Tag Archive: Blag

Turkish Coffee

As somebody who really, really enjoys coffee there is one variation that I keep meaning to try: Turkish Coffee.


Turkish coffee is touted as one of the richest, fullest coffee experiences a body is likely to enjoy. The basics of Turkish coffee is that you take extremely fine ground coffee and add it to some cold water in an ibrik (cezve), stir it with sugar, and then bring it to boil 3-4 times over low heat. Once it’s all done boiling, you let it settle so the grounds collect in the bottom, then pour it into small cups called demitasse. You drink your coffee until you start sipping up the coffee sludge at the bottom.

As somebody who has tried almost every variant of coffee he can find (aside from vacuum infused coffee, which I don’t have lab equipment to do), I find this hole in my coffee knowledge somewhat perturbing. I think the next big coffee gift to myself will probably be a Turkish coffee set. After that, maybe I’ll look into one of those $80 vacuum infusion coffee siphons.

-Confusion is a state of mind, or is it?


We’ve had Vir, the TacoCat, now for nearly two years.  Now, up until recently, he’s not had a lot to take up his days.  Mostly he’d spend them looking for new and inventive places to sleep.


However, within the last few months things have changed. You see, over the course of the Winter Tron has taken an interest in the poor cat. Previously they existed mostly independent of each other, and aside from the initial interest which led to the toddler tackle, the two didn’t really associate too often. Now, the kitty has become a source of extreme interest for Tron.

To step back a bit, it all seems to have started when Tron picked up on TacoMa’am’s nickname for the cat: “KittyPuss.” Now, he can’t say the whole word, mostly because ts are still being developed, so he settled on “Keypuss” which has since been adopted by TacoMa’am and myself. The issue, from the cat’s point of view, was that once Tron had a name for him, Vir became an object of intense interest. Many, many times throughout the day, Tron has to stop what he’s doing and make sure he knows where the cat is, what the cat’s up to, and, occasionally, bother the cat with hugs or other various affectionate, and potentially damaging attention. It isn’t malevolent, just affection that isn’t tempered with a knowledge that the cat might feel pain or not like being bothered.

It’s gotten to the point where all of Tron’s most complex phrases involve the cat. He can’t say daddy, or dad (in fact, he calls me mom most of the time, which to him means “parent”), but he can say “Where did Keypuss go?” and “Keypuss go up the stairs!” He’s even started putting together multiple sentences… but only when talking about the cat. Vir has inadvertently become a teaching tool for language, much to his chagrin (I said the secret word! Aaaaaaaahhhh!)

Vir doesn’t really help things either. Not only does he flaunt himself in front of Tron, but he also insists on joining everyone upstairs for story time each night. Yup, every night story time is enjoyed by a preschooler, a baby, and a cat. And story time is kicked off each night by Tron letting us know where the cat is in the room.

I’ve candidly let Vir know that it’s going to get worse before it gets better, seeing as Vash will likely start crawling sometime in the next two months and has already shown interest in the cat. TacoCat is going to need to start finding some less accessible places to sleep. I’m beginning to think that he looks forward to the quiet evening on the couch as much as TacoMa’am and I do.

-Confusion is a state of mind or is it?


It’s my birthday today.


I’m not sure why, but I’ve been finding in recent years that my birthdays really don’t seem to hold any special significance for me. I remember them being the highlight of my younger years, to the point where I would spend the greater portion of March looking forward to it. Maybe I liked presents more back then, I don’t know.  It may also have had something to do with my birthday always being during spring break, so that may have been positive reinforcement.  It’s not like I dread them like some people seem to, they just haven’t had the spark that they had in my youth.

In any event, these days I see my birthday as really just that day at work where I can convince TacoMa’am to bring us all really good pizza for lunch.

Really, really good pizza.


OK, well now I’m getting excited about pizza.  When’s lunch?

-Confusion is a state of mind, or is it?


I have a pen problem.

Let me unpack that: I love pens. Not in a “buying novelty pens at every gas station” kinda way, not quite that obsessed. No, my love is more specific, I love free pens.  I can’t get enough of them.  I will snatch any pen I see at the various free-pen outlets: Hotels, casinos, business conferences, vendor fairs, product promotions, and on and on.  No free pen is safe from my grasping pen greed.

But I don’t really need more pens.  I have an overflowing pen cup on my desk, and about a cord of these pens shoved into our stationary box.  So, on the one hand, I’ve got too many pens, but on the other, I both never really have to look very far for a pen, nor do I really worry about losing a pen or leaving it somewhere.

Why do I mention all this?  No idea, just something to talk about, I guess.

I’m also the same way about match books when visiting casinos.  I don’t like to gamble, but I do like to snag a few hands full of match books.  I may have a problem.

-Confusion is a state of mind, or is it?

Stage 1: Complete.

A week or so ago CrappyPictures posted an entry on babies and books.  Honestly, I can’t say that it’s very accur…



Stage 1: Complete.

Jeez, Vash, way to propagate the stereotype.

This is actually the very reason I’ve had to keep a careful eye on all my gaming and woodworking notes. If he’s sitting on my lap and I’m not watching him too closely, he’ll grab any stray piece of paper, crumple it up, and start trying to eat it.  I lost a whole page of mineral density notes for Ur Quan Masters to Vash’s ravenous literary cravings.  Luckily he spit it all out… but wads of saliva soaked game notes aren’t terribly helpful when trying to remember which planets had lots of minerals.

-Confusion is a state of mind, or is it?

Super Mario Busters

I you haven’t seen this video, then you owe it to yourself to watch it:

-Confusion is a state of mind, or is it?


Last week the Taco clan had a staycation. You know, one of those vacations where you take off work in order to spend some time around the house. In this case we took care of a list of stuff as well as got some relaxing in. Granted, I spent nearly half of the vacation sick with a flu-like bug, but at least I did still get some stuff done.

Among the more important things I accomplished was a prune-out of all my obsolete electronics. I have a small hoarding problem with obsolete equipment that still works and I collect it as if it’s going to be the currency of the post-apocalyptic world. Every decade or so I have to root through my collection and dump a bunch of it, or, in this case, send it off to the recycling plant.

Two-ish hours spent in my basement and I’d pruned out two large boxes of obsolete equipment, as well as a couple organizers filled with old passive components that I’d been planning to use “someday.” Since I’ve been waiting about five years for a someday that isn’t any closer than when I got them, they went off with the rest of the stuff. I also pruned down my cord box so that I can start filling it up again.

We also cleaned several other places in the house and donated several boxes worth of stuff to our local thrift resale store. We didn’t get everything done (on account of getting sick) but we got most of our list tackled, and some relaxation in as well. Now I just have to find some free-time after we’re all done being sick to get down into the craft room and put up the shelves. Once those shelves are up, we should finally be able to get the room into the order needed to actually use it for crafts… instead of just Vir’s bedroom.

-Confusion is a state of mind, or is it?

Science Store

So, TacoMa’am let me go to a science supply store. By myself. You can imagine how that ended…


Yup. That’s an Erlenmeyer flask*. With beer in it. On my Helmbot coaster.

It’ll be awhile before she lets me go back.

-Confusion is a state of mind, or is it?

*Turns out that these flasks are pretty fragile.  I broke it shortly after taking this picture.  As it turns out, a Buchner flask may actually be a better cup since it’s made with much thicker glass.  I’ll have to sneak off to the science supply store to waste some more money on being ridiculous.

The More Geeky Lunchbag

In an attempt to save a bit of money and eat a bit better, I’ve been trying to pack more lunches to work. This attempt has been running for nearly four years to various degrees of success (mostly hindered by having children in those four years.). Originally the deal when I got my shiny new job and TacoMa’am got to quit her unrewarding phone-support job was that she would make my lunches. Two kids later it seems a little unfair to include that she should have to deal with those two all day and still have to make me lunch. So, I’ve taken back the role of making lunch for myself… and promptly sucked at it and spent the last three months primarily buying lunch at work or eating out.
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TacoFamily Book Club

My family has a book club.

Let me unpack that for you. A number of years ago my sister and father were talking about books over a surgery one day, and the discussion, over a course of several surgeries, led to the formation of TacoFamily Book Club. The full details of the conversation are here.

Anyway, after much delay I finally started in on the rather robust list of reading. I knocked out the first two on the list, A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens and Alice’s Adventure in Wonderland by Carrol Lewis, in short order. They were both very short and very fast to read. I knocked out A Christmas Carol in one late night sitting up with Vash waiting for him to pass out, and Wonderland was tackled in two nights reading before bed.

Then comes Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe. Robinson Crusoe is interesting for several reasons. First, it’s interesting because it was one of the first novels ever written, and that is was written about 300 years ago. Second, it’s interesting because the prose if very archaic and the themes very reflective of the mindset of the times. Third, it’s interesting because there are actually two books, and I think the second book ninja’d my sister and father. You see, originally there was the first book: The Adventures of Robinson Crusoe and the second, lesser known book The Further Adventures of Robinson Crusoe. Since both have been public domain for a few hundred years, many publishers have taken it upon themselves to combine the books into The Complete Adventures of Robinson Crusoe or The Life and Adventures of Robinson Crusoe. However, that’s been going on for a while. As it turns out, some publishers have dropped the word “complete” and have actually been marketing both books as just the The Adventures of Robinson Crusoe. Or even just Robinson Crusoe. Fabulous.

There are also two additional follow-up books beyond this one, which I’m thinking I don’t have to read because they are just essays on morality written as by Robinson Crusoe.

I discovered this last night when I finished the first book. Lyle, TacoDad, and TacoMa’am had all mentioned how boring and crazy his exploits after the island were, mentioning China as being particularly boring. When I reached the end of the book without even a hint of China, I knew something was up. Turns out, I’ve got another book about the same size as the one I’ve just finished yet to read.

*cracks knuckles*

Better get to work on that.

-Confusion is a state of mind, or is it?