Monthly Archives: January 2014

Chicken Tikka Masala (from a jar) – Success!


This one post has been viewed over 2,000 times, making it responsible for over half of the total views for this blog. This baffles me for several reasons–for one, there are instructions right on the jar for how to use it. Second, there is still only one comment on the post. I have no idea if these thousands of people who are looking at this post LIKE my “recipe,” or bothered to make it, or just moved on to a more detailed/specific recipe.

Which basically means I’m still flying blind in terms of posting and whether or not I’m ever going to get more views.

As a side note, I haven’t made this for a really long time, so I should do it again. I wonder what I should add in this time…

The No-Recipe Life

My most recent anti-recipe dinner was chicken tikka masala. I have actually made this several times in the past and I have a method that I really like. It’s very easy, and I bet you could do it too. I am going to try to describe things in a way that lets you copy the method, even though I don’t have a recipe. I bet it would also be really good with shrimp or just veggies, if you want a meatless version.

The first thing you should know is that I do not make it from scratch. I have no idea how you would do that. I buy the sauce in a jar, usually from Trader Joe’s, but you can often find some version in the “world” sections of any regular grocery store. In just a minute, you’ll see a picture of the one I used this time.

I really…

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Monday Madness: Why, Math?


I signed up for an online class that started at the beginning of the month. I watched the first three video lectures right away, but then I forgot about it for the rest of the week. Each time they post the next week’s lectures they send an email. I got that email as each Sunday passed, putting off watching the videos, and finally, yesterday, went and watched the rest of the first weeks’ videos. The first four weeks are posted now.

The first videos I watched were ok. I generally understood what they were talking about and I figured they’d elaborate more in later weeks. Then the fourth and fifth, or fifth and sixth–I’m not sure, counting is hard–videos came along with equations and stuff, and all of a sudden I’m like “Uh, what?”

I’m not good with math. I can wrap my head around equations but only if each part is explained to me in detail, usually, and did I mention I haven’t actually done any math since high school, where I haven’t been for almost nine years? I was pretty lost. I felt that anything that they lingered on was stuff that was ridiculously easy to understand, but they sped through the equations without actually explaining how to use them. I really wanted this class to be a success, but if I watch the second group of videos and can’t get it, I might have to unenroll. I’m sure this will be largely because I put off watching the videos and therefore didn’t give myself enough time to study the stuff. But I thought we were going to be talking about theoretical stuff, not making calculations, so…

I’m starting to think that online classes don’t work for me, particularly if it’s just a free class that I’m not taking for a grade. There’s just about no accountability and that, ODDLY ENOUGH, is the same reason I never get any writing done.

I don’t know. There’s a class on the music of The Beatles starting soon, so maybe I should just take that one.

Monday Madness: Odd Motivation


Happy birthday, Martin Luther King, Jr. I don’t get the day off to celebrate but I hope you have a fun ghost party.

I’ve discovered an interesting pattern: I’m able to focus on work (of whatever kind) for a solid several hours after watching at least one episode of Gilmore Girls.

Pop culture (movies and tv in particular) is not generally something I find helps me work. Typically it helps me avoid work. This is a very odd phenomenon, completely out of tune with my life in general.

I have a guess for why this happens, but I couldn’t say for sure.

The women in the show (the main ones) are very driven, with specific goals and very obvious determination. Others do not have the same goal-orientation, but they are very talented or have strong personalities. I think that watching them instills, to a certain degree, the urge to get something done. Watch an episode, edit thirty pages. Or something like that. I wanted to work on my own writing again, but sadly I did not have time.

You know what’s not motivating, though? Hint: I talk about it a lot–my commute. I find it draining and I need time to recharge after I get to work. This can be a problem because I can’t leave early enough to have proper time for recharging. I like sleep too much for that. Why couldn’t I have found a job I could get to without wanting to die? WHY?

And why do buses have to change their schedules on certain days? All you really achieve is making the people who still need to use the bus that day wait for absurd amounts of time.

 

I need to stay off facebook on days like this. People are posting their day-off activities all over the place and not only do these activities not have anything whatsoever to do with me, but they make me jealous that I have to be at work. So. Keep it to yourself, why don’t you?

What you need to know about the court decision that just struck down net neutrality


Dystopic future, anyone? But seriously, it is important to know things like this. Like always, corporations are only concerned with how they can make the the Most Money.

Gigaom

The principle behind the phrase “net neutrality” is that internet service providers of all kinds should treat data flowing over the open internet equally, without giving preferential treatment to data from one provider or platform. On Tuesday, however, the Federal Communications Commission’s rules governing that kind of behavior were struck down by an appeals court in Washington, D.C. — as reported by Gigaom’s Jeff Roberts — in a case launched by Verizon.

This decision — if it remains unchallenged — raises the possibility that large internet service providers could charge certain companies extra for delivering their content to subscribers, and give preference to the content coming from those who are willing pay them a fee, or have cut some other kind of deal. In effect, the democratized nature of the internet would be replaced by a feudal system in which the ability to reach a consumer would be auctioned off…

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Monday Madness: A Day Out of Time


I opened this tab with no desire other than to bang out some sort of thought that would be amusing to someone who reads it. But now, although my mind is not blank, I can’t think of anything to say. Nothing in my mind is worthwhile to share with other people. My humor is deadened by the mountain of obligatory/shouldatory(?) stuff that I currently have to do. I feel as if I’m just swimming in mediocrity right now, and who wants to read about that?

Well, some people, I guess. There’s a lot of literature centering around mediocre people. Probably.

I’m sure there are many things I could say. However, if blogging has taught me anything, it’s that I have no idea what people want to read about. (Or I’d have a lot more views.) For instance: do I just uncensored-ly pour my heart and soul out onto the page, without worrying about the trolls that might comment on them (answer: no), or do I write thoughtfully composed pieces that prove I’m good at writing? So far I’ve done neither, instead falling somewhere in between. I am to be “real” without exposing details of my private life to the entire internet. Any time I’ve tried to write more formal articles on any blog, it comes out rather informal, because to me that’s what the blog format is for. Is that why I’m failing to become popular?

Oh, wait, no, that’s just me. I’ve always been unpopular, and chances are I always will be. Someone once told me “Everyone likes you,” and I have no idea how he got that impression. …Of course, he didn’t know me in grade school, but I still don’t think the comment makes sense.

This is one of those weeks when I really needed another day on the weekend. I think there should be an extra day between Saturday and Sunday, but it would be a day that does not exist on the calendar. It lives in a sort of adjacent dimension, and you can sleep and eat and get things done without passing any real time. I would LOVE to have that day.

 

We All Need a Break Sometimes


For a while, I wasn’t really cooking anything that seemed interesting enough to post about, so I didn’t post any recipes. More recently I’ve been making some good stuff–made guacamole with my mom, made salsa (as far as I’m concerned, the secret is just jalapenos and cilantro), and some other things I now can’t really remember. But I haven’t felt too motivated to post about these things, even though I do sort of want to.

And all those things I said I was going to do to update my blog? Still intend to, but I’m already late. Like almost everyone else I’ve ever met, I’m kind of a procrastinator, especially when I don’t have a set deadline. (And deadlines I set myself that no one else cares about don’t count.)

It can  be argued that keeping at something even when you don’t feel like doing it can be good for you. If you push through the difficult times, you will come through to the other side with more energy and motivation. However, you can also burn out that way. I think that taking a break is a good idea for me right now, so I’m just taking it easy. I haven’t posted on Between Worlds either. I have been watching a lot of Netflix, though.

In the meantime, you can watch my eggnog cupcake video if you missed it (doesn’t show actual cooking, sorry) or my most recent one on my non-resolutions:

 

I haven’t done nearly as much with my channel as I originally wanted by this point. One of my unstated goals is to play around with editing a bit more, even in the crappy program I have, and see if I can understand more of the features. All I have to do is just take some sort of stock video-like footage I can play around with, because then I won’t feel like I’m in a rush to post it (I talk about time-sensitive things when I’m vlogging), and I can take my time. I’d also love to figure out how to make it post in HD… my camera should be able to do 1080p videos, but so far when I upload them it only goes up to 260 or whatever the number is. It’s really low, I know that much.

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So, based on what I’ve stated above, you might not see a lot of posts from me for a little while. I’ll be back though. I’m stubborn, so I have to pretend that this blog might one day be successful.

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