Saturday, August 21, 2004
Blue Screen of Death

on the office machine this morning, a not totally unxpected conclusion to the Week From Hell (medical problems, staff turnover, near-fistfight with the Tattooed Cheese Thief -- of whom more later -- & etc.). Strong electrical smell. Pulse-raising beepy noise from somewhere deep in the tower's innards.

Diagnosis: burned-out fan ($29.95)

Replacement ETA: Monday

Patience, readers.

Friday, August 20, 2004

It Ain't Rhubarb

Meet my new best friend swiss chard. For months now, the vegetarian specials next door at Aurora have all featured little steamed piles of jade-colored leaves that are chewy like steak and taste like spinach would if it wasn't, well, bland as hell.

Last night I decided it was time to try and learn how to cook chard myself.

Sautee the edible stalks in a little bit of olive oil and chopped garlic, then dump the shredded leaves in and stir with a wooden spoon until shiny and dark green. Add a bit of balsamic vinegar, pinch of salt, and a pinch of cornstarch. Half a vegetable bouillon cube. Reserve the liquid, which is flavorful and brimming with vitamins and minerals. In fact, until I did research this morning, I had no idea just how healthy chard really is. Also easy to grow in a Cascadian climate. Window box coming soon! Posted by Hello

Thursday, August 19, 2004
Pay No Attention to the Men Behind the Curtain

Dahlia Lithwick -- well-reasoned op-ed in this morning's NYT:

"[T]he campaign to cast Mr. Bush as a bumbling child ignores the very grown-up machine that stands behind him. Infantilizing the president shifts the focus away from the Cheneys, Rumsfelds, Ashcrofts and Wolfowitzes. These are the men who promised us short, easy wars and painless little suspensions of the Geneva Conventions. These are the men of the secret energy-policy meetings. They aren't a bunch of rowdy juveniles. They represent one of the most secretive, powerful administrations in recent memory. Whether the president could outscore your kids on the SAT is a distraction from that fact."

Tuesday, August 17, 2004
The summer's first thunder, at dawn, from a bank of cloud hanging over downtown Vancouver. Low rumbling rolls, eight or ten at a time, like Elvin Jones warming up overhead.

The smell of rain through the open balcony door.

Walking out for the paper I noticed how the dust had gone from the air. Everything sharp and green and gleaming.

That dizzying sensation you get putting on a new pair of glasses.

Sunday, August 15, 2004

A Fred Sandback drawing, for those of you who asked Posted by Hello

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