Yeti loves to sit in the puddles in the tub, which causes his coat to get matted. And unlike Cleo, he can’t be bribed to sit still for extensive grooming.

Yeti snoozing, belly fur exposed

So in mid-Spring, we take him to Canine Showcase for a trim:

Yeti after his 2017 summer haircut

As usual, I’ve done my research for the upcoming election and written up my notes to share with the rest of the class. I’ve given my conclusions, and invite you to come to your own. Even if we disagree on every issue, I’m happy if this saves you a headache.

San Jose Inside has A Voter’s Guide to California’s 17 Statewide Ballot Measures and Santa Clara County Voter’s Guide to All 32 Local Ballot Measures.

Measures submitted to the voters )
As usual, I’ve done my research for the upcoming election and written up my notes to share with the rest of the class. I’ve given my conclusions, and invite you to come to your own. Even if we disagree on every issue, I’m happy if this saves you a headache.
  • President and Vice President of the United States

    Thanks to our electoral system, there are only two viable choices for President, protest votes are ineffectual, and often regretted. How many Nader voters are happy with their choice in 2000, after George W. Bush got us into a $3tn war in a country that posed no threat to us? If you want more than two choices, I commend your attention to FairVote, who support electoral reform that would give us more possibilities. If you want to make a stand, demand of your representatives that they commit to reform that will make more parties viable, so we can have more than two choices. And if you’re tired of the concept of “swing states” altogether, check out the National Popular Vote compact.

    No matter what you see in the polls, the election belongs to the people who show up to vote; in the UK, people got complacent and wound up with a vote for Brexit that is inflicting ongoing damage to their economy. Please be sure to vote.

    Just in case you haven’t already made up your mind... )
The rest of the offices )

As usual, I’ve done my research for the upcoming election and written up my notes to share with the rest of the class. I’ve given my conclusions, and invite you to come to your own. Even if we disagree on every issue, I’m happy if this saves you a headache.

Political information cut to spare your sanity )

[livejournal.com profile] obsessivewoman suggested we try a beef tenderloin this year, so I reserved a couple of 7 pound roasts at Safeway and picked them up on the 23rd. We spent a while on the America’s Test Kitchen web site reviewing different recipes (which vary wildly) and eventually distilled it down to this:

The night before the party:

  1. Remove the silverskin, but not the chain; recipes also suggest that one can simply segment the silverskin to avoid it shortening during cooking and curling the meat, much like cooking calamari.
  2. Tie the roast with twine every 1½–2 inches, folding the tails over to achieve uniform thickness and trying for as cylindrical a profile as possible.
  3. Set it on foil and cover it in kosher salt (about 1½ tbsp).
  4. Close the foil and put it in the refrigerator overnight.

On the day of the party:

  1. Two hours before cooking, remove a stick of unsalted butter from the refrigerator to soften.
  2. 20 minutes before cooking, heat oven to 300°F.
  3. Remove roast from refrigerator and blot dry with paper towels, removing any remaining salt.
  4. Rub butter all over the roast (¼ stick should be enough) and then cover in low-salt Montreal steak seasoning. (Every recipe we saw for tenderloin managed to cover it in either butter or olive oil.)
  5. Place the roast diagonally on a baking rack on a cookie sheet; it’s too long to fit in a prime rib roasting rack.
  6. Insert meat thermometer and begin roasting.
  7. At 105°F, remove the roast, flip it over, and replace it in the oven.
  8. At 120°F, pour olive oil in a saucepan and begin heating on medium high.
  9. At 125°F, remove the roast from the oven and immediately bisect it. Sear each half in the olive oil, 1 minute on each side.
  10. Let the halves stand, tented in foil, for ¼ hour.
  11. When carving, remove the chain first and slice that onto a separate platter in 1–1½” segments. It requires more attention when eating to get around the gristle, but it’s very flavorful.
  12. Now that the chain is removed, slice the rest of the roast in ¼–½” medallions.

Tenderloin cooks fast compared to a prime rib; it’s ready to serve in a couple of hours. The result is very flavorful, and tender enough to cut easily with a butter knife.

Future avenues of investigation:

  • A guest mentioned that there are waste-not-want-not recipes for silverskin. See if I can track one down.
  • One recipe I saw used a rub of 4½ tsp of kosher salt, 1½ tsp of sugar, and ¼ tsp of baking soda to make the surface tacky (in that case to make an olive oil-peppercorn mixture stick to it); that might also get more butter to stick to the roast.

We’ve long observed that Cleo was a survivor, ready to hunt for herself in case this “human civilization” thing doesn’t pan out, while Yeti has bet everything on humans by going back for extra helpings of cute instead of picking up survival instincts. And survive she did: she beat thyroid cancer in 2012, thanks to a radioactive-iodine treatment at RadioCat. She thought diabetes was the best scam ever because it meant she got fresh wet food, twice a day, every day, for the tiny annoyance of an insulin injection in the scruff of her neck. When she came down with a spindle-cell sarcoma in her jaw, she handled radiation treatment (at SAGE) very well; her tumor stayed small and stable afterward. She was always sweet-tempered, even at the vet’s, where she charmed all the staff.

Three weeks ago, we took her in for some routine bloodwork that turned up some suspicious values from her liver, so we took her down to SAGE for further investigation, which involved an ultrasound and needle biopsy. It turned out she had also had a lymphoma on her liver and spleen, of a type that normally responds fairly well to chemotherapy. The odds were good that she would get 6–9 months of remission from a course of Saturday visits to SAGE, so we started that course last Saturday and she weathered it very well, continuing to demand treats and lap time from her humans. We were confident she would make it to January to celebrate her sixteenth birthday, and thought there was a possibility she would see seventeen.

On Tuesday afternoon, she manifested some scary symptoms of an ulcer, and her red blood cell count declined on Wednesday morning and further this morning. We took her in to SAGE for a blood transfusion and further investigation of the problem; it turned out to be a perforated intestine, which was due to very shortly turn into a fast and unpleasant decline, and we decided to spare her the suffering.

Cleo had a good Wednesday night, purring on my lap and enjoying her favorite foods; she went out peacefully this afternoon, purring and being adored by her humans. Here is a picture of her snuggled on the bed with us, just a couple of nights ago:

As usual, I’ve done my research for the upcoming election and written up my notes to share with the rest of the class. I’ve given my conclusions, and invite you to come to your own. Even if we disagree on every issue, I’m happy if this saves you a headache. It’s a midterm election without even a senator on the ballot. That means you especially need to vote, because a lot of people won’t be bothering.

Political information cut to spare your sanity )

As usual, I’ve done my research for the upcoming election and written up my notes to share with the rest of the class. I’ve given my conclusions, and invite you to come to your own. Even if we disagree on every issue, I’m happy if this saves you a headache.

Political information cut to spare your sanity )

Once we can print protein circuitry, it should be possible to create semi-living mouse-shaped cat treats that have fewer ganglia than a flatworm, as their only purpose in existence would be to be taken out of hibernation, set on the floor, and turned loose for cats to chase. They would, of course, be made to be nutritionally balanced for cats, and come with a program for your future-Roomba to track down where your cat devoured the animatreat and made the inevitable mess. (Less of a mess than a mouse would be; it would be able to operate with an anaerobic metabolism on energy stored in the cells before they were printed, so no need for a circulatory system.)

As usual, I’ve written up my research notes for the coming election so you can all crib from my work. I’ve given my conclusions, and invite everyone to come to their own. Even if we disagree on everything, I’m still happy if this collection of links saved you a headache. No issues outside Sunnyvale this time )

As usual, I’ve written up my research notes for the coming election so you can all crib from my work. I’ve given my conclusions, and invite everyone to come to their own. Even if we disagree on everything, I’m still happy if this collection of links saved you a headache.

Offices and local measures )

As usual, I’ve written up my research notes for the coming election so you can all crib from my work. I’ve given my conclusions, and invite everyone to come to their own. Even if we disagree on everything, I’m still happy if this collection of links saved you a headache.

State Propositions )

While this is being touted as a primary, don’t be fooled. Thanks to Proposition 14, this is a general election with a mandatory run-off in November. So, as Pete says, you need to vote for the best viable candidate, not for the one you like best.

Political information cut to spare your sanity )

So my sangha has become a 501(c)(3) organization, looking to accomplish more in the community and perhaps get some permanent quarters for meditation. One of my fellow Zen practitioners was remarking on the difficulty of finding a place in Sunnyvale, due to the high property prices there. My suggestions for avoiding the problem:

  • The Sanghamobile! Get an old bus, retrofit it for biodiesel, rip out the seats and put down zafus and zabutons. Give it a Twitter feed like a food truck so people know when it will be in the neighborhood if they want to meditate. “If you want to order nothing, we deliver!” It could even provide a “meditate while you commute” service up to San Francisco and back.
  • Zendo bouncy castle! Just let people know via social media where it will be inflated for today’s meditation and service.
  • Augmented reality temple! Just get enough Google Glasses for everyone and turn on the “Zen temple” overlay. One could make all kinds of points about emptiness there.
Tags:
mithriltabby: Buddha zen-zapping Slick (MAX ZEN)
( May. 10th, 2012 11:27 am)

If you meet the Buddha on the road and he can remain in Earth’s atmosphere for more than three minutes, kill him.

(Via Toy Karma.)

Most fantasy worlds manage to sustain a roughly medieval level of development for thousands of years at a stretch. (I blame hyperconservative nigh-immortal elves for quietly holding back technological progress.) Walter Jon Williams’ Metropolitan takes that restriction off and follows it to its logical conclusion, with geomantic public works and the essence of magic on tap as a utility; it’s a great read for gamers and anyone who likes to play with the idea of technomagic. The author discusses the worldbuilding and where to find the ebook.

I’m hoping there will be enough interest in this (and the sequel, City On Fire, when it comes out soon) that we can talk WJW into holding a Kickstarter for writing the third book that answers some of the questions raised in City On Fire.

mithriltabby: Jedi Holocron (from Star Wars) (Jedi Holocron)
( Apr. 13th, 2012 02:25 pm)

The Old Republic’s servers had to be taken down for emergency patching today, and the announcement that they’re back up stated:

All servers are now back up and running! Please note that you will download a small patch upon login (approx. 200MB). Thank you for your patience. As a reminder, due to today's unexpected maintenance, all active subscribers will receive a full day of game time as compensation.

200 megabytes is a small patch by modern standards. I can remember using a 300 baud modem, and how upgrading to 1200 baud meant that my computer could finally download text faster than I could read it.

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