April 16, 2016

Chicago 2016

Filed under: Foodz,Going Places — Katrina @ 11:59 pm

One moment in late February I’m idly browsing Southwest’s low fare calendar, and the next I’m saying “$72 roundtrip?! Fuck yeah, I’ll go to Chicago, why not?”

So I did.

I awoke just before 4am on April 16, got dressed and grabbed my bag, and was out the door. I parked at the BWI lot around 5am, waited an annoyingly long time for the shuttle, and finally got to the terminal after 5:30am. Argh! Look at that TSA line. How are so many people traveling this damn early? Wonder if I’ll make my damn flight… Oh, okay, line was moving fairly quickly actually.

I got my barely awake self to the gate and onto the plane, as the sun began to rise over the airfield. Isn’t it pretty?

Then we were off at the scheduled 6:45am departure time.

Two hours later, after a rather lovely aerial view of the southern edge of Lake Michigan and then the big city, we were on the ground at Midway. I made a glance at the long line at their TSA as I headed out, grumbling at what I might have to deal with later. And after playing with the machine a bit, I had my ticket and was on the L train.

Good morning, Chicago!

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December 10, 2015

Baking Cookies

Filed under: Christmas Time!,Decrees!,Foodz,Think About It! — Katrina @ 11:06 pm

I hereby decree…

Baking cookies is the happiest activity there is.

Well, it is. Just say the words. Baking cookies. See, there’s a smile!

Saying “let’s bake cookies!” conveys joy and excitement. It’s not like anyone ever says “ah damn it, I’m stuck baking some fucking cookies!” Just plain doesn’t happen.

There’s all kinds of ways to make cookies. Lots of room for experimenting! And what’s more fun than experimenting with different ways to create a tasty treat? Nothing, that’s what!

And after all that fun with trying different ingredients and methods, you end up with cookies! Yay! 😀

February 14, 2014

Mmmm, Candy Hearts 9

Filed under: Foodz,What the hell? — Katrina @ 8:53 pm

Huh? Does this heart say “Just Meh”? Wow, these things have lost their luster.

Oh, wait. It says “Just Me + U”. Was a little faded. That makes more sense.

*picks out another heart*

“Hold hands”. Aww, how cute. I suppose.

Anyway, wow, the ninth installment of this crap. What’s annoying around love and relationships now on this Valentine’s Day? I don’t know. What haven’t I covered? It’s just about some people having strong if irrational feelings for one another and acting incredibly silly about it, while their friends and relatives tease them to no end…

Aha! Teasing. What the hell?

Okay, last year I was sort of teasing those who have crushes because of all the stupid questions and worries. But that behavior kind of deserves it, even if understandable to those of us who have been there. That’s just it, though. It is understandable, and one can only blame these people so much. Simply having the feelings in the first place is fine, even if a special kind of hell.

It happens at any stage, whether just a crush or an actual relationship. We’ve all heard it: “Oooh, someone has a boyfriend/girlfriend!”

Seriously? I mean, plenty of people have insecurities around these feelings or the stability of new relationships, and your response is to make them even more self-conscious? I remember reading Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility a couple years ago, and the annoying old woman in it, Mrs. Jennings, is teasing some minor character about her interest in some guy, and she comments to someone else “Young people love being teased about their crushes!” And all I could think was, umm, NO, young people do not like being teased about that or anything for that matter, even two hundred years ago, you’re a bitch, shut up. :irked:

And about 15 years ago or so, my cousin, who’s a year older than me, was getting ready for prom or otherwise about to meet up with some guy she was into (okay, I forget the exact circumstances but the point is there was a guy). My mom teased her endlessly about it, until I finally said, “Mom, leave her alone.” And my mom replied with something like “I’m her aunt, I get to tease her about these things!” She’d have done the same to me at some point, except I have yet to actually subject any friends to her presence since then, a decision I made at that time. 😛

I mean, a simple “congratulations!” or at least “okay, that’s cool” upon hearing about someone’s new relationship is perfectly fine. More than that, unless explicitly allowed, is just asinine.

Just like the messages on these hearts.

“ALL MINE”. Possessive much? “COOL DUDE”. Ah, there you go, what guy doesn’t get an immediate erection from being told that? “U R GR8”. Thanks, text messaging heart! “HEY BABE”. Hmmm, those movies were a while ago, so I’m pretty sure that pig is long dead. That’s kind of a downer.

December 25, 2013

Glaedelig Jul

Filed under: Christmas Time!,Foodz — Katrina @ 11:09 pm

I made cookies.

That’s the main thing. I’d been studying cookie recipes for about a week and got eager to finally try one out. Want to develop my own cookie recipe sort of. I’ve already got a muffin recipe, even if I haven’t made them in many years. But, it’s Christmas, so it’s cookie time, and I’ve put it off for too many years. Can’t just make and poorly-modify the store-bought Pillsbury dough. Got to make my own! 😀

Christmas is about the old and new.

So I watched specials. So I saw the family. So I went to the Christmas Eve late night church service. So I held the candle and sang Silent Night and for some reason found myself holding back inexplicable laughter. So I stayed up way too late wrapping presents.

And this morning I baked some more of my cookies.

Damn, they are good! If really goddamn sweet.

There’s white chocolate and milk chocolate and peanut butter and butterscotch! 😀

This morning, opened presents and saw the little brother get another damn train.

The new were my cookies.

The old is this old house that has belonged to my family since my grandparents bought it in 1965. Every Christmas of my life has brought me to this house.

And it’s been sold and we’re moving out next week before the year is even up.

Well… I don’t know what to say about that anymore. Certainly not giving any more details than that.

I’ve got a lot of Christmas traditions, from those lasting my whole life, such as the simple opening presents with family and having our feast of roast beast, and watching the ball drop on New Year’s Eve. To newer ones like the Christmas Eve night service, having gone to it every year since 2003, with a few times before then. To NYRA’s holiday cards since 2006. To Washington Ethical Society’s Winter Festival since 2009. And to whatever others may come in what I sure hope will be many more iterations of this holiday.

Can’t say it’s totally happy right now.

But I’ve got cookies. They’re awesome.

December 22, 2013

Easter Creep

Filed under: Christmas Time!,Foodz — Katrina @ 3:46 pm

So I was at the grocery store earlier getting some food and avoiding going home to cringe at the Redskins game. I’m in the holiday aisle with a crapton of Christmas goodies, though not quite as much as they had last week. Despite the obvious fact Christmas hasn’t actually gotten here yet.

And what to my wondering eyes should appear, occupying just one little area but present nonetheless… Easter candy.

Seriously! Three days before Christmas, and the Easter candy is out.

Know when Easter is in 2014? April 20. It’s going to be one late ass Easter this coming year. And stuff for it is appearing already.

Mary’s not even two centimeters dilated and we’re already planning her son’s crucifixion.

Though one could argue it’s fitting, as Christmas/Winter Solstice celebrations all come down to promising that Easter/Vernal Equinox will come. If four months away still. If the (freakishly warm) Winter Solstice was only yesterday.

Already there are the Peeps. Already there are the Reese’s Peanut Butter Eggs. Already there are Cadbury Creme Eggs…

I’m okay with this.

December 7, 2013

You Don’t Serve Me

Filed under: Christmas Time!,Foodz,What the hell?,Youth Rights — Katrina @ 1:19 pm

Some nearby pizza place decided they didn’t want to serve me the other day. Only they didn’t know they said this. I hadn’t even walked in the door yet.

They had one of them “we don’t serve teens” stickers on the window, announcing that the drinking age is 21, this is law, and that they follow it. Which worries me, because since the drinking age is an actual law, one would presume already that they follow it. So since I didn’t see any other stickers, I’m guessing that’s the only law they care to enforce. Maybe I should have robbed the place, since they’re indicating they wouldn’t be too bothered, just so long as I’m not drinking their alcohol ten years in the past.

So, yeah, despite not having been a teen for quite a while, I took this to mean they didn’t want to serve me, because when I can help it I don’t visit ageist businesses. I expect businesses to enforce the drinking age as it is an actual law, but rubbing it in people’s faces, without having a sticker saying they don’t tolerate aggravated assault on their premises, implies this particular law is super important to them. Well, youth rights is super important to ME, so I turned right around and returned to my car.

And found another pizza place across the street. They’re rather plentiful. Mmmm… pizza.

May 31, 2013

Microwave Cookery

Filed under: 100 Days of Summer,Foodz,What the hell? — Katrina @ 5:24 pm

It occurred to me recently the way people use microwave ovens. How different they can be. How just plain weird and wrong they can be! :doitnow:

You see, when I’m microwaving something, I set the timer to something sensible depending on the item, very rarely more than two minutes for anything unless it’s frozen solid.

And yet, now and then, whether at work or elsewhere with a shared microwave, I see people just heating up some lukewarm soup or chicken or something and setting the timer to something like three minutes! True, the cans and packages sometimes say to microwave for that long, but it’s sort of a general rule that the amount of time they give is more than you need, unless your particular microwave sucks. Then again, packages also give stove top or conventional oven instructions, which nobody who isn’t my mother is dumb enough to pay any attention to.

Hell, I had a burrito once whose conventional oven instructions said to cook for 65 minutes. Not sure if trolling or really fucking crazy.

Anyway, as it sometimes turns out, the people setting their three ounces of clam chowder to microwave for four minutes don’t actually leave it in there the whole time. Oftentimes not even a minute has passed and they decide to stop it and remove their food. Which sort of boggles me further. If the time didn’t even matter, why not, you know, just set the time lower? And, of course, they take the food out and away, and the stupid timer is still blinking with the remaining time. Which the next person has to clear off.

Okay, it makes some sense if they pull it out early to see if it’s warm enough yet, so they could just pop it right back in if it isn’t without having to reset the timer. But they don’t even do that. And why such a ridiculously high time, heating something for four minutes that would be plenty hot in 45 seconds? Is your tongue made of asbestos?

Meh. I don’t know why anybody does anything. 😆

This has been Day 8 of the 100 Days of Summer, Round 13.

December 30, 2011

Temptations for Ageism

Now for a growed-up, snack-packy edition of…

YOU SUCK!!!!

Jell-O. And they’re little Temptations pudding advertising. See, the idea is that it’s not like their other desserts (somehow). I mean, it probably still contains the exact same ingredients. But somehow this one isn’t for kids. They’re not only saying so. They’re forbidding kids from getting free samples of it through fancy machines!

The current offer is for Temptations by Jell-O, the brand’s first product designed specifically for adults. The machine is equipped with technology to determine the age of the person requesting a sample. If the machine senses a child, a panel lights up with the words, “Sorry, kid. You’re too young to experience indulgence like this. Please step away so the adults can get their free treat.”

You’re too young to experience indulgence like this? Even if I weren’t outraged on youth rights grounds, I’d want to smack the person who came up with this. Are they actually implying eating this particular pudding constitutes sex?

We’ve been discussing this a bit on the NYRA board e-mail list, and Eric Goldstein suggested the restriction could be for liability purposes. And he’s probably right. Except if that were all it is, you’d think they could at least try to be respectful about it. Having a machine say the equivalent of “ha ha, you can’t have this!” pretty much shows there’s more to it than that.
(more…)

April 6, 2011

No Sugar for Students

Filed under: Foodz,In the News,Rants,What the hell?,Youth Rights — Katrina @ 9:44 pm

Dear Overzealous Anti-Sugar School Official,

Awww, isn’t that cute? You hear that sugar is evil and want to keep kids away from it. You’ll go to any ridiculous lengths to keep them from buying it themselves!

What’s this? You soooo badly don’t want students drinking anything other than water ever that you’ll bully stores into not selling anything to them? Stores that, I might add, have no connection to your school whatsoever? Oh, well, isn’t that just lovely. I mean, that’s totally justified seeing as the students aren’t people or anything and as their principal, I believe they are officially your own property! Goodness, why stop at dictating food and drink choices? But I digress.

Or, wait a minute. That’s not right. I’d say that students are PEOPLE. And as real individual people, they belong only to themselves. You aren’t even their parent. All you do is act as administrator of the place they’re forced to spend several hours of their day whether they like it or not. Does that make them constitute your property? And doesn’t the idea I even have to ask that question raise concerns over whether you should be teaching or even being near any children ever?

So sugar is just sooooo bad for children that it’s abuse if an adult were to allow a grain of it to touch the child’s lips. Is that what you believe? No, moron, I’ll tell you what’s abuse. The abuse here is dictating the living shit out of every little thing a child does, denying her the choice of what food and drink she consumes, and preventing her from exercising even the tiniest bit of economic autonomy just to buy a goddamn bottle of juice if she wants it!

In short, go die in a fire. Or at least stay away from kids. You’re a thousand times worse for them than sugar ever could be.

Wishing You Great Pain,

Katrina

March 22, 2011

It’s Best

Filed under: Estrogen,Foodz,What the hell? — Katrina @ 8:07 pm

How can anybody possibly have a problem with breastfeeding?

Every now and then I hear about some mall or museum or whatever that kicked out a mother for feeding her baby in public. Even if that doesn’t happen, there are still other people who flip their lid over it for some reason. “Oh, noes, that horrible woman is exposing her breast and a baby is sucking on it!”

Hey, idiots. What the fuck do you think breasts are FOR? They aren’t sexual organs, outside of exhibiting some sensitivity and reactions to arousal. But then again, so does most of the body. To your stupid self, the mother is exposing a shameful sexual part, but to the baby, she’s allowing him/her access to FOOD. How would you like it if people got pissed at you for eating in public? And, hell, some people’s eating habits are way more gross than breastfeeding could possibly be (not that breastfeeding is disgusting at all, mind you). But you’re not anywhere near as likely to be asked to leave for chewing with your mouth open as a new mother is for nursing her baby. Hell, if you’re eating some nachos near me, I’ll be gagging on the smell of the cheese. That I would find disgusting. Much rather a breastfeeding mom were near me than you. But in that case, I would simply get up and move away to where I can no longer smell the cheese. Like you should do if you’re so bothered by how a little baby is eating.
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March 17, 2011

When I Saw It…

Filed under: Check It Out,Foodz — Katrina @ 8:24 pm

Wow, my ass sure does hurt. From all the humongous gold bricks I shat.

:wow: :wow: :wow: :wow: :wow:

Five Alive?! In my United States?!

😀

February 14, 2011

Mmmm, Candy Hearts 6

Filed under: Foodz,What the hell? — Katrina @ 7:28 pm

*munches candy hearts*

What are they saying? “YOU RULE”. Yes, yes, I know. “HELLO”. Well, hello yourself, little candy heart! “MY CUTIE”. Why, thank you! “SEE YA”. Bye! “GET REAL”. Well, fine, be that way!

Anyway, where was I? Ah, yes, the sixth installment of Mmmm, Candy Hearts, the Sure, Why Not? Valentine’s Day tradition! Where I remark about how people who are in relationships or are dying to be in relationships just utterly fail hard. I don’t claim to be an expert, not that anyone can really make that claim, but sometimes watching the way people handle this hot potato known as love is just intriguing.
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December 29, 2010

Interference

Filed under: Christmas Time!,Foodz,In the News,What the hell?,Youth Rights — Katrina @ 3:18 pm

Oh, my good God…

Mother Sues McDonald’s for ‘Interfering’ With Kids

Happy Meals just got a little more expensive for McDonald’s: the fast food chain has been sued by California mother Monet Parham for using toys to make her two young daughters want nutritionally unsound Happy Meals…

Parham, mother of a six-year-old and two-year-old, said in a CSPI press release that: “I object to the fact that McDonald’s is getting into my kids’ heads without my permission and actually changing what my kids want to eat… what kids see as a fun toy, I now realize is a sophisticated, high-tech marketing scheme that’s destined to put McDonald’s between me and my daughters… I want McDonald’s to stop interfering with my family.”

Owwwww! My head hurts! Soooo much concentrated stupid!

*clutches head*

*takes ibuprofen*

Sigh. Okay, feel a little better now.
(more…)

December 14, 2010

Just Add Alcohol

You know what’s annoying about the drinking age? Aside from the fact that it exists? It’s like a go-to excuse for all sorts of other ageism against young people.

There are many hotels out there that will not let you check in if you are under 21. Hell, Holiday Inn Express’s website will even tell you point blank on their hotels’ pages the minimum check-in age. What’s often the little excuse for having this ridiculous rule? “Oh, we don’t want there to be underage drinking parties!”

Well, the logic there crumbles easily. Most parties with alcohol have at least a few people 21 or older around, mostly since they’re the ones who supply the alcohol to begin with. And if they have the 21+ people for that, chances are those people would be the ones checking in. As long as you allow anyone under 21 to stay at your hotel at all, even families, you run the risk of having underage drinking on your premises. Please. These rules don’t attack underage drinking. They attack youth independence.
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December 2, 2010

Vindicated!

Filed under: Check It Out,Christmas Time!,Foodz,Teh Interwebs — Katrina @ 10:15 am

I hate cheese.

That’s one infamous thing about me that anyone who knows me even a little bit knows or will find out soon enough. When I first mention it, I get some strange looks and shocked reactions, as if I’d just praised Satan or something. Some wonder if I’m healthy. Some ask if or assume I’m a vegan. A college roommate said “but cheese is a nutrient!” (If that quote hurt your brain a little, that’s nothing. The same girl once told me that I shouldn’t carry such a heavy backpack or I’ll give myself cerebral palsy… yeah.) I’m not really a big fan of dairy products in general. Don’t care for yogurt. Only ever buy milk if it’s to have it with cereal. I like ice cream, of course, but most ice cream has very little milk in it anyway. I was glad to notice on a Cool Whip tub one time that it contains no dairy (or, well, at the time, it does now). I mentioned this to someone and the immediate response was “yeah, I know, that sucks, stick to Redi-Whip instead” or something like that. They just assumed the observation of no dairy was to me a bad thing, but not at all. To be normal, you must want lots and lots of dairy products.

Then I saw yesterday’s Cracked list, 6 Insane Conspiracies Hiding Behind Non-Profit Groups. Go read it. I’ll wait.
(more…)

November 26, 2010

I’m Only Half Arab

Filed under: Christmas Time!,Foodz — Katrina @ 6:59 pm

So yesterday was Thanksgiving, and we did one thing a little different. Rather than just stuffing our faces at our own house, we fixed some food and drove into Virginia to my aunt’s house to spend yesterday evening there. This aunt is my mother’s sister, and my mother’s side of my family are Christian Palestinians. My dad’s side are just boring WASPs. So that makes me, of course, half Arab.

What does it mean to be half Arab? Well…

I’m only half Arab. I eat my hummus… with tortilla chips!

I’m only half Arab. I make spinach fatayer… meaning I stuff a spinach filling into Pillsbury biscuits!

I’m only half Arab. I’m willing to martyr myself for what is right… by telling my relatives that my Jewish friends are awesome!

I’m only half Arab. A distant cousin tells me in Arabic that I’m wonderful… and I actually have no idea what she just said but I’m sure she’s pissed at me!

I’m only half Arab. I like to make tabbouleh… except the bulghur wheat is a pain in the ass, so it’s really just chopped tomatoes and cucumbers in a bowl. Close enough!

I’m only half Arab. Sometimes I get “randomly” selected at airport security… and sometimes I don’t!

I’m only half Arab. I’ll take my baklava… alongside a nice piece of pumpkin pie!

I’m only half Arab. I drink coffee from a teeny tiny little cup… while watching the Thanksgiving NFL game!

I’m only half Arab. I go to bed at 2am… which my family tells me is way too early!

I’m only half Arab. I yell everything I say… which makes me the quiet one!

I’m only half Arab. My relatives go on and on about how I need to find a good man and get married… which I just sort of ignore.

June 21, 2010

Kids Aren’t Any Fatter Than Your Head

Now for tubby, chubby edition of…

SHUT THE HELL UP!!!!

I’m so fucking sick of hearing about childhood obesity everywhere I look. It’s all “oh noes, kids are fat, kids are unhealthy, aaahhh!”

Alright, some of them might be above a healthy weight. So what do you do about it? Maybe they go play in the park a little longer. Maybe they eat some healthier foods. In any case, maybe the adults so involved with these kids’ lives should give the kids healthier options if they aren’t already. Maybe help them (and set an example by doing it themselves) develop healthier habits in general.

Of course, since when do adults actually take personal responsibility for helping young people do better? In ways other than finger pointing and berating the youth, that is. That’s right, they don’t, so they blame everything else they can. So the blame gets put on what mascots fast food chains are using or even, stupidly enough, whether the cartoons they’re watching depict fat characters! (Not to mention the slimming down of Santas I mentioned a couple years ago.)
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May 20, 2010

Milk or Water

Filed under: Decrees!,Foodz,What the hell? — Katrina @ 1:37 pm

I hereby decree…

You don’t have anything to drink.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve gone over to someone’s house, and been expected and invited, and when either I asked if they had anything to drink or they offered something to drink, and I asked what they had, they replied, “Milk. Water.”

*facepalm*

So, in other words, you don’t have anything. Who the hell goes to someone’s house to drink fucking MILK? Water might be okay, even though they’re usually just talking about unfiltered tap water.

It’s one thing if I’m just one guest, or one of two or three. But I’ve seen this even when someone is hosting a good sized gathering at their house, and there isn’t shit to drink besides those two non-options. And probably didn’t bother to tell the guests beforehand to bring their own drinks.

Maaaybe there might be juice. Depends what kind of juice. But that’s at least something. It actually has flavor. Same with iced tea, so long as it’s actually sweetened.

Or sometimes they might have juices, sodas, etc. Except they didn’t bother to put any of it in the refrigerator beforehand, so it’s all warm! Lame!

I don’t mean to sound like as a guest to someone’s house that means I’m entitled to them having stuff I like. Yet if I brought my own drinks without being invited to do so, could be seen as rude. *shrug*

Of course, got to wonder, is milk and water all they drink? Or did they just happen to run out of real drinks right before having guests over? Or is this a common case of hosting fail?

Now, if you don’t mind, I’m thirsty, and am going to get some orange juice. The kind fortified with calcium so I don’t have to drink milk! 🙂

January 5, 2010

Happy Meal

Filed under: Christmas Time!,Foodz,Think About It! — Katrina @ 10:31 pm

So I was just making my dinner, some steak and fries, when I had a thought. The fries I was making were some of those McCain “Smiles”, fries shaped like smilie faces. And then I thought to myself “I’m having a happy meal!”

And then I wondered… why the hell aren’t the McDonald’s fries, or at least the Happy Meal ones, shaped like smilie faces? Wouldn’t that make more sense? The things clearly exist. Or would that be a bit too much happy? Is there a such thing as too much happy? 🙂

December 8, 2009

Thirty Second Pissing Contest

Filed under: Christmas Time!,Foodz,Idiot Box,Rants — Katrina @ 1:42 pm

You know what I’m sick of? Commercials that are basically nothing but a pissing contest between two rival companies. You get pretty much no actual information about their products. Just basically “the other guy sucks ass!” I mean, true, that’s about what advertising is, but it seems to be less about advertising and more about expensively airing a stupid spat.

I know right now we’re all thinking of the same spat. Microsoft vs. Mac. The “I’m a PC” crap versus the “I’m a Mac” crap. The Mac ads with the conversation with the “hip, young Mac” against the “old stuffy PC”, so they’re at least mildly ageist. And the PC ads all like “Macs are expensive and shitty, lulz”. Goddamn, STFU both of you.

It’s bad enough our entertainment is being interrupted to view these things, but they also are mindnumbing.
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