Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Third time's a charm

Our team played again last night (get used to it, every Monday night). This time we actually had five and a half players. Mr. sprained ankle didn't get it checked out, and he was hobbling around - but he's good enough that his hobble works (heck, he scored 5 pts and got a couple rebounds w/out ever jumping).

I finally played a reasonable game. I was 4/9 from the field and had 11 rebounds. It felt good to not be a liability.

We totally crushed the other team - there was another big guy on our side, so we completely dominated the boards. At one point the score was 40-12. Then they finally started playing some aggressive defense - stealing some of our lazy passes. We still won by 15.

Friday, January 27, 2006

Even Better Than Fast Tying Shoelaces

Wow, this was fun. A new way to fold your shirt. It's even cooler than when I found out a fast way to tie my shoe laces.

Second Game

This past Monday my basketball team had its second game of the season. Only four people showed up (well, five did, but the fifth guy had just sprained his ankle that morning and couldn't play) - which is just enough to not forfeit the game.

The other team was better than the first guys we played, but they certainly didn't play very smartly. With an extra guy on the floor the entire time, they should have run circles (well, passed circles) around us. They finally started doing that at the end of the game, but didn't really pull away even then. We ended up losing by 10 or 12, which is pretty good considering they outmanned us.

The real stat that is sticking with me was my amazing performance. I went 2 for 14 from the field, and 0 for two from the line. I don't think I've shot that bad since I shot an air-ball in my first game in fifth grade. I've got to go to the gym to find out my other stats for the game (rebounds and assists), but I'm sure they're about as stellar. I guess that's to be expected after three years of not playing, but it's still a bit disheartening.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Slick Mouse

This mouse will be available in March. Looks real slick, and it does address all the issues I have with carrying a mouse and a laptop.

Bluetooth stuff costs too much (this is $70, which is close to the realm of possibility). It stores inside your laptop (cool), recharges while stored (nice, no batteries to replace), and just seems cool.

The only downside I can see so far is a lack of a scroll-wheel. None of the reviews I've seen have mentioned that capability, but I'd definitely miss that if it's not available.

Sunday, January 22, 2006

A Stitch in Time...

Saves having to rip up your new hardwood floors.

So, we had hard wood floors installed almost two years ago. They extend into the half-bath in the master bedroom. Long story short, the wax ring didn't quite seal all the way (evidentially, about 1" didn't seal along the front). Now we have several wooden boards that have begun to rot out, and I even had shelf-like fungus under the porcelain base.

I'll be sure to make sure we have plenty of wax next time.

Saturday, January 21, 2006


So, I sat down and watched the Dukes of Hazard. It's about what I expected (garnering a 16% approval rating on rotten tomatos).

THe special on the DVD with the special effects (about jumping cars) was pretty good. THey basically just catapulted the cars hundreds of feet - all sorts of cars. That'd be a kick ass job for sure.

Oh, and the bonus of the movie was that Wonder Woman was in it.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Random Shooters

I joined a basketball team at the club. They threw together a team of guys who didn't have their own team, and we're called the Random Shooters.

Anyway, last week was the first game. I showed up, bought my black and white jersey, and walked into the gym. My team was on court #1. I walked in and saw a bunch of newborns throwing a basketball at the hoop. Some guys who'd actually gone through puberty were playing on court #2, so I double checked the blackboard - yup, court #1. I bet that I wasn't going to be expecting any alley-oops from the munchkins, so I grabbed a ball and headed to the other side of the court. Sure enough, a couple of other guys were shooting around who looked like they had driver's licenses for a little while. I was obviously the elder of the team, and probably the slowest, definitely the heaviest.

Turns out, the opposing team was a bunch of freshmen from a local high school. We have no idea if they were on the high school team or not, but they played with heart.

No matter. We crushed them, nearly 70 to somethign like 30 points. We out-rebounded them, out shot them, played zone (which I don't think they'd ever seen before), and generally dominated. It really wasn't fair.

I did fairly well, especially considering I hadn't played a real basketball game in probably 3 years. I probably could have scored a little more if I dragged my butt down the court, but I felt it was better to "play deep defense." And I missed half a dozen short shots, and missed a number of assists because our guys didn't cut to the hoop. Oh, and I brought the ball down like the point guard I never was.

Next week we'll hopefully play a team who wasn't in diapers this decade.

Sunday, January 08, 2006

Three Songs

I've now learned a third song (two variations) to play on my hammered dulcimer. The song is: "Mississippi Sawyer" - it's yet another reel (that's the timing of the music, as opposed to a waltz, or a jig, or ...). The lessons on CD are good, and I'm getting pretty good at reading the tablature. However, the author of the series has definitely deviated from the tablature on a couple of occasions. The first time was just three notes, but for this song, the two examples of variations for part A are complete wrong. They might be acceptable sound-wise (hard to tell when I'm trying to play them), but the do not match the music on the CD at all.

Though, perhaps it is because my dulcimer is further out of tune...

Saturday, January 07, 2006

Lemons (and limes)

Mmmmm.... lemons.

Well, it is winter, and that means citrus fruits are in season - and the Meyer lemons are at their peak. This lemon is a little less acidic than the standard lemon - it also has a hint of orange. Anyway, it's got a nice mild taste.

So, what do you do with lemons?

No, it's not summer - you don't make lemonade in the winter.

You make lemon curd. Mary loves lemon curd with fresh gingerbread. What lots of the recipes don't tell you is that it's safest to cook lemon curd in a double boiler so that you avoid curdling the egg (read that as avoid making lemon-flavored scrambled eggs). If you happen to scramble a little bit of the egg, it makes the lemon curd very lumpy and unappetizing. I've tried using a wire mesh strainer, but that really doesn't work well because the holes are just too small. What works really well is a food mill.

But I bought a ton of lemons. There's only so much lemon curd you can eat between two people. What do you do with the rest of the lemons?

For some reason I've wanted to make preserved lemons for a long while now. Much easier than lemon curd: you just stick some quartered lemons into a jar and with some good coarse salt. After a week (or a month) they're ready to be used. I've no idea what they taste like, though I imagine perfumey and exotic. I think I'll probably try making this salad. Whether or not they taste good, they are beautiful.

I also had a few limes that needed to be used. In Mexico I found a drink I really liked. It's not your standard lime drink - as opposed to flavoring with the juice, it is just flavored with the zest. You take the zest and soak it in water (with a little sugar). That's it. As opposed to the acidic limeade flavor you normally get with limes, it is much more subtle and complex. In a way, it's kind of like drinking rose-water, only with a lime taste. The zest from 3 limes finely grated, half a cup of sugar and a quart of water makes a tasty drink. Let the zest soak for 10-15 minutes or longer, and strain out the big pieces.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

A New Sport

Perhaps now that baseball and softball are out of the olympics, there will be room for a new sport.

Monday, January 02, 2006

Go Figure

What I don't understand is how the RIAA can get all pissy about the pricing of the music CDs, but it's sister company (the MPAA) lets folks buy their products for almost half (it's easy to find recent releases for under $10, try to find an album from the last 15 years for that).

A music CD can't cost nearly as much as a movie, yet you can buy them for half the cost. What the hell is up with that?