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calendar   Saturday - December 28, 2019

Holiday Recap, And If You Don’t Play You Can’t Win

Ok, I’m back. I was forced - forced I tell you - to take a few days off the blog due to holiday activities. We went to the annual Christmas Eve blowout at the cousin’s, and it was wild as always. Tons of food, loads of people. Much noise, much fun. Much alcohol. Got in at least 8 kinds of fish plus lots of everything else. I walked in the door and out came the butter and the bread knife, and this year’s giant loaf I made was eaten up in less than 10 minutes. Her cheesecake was the centerpiece of desert, although those guys were still out in the backyard frying up more fish and squid at 11pm. They go all night. Too much for us. Managed to get home at 3 minutes til Christmas. Did our own Christmas morning opening stuff - I really miss having a dog to “help” with the unwrapping; cats just aren’t into going wild with the piles of gift wrap - then went up to mom’s for a good long visit. Mom really scored this year, with so many things to open that she needed a break. Got back here late in the evening and happily slept until 10:30 the next morning.

And then we baked some more. She made yet another cheesecake - bless our Kitchenaid mixer, it really does the job - to take to our new friends at Cheap League. I made a batch of pretzels for them too, but they suffered a baking mishap so I only brought them two. The damn things glued themselves to the baking sheet, which I now have to soak for a day or so to try and get the crusts off. Pretzels get dipped in lye; that gives them the pretzel flavor. The lye water is caustic. In the past I’ve had brown parchment paper from King Arthur, but lately I’ve been using the white parchment paper that I can get locally. It’s not the same. Back in April, my last batch of pretzels stuck to the paper.  I didn’t use any this time, and they stuck to the baking sheet. Either I have to order a roll of the brown stuff, or try using one of those silicon sheets. I have two somewhere around here. But even with part of their undersides torn off, the pretzels were a big hit. If you like soft pretzels, my recipe is about the best you’re ever going to find. It’s a lot of work, but once you have one you’ll never be satisfied with a store made pretzel again.

~~~

And that brings us, finally, to bowling. The other team didn’t show up last night, and they didn’t pre-bowl. Oh sure, one of them kept calling the alley - “wait for me, I’m on my way” - but he never got there. So we had to roll against their absentee scores. We lost the first game by just a few points, and then went on to win the next two. Our newbie teammate made the 4-7-10 split, a holiday miracle. I called it, crudely, when her ball was halfway down the lane. She was thunderstruck; her ball just kissed the 4 pin and then got the 7, and the 4 pin slid slowly across the deck, not even wobbling, and dinked the 10 pin and they both fell. It’s one of the harder splits to make and a real thrill. So that was awesome. A while later my wife won the score match card game and won the pot that had accumulated for a month. $160. Sweet! The game is simple: Early in the third game a couple bowlers are selected to pick a card from a deck. It’s value, 0 - 9, counts as the first number. The second bowler picks a card from another deck. The two numbers together make up the winning number, and the matching scores from Game 2 win. So if a 5 and a 4 are drawn, then the number is 54, which means scores of 54, 154, and 254 are winners. Even with 40 people playing the game, most of the time there isn’t a match, and everybody’s weekly $1 just stays in the pot. So that was an awesome thing too.

The two of us were up at the lanes yesterday too. I gave her a new pair of fancy bowling shoes for Christmas and she had to give them a try. The place was crowded in the mid afternoon, and the lanes were burnt; used up. Our balls were hooking massively; I had to stand 5 boards over to even make my line, and still the ball was going Brooklyn most of the time. So it was crazy, but fun. I put on my robo-brace for more fun, and was able to rev the daylights out of the ball. And I guess I’m finally ready for it, because the throw felt right, and I was able to keep that feeling and get a bit under the ball last night at Cheap League. So my hook is getting stronger. I’m happy with that.

Our team’s scores weren’t anything astronomical, but they were good enough. So we took the night 5-0. Not 5-2. Like I said, the other team didn’t show up, so they forfeited. Bowling uses an “earn the points” method, which means that if your team is a no-show, you won’t win any points even if the other team can’t beat your absentee score. If you don’t play, you can’t win. And you still have to pay for that night too.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 12/28/2019 at 09:16 AM   
Filed Under: • Bowling BloggingHolidaysChristmas •  
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calendar   Tuesday - December 24, 2019

Merry Christmas To All

Merry Christmas

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I don’t want to post about politics today. Or about crimes, or murders, or any of the other depressing garbage that is news in the world around us. Instead I want to wish all of you the best possible holiday, with peace, love, and happiness. And lots of extra patience for dealing with your guests who might turn out to be really annoying.

Ok, I think all our packages have arrived. I know I’ve got everything wrapped. Laundry is done, the kitchen isn’t a disaster and the garbage is out. Time to make two loaves of bread and some mincemeat bars. As always, we’re off to her cousin’s Christmas Eve event this afternoon, and then up to my mom’s place tomorrow. That’s a lot of driving. 250 miles for both round trips. Better top off the gas tank too. Do I have time to get a haircut? Oh, and I need to get some German beer, so I can whip out a batch of pretzels for Friday night. I guess I can sleep Saturday? At least we’re getting a break in the weather; it’s not that cold out and the chance of snow or rain is really really slim. Good.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 12/24/2019 at 08:56 AM   
Filed Under: • HolidaysChristmas •  
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calendar   Saturday - December 21, 2019

Holiday Thanks

Two things I’m really thankful for this time of year, when it comes to wrapping Christmas gifts.

The first is my endless gratitude to whoever it was who first put the grid pattern on the back of wrapping paper. My friend, you are a life saver.

The second is for the large 9” Fiskars Razor Edge scissors. The Dressmaker Shears. You can get them in lots of places locally or online. They work. Period. We keep a special pair in the wrapping paper bucket, which never get knocked about or nicked up from other household snipping tasks. We have several other similar pairs around the house, I’ve got their poultry shears in my toolbag, and we have the special ceramic sharpener for them too. A few passes through the sharpener, and these things really are razor blades. Zero effort to slice off long smooth cuts of paper; you barely even need to squeeze the handles or push the blades. They fly. About $20 and worth every penny.

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I guess I should add quality cellophane tape to my list, like the Scotch Magic Transparent stuff. So far I’m doing Ok with the dregs of a couple rolls we got the other year from the dollar store. But the Scotch stuff is way better.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 12/21/2019 at 04:10 PM   
Filed Under: • HolidaysChristmas •  
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calendar   Sunday - December 27, 2015

third christmas

First we did the Christmas Eve party at the cousins, with dozens of relatives and friends.

Then we did Christmas Day here with a dozen more relatives.

Now we’re taking a day trip to do Christmas once again with a few more of them.

Then when we get back here this evening, Christmas will finally be over.

And we can start the loop all over again for New Year’s!!!

Oy.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 12/27/2015 at 09:28 AM   
Filed Under: • HolidaysChristmas •  
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calendar   Friday - December 25, 2015

Christmas Morning

Merry Christmas to all, and to all a day free from political argument. That’s going to be hard to do.



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See More Below The Fold

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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 12/25/2015 at 10:28 AM   
Filed Under: • Eye-CandyHolidaysChristmas •  
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calendar   Thursday - December 24, 2015

merry christmas to all.  well, don’t kno bout all. ok. libtards too cos it’s the season.

I don’t imagine there are many folks surfing today. Especially late as it is here. Late for me that is. Dark, rainy, cold and only 4:30.
Of course, where Drew and Vilmar are, it isn’t yet noon.  I guess there are lots from different time zones.

Might not be anyone at all tomorrow, Christmas day. But what the heck .... even if just one person happens by it’s worth the time to wish that person and all the truly great folks here at BMEWS, a (hopefully) very Merry and Joyous Christmas.  You are an outstanding group of people and apologies if that causes any embarrassment.  But it really is true.  If I have any complaint with you, it’s that none are in public office.  Not one that I am aware of is even interested.  And what a damn shame that is, because I do honestly believe and no smoke blowing here, that you folks are way brighter than the powers that be who rule us.  And btw, how’d you let that happen?  It isn’t the fault of Bush after all. It’s yours.

Hey ... your country needs you.

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Posted by peiper   United Kingdom  on 12/24/2015 at 11:31 AM   
Filed Under: • HolidaysChristmas •  
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crivens

Neighbor called me up this evening, tells me my car’s trunk lid is open. And we’re having a deluge. Of course. So I grab a jacket and run out and check, and it’s not my car, it’s hers. So I close the lid, thank you kind neighbor, and I’m soaked. And the rain stops. Mostly. I’m very glad we’re having a bit of a weather anomaly right now, because we’re getting a solid week of rain, still needed from our rather dry summer. But if it was cold, and all of that was snow instead, we’d be buried. Kind of just like last year. I don’t want to go through that again, ever.

Right. So I get dry, get some food in me, and go off to my evening job. And it starts to rain again, but not so hard. And the driver’s side power window gives out, 3/4 closed. Rats. Won’t go up or down. Well whaddya want? The old Satrun is 19 years old with a quarter million miles on it. Bound to be some issues sooner or later. And you know stuff like this always happens when the weather is lousy and when your time is short. Like the day before the big holiday weekend. So I taped a couple of plastic bags over the door, and we’ll drive her car this time. I’ll figure out how to fix the thing, or at least get the window closed.

And now, it’s time to go to sleep. First thing tomorrow, shopping! And returns! And trips to the grocery store! And housework by the ton!! Woo hoo, guess who won’t be sleeping late tomorrow?? Me!! Crap. 


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 12/24/2015 at 12:15 AM   
Filed Under: • HolidaysChristmas •  
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calendar   Saturday - December 27, 2014

Holiday Survivors

I get most of today off I think. Got a chance to sleep late, and then we can kick back a little and do a bit of laundry and cleaning here. Then it’s time to run over to Allentown Pennsylvania to go to a AHL hockey game. Which means my Saturday cleaning work will get pushed back to Sunday, so Sunday will be pretty busy. And then by Monday it ought to be business as usual once again.

We gave ourselves a nice Christmas present at Fun League last night. Once again we had the bye, playing against ourselves. So instead of carefully throwing just minimum scoring games to win points and temper our averages, we relaxed and just bowled really well. Seriously, the hardest part of bowling is not letting it eat up your head from inside. Everybody threw at least one Deuce (200+ game). I threw a 638 series, bracketing a careless 169 with 2 games in the 230s. Definitely my best series so far this year. We beat our team average by at least 100 pins in each game, so we took all 7 points with ease.

I think all the Christmas goodies have been eaten up at this point, other than the cheese and crackers. We took the sushi, the sea scallops, the wine, the soup, the deserts, the artisan breads, and even another tri-tip steak to my mom’s, where we ate like princes for 2 straight days. I guess we really did buy too much food. 


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 12/27/2014 at 10:02 AM   
Filed Under: • Fine-DiningHolidaysChristmas •  
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calendar   Wednesday - December 24, 2014

Christmas Repast Repeat

Christmas begins in just a few short minutes here. We got the last Christmas Eve reveler out of here maybe half an hour ago.

I’ve been going all day; breakfast this morning was a free coffee and half a bagel, under the canopy outside the fish market, waiting for them to open, along with a half a hundred others. At 7 o’clock in the morning. We were 2nd in line so we got our stuff and hightailed it. 17 hours later and I’m just about run down.

Everything was a success. The sea scallops with pancetta and avocado were great. The sushi we made was great; tuna, salmon, hamachi sashimi, Inside Out rolls, California rolls, and a roll for each kind of fish.  The cold shrimp plate, awesome. There were clams on the half-shell, yum! And squash! My brother’s recipe for cream of celery soup worked out, but only after I stopped halfway through and got as much carrot out of it as I could. Too overwhelming. After that it was fine. And when we finally got around to making the tri-tip beef, all the “oh God, I’m so full I couldn’t eat a thing” people suddenly had an appetite again. And ... bang, zoom ... the whole big steak was gone, just like that.

But the biggest hit of the night was really the sort-of crab dip. Go figure. They were fighting over who got to take some of the extra home.

Sort-Of Crab Dip

1 (8 oz.) pkg. cream cheese
1 c. sour cream
1 very large handful shredded Mozzarella cheese (most of a 6oz package)
A dozen big shakes Parmesan cheese
1 small onion, finely chopped, or about 1/3 of a medium yellow onion
1 - 1 1/2 c. chopped sealegs, seasticks, crabmeat or shrimp (250gm, or half the package)

Unwrap a dozen sealegs and chop the heck out of them. Mix all ingredients as best as you can by hand with a fork. Bake at 375 degrees, uncovered for 10 minutes. Now everything is warmed up and soft, so mix it properly now with a fork. Back in the oven for another 25-30 minutes, at which point the onion will fade into the background. Serve with crackers or thin slices of bread.
You could EASILY get by just making half this recipe.



I see that Christmas snuck up on me while I was writing this, so I’ll sign off now.


Merry Christmas To All, And To All A Goodnight




And tomorrow we pack up all the extra food and take it to my mom’s, so they can get a fancy holiday meal in too. And presents!


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 12/24/2014 at 11:57 PM   
Filed Under: • HolidaysChristmas •  
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God Bless Us, Every one

I’ll not even try to comment on this from The Great Communicater:


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Posted by Christopher   United States  on 12/24/2014 at 10:25 AM   
Filed Under: • HolidaysChristmas •  
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calendar   Monday - December 22, 2014

Cooling Off And Going To Bed

Hoo boy.

Ok, the cheesecake is cool now. Wrap it up and put it in the fridge to mature. She likes them “white”, so to her this one came out perfect. I like them browned a tad on top so I think it’s underdone. Whatever. Best tip ever for folks using the water bath method of cooking cheesecake: Go get a roll of extra wide tinfoil, so you can wrap up the springform pan with one seamless piece. No leaks that way. And use a big roasting pan as the bathtub itself. Two teakettles full of boiling water gives you enough depth to moderate the oven temps. ( she made a regular size cake in a 10” spring form pan. It floats! )

The next bunch of mincemeat bars is done too. The “test batch” lasted just over 2 days before we nibbled up the last of it. I threw a shot of Grand Marnier in the mix and a handful of brown sugar, and got them out of the oven on time. I’ll leave them uncovered overnight, then wrap them up tomorrow.

The test batch of lobster bisque was a failure. Ok, call it canned crab bisque, since lobster is too expensive to experiment with. Fine. It just didn’t taste so good. I’ll make my brother’s cream of celery soup instead, and do scallops with pancetta and wasabi avocado for a fishy appetizer. That’s easy, and it’s very impressive.

Fine. Off to bed. More to do tomorrow.

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Yes, I’m keeping an eye on the news. I am so pissed off at NYC Mayor deBlasio right now. And I saw it coming with those two poor NYPD officers, especially after the “we want dead cops now” rally the other day. The line has been reached, and now it’s been crossed. Which is why you’re seeing the “look at us, having a peaceful, prayer filled vigil, community support” and all that BS, when yesterday these same baboons were flinging poo through their cage bars. They’ve just figured out that they’ve pushed things too far, and realize the pendulum is going to swing back the other way. And it’s a damn big pendulum.

Not that any of that is going to slow down the worst of these animals. OMG. OMG, OMG, I want to do the most un-Christian things to these evil sickos. Father and son in the bunch too. Ewww. It’s going to take a mighty big can of Raid to clean out those roaches.

Early morning update: watch the oon change the tune. Just like I said.

Our city is hurting, we are hurting. Today we mourn the loss of two NYPD officers who were gunned down in a vicious act of senseless violence.

As soon as news broke of the tragedy in Brooklyn, I spoke with both the families of Eric Garner and Michael Brown. And let me be perfectly clear, we are all outraged and saddened by the deaths of these police officers. Any use of the names of Eric Garner and Michael Brown, in connection with any violence or killing of police, is reprehensible and against the pursuit of justice in both cases.

I don’t buy this crap for a second.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 12/22/2014 at 12:18 AM   
Filed Under: • HolidaysChristmasNews-Briefs •  
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calendar   Saturday - December 20, 2014

Game Of Holidays

Holiday Oath

Christmas approaches, and now my work begins.

It shall not end until the last leftover is properly stored after the holiday weekend.

I shall blog few posts, bowl no games, read no books.

I shall take no naps nor spend time on any frivolity.

I shall strive and sweat to complete my tasks.

I am the cleaner of the dark corners.

I am the scrubber of the walls. And the floors.

I am the carrier of big things to the garage.

I am the mover of furniture.

I am the one who dusts and vacuums the high spots.

I am the chef that cooks fancy things for the ravening hordes of relatives.

Later on, I will be the hanger of pictures, the placer of holiday decorations, the wrapper of gifts and the guy who knows where the extra tape is.

I pledge my energy and my focus to this Holiday Event, for this day and the several days to come.



And that’s my plan for the next couple of days. Busy busy busy bee. See ya!


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 12/20/2014 at 11:35 AM   
Filed Under: • HolidaysChristmas •  
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calendar   Wednesday - December 17, 2014

So say we all!

Macker, didn’t take me long to find this:


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Posted by Christopher   United States  on 12/17/2014 at 07:42 PM   
Filed Under: • HolidaysChristmas •  
Comments (1) Trackbacks(0)  Permalink •  

Make it so!

I know. I’m going to BMEWS hell for this!

Just for Macker, I’m still looking for a Battlestar Galactica version.


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Posted by Christopher   United States  on 12/17/2014 at 07:24 PM   
Filed Under: • HolidaysChristmas •  
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Not that very many people ever read this far down, but this blog was the creation of Allan Kelly and his friend Vilmar. Vilmar moved on to his own blog some time ago, and Allan ran this place alone until his sudden and unexpected death partway through 2006. We all miss him. A lot. Even though he is gone this site will always still be more than a little bit his. We who are left to carry on the BMEWS tradition owe him a great debt of gratitude, and we hope to be able to pay that back by following his last advice to us all:
  1. Keep a firm grasp of Right and Wrong
  2. Stay involved with government on every level and don't let those bastards get away with a thing
  3. Use every legal means to defend yourself in the event of real internal trouble, and, most importantly:
  4. Keep talking to each other, whether here or elsewhere
It's been a long strange trip without you Skipper, but thanks for pointing us in the right direction and giving us a swift kick in the behind to get us going. Keep lookin' down on us, will ya? Thanks.

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