Sunday, February 1, 2009

SoCo Pretty Much Rocks

They have these peacocks just wandering the roadside.

Some places have birds. SoCo has these.

Mike Pretty Much Rocks

At cooking... and other things too numerous to mention.

Some people make chili. Mike makes this.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

A Little Colour...

...on an otherwise bleak Tennessee day.

Outside of Shelley's bedroom window were these beautiful creatures, including this Blue Jay (although he preferred just "Jay").

I believe this is the very first time I have ever seen a Cardinal, except that one time at the Catholic Church when I was five (remember kids, no means no).

And while we are on the subject of dirty minds, is it just me, or does it look like this little guy is clinging to a set of balls?

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Tennesee, Not What I Thought

Northeastern Tennessee looks about like this...

A little hilly, a few trees, countless barns (I didn't feel like counting), some power lines... what else... nothing really.

These are pretty popular. Even in the middle of nowhere (actually it's in a town called Gray, but don't get me started on whether or not Gray could be considered a town) they build these enormous structures as a monument to the lack of quality food in this part of the country.

And the reason for my visit to this culinary delight of a region of a State I've always wanted to visit? Harry and Shelley, with Harry standing on the right in his lovely kitchen, and to his left, not Shelley, but rather my father, whose trip overlapped with my own.

As Dad and his sister Linda readied themselves to depart back to Atlanta, Harry deftly explains that Georgia is "that way."

Aaahhhh... how often does this happen? Not often enough.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

My new baby... a Canon EOS 5D Mark II, and it is a thing of beauty. Although it is what one can do with the 5DMKII that makes it so special.

Case in point, my desert for the evening, a spicy tuna hand roll from John and Yung's sushi joint down the road. Shot with a Metz MZ-54 flash angled towards a poster to the right of the table with a few incandescents serving as fill, this is desert at its finest.

1/200 sec at f/2.8, ISO 200 45mm (EF24-70mm f/2.8L USM)

Monday, January 5, 2009


After clicking "refresh" several dozen times over the past week, grades for the Fall 2008 semester have been posted.

My most difficult course resulted in a "B," which is not altogether surprising. I know what my Theory professor expects now (I knew it then but I was honestly incredibly intimidated by the coursework and I did not give it the time it deserved), and as I take Contemporary Theory next semester from the same Professor (Professor James Dean that is, no shit) I expect nothing less than top tier work from myself. My cumulative GPA is now a 2.389 (yes, it truly is) and if I am fortunate, I can have my lesser courses (of which there are many) dropped from my transcripts to better reflect the student I am today, and not the one from eight years ago. Either way, a 3.75 means this kid is on the Dean's List for Fall 2008, and that my friends is righteous.

In other righteous news, the property management company that oversees my soon-to-be-foreclosed property happens to have an identical unit to mine less than a block away available for rental at the end of this month. If the planets line up just so, I may have to simply roll my possessions down the road, and I will already know exactly where they are supposed to go. As my father would say, "Fucking 'A Josh. Fucking A." Err... maybe he doesn't say that, but he should. Because that would be righteous.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

This was amazing...

And terribly cute as well. On New Year's Day, I spent the evening with three of my favorite people, including this one: dear sweet Ruby Day.

I don't know that it gets any cuter than this.

Mike has been eager to try his hand at a Thai Curry, and while I did not understand his hesitation at first, after reading from the official Thai Curry cookbook, I realized what an undertaking this was. I believe we ground, minced and pounded a dozen ingredients until we formed the curry paste, seen here in its raw form on the left. Once pounded, we fried the curry in coconut cream over low heat for about ten minutes until the flavors we best liked began to waft from the pan.

In the meantime, we poached an entire chicken in coconut milk, then drained the stock and pulled the chicken from the skin and bones by hand. Using fresh coconut milk, we combined the curry paste, kaffir lime leafs, Thai basil and the chicken, and cooked the resulting curry until the milk reduced, fortifying the flavoring from the curry paste. Served with Jasmine rice and a bit of the Thai basil, this was an excellent dish with a fair amount of flavor. If you think French cooking is impressive, try a Thai curry.