I want to get some random post-fodder out of my head, then I'll try
to get back to finishing already-started topics and maybe even finally
try start to catch up on comments and reading my friendspage ... So for
the moment, some random snippets:
I need an OS X machine. Oh, for quite a while now I've known how
pleasant they are, and have thought about how nice it would be to
have one, but I could do most of what I wanted to do using a combination
of Linux and Windows and once in a while Mac Classic, if somewhat
But now there's a tool that I want to create (if it doesn't turn
out to already exist), and I want to make it for a couple of Mac users,
and the level of transparency I want to build into it will require
my learning a lot more about the behind-the-scenes aspects of the
OS X environment and access to OS X for trying out ideas.
I want to make a magic music container which will, when accessed,
produce sheet music in the most apropriate format for the application
of the moment, without the user having to keep track of five files
per tune or worry about whether the JPG was regenned the last time
the PDF was updated or the Finale file was edited. The less the user
has to think about choosing the format or dealing with archive-maintenance
tasks, the better, and adding tunes to the library has to be nearly
as easy as getting copies out. For myself, I'd probably continue
putting a Makefile in each sheet music directory under Linux, but I
want to create a more end-user oriented solution, and the more magically
Macish the UI, the better. Easily using the clipboard to paste tunes
into a word processing or DTP document to create sets will be a very
important feature. OCR'ing scanned pages of sheet music will be
extremely useful as well -- I don't want to try to write that part,
so I'll want to invisibly invoke some other program that already
does music OCR.
This would be in a "really big, long-term project" category.
It's going to take me a while to get it just right.
It was probably mere coincidence, but this startled and amused me
nonetheless: A few days ago I was lying naked in bed and Perrine leapt
up on me. "Jeepers, cat! Your paws are like ice," I
exclaimed. Perrine jumped down straightaway and left the room.
Two or three minutes later, she returned and jumped up on me again.
This time her paws were not just warm, but hot. I'm not sure what
she did in those few minutes.
Two errors while making yesterday's breakfast, the first being the
classic mistake of picking too small a bowl to start with when improvising
in a new direction, and winding up having to get a larger bowl as the
list of ingredients grows ... and the second being a result of my
relative inexperience with habaneros ...
A while ago I decided that since I like a lot of things that are
flavoured with habaneros, I should learn to use them myself -- I mostly
use jalapeños and serranos, and sometimes those skinny red
Asian peppers that I'm not sure the name of. So for the past month
or two I've been playing with habaneros, and have figured out how
much habanero goes with how much egg and cheese to result in maximum
flavour within a comfortable-to-me level of heat.
Yesterday morning I learned that "this much habanero to that much
egg & cheese" does not translate to "somewhere in the
ballpark of this much habanero to that much other stuff".
Not even close. (Either that, or habaneros get a lot hotter after
sitting in the fridge for a while.) Tasty, yes, tasty, but rather
uncomfortably hot. Eat-slowly-and-drink-lots-while-my-nose-runs
hot. Accent-hot or maybe snack-hot -- pleasant for a bite or two --
but too hot for "I'm hungry and want to fill my tummy" eating.
I ate half, and threw the rest in the icebox. Last night I hit the
grocery for a block of cheddar, and this morning I ate the rest of
the too-hot breakfast with occasional bites of cheddar to tame the
effect. That worked. I'll get the hang of the little orange firebombs
yet. But I get the idea they're easier to use when making a large
batch of something than in single-serving recipes. I wouldn't mind
finding a milder but similar-tasting pepper to use instead. Chipotles
taste a little bit like habaneros to me, but not so much that I'd
call one a substitute for the other. (It's interesting that I notice
any similarity in the first place, since habaneros aren't smoky and
fresh red jalapeños don't taste anything like habaneros -- they
taste like, well, like green jalapeños minus the green-taste --
but the interactions between flavour components are fascinating and
often mysterious.) One of the reasons serranos are my favourite
pepper so far is that their flavour:heat ratio is unusually high;
even though serranos are hotter than jalapeños, you can
(optionally) make milder recipes with them because it takes less
of the pepper to get more of the pepper's flavour. (The other reason
serranos are my favourite is that I happen to really like their
flavour, of course. I find that they taste much more interesting
than jalapeños regardless of the overall heat level of the
dish they're used in.) Habaneros, alas, are t'other way 'round,
having an interesting flavour but a relatively low flavour:heat
My ability to tolerate cold on my hands seems to be dropping.
I suppose I should take notes to figure out whether it's correlated
with my levels of fibromyalgia pain from day to day or an actual
long-term trend of its own.