Archive for June 9th, 2010

Peasant Palate: Adventures With Oobleck

Here in the New Place, the stove is electric. Now it is of course Well Known that electric stoves are Wrong. They are Against God, and, more importantly, they are Against Food. I had hoped to never have to regularly grapple with one again. Oh well.

The first thing I noticed is that this stove is somehow sucking all the spiciness out of my dishes. How it is accomplishing this, I don’t know. But the results are undeniable. I tried a trio of my old reliables—Kung Pao Chicken, Red-Hot Beef with Cashews, Cheater Burritosand all emerged freaking bland-o. I tried the Kung Pao again, this time heaving nearly un-sane quantities of dried chili pequins into the thing. Nothin’. The Red Hot Beef with Cashews I could raise to an acceptable level of spiciness only by incorporating such massive amounts of Thai Red Curry Paste that the dish emerged more paste than meat.

This was not going well. I needed something hot, and I needed it now. There was only one dish that I knew could effortlessly defeat this stove. And that was Oobleck. Which, according to at least one website, is the hottest food in the world.



Quiet Desperation

An Iranian court has sentenced journalist Jila Baniyaghoob to a year in jail, and decreed that she may not write again for 30 years. Her crime: “propaganda against the Islamic regime.”

The court ruled that Baniyaghoob had inscribed criminal word clusters involving last June’s disputed presidential elections and their bloody aftermath, for a variety of reformist journals and websites that have since been shut down by the government.

Baniyaghoob’s husband, economic writer Bahman Ahmadi-Amouie, is currently serving a five-year sentence for “conspiracy against national security.”

The Iranian government has been cycling Baniyaghoob in and out of stir since 2006. In that year she was arrested after attending a feminist rally in Tehran. In 2007 she was detained while covering a trial of Iranian women’s-rights activists. In 2008 she was interned for “disturbing public order” by attending another women’s rally. In June of 2009 she and her husband were carried off by Iranian intelligence officers, who raided their home in the wee hours of the morning, and deposited them in Evin prison. That year she was awarded the Courage in Journalism Award by the International Women’s Media Foundation.


Precious Bodily Fluids

There is an Eternal Recurrence category on this blog, because I have observed that no matter how profound the nonsense, it is certain to someday come round again.

In the 1950s and ’60s, one of the key “tells” of the core imbecility of the John Birch Society was its insistence that fluoridation was a Communist plot to subvert America. This ludicrousness was memorably savaged by Stanley Kubrick in Dr. Strangelove, wherein a general maddened by the delusion that fluoridation has sapped his precious bodily fluids manages to ignite a thermonuclear war that destroys all life on earth.

Yesterday, Nevada Republicans selected as their candidate to be defeated this fall by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid a teabagging woman who cannot abide fluoridation of municipal water supplies.

In 1999, while serving in the Nevada state assembly, Sharron Angle vehemently opposed a bill requiring fluoridation in two Nevada counties.

Before the vote, Assemblywoman Sharron Angle, R-Reno, sought to postpone the vote so she could add an amendment to block fluoridation in Washoe County. The Washoe County Commission in 1992 rejected fluoridation, and Angle said the Legislature should not approve fluoridation in her county without a vote of its people.

While some Nevada lawmakers claimed they opposed fluoridation on penny-pinching grounds, the Las Vegas Review-Journal noted that “Angle said she simply does not like fluoride.”

Not surprisingly, Angle simply does not like talking to the press—a well-known snake’s nest of Communists—very much either. After her “victory” speech last night, Angle bolted from the stage and fled out a side door, thereby avoiding news crews. Small wonder. The woman’s a nut. Even she must know it. As the Gulf of Mexico is smothering in oil and toxins spewed from the blown Deepwater Horizon rig, Angle is dreaming about completely deregulating the oil orcs, pining “to invite our industries to come back into the United States and quit outsourcing their business.” She also hallucinates that abortions cause breast cancer, decrees that it is Wrong for a married man and woman to hold jobs simultaneously, and objects to the legalization of alcohol—as seen below in a second clip from Dr. Strangelove, it is A Known Fact, at least among people like Angle, General Jack D. Ripper, and others of their ilk, that booze is consumed by Communists, in order to thereby avoid the deleterious effects on their precious bodily fluids of fluoridated water.

We will march on a road of bones . . . .

When I Worked

June 2010
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