Castlevania Level 9 reached

Of course as you can see from the image I went in with 3 lives. Got killed off quickly though.


But better – I can consistently get past level 6 now then to level 7 and then level 8. And this is proof I’m starting to reach level 9. So I’m half way through the 18 levels in this game. I’ll keep plugging and keep playing. See how far I can get.


So I learned the lesson – never grab the handle of a hot cast iron pan. Fortunately I didn’t grab it with my right hand, but my left instead. A small blister on my thumb, index finger, middle finger and ring finger.

I was doing another spatchcocked chicken – this one I figured I’d try the America’s Test Kitchen technique. Get a cast iron pan ripping hot and dump some oil and the chicken in.

Here’s the chicken all spatchcocked. Getting better at doing a straight line.



Ok, I have to admit the ATK recipe failed. I had to resort to other methods.

Chicken was delicious. And we had a nice Chardonnay with the meal. That’s the way to drink wine – with a meal. i think it’s what explains the French Paradox – if you’re not familiar they eat a lot of heavy fat laden dishes and yet suffer lower rates of heart disease than we in the U.S. the only difference I see is they have wine with every meal right down the preparation of the dish.

As the late Julia Child and numerous other chefs have said, never cook with a wine you wouldn’t want to drink.

Home Made French Fries

Well or steak fries in my case. It’s easy.

First wash russet potatoes and dry them. Then cut a small piece from the bottom of the potato to stabilize it and then cut down 3 to 4 slices. Then each slice is cut into 3 to 4 fries. Into cold water.

Heat oil to 350F (180C I believe) – I use a deep fryer but you can do it in a pan with enough oil and a good thermometer.

Drain the water and then into the fryer.

Fry them for 4 minutes and then remove to drain and rest. You can let them rest for some time. Then when you’re ready back into the 350F/180C oil and fry again for 4 to 6 minutes or until golden brown.

It’s awesome. Crispy outside, fluffy inside.

Here they are in their first frying. You’ll note quite a bit of steam comes off the potatoes during this fry.

And yes, that’s my voice.

Better here’s the second frying – note less moisture coming off the potatoes.

Why Racists can’t stop fighting the civil war

Interesting article exploring the roots behind the neo-nazi and white supremacists behind the Trump administration.

One question within the article is “Should the statues and other monuments honoring the Confederacy be removed from public spaces? If so, what should be done with them?”

Actually two questions. I’ll answer the first part:

Yes in fact Confederate monuments should be removed from public spaces. I’ll explain why – monuments to those who LOST the civil war tries to glorify the men who thought it was slavery now, slavery forever. Add to that the fact that most of those monuments were put up in the early 20th century and it was a time when Jim Crow was in effect and the KKK was pretty active throughout the United States. So now we know their origin.

The second part of the question as to what to do with the statues once removed – destroy them publicly.


Reading: Number of the Beast

It’s a book written by Robert Heinlein – if you ignore his central individualist message in the book it’s an entertaining read. And I’d dearly love to see this one get made into a movie.

You see a mathematics professor develops a device to translate through six spatial coordinates. So X,Y,Z,t, tau, teh and another. The t of course is time. So not only space but time – two of my favorites.

But I suspect it’s the very title of the book that puts people off from creating a screenplay from it. They’d rather go with Starship Troopers, another Heinlein book.

The Wine has arrived

So yesterday I did a round trip of 30 miles to retrieve our quarterly shipment of wine. At a Walgreens store in Attleboro, MA.

Here’s the wine:


Brought the Girasole on the right to a friends house last night. Good wine.


And you might note the Scout and Cellar labels on the wines. So long as you don’t live in Rhode Island or Kentucky you can get it shipped right to your door.


So no synthetic pesticides. That raises a slight alarm with me – there are in fact organic pesticides. But researching it allays the fears.

As the claim of being Wildly Delicious and Distinctive – I can agree. That Girasole we drank last night was quite good.

Now from old growth vines – ok. Tended by people and not mass produced.  They’ve got UPC codes on them. Tried scanning them with my phone but they’re very imprecise so there’s that. I suppose I could google them. But I know how easy it is to get a UPC code for an item. Part of my career was spent doing just that. So we’ll give this one a pass.

Now the claim commercial wines can have 16G of sugar vs. 0 added in these wines – yeah we can tell it’s very smooth and good. If a wine needs added sugar – they’ve failed. Which is why I like the wines from Scout and Cellar.

The chemicals claim – put it this way humans survive by chemosynthesis. We take in food stuff and liquids and chemicals in our body break them down into other chemicals. So we’re going to call this pure marketing fluff to the ignorant masses.

Now the final three claims I have to accept since I don’t have the methods to test it myself, other than tasting it and some anecdotal evidence that the red wines don’t give people headaches after drinking it. That’s likely the Sulfites. So one of the three can be verified to a lesser degree.

All in all well worth it. High quality basically organic wine – averages about $26 per bottle. It’s worth the premium knowing we’re getting good wine, that we’re helping out our friend so all in all a good deal.