and fresh basil to add to the rice.

  • Pending chicken experiment
    • Baked chicken breaded with crushed jalapeno sweet and tangy kettle chips.
  • Upcoming reviews:
    • Dragon Age: Awakenings - worth $40?
    • Randis Albion - my new favorite artist of the moment
    • Terminator 2: Judgment Day - Come with me if you want to get lunch
    • Objectified - my new favorite documentary about the design of objects
    • Deathspank - a game about dishing out justice with a firm hand
    • Bigger, Stronger, Faster - a docu about steroids.  Actually pretty damned interesting.
  • Assorted gibberings:
    • A mega-post about my march on Atlanta.  Not to raze it but to attend DragonCon.  I need to get a t-shirt that reads, "Sherman kicks ass!"
    • Food and restaurant reviews from the Labor Day Campaign.
    • Pictures
    • What is the region food of Atlanta/Georgia?  Inquiring minds want to know.
    • Who would win in a fist fight?  The Dalai Lama or Jesus?
    • My internal debate about facebook - should I take it out back and shoot my account?
Oh yeah, school starts Monday...I don't even know when, where, or what my classes are...I know I registered months ago...hmmm...

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Time...a break down of an optimal (?) 24 hour day

  • Sleep - optimal time 8 hours (Midnight to 8am)
  • Waking and getting to work - optimal time 1 hour (8am - 9am)
  • Work - optimal time 8 hours (9am - 5pm)
  • Return home - optimal time 1 hour (5pm - 6pm)
  • Dinner and assorted chores - optimal time 1 hour (6pm - 7pm)
  • Free time - optimal 4 hours (7pm - 11pm)
  • Prepare for sleep - optimal 1 hour (11pm - Midnight)
It seems so simple doesn't it?

After watching a documentary...

about the evils of Wal-Mart - it was a preaching to the choir documentary though I was glad to see they represented various sides of the socio/economic/political spectrum - I decided to figure something out;  How much can a person - namely me - working 40 hours a week at minimum wage - $7.25 make ends meet?  I'm not going to factor in what I get in grants and loans from the government for going to school and work study, I'm going to pretend that I only have a $7.25 an hour job and look at how that pay covers my monthly expenses if I lived without any bells or whistles - i.e. beer & smokes, cable internet, Jack in the Box, XBOX Live, Netflix, etc. I am going to - for argument's sake  - pretend I have health insurance.

  • Rent:  $500 (Moxie doesn't chip in for rent)
  • Electricity: $100 avg
  • Cell phone: $40
  • Groceries (for me and Moxie):  $200 (I know it seems like a lot but this is all of my meals for the month...assuming I three square a day it at home)
  • Utilities: $20
  • Credit card minimum payment: $150
  • Health insurance: $100
Now if I work a full 40 hours a week at $7.25 my monthly take home pay (80 hours minus 20% for misc taxes and Social Security) is roughly $928.00.  My monthly expenses are $1110.  Hmmm...seems like I'm $182 short. Well...huh.  I could stop paying my credit card debt.  Shit, I'm still $32 short.  Huh.  Well, I never really get sick so...look I have an "extra" $68 by cancelling health insurance!  Boo-yah Jack in the Box here I come!

I'm not exactly sure where I'm going with this exercise (besides being depressing).  I guess over the last few years my opinions and viewpoints have shifted - some greatly, some not so much.  I used to soapbox about exploiters of welfare and the damned lazy poor, etc. etc. but well I'm pretty much living my life on government handouts.  Sure I could be smart and tighten my belt and budget and pull myself up by my bootstraps.  It might not be a bad thing if I didn't have the internet or a phone, I might read a book or spend more time in the library (on the internet) or I might be a better person and spend my time helping those who are worse off than me.  All of this is something I've had on my mind and it has played into my - admittedly ignorant - political views.  I'm still thinking about stuff so please don't go troll on this post but I would love to hear some of your thoughts.

Hope you and yours are well, safe, happy, and had something good to eat today.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Going to be having a new author on HYR:

An old, old friend of mine that used to get into all sorts of trouble with me in the last Century has become a shaolin master gardener and has a penchant for cooking that might surpass my own.  Plus he takes brilliant photos of his greenhouse (the dude built a greenhouse fer chrissakes).  Cheers to ya Ben.

Lack of reviews, not eating, not cooking = not much to blog about.

Apologies folks, I know that HYR has pretty much been bone dry lately.  My inspiration has been lacking and I freely admit that I use facebook as a crutch for posting videos and the like nowadays.  I've also been very depressed and broke and suffering from chronic beer induced laziness (and living in Nac during the summer during which there is fuck-all to do plus it's 100 degrees plus outside) and that's not fun to write or read about.

Coming up though, barring any major catastrophes or financial shit storms, I will be attending DragonCon with my good friends.  My initial purpose was a surprise visit to Amanda, who as you may know is living in the Peach State, and will have her jewellery on display at the con.  But I kind of spoiled the surprise, so now she knows I'm coming.  However, it should be a good time to be had by all.  I've never been to a major convention so I'm not sure what to expect.  Truth be told I'm a little more curious about what there is to eat in Atlanta - plus there's an aquarium!  Plus, I'm excited to be going with such awesome people.

So yeah, school is starting in roughly a week or so.  I'm weeding my netflix queue and plan to hunker down with a stack of documentaries over the next few days, focus my chi, cleanse my aura, try not to be too nervous about the trip and seeing Amanda, and calling the electric company and letting them know payment is gonna be late.

Saturday, August 07, 2010

Two of my new favorite scores: The International & District 9

The International (2009) was a great conspiracy thriller with Clive Owen looking haggard, mean, and sexy.  It also boasts an impressive score done by Tom Twyker, Johnny Kilmek, and Reinhold Heil.  I hadn't heard of any of these composers but The International's score is in the vein of Jesper Kyd's Hitman scores; atmospheric, electronic, menacing, salt and peppered with some interesting non-Western influences.  The score is one of those that seamlessly blends with the settings and action on screen.  It evokes in me feelings of doing cool clandestine shit, the kind of Euro-thriller score that makes you wish that you are the wheel man, driving a graphite colored car through the sickly green lighting of a tunnel while the other occupants check the action on compact submachine guns and smoke.  Maybe there's a blade expert from Lyon absentmindedly honing a blade while watching the passing traffic, he knows enough English to curse.  Maybe there's an Austrian Turk who is monitoring the target on a Sony Vaio.  You get my drift.  A good number of the tracks don't stand well alone but work better in album listening.  The Calvini Hit has a mixture of sparse bridges, tension building strings, and a forceful bass line.  The Guggenheim Shootout is the second longest track on the album (and one of my favorite sequences in the film).  My favorite track is Istanbul which is the most "action-y" track and possibly the most Jesper Kyd-esque.  Well worth picking up.

Clinton Shorter's District 9 score is a great pairing with The International.  It's a very bleak score for a very bleak movie.  The action cues (like Exosuit) are sharp and short.  It's not particularly original - "wow I've never heard a score like this" - but it's still a great score and well worth owning...if only for Get Him Talking.

Crap I've been watching...and one or two not crap

Ah, Summer...the time of year when it's too damn hot to watch anything that requires the slightest amount of thought.  I've been staying indoors and been being a bit short on fundage.  Hello Netflix instant download.  Plus I have a new buddy who's a movie junkie and is willing to watch anything - including Single White Female 2: The Pyscho.  Here's a scattershot of what I've watched in the last month:
More reviews and editing to this post pending, the browser I am using is crappy.

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