Friday, December 30, 2011

Random Thoughts

Snippets from other conversations:

I want leaders who are not afraid to speak and live their faith and whose principles are grounded in reliance upon God. I do not want leaders who use their station to impose morality on others. If God will not force Himself upon anyone, how shall any man suppose to do it for Him?

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Woodbine flag broke the law

Patriotism is no exemption to law

You can't touch me! I'm wearing my 'invincibility flag!'
I don't keep a list of pet peeves like some people do because everything that could be on my list is pretty well covered by a single item: stupidity. Normally, I need only avoid liberals in order to avoid being irritated, since they are the ones who cling to stupidity the most. But every now and then, I run into some stupidity on the right. 

Nowhere does this happen more often than with matters concerning the American flag. Don't get me wrong, I love the flag--I even get a little misty sometimes reflecting on what it stands for. But because I'm not trying to get into the flag's pants (as some seem to be) I don't take those feelings so far as to abandon all reason. And I certainly don't get jealous about the flag, thinking everyone is trying to steal her from me. I'm going to stop this line of thought because it's starting to sound like a typical teen movie.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Quick Hit: "Hey Honey, you look fat. Merry Christmas."

BBC News has an idea about the perfect Christmas gift for that someone who has already eaten everything: tell them how fat they are.

The article lists all the oft repeated health risks of being overweight. It also cites a survey that found "42% of 18 to 24-year-olds would not tell a loved one they should lose weight because of a fear they would hurt the other person's feelings." Well, that makes Christmas just the perfect time to cast insults at those closest to you. After all, as Donkey from <i>Shrek</i> says, "It ain't Christmas until somebody cries."

But besides the obvious, let me tell you why this is the most crap-tastic Christmas idea ever. And no, it's not because it is cheap. Speaking as circumferally-enhanced individual, I already know I'm fat. And your loved ones? They know they are fat, too. Christmas is the time to say "I love you" (thank you Billy Squire), not the time to point out others' imperfections.

On the other hand, one could take this all the way and use the holiday as a time of absolute candor. After you are done telling Aunt Dottie how fat she is, may as well tell Uncle Billy that his toupee it completely obvious, tell Cousin Jeff that his problem with women is his personality, that, no Lil' Sis, your singing career is not taking off, and Grandpa, no one thinks that your jokes are funny anymore. Actually, that last one might be alright.

Friday, December 16, 2011

It’s a Wonderful(ly Capitalist) Life(!)

I have a guest article over at Commentarama Films examining the conservative message behind the Frank Capra classic It's a Wonderful Life. Here's a taste:

"It’s a Wonderful Life praises a far more substantial vision of free-enterprise than its detractors seem to apprehend. Besides that, the film is also a tribute to family, a salute to Americanism, an homage to goodwill, and an ode to traditional values all wrapped up in a beautiful golden-age Hollywood Christmas card."
Read more at Commentarama Films »

the Almighty Crock Pot

This is actually the model of crock-pot that I have.
I am a man of few regrets. However, one true regret I have in my life is that I did not discover the power of the crock pot sooner. It wasn't until I became a full-fledged adult, with a mortgage and children, that I came to understand the usefulness of what is quite possibly the greatest convenience appliance of all time. Yes, I'm ranking this thing above the microwave (though I would never go without one of those, either).

The reason I regret not learning about the amazing crock pot sooner is that, contrary to what you might think, this appliance is not just for busy moms (and dads) or for keeping Buffalo wings hot. I wish I could go back in time to visit bachelor me and give him the gift of slow cooking. It certainly would have saved me from weeks on end of Chinese take-out, microwave pot-pies, and canned pasta.

If there is one thing that every single man is wanting, it is a home cooked meal. The beauty of the crock pot is that, with minimal effort and approximately equal know how, one can have just that. You just load it up in the morning with whatever you fancy, go do whatever you need to do all day, and return in the evening to a hot and ready dinner. That's faster than nuking a Hungry Man dinner.

Sure, crock pot cooking takes a little more planning than microwavery. But it has great advantage. With a microwave, everything you make is limited to one texture: mushy. This may be fine for ramen noodles and Salisbury steak. But what about roast chicken with new potatoes and garden vegetables? Yes, armed with a crock pot, a single guy can make for himself a roast chicken dinner. And that is not all, the possibilities are endless. And preparation is as simple as throwing stuff in a pot.

Sure, a little trial and error will lead you to bigger and better dishes, but I've never known a guy who wasn't willing to eat his mistakes--literally. So, my advice to all you bachelors out there, forget the microwave and get yourself a crock pot. (But don't really forget the microwave. You're still gonna want a Hot Pocket now and again.)

Friday, December 9, 2011

Breakfast Bagel Sandwich

A homemade ham, egg, 'n' swiss bagel sandwich. Ummmmm!

Friday, December 2, 2011

Indoor S'mores

I really like this recipe, and I just made it. It's like rice crispy treats only much, much better.

Indoor S'mores

  • 8 cups (13-oz. box) graham cracker cereal
  • 6 cups (10.5-oz. bag) miniature marshmallows, divided
  • 1 1/2 cups (9 oz.) Milk Chocolate Morsels
  • 5 tablespoons butter or margarine, cut into pieces
  • 1/4 cup light corn syrup (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
GREASE 13 x 9-inch baking pan. Pour cereal into large bowl.

HEAT 5 cups marshmallows, morsels, butter and corn syrup in medium, heavy-duty saucepan over low heat, stirring constantly until smooth. Remove from heat. Stir in vanilla extract.

POUR marshmallow mixture over cereal; stir until well coated. Stir in remaining marshmallows. Press mixture into prepared pan. Refrigerate for 1 hour or until firm. Cut into bars.

Microwave 5 cups marshmallows, morsels, butter and corn syrup in large, microwave-safe bowl on HIGH (100%) power for 2 to 3 1/2 minutes, stirring every minute, until smooth. Stir in vanilla extract. Proceed as above.

Keystone XL Pipleine: Good for America. Safe for Nebraska.

As a Nebraskan, expressing my support for the Keystone XL Pipeline is probably long overdue. I guess that's because I don't have a whole lot to say. I've heard the arguments and I think it is a good project. That is all I have to say. But I don't think it is good to remain silent on the subject.

The facts of the debate are remarkably simple. The main arguments against the pipeline are environmental. The trouble is, they are all wrong. But don't just take it from me.