Feb 282013
  • The perfect squares are getting fewer and farther between.  That’s their nature.  But 225 is one.  Hello, 225!
  • I absently selected and took a bite of a piece of sausage pizza at the boys’ Upward season-end party Monday night.  Shoot.  I went ahead and finished it, and decided I’ll go one day full vegetarian to make up for it.
  • Forecast for next three days as I type:  average high, 43 ºF.  Average low, 25 ºF.  Average snow chance, 47%.  One upside is that I can buy beer at lunch today and it’ll be fine in the car all afternoon.
  • I was headed with the boys last night to have dinner with Papa Ross and Grandma Martha, but just Aaron went because Nathan is down with what is unmistakably a stomach bug.  Potential respiratory contagion doesn’t scare me much, but I always hold my breath for gastroenteritis because it’s so debilitating.  Get well, Nate.  Don’t get sick, anyone else.
  • Eddie Williams, D.J. Pettway, Tyler Hayes, and Brent Calloway have been dismissed from the University of Alabama football team (and by extension the university itself).  So, juco standouts this year, and we’ll see you at Auburn in 2014, boys.  Ha ha ha.
  • So my uninterruptible power supply is throwing an error about every other day.  It says either “internal communication fault” or that the battery needs to be replaced.  I’ve been dealing with it by running self-tests on it until one passes, which clears the error log.  (Good old “last time until the next time.”)  This is its second battery already, so I guess it’s time to replace it.
  • I actually purchased a Barbra Streisand MP3 the other day.  It’s “Don’t Believe What You Read”—the second cut on Streisand Superman, a record I remember my mother enjoying (which is the source of my nostalgia for the track).  It’s a decent up-tempo pop/rock song, and you know, whatever you have to say about Streisand herself, the chick can sing.  Scott Mathews, one of its co-writers, starred as Fluke Starbucker in Hardware Wars.
  • Speaking of Star Wars (more or less), did you hear Disney has signed Lindsay Lohan to a major part in Episode VII?  (Gotcha.)
 Posted by at 12:01 am
Feb 272013

Well, let’s see if hitting me in the pocketbook will motivate me to lose significant weight.

I won’t get into specifics, but the upshot is that I have to complete a lot of activities this year to avoid paying a surcharge on my medical insurance premiums next year. (The activities tend to be things that burn a lot of calories.)

This appeals to my competitive nature. It appeals to my business sense. Can I fan those flames enough to drop a waist size or two? Stay tuned.

 Posted by at 10:18 am
Feb 252013

With my Lenten pledge of no red meat, turkey bacon has made a return appearance at my house.  It’s an interesting product.  You see, there is no real bacon on a turkey.  So, we’re talking about turkey meat formed to simulate bacon.  That’s perhaps slightly distasteful, but if you’ve ever eaten bologna or hot dogs, you’ve effectively jettisoned any license to complain.

Calorie count and fat content are about half (or slightly more) those of real bacon, and if done well, it’s quite tasty.  Let’s dispel a few myths surrounding this foodstuff, shall we?

Myth:  Turkey bacon tastes just as good as real bacon.  You don’t see this claim particularly often, but it’s out there once in a while, and it’s absurd.  I would say perfectly cooked turkey bacon captures two-thirds of the real bacon experience.  Now, as we’re talking about two-thirds of gustatory nirvana, that’s still pretty strong, yes?

Myth:  You can cook turkey bacon satisfactorily in a number of ways.  The package usually offers microwave instructions and oven instructions, neither of which remotely approach the quality of pan-frying.  You have to do turkey bacon in a skillet over medium heat or it doesn’t get uniformly crisp, and limp turkey bacon is gross.


Myth:  Turkey bacon doesn’t shrink.  Turkey bacon does shrink, and notably.  It just doesn’t shrink quite as much as real bacon.


Myth:  Turkey bacon sticks to the skillet.  Not in my experience (which admittedly is exclusively in non-stick skillets).  However, remember you’re dealing with much less fat than real bacon, so it’s less forgiving of overheating.  Turn it often when it’s almost done—maybe every 45 seconds—or you’ll burn it.

Leave it on paper towels for just a couple of minutes before you use it.


An additional bonus of the low fat content is that when turkey bacon is done, the skillet doesn’t contain half a cup of cardiac arrest.  So you can go straight in with eggs, and they cook in under a minute.


Finally, you build, say, these marvelous 300-calorie wraps for yourself and two hungry little boys.


(That’s a low-carb/high-fiber tortilla, a Kraft single, one egg, and two slices of turkey bacon.)

Go forth, armed with this useful information.  Awaken the turkey bacon warrior that’s been inside you all along.

 Posted by at 7:19 am
Feb 232013

Look what Lea found this afternoon:


I lamented the loss of this flashlight in this blog post, which oddly enough, I posted two years ago tomorrow.  It was in a crevice inside Lea’s van’s glove compartment.

So every time I’ve driven to church, soccer practice, or out to eat for the past 24 months, I’ve been two feet from this flashlight.  I spent $30 for it.  I spent $40 to replace it.  Pissed me off for months when I lost it.

But, now I have two.  Life is funny.

(By the way, I’ll take this opportunity to plug Imedion low-discharge nickel-metal hydride rechargeable batteries.  The light fired right up at full intensity after sitting that long.)

 Posted by at 10:10 pm
Feb 222013

Our last Upward basketball games of the season are tomorrow.  I assistant-coached Nathan’s team again this year, and head-coached Aaron’s team.

upward13(And there’s another shot of my orange mohawk for Crazy Hair Day.)

I was sure I’d enjoy myself, but I did even so much more than I expected.  It’s really rewarding to get to know the boys a bit and be there for part of their walks with Christ.  I can’t wait to do it again next year.  (It’ll be Nathan’s last year, but Aaron has three more!)

 Posted by at 7:59 pm
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