Category Archives: Uncategorized

Truly Thankful

I’m truly thankful for my family and friends.  Obvs.  Then there is the Field Roast  Grain Meat Company.  They take care of us on Thanksgiving (and may other days of the year, too).   They give us an answer when people ask what we eat on Thanksgiving.  Then they go and give us this:

Can’t wait to try them!

Related–I’ve been sending mucho dinero north, to Canada, when I buy Daiya products.  Now I read that Canada is blocking the importation of Field Roast products.  So they can have my dollars but we can’t have theirs?  Srsly?

Also related–my friend on the other side of the snow belt mentions Vtopian Artisan Cheeses from Eugene, Oregon.  Wow.  The world is really taking care of us these days.

Frida is hugely alive.  Lacey is strong and getting herself stronger (to help shovel tonight).  It.  Is.  All.  Good.


Remember to sharpen your kitchen knives and keep them away from your fingers, okay?

Best November Weekend

Friday night we hung with neighbors at their home.  Such a great way to relax after a long work week.  I brought a half growler of Mom & Pops Pumpkin Crop Lager from Jack’s Abby.  Only the third pumpkin beer of my life, but the best.  Two of us were drinking it and 32 ounces was not nearly enough.rnf

Saturday morning we walked with Frida around the Capital Hills at Albany golf course.  It is finally closed to golfers so once again the dogs have the run of the place.  Frida isn’t so much into running of late, but to make it around the circuit was a win in my eyes.  She just keeps going!

Saturday night we enjoyed Curry House take-out at our friends’ place.   I brought a full growler of Shuggie SoulBender IPA from SingleCut Beersmiths in Astoria Queens.  So fresh and delicious.  What a treat.  Try it before Oliver’s keg is kicked.

Sunday we went to the Spectrum to see Birdman.  Very highly recommend you do the same.  Not an action film per se, but there are reasons you should see it in a theater.  Enough said.  So go.

Then we made our first trip to the Fort Orange General Store.  They’ve been open some time, maybe a year, but we’d never noticed the place.  If you leave the Spectrum and turn right to go to the parking lot, you’ll miss this really stunning collection of home goods.  Apparently that’s what we’ve done during the whole of their existence.  So when you are leaving the Spectrum, turn left for heaven’s sake.  It’s right there (under scaffolding).  We bought a good collection of small gifts.  I won’t show those in case one of them ends up in your mittens, but I did bring home some wonderful bitters for us.  cb

I haven’t had them in a drink, but I have had them in water.  This is a great way to get to know a new bottle of bitters before you bury them in a strong cocktail.  These are delicious.

So three cheers for Fort Orange.  I’m not aware of a better store in town for gift giving (and for buying for yourself as well).

Take care!

NYC Correspondent

I asked my friend, Abbey Isolda, to submit a review of the Cinnamon Snail.  My TV had shown folks going gaga for this vegan food truck and Abbey works in the area it parks, and thus the occasion for my first guest post.  How exciting!  I’m pleased to present her review.

In keeping up with a promise, I headed over to the Cinnamon Snail vegan food truck on a cold, cold Manhattan Friday.  Prior to departure I reviewed the menu to have an idea of what I was getting myself into.  I had it narrowed down to two items.  I offered to pick up something for  my colleagues but they were “weirded out”  by “foreign” items like kimchi, tempeh and seitan.  A physician I work with opted for the side salad,  I think just to be polite, but I was happy about it anyway, and off I went!wtft

The truck is .7 miles away from my office.  Thanks to what the weatherfolk like to call “abundant sunshine,” the walk was pleasant if a touch crowded for my I’m-so-over-this-city mindset. image1

It’s a nice walk past some of the old theatres and it was somewhat refreshing to get a feeling that not all of the city’s history has been erased by contemporary renovations.  image3

I even found the Ziegfeld theatre which was originally built in the 20s, demolished and now has a 60s movie theatre in its place.   I think it’s a pretty neat theatre despite its separate incarnations.image2

Ten minutes later I arrived at the location Twitter provided me with,   55th and Broadway, and found a mess of trucks lined up.   The Cinnamon Snail had a steady line and I overheard people discussing tasty breakfast options.   The folks in the truck were pretty hippie dippy, but not the customers.   At 9-10 buckaroons a pop (not to mention the overall seeming disappearance of hippies in the city) this wasn’t surprising.   I asked the hippie man in the truck what to order and he told me he preferered the two sandwiches I had narrowed it down to–the bbq tempeh and the five spice thai seitan thingie.  I went for the latter and ordered the salad for the doc.image7

As I waited for my stuff I overheard some people ordering the famed cinnamon snail which was not a snail at all but rather, a cinnamon bun.   I went ahead and ordered one despite my current sugar restriction.   After all, I reminded myself, the restriction is not ment to deprive me of occasional desserts, it’s ment to discipline myself from gobbling every sugary snack in sight.image4

I brought the food back via an ambling walk through the park.image6

I attempted to get a little UV on my face but it was too cold. I went back to the office and unveiled the sandwich.  It looked unsettlingly like meat and had strange hair like protuberances throughout the seitan, as thought the sandwich had been prepared by cats (maybe this was one of the five spices?? No idea. ) It was a bit greasy for my liking but I ate it anyway.  The flavor was nice but  I couldn’t shake the notion that this thing was going to cause  some GI issues later.image5

The doc liked the salad reporting that the arugula was particularly spicy.  I inhaled the cinnamon roll, and felt a little guilty.

I wouldn’t not go back, but I don’t know if I’ll hurry.  If I do, I think my next dish will be the breakfast burrito.

Thanks for the leg work friend!  Now inquiring minds are in the know.  If I found myself in the vicinity of the truck I’d still give it a try, but it sounds like a modest lowering of expectations might be in order.  C’est la vie!

Take care!






Oh Person

I go for long stretches listening only to music I own.  Then I remember… radio!  If I have my wits about me, when I think of radio I think of Laura Glazer.  I checked in today and found this gem.

I have to remember to tune in to WEXT on Sundays at 8.  AM or PM.  One less thing to remember.

Frida is absolutely killing it.  Sleeping, chilling, eating, guarding and walking.  The whole  package.  Hard not to be over delighted.  Here’s one from the archives (more than a decade ago).OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Not sure how we got comfortable letting her off leash with her ridiculously fast running sticks.  But we did and she always came back.

In the mood for a bummer?  Here you go!



Very Metal

Yesterday I very much enjoyed the Vegan Black Metal Chef’s cooking demo at Albany Veg Fest.  I had a front row center seat for all the action, of which there was plenty.  vbmc5He made three dishes in an hour.  First up was aloo palak (Indian potatoes and spinach).  This involved sautéing onions, adding spinach, tomatoes, the precooked potatoes and a packet of spice from the Indian grocery.  After it cooked down, it all went into the blender, then back into the pan to warm and it was done.   You can watch it here.

vbmc4It was better than any Indian spinach dish I’ve made.  Next up was a dish with veggies, seitan and soba noodles.  That one I didn’t get to try, but it looked great. vbmc3

Finally, he made buffalo seitan bites with ranch dressing and celery sticks.  This one was amazing in its simplicity, speed and the awesome end result.  I’ll fire this one up soon.vbmc1

Seitan was browned in a pan and then Franks Red Hot and Earth Balance margarine were added.  The ranch was blue cap Vegaise mayo, dill, parsley, white vinegar and a couple of other things I’ve forgotten.  The celery was chopped into sticks all at once from the full bunch using his sacrificial blade.  Hail seitan!


It was so very epic, and he was really sweet to boot.  And very metal.

Also metal?  Frida has slept four nights now, the last two without any meds.  The meds are fast acting so we’ll have them at the ready should she become uncomfortable.  It.  Is.  So.  Swell.fil

Not metal?  The rake I bought on October 30 lost three tines when coming into contact with a tree stump.  It was plastic, it was cold out and trees are hard, but what is not foreseeable about the two meeting in these conditions.  Lowe’s took it back without blinking and I bought another style.  We’ll see.  Single use tools are so not metal.  Shame on you True Temper.

I brought in my five metal (two steel and three alu) snow shovels so I can wax them all tonight.  Supposed to snow Monday.  Have you waxed your shovels?

Take care friends!



Near Term Win

Frida’s magic relaxing pill allowed her to sleep through the night.  We are all pleased as punch.  Thanks so much to our friend and vet.  She is magic and not a pill.  Here’s hoping the pills keep working.  We all need to string together a number of good nights of sleep.aal

Also enjoyed a visit from the printer repair guy.  My printer was picking up an extra page at the end of each job and causing jams.  The internet told me a pad had deteriorated on the paper pick up solenoid.  The sticky residue where the pad used to be was preventing the solenoid from operating correctly.  I opened the printer, determined to make the fix, and then realized I had no idea what a solenoid looked like.  Nothing obvious in the tangle of wires, boards and mechanisms, so I hit the internet again looking for a repair shop.  I found The Printer Repair Guy.  He doesn’t have a shop so he comes to your place.  I called him this morning, he was here in the afternoon, and the repair was quick and affordable.  Nice guy, too.  Do not add your printer to the landfill.  Call The Printer Repair Guy!

That’s that.  Be well.