Barack the Vote

If you are a registered United States voter, go to your polling place, review the non-partisan voter’s guide, and make your voice heard!

You don’t have to reach the same conclusions I did before I cast my vote, so go. Stop reading this and go vote.

A Morning in the Life of a Well Traveled Sock

So here we are at our home away from home, the Hilton Grand Vacation Club on International Drive. We were up on the 8th floor in a 2 bedroom suite with an adjoining studio (total: 3 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, a living room, dining area, 2 screened porches, and a full kitchen).

And by we, I mean Mom, Dad, Heather, Micah and myself. And the sock.

Wednesday morning, while Dad & Micah went to SeaWorld and Mom & Heather took a day off, the sock and I went to Disney World.

We drove to the Transportation and Ticket Center and caught a ferry over to the Magic Kingdom. The sock really appreciated the view of the Grand Floridian as we passed by.

Our first order of business? A photo op with The Poppins! She was quite taken with the two circs method and hoped to find a pair to add to her magical carpet bag.

After being fondled so gently, the sock was ready for fun. So off we went to Tomorrowland!

Our first ride of the day? We snagged a fast pass for Space Mountain and then trekked over to Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin!

I’m afraid the sock didn’t score high enough to beat me though, but to boost its self esteem, I let it chose the next ride. It wanted to see how far we’ve come so off we went to the Carousel of Progress.

Ironically, we made no knitting progress but still enjoyed the show.

We still had time to spare before our Fast Pass for Space Mountain was good, so we padded over to Mike Wazowski’s newest enterprise, The Laughing Floor.

The wait was once again ridiculously short but we were able to pass the time visiting with this lovely tourist.

He wanted to take the sock with him, but I couldn’t let go. Perhaps I should have though, because the sock heard the siren call of Fantasyland and whirled me away to the teacups.

While trying to get a picture of the socks in the cup, I inadvertently took a video of the spinning.

Tea Cups

We staggered onward through Fantasyland towards my favorite ride Peter Pan and somehow ended up in a Small Small World (I blame the tea cups), but with a new Fast Pass for Peter Pan.

Having obtained a new fast pass, we doubled back towards Space Mountain, but we were seduced by the posted 20 minute wait time for Pooh’s Many Adventures. We hopped into line, tigger style. We were even given a red tag to measure our wait time.

Good thing too. The sock was thrilled to finally be in a slow moving line so I knit on it. We got all the way to the heel flap divide before getting into our car.

When we exited, we discovered that the posted wait was 50 minutes. Yep, we spent 50 minutes waiting for Pooh. We were too hungry to face Space Mountain so off to the Harbor House in Liberty Square.

Fish and apple chips, yum!

With a fully tummy, Space Mountain was once again off the table, but the Haunted Mansion was nearby so off we went.

We still had time until we could use our Peter Pan fast pass so we decided to wander over to Adventureland. When we passed the stocks, I just couldn’t resist.

to be continued…

Ah the bliss

If one can tune out the whirring of the drills and slurping of the suction, is there a more serene seat than the dentist’s chair?

I know you may think I’m being sarcastic here, but seriously, after 2 hours in the chair this morning to have a filling removed and a temporary crown put in, I am feeling mighty relaxed. And I think I know why.

It was 2 hours of no expectation of me to participate in conversation. No chit chat, no small talk, just “Grunt if you’re in pain,” and “Here, let me wipe that drool for you” while I’m thinking, “I drooled? Dude, I can’t feel a thing.”

And lest you think this is just the lingering effects of nitrous oxide, I still haven’t had that pleasure. I was only under a local, which is finally beginning to wear off 3 hours later.

While in the chair, I closed my eyes and watched my favorite parts of various Jane Austen adaptations. I originally tried to watch Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along-Blog, but that made me giggle and giggling is not good when 2 people have their hands in your mouth with various sharp and whirring instruments.

On a totally unrelated topic, I watch Michel Gondry’s The Science of Sleep last night. I definitely enjoyed this film. It wasn’t as good as Eternal Sunshine, but it was very very interesting. I put down the knitting to watch and that’s saying a lot! I can’t wait to hear what Heather has to say about it after I take it to her place.

Remaining Netflix: Bleak House: Disc 1 (guess what I’ll be watching this weekend)

iTunes Genius?

Just 2 weeks ago, I accidentally deleted my favorite play list on iTunes so I when I downloaded the latest update to iTunes last night, I was very happy to see this new Genius feature. For those non-iTunes folks, Genius lets you select a song and then it builds a smart play list around it.

I was very curious to see what it would do with my rather eclectic library.

Since I listen to a lot of independent music, the majority of the songs I initially tried to build play lists off didn’t work. A few examples:

Hee, ok I didn’t really expect it to work for Cartman but I thought it would be funny to try. A few songs I was surprised to find it couldn’t match include:

  • It Doesn’t Matter by Alison Krauss and Union Station (seriously!)
  • I Said I Love You by Raul Malo
  • Mozart: Violin Concerto No. 3 K. 216, 3rd Movement
  • J.S. Bach: Prelude, From Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 1 In G Major, BWV 1007 performed by Yo-Yo Ma
  • The Twin Peaks Theme by Angelo Badalamenti

So I started working towards mainstream. When I chose Drunkard’s Prayer by Over the Rhine I got the following play list:

  1. Over the Rhine: Drunkard’s Prayer
  2. Counting Crows: Ghost Train
  3. U2: Yahweh
  4. Biff Naked: Lucky
  5. Todd Agnew: My Jesus
  6. Sting: All This Time
  7. Creedence Clearwater Revival: Have You Ever Seen the Rain?
  8. Over the Rhine: Show Me
  9. Cracker: Low
  10. Madonna: Ray of Light (I have no idea how that even got into my library!)
  11. Hootie & the Blowfish: Only Wanna Be With You
  12. MxPx: Take on Me
  13. Queen: Bohemian Rhapsody
  14. Bill Mallonee: Life on Other Planets
  15. Over the Rhine: Spark
  16. Counting Crows: Time and Time Again
  17. Sarah MacLachlan: The Path of Thorns
  18. U2: Crumbs from Your Table
  19. The Sundays: Wild Horses
  20. Sting: Moon Over Bourbon Street
  21. Over the Rhine: Give Me Strength
  22. Vigilantes of Love: Solar System
  23. Sarah MacLachlan: Possession
  24. Glen Hansard & Markéta Irglová: Falling Slowly
  25. No Doubt: Just a Girl

Now some of these make sense to me. I often pair Vigilantes of Love/Bill Mallonee with Over the Rhine, and I can see matching Sting and Sarah MacLachlan to them. Counting Crows aren’t too much of a stretch and U2 is a pretty reasonable match. But Madonna, Cracker, No Doubt & Queen? Maybe in bizarro world.

Still, I’ll keep playing with the new feature and see if it comes up with some good matches for Lyle Lovett and VeggieTales.

Current Netflix: same as before

A Rare Culinary Success!

OK, I know I need to blog something important, but this is a real milestone for me.

I tweaked food into a tasty combination! Granted, Trader Joe did most of the work, but those of you who know me well, know that I can indeed screw up the preparation of frozen dinners. But not this time!

Last night I cooked a package of Chicken Gorgonzola (3 chicken breasts, diced tomatoes, mushrooms, Gorgonzola, and a pesto-y sauce). I ate one breast and thought it was good for frozen food, but not quite perfect.

Still, I brought the leftovers for lunch & dinner today (it’s knitting night so I won’t be going home til after 9). I wanted to dress it up a bit so I went back to Trader Joe’s and picked up a Spinach salad (baby spinach, some greens, dried cranberries, sugared pecans and bleu cheese).

When I got back to the office, I nuked the chicken and as I was pulling it out, I had a thought. What if, instead of putting the warm chicken over the cold salad, I put the salad over the chicken and wilt the spinach and melt the bleu cheese? I had to separate the baby spinach from the mixed greens which was time consuming but so worth it. PERFECT! Sweet, savory, salty, earthy, creamy, nutty. A delightful dance of flavors across my palate!

Yummy yummy!

Current Netflix: The Science of Sleep & Bleak House: Disc 1