jbsegal: (Default)
It's an annual ritual, I know, but one I could live without.

We're 5 weeks from Baitcon and we haven't come near making our minimium
numbers as yet. If you're planning on coming, PLEASE rsvp asap?

http://wp.baitcon.org/baitcon-xxvii/registration-payment/

Thanks,
JB
jbsegal: (Default)
... when you walk out the door, see the other side of the street empty for street sweeping and your heart sinks because you think you parked not-your-car there and now it's gone, but you have to get to something else so you don't have time to stop and think about it. And then on the way to that something else you lose your keys, so you go walking back and forth between home and Davis scanning for your keys (and not pausing to look for the car because of course it's been towed...) and HAPPILY you manage to find your keys, which someone picked up and brought in to their office, which wasn't the office you were going to, but then you have to go to work - half an hour later than planned - and then you have to tell the owners of the car what's up, because you need the license plate number to check on its status, and of course that conversation is no fun "Your car? Either towed or stolen. What's your lic. plate number?"
And you get the number, and you call the local tow-mafia and... they don't have the car. "You should call the cops and ask them." and you do, and they don't, either.
So you start tagging people around you to try to look on nearby side streets, because maybe you're just too tired and stupid to ACTUALLY remember where you parked?, and one of those very kind people manages to find the car, around the corner from where you thought you'd left it and it's safe and sound and suddenly ALL the stress can leave your body, and you collapse?

Yeah, me neither...

A list

Apr. 26th, 2017 04:11 pm
jbsegal: (Default)
It's long, but it's not (yet) a meme )
If you know of more I forgot, let me know...

Edited: 2017/04/26 and re-crossposted.
jbsegal: (Default)
The invitation is now live and registration is now open for our 2nd take at Baitcon XXVII, D.M.I.C.

We're back at The Abode again, and as promised last year the dates are 23-26 June.

Details, the invitation, and the reg link, as ever, are at http://wp.baitcon.org/

We hope you can make it! If you have any questions, please ask away, here, or in mail to bcc.

JB and all of BCC


[community profile] baitcon is also a good place to chat.
jbsegal: (Default)
From mom's house. Portrait by Bev Zuk

jbsegal: (Default)
When you finally get around to doing your taxes (Hey, at least it's > 24h in advance of deadline (when I started, at least)) and you get to the Filing part of it, and the online system you're using locks up, such that you can't actually DO the filing... and when you log out and back in and try it again (having to repeat only a few minor steps, luckily), it locks in the same place.

I'm sort of going to assume their ops folks are NOT happy right now and I'll try again tomorrow, but STILL...
jbsegal: (Default)
There are times that I really wish I could even consider the idea of living in a moderately or even extremely remote setting with gorgeous views and surrounding nature.

However the idea of more than a month in such a setting has me getting ready for a walk in to Davis to be surrounded by people.

(Thoughts from both the Subject's eponymous show, as well as things like All Creatures Great And Small.)
jbsegal: (Default)
So, I wasn't hosting a seder this year, but I was planning on providing soup and charoset at one, one which ended up not happening.

Subsequently, I've had a lot of leftover soup and matzah ball mix, and charoset left over.

Soup: I've noted elsewhere: "I have always started with an initial boil of various lengths (Mom called for 2-3 hours), I've varied over the years from that to ~6) that produces something that's never right to begin with - no matter whose meat/water/veg proportions I use.
It's then strained.

It's worth noting that even when I've precisely followed Cooks Illustrated's recipe precisely, this 1st boil has always completely failed to produce something that is like soup to me. I'm... always sort of perplexed by this. Ok, utterly confused."

This year, being the year of the Instant Pot, I decided to start with iPotted stock, via http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2017/04/pressure-cooker-chicken-stock-recipe.html - modified by adding dill and a parsnip, subtracting the garlic, and taking the celery out after the 1st batch, because it wasn't right.

... and by 1st batch I meant 1st 3 batches. Thanks to [personal profile] kimberlogic and [personal profile] ahf, I had 3 pots to work with, and then did a 2nd run for 6 batches in total, 12Kg chicken, and just about 12q of water. I believe what came out of the 1st boil was something like 12-12.5q of broth, and about 1q of shmaltz. Yes, more stock than water.

... And that stock was... still not right. Tastier than average for my 1st boil, but still not what I want for my end product, or even for a soup I'm ready to eat then. I still don't understand it at all.



As for matzah balls, when I got home from the emergency backup seder I went to on Monday, I boiled up a batch as the seder had been sadly soup-free (but otherwise lovely!) and I wanted some.

They were rocks. They're usually dense, but this was ridiculous. Also, somehow despite all the salt I'd put in, they were nearly salt-free in taste.

Over the next couple of days, I asked everyone with experience for their matzah ball recipe. It seems to be that mom, back when she was giving me the full instructions for her seder experience, halved the amount of fat that goes in to them. I went and added enough extra fat to bring them in line with normal recipes, and more salt.

And then I went and asked if anyone had ever pressure cooked matzah balls. The answer is Of Course They Have, and [personal profile] tamidon pointed me at http://foodsforlonglife.blogspot.com/2017/03/instant-pot-matzo-ball-soup.html and so, mindful of the caution [profile] pookfreak had about not overboiling due to the time bringing cold soup to boil, I brought the soup to low pressure and immediately opened it, then added the mix. 15 min high pressure, quick release... voila, they were _excellent_. Ok, still not enough salt, but other than that...


On to the haroset: 1# of Macintosh (4 small) to .5# of Granny Smith (1 large), 1# walnuts, WAY more nutmeg than I usually add, due to an more-aggressive than I'm used to grater, cassia, and wine... worked excellently! MAYBE a bit less nutmeg, or a bit more cinnamon.


And FINALLY! Allison was feeling driven and stripped off all the chicken meat (cardboard as usual, as its been boiled free of ALL its flavor, fat, etc.) so I contacted old family friends for the chicken croquettes recipe that for years was the standard destination for such chicken meat in my childhood. I got that yesterday and haven't yet had a chance to make it - it's just a thick white sauce, mix in the shredded chicken to the right texture, bread (or matzah meal) and fry. I hope to do this soon.

So yeah, despite not actually serving food to people, I've had good progress this year in making everything better for next year. Yay!

(NOW let's see how this wall of text looks when it's cross-dumped to FB. No cut.)
jbsegal: (Default)
This post includes at least some of the body of the post. The interesting thing for this one - as it's a 'link post' that I included the body in to - is how much of the body and then does it pay attention to
Read more... )
This is outside the cut.

I suppose if I had a more of a clue about RSS, maybe I'd know what to expect.
jbsegal: (Default)
... via IFTTT.com and their RSS feeds. Let's see if it works...
jbsegal: (Default)
There will never be a good time to say this so I'll just say it now.
My mother, Judy Segal, died this evening, fairly suddenly and completely unexpectedly.
I expect the funeral will be on Sunday, but that's not certain yet, though it absolutely will be in Pawling. I will be heading there tomorrow (Friday).

What any time between now and the 27th looks like, I have no idea as yet. At some point I'll probably do something like sitting shiva. At some other point I'll probably hold a farewell celebration, also in NY.

Offers of practical help - "I've been through this and can try to answer questions for you when you have them" - are very welcome. Of especial interest is anyone who's dealt with a house with a reverse mortgage on it.

Anyone who knows people who want a collection of old Star Trek fanzines should also let me know.

Please feel free to share this with all who knew her.

Judith Z Segal - 9/25/1935-11/17/2016




jbsegal: (Default)
I know I say this every year - including noting that I say this every year - but it's more true than ever at the moment:
We have a minimum we need to be able to afford to do this, while paying our contract with the site and we need that minimum well in advance.

That deadline is approaching. Please! If you're intending to come to Baitcon this year, hie yourself to the website and register soon.

Hope to see you there!
jbsegal: (Default)
The invitation/registration for Baitcon XXVII is up and running.
We invite you to stop by wp.baitcon.org to check it all out.

If you've never been to Baitcon before, please contact us before registering.

I'd also like to call out right now that we're less than 2 months out from the date now... As ever, we have a minimum registration number that we have to meet by a month out to be sure we're able to do it, so please register soon!

I hope to see you there!

JB (and the rest of BCC)

Dreams

Feb. 10th, 2016 05:40 pm
jbsegal: (Default)
I almost never remember having dreams, let alone what they are, so this one was multiply odd - odder still that I remember it 9 hours later.

Basically, it was an extended period of hanging out in a (very dark?) house, trying to convince the very nice but very persistent vampire couple who lived there - but who I never actually saw, just felt in the dark - that no, they really didn't want to bite/feed on/turn me. Were I to relax and stop insisting/preventing, they would've gone ahead with it and I didn't want that.

They might've had a cat, too.

I FEEL like I was half awake for most of this, but that it took forever for me to get to the point of "I am REALLY not enjoying this, and if I wake All The Way up (say, by getting up and going the bathroom) I can probably not pick this up again when I go back to sleep", and in fact that worked.

It wasn't a nightmare, as much as an extended stress-ball of a thing. It certainly Means Something.

{sigh}

Loneliness

Jan. 24th, 2016 09:01 pm
jbsegal: (Default)
Much of the time these days, I feel almost desperately lonely minutes after the last person in my physical vicinity leaves.

An even more disturbing thing, I think, is that I often feel pretty darned lonely when I'm surrounded by people. Not always, not all people, but...

I need to fix this. I have no idea how.
jbsegal: (Default)
Somerville, MA
Boston, MA
Seattle, WA
Wenatchee, WA
Sunnyvale, CA
San Francisco, CA (2 locations)
Troy, NH
Foxborough, MA
West Springfield, MA
{Munich Airport}
Prague, CZ (2 locations)
Elmshorn, DE
Copenhagen, DK (3 locations)
Vejle, DK
Slagelse, DK
Pittsfield, MA
New Lebanon, NY
Danbury, CT
Northampton, MA
Fairlee, VT
Falls Church, VA

That's one SF convention, 4 square dance events and (for CZ, DK) surrounding tourism, a work trip and surrounding tourism, 2 family trips, a getaway weekend, {a napcab in the airport during an extended (unplanned) layover}, and Baitcon

Star Wars

Dec. 31st, 2015 01:23 am
jbsegal: (Default)
Finally just saw TFA.

I'm very happy. Will see again.

Now, what commentary have I missed that I should go back for?
jbsegal: (Default)
I just spotted an Infinity-Heart tattoo on the neck of an employee of Vermeer during a How It's Made segment on circular hay balers.
http://www2.vermeer.com/vermeer/NA/en/N/

I'm amused.
jbsegal: (Default)
I just totally broke down crying at a touching cinematic father-son moment... and this on a movie I've seen before. (About Time)

I think the last time I was hit like this was by Big Fish.

Mostly, I'm ok with the relationship my father and I never managed to have. Until I'm not.

{sigh}
jbsegal: (Default)
I have a double double in the main hotel in a quiet block, Fri-Sun nights.

I'd really like to not have to pay for the whole thing myself. :)

I have one bed and some floor available. The floor space will be about 1/2 of what the bed space costs, but we can work out all the details later.

Let me know if you're interested, or if you know someone I don't who might be.

Comments screened, so be sure I know how to contact you if you comment here...
jbsegal: (Default)
"Soda fountains on the Lower East Side would mix up a batch of Droste's cocoa, egg whites, and real cream, daily. One batch each day. When it was gone, there were no more egg creams that day."
--- from a comment on http://www.wsj.com/articles/why-you-should-order-the-egg-cream-1441313172

I need to find a recipe for this syrup.
jbsegal: (Default)
> I’m late because I have a weird aversion to changing circumstances.
>
> Not sure what the deal is with this, but something in me is strangely appalled by the idea of
> transitioning from what I’m currently doing to doing something else. When I’m at home working, I
> hate when there’s something on my schedule that I have to stop everything for to go outside and
> do. It’s not that I hate the activity—once I’m there I’m often pleased to be there—it’s an
> irrational resistance to the transition. The positive side of this is it usually means I’m highly
> present when I finally do haul my ass somewhere, and I’m often among the last to leave.

Wow. This happens to me WAY more often than I want to think about, including to the level of "Nah, I just won't go."

(From: http://waitbutwhy.com/2015/07/why-im-always-late.html which describes other of my time-based failings, too, but with much less of a "This!" reaction.)
jbsegal: (Default)

Baitcon 26 will be held on August 28th-31st, 2015
at the Mountain Campground of the Abode of the Message.

Why Change the Date?
The severe snow and ice this winter has impacted everything in the Northeast – roads, public transportation, roofs, buildings of all sorts (both inside and out), school schedules, etc. Last week, the Abode staff shared some concerns about the potential impact to our site due to the weight of the snow on various buildings and structures and also the possible ground conditions in June. As we are always the first event of the Mountain Campground season, many assessments and repairs are often in-progress during our event. This year, it seems more than likely that many spaces may be unusable even in late June.

Why August?
This was the only available Abode’s only other available weekend this summer. Our new date, much like our traditional date, is sandwiched between many wonderful things. This year, Baitcon 26 will be right after Worldcon and right before Burning Man and Labor Day weekend. This unique date offers us all a chance to experience the Mountain Campground at a different time in the summer, celebrate before kids go back to school.

Registration will open in late May this year. The same go/no-go condition we always have for Baitcon will still apply despite the date change: we need at least 120 paid adult registrations to meet our minimum attendance guarantee and go forward with the event.

We know that many of you many have already planned around our traditional late-June date. We’re sorry about that and we hope you can still join us this year. If you have questions, please email us via this address: exec AT baitcon DOT org

jbsegal: (Default)
On the fluffy side: If they ever let NPH not host, they're idiots.
But I wouldn't be posting if it was just that.

What I mainly came here to say was:
Holy SHIT, Glen Campbell's "I'm Not Gonna Miss You" - written after his alzheimers diagnosis - is a total gut punch of a song.

www.youtube.com/watch

If you have lost anyone to dementia/alzheimers/degenerative brain disorders... I strongly suggest sitting down 1st.

Wow.

jbsegal: (Default)
NBC is running the 1st Saturday Night Live tonight... and of course the 1st musical guest was Janis Ian, of who I'd never heard until reading
[personal profile] roadnotes' zines for ApaNu, where she regularly referenced and quoted her.

{sigh}

jbsegal: (Default)
I want to write something long and thoughtful about the Mourner's Kaddish and the problems it presents for an atheistic Jew such as myself, especially in concert with the amazing powers of ritual and tradition, but I know I won't get around to writing such a piece for quite a while, if ever, so in the mean time, I'll ask all the appropriate y'all... what do you do about this?

(The very short form is that the Jewish prayer for the dead says nothing at all about the dead and instead spends all its time praising God. I didn't really /get/ this until years after it was seared in to me as the Thing You Say when remembering the deceased and anything else _feels_ wrong. I've looked at various Humanistic versions of the Kaddish and none of them feel like What You Say... but
Exalted and hallowed be God's great name
in the world which God created, according to plan.
May God's majesty be revealed in the days of our lifetime
and the life of all Israel -- speedily, imminently, to which we say Amen.

Blessed be God's great name to all eternity.

Blessed, praised, honored, exalted, extolled, glorified, adored, and lauded
be the name of the Holy Blessed One, beyond all earthly words and songs of blessing,
praise, and comfort. To which we say Amen.

- to quote 90% of it - is not what I'm looking for, similarly to how Ecclesiastes 3 (To every thing (Turn, turn, turn)...) isn't, either.
jbsegal: (Default)
I'll be flying to Seattle on Friday, Jan 23, and out (to Wenatchee (iata:EAT) (and then on to Quincy)) on Sunday, around 4pm. I'm staying at the Ace Hotel and haven't yet decided to rent a car.

On Wednesday, I'll be flying EAT->SEA->SFO and driving down to Sunnyvale, where I'll be staying Wed and Thu. night.

I'll have a car, and be at loose ends, from Friday after work until Sunday, 6:30pm, when I fly SFO->SEA->BOS.

The only square dancing I've found during those times is:
Interlocked Squares, Cupertino, on Thursday (I'm not sure I'll be able to make it, there might be work obligations, or not...)
... and I THOUGHT there was something on Friday, but I can't find it now.

I have no idea where I'm staying for that weekend.

Who wants to do things? What things should I be doing?

Books, 2014

Jan. 1st, 2015 03:44 am
jbsegal: (Default)
Remember when I said "(I received a Kindle for the holidays, as I bought the $10 Song Of Ice And Fire special that Amazon had a month or 2 ago. That might either really speed me up or slow me down… Ok, it'll certainly lower my velocity in terms of completed books for a while... but compared to last year? Will I even notice?)"
Yeah. That, and many other things, dropped my total through the floor.

Also, my record keeping got worse. I don't believe this is complete, but I don't know what's missing... mostly comics, most likely.

Martin, George R.R. George R. R. Martin's A Game of Thrones 5-Book Boxed Set. Bantam, 2012.
Wrong, Less. Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality.
Herriot, James. All Creatures Great And Small.
Herriot, James. All Things Bright And Beautiful.
Vaughn, Brian K. Saga, Volume 4. Image Comics, 2014.
Layman, John. Chew Volume 7: Bad Apples. Image Comics, 2013.
Layman, John. Chew Volume 8: Family Recipes. Image Comics, 2014.
Carey, Mike. The Unwritten Vol. 5: On to Genesis. Vertigo, 2012.
Carey, Mike. The Unwritten Vol. 6: Tommy Taylor and the War of Words. Vertigo, 2012.
Carey, Mike. The Unwritten Vol. 7: The Wound. Vertigo, 2013.
Carey, Mike. The Unwritten Vol. 8: Orpheus in the Underworld. Vertigo, 2014.
Azzarello, Brian, and Cliff Chiang. Doctor 13: Architecture and Mortality. DC Comics, 2007.
Foglio, Phil, and Kaja Foglio. Girl Genius Volume 13: Agatha Heterodyne and the Sleeping City. Studio Foglio, 2014.
Sakai, Stan. Red Scorpion. Dark Horse Books, 2014.
Wegener, Scott. Atomic Robo Volume 7: Flying She-Devils of the Pacific. Red 5 Comics, 2013.
Clevinger, Brian. Atomic Robo: Real Science Adventures Volume 1. Red 5 Comics, 2012.
Willingham, Bill. Fables Vol. 20: Camelot. Vertigo, 2014.
Carey, Mike. The Unwritten Vol. 9: The Unwritten Fables. Vertigo, 2014.
Carey, Mike. The Unwritten Vol. 10: War Stories. Vertigo, 2014.
Fforde, Jasper. The Eye of Zoltar. New York: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2014.
Tayler, Howard. Schlock Mercenary: The Body Politic. Hypernode Press, 2013.
Maupin, Armisted. The Days Of Anna Madrigal. Harper, 2014.

Beds 2014

Jan. 1st, 2015 03:35 am
jbsegal: (Default)
The list this year is shorter than last year by a couple, but almost the same.

Somerville, MA
Boston, MA
New Lebanon, NY
Troy, NH
Fairlee, VT
Foxboro, MA
Lake Buena Vista, FL
Danbury, CT

I'm kind of dissatisfied with the rut, but the 1st 6 are going to happen again this year, the 7th won't (probably), the 8th might vary back to Brewster NY, or someplace nearby, but be effectively the same. The work trip in late Jan will add at least 3 and probably 4 cities...

I don't feel like I have significant wanderlust, except that it seems I do... {sigh}
jbsegal: (Default)
Unless something changes - and that's always possible - we intend to haul the contents of a 10x10 storage unit to a different storage unit, and we need some folks to help do this. We'll have a truck, and we need you to help load and unload it.

We hope to start around noon, and I don't expect that this will take more than 3 hours?

Most of this is already packed, there are flatbeds (and elevator where needed) on either end.

I feel like 3 more people is a maximum we'll need to have this go fairly smoothly.

I don't know what the right amount to pay for this is, but this is a paid thing and we'll provide some food, too.

We'll be starting in Medford/Somerville and ending in Stoneham.

Comment here, or mail me (jailbait, gmail) if you're interested.

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