Monthly Archives: November 2009

Tidbits :: Saturday, November 21, 2009

The New York Times on Cleric Wields Religion to Challenge Iran’s Theocracy : ‘In recent times, Ayatollah Montazeri has kept up the pressure,
taking the unprecedented step of apologizing for his support for the
1979 takeover of the United States Embassy. “Independence,” he
said in a recent speech on ethics, “is being free of foreign
intervention, and freedom is giving people the freedom to express their
opinions. Not being put in prison for every protest one utters.”‘
Steve Lawson on Rethinking Reviews: “So the art of writing reviews was about giving people an insight into something that hadn’t yet experienced, and couldn’t experience unless you bought them. It was meant to be impartial, educated and the trust was cumulative… That independence of mind is lost if I start writing reviews of things I don’t really love as favours. ”

The Prosciutto, It is Ready


Photo of Earl and the wild pig prosciutto taken by Ms. Jen with a Nokia N97.

Fri 11.20.09 – Today, neighbor Earl and I decided it was time to take down one of the two pig legs that have been hanging to cure in his garage to see if they were ready to be eaten yet. Earl was the guinea pig to see if it was good and not moldy/botulism-y/etc and he determined it was ready to be eaten without harm, the point that his sister and friend both had slices.
My brother and his friends went hunting up at Tejon Ranch in February of 2009 and bagged two wild pigs*. I requested and received two of the legs so that I could see if I could make prosciutto.
Wild, organic, slow food experiment = successful.
I plan on taking the other leg down around Christmas time.
*****
* Wild pigs or boars in North America are not native, but are escapees from farms. Most of California’s boar / wild pig population are domestic pigs that escaped from Central Valley farms from the 1880s -1920s. Unfortunately, they are a menace to wild landscapes and are environmentally unsound to native ecosystems, so California has a 365 day 24/7 hunting season open on wild pigs to help restore the native wild space and keep the pig population down.

This Evening

Crescent Moon
Photo by Ms. Jen with a Nokia N97.

Thurs 11.18.09 – While walking Scruffy in the late afternoon, early evening, aka around 5pm, I spied this lovely crescent moon through the boughs of a eucalyptus tree while waiting for Scruffy to make a deposit.
When we returned home from the walk it was fully dark and I found myself slightly sad. I love this time of year and am not normally affected by SAD, but tonight a weight of the last few weeks piled up on me – Grandpa Bill Hanen’s passing, the resulting family stuff, all the activity of the L&D wedding, work projects, and loneliness.
Most of all, what looms like a big ‘ole hawk watching a small industrious rodent’s hole waiting, just waiting, is The Holidays. If you come from a many times divorced family and further fractured by the years & infighting like both of my family sides, The Holidays get Stressful Fast™. This year doesn’t even have to be bad, but all the years of fracture, pressure, and atomization build up and continue to reverberate.
To me, multi-generational intact families are a like a lovely, rare artifact at a museum, and I just spent 3.5 days at a lovely museum watching Families that Actually Like Each Other, Laugh Together, and Do Stuff Together. It was amazing, but even more poignant given the passing of the 10 Second Grandpa™.
Last Wednesday night, the night before leaving for the wedding and the night before Grandpa Bill Hanen died, my Dad called me as I was driving home from an errand to discuss that what the plans would be when Grandpa died. Since the Hanens have all the family togetherness of 3 billion year old Quarks moving away from the Universe and each other at the speed of light or faster, I made sure that my Dad knew that I wanted to make sure if Grandpa passed before I got home from the wedding that they were to make sure that all the family got invited to a memorial and not tell me about it after it happened.
My Dad assured me that after Grandpa was cremated that he would have the funeral folks put some ashes in a small vial to give to me so that I could have my Grandpa stick around for longer than 10 seconds. How did we go from ‘Don’t forget to invite me to the memorial service’ to ‘Cool, I get a my very own vial of ashes’?
Six days later, I am tired and sad. Sad for reasons that can’t be listed here. Tired for way too many activities packed into too few days. I am going to log off now and read a book for the rest of the evening.
In the meantime, can someone loan me a rifle or bb gun so I can shoot or shoo that evil Holiday Hawk away from the entrance to my lair?

This Morning

Local Seal Beach Camellia on Seal Way facing the Alamitos Bay Local White Rose dotted with lovely dark rose pink & dew or sprinkler water.
Photo by Ms. Jen with a Nokia N97.

Thur 11.18.09 – Now that the hot, dry SoCal summer (July – Oct) is behind us, the roses are in full busting out all over bloom. Southern California has two good growing seasons, one from February to June and the other from October to December, and if you are within a few miles of the ocean December and January are very kind to one’s plants. Go a few miles inland and there will be the occasional frost in December that will piss off the basil and flowers. Go many miles inland and Nov. 15th to Feb. 15th is frost time.
Here in Seal Beach, where we are on the Pacific Ocean, the local roses, camellias, and other spring flowers like pansies, violets, and snap dragons are having their second big bloom of the year after being seared into non-blooming compliance during the hot, dry months.
From now, mid-late November, until April are my favorite months of the year in SoCal. From late April to early November, I would rather live quite a bit north of here, like the 50-54th parallel line. ;o)

Tidbits :: Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Tiffany B. Brown on On Mobile Context : “When developing mobile applications, we should ask: What do people need to know? What kind of device can they afford? What are the technical limitation of that device (physical size, screen size, input capability, battery life, available memory)? How can we build an application that works well on such a device?”
To Tiffany’s list, I add: “What do people need/want to do?”