Later On

A blog written for those whose interests more or less match mine.

Archive for January 13th, 2011

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This sounds pretty cool for those involved in team sports.

Written by Leisureguy

13 January 2011 at 5:44 pm

Posted in Daily life, Software

Rainy day, and thinking of one-pot meals

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I was planning to go the Monterey Peninsula College and wander around the campus: check out bookstore, library, find the language lab, etc. But it’s raining.

Still, I did an outing and stopped at Nob Hill for a few things. One was a bunch of beef fat: I’m rendering that now and will use it to season cast-iron stuff. (Whole Foods will neither sell nor give away beef fat; Nob Hill gave me a couple of pounds, no charge.)

I also got some stuff toward my first one-pot recipe of my own. The layers, from the bottom up:

1/2 large onion sliced thinly
2/3 cup whole-wheat Israeli couscous (the large ones)
8 oz center-cut boneless pork chops (after trimming fat)
5-spice seasoning
1/2 red bell pepper, cut in thin strips
6 kumquats, cut cross-wise into slices
1/4 head green cabbage chopped
8 asparagus spears, chopped

I’m still not sure about the seasonings. It probably should have a little cayenne, salt, pepper, … And I’ll add some liquid—perhaps some vinaigrette: say, 2 Tbsp along with 1/2 cup water and 1 tsp Dijon mustard.

Layer the food in 2-qt cast-iron Dutch oven, put into preheated 450º F oven, and remove after 45 minutes.

Serves two.

Written by Leisureguy

13 January 2011 at 2:19 pm

The disgusting, despicable side of the US government

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These are outrages against human decency:

(1) Gulet Mohamed — the Somali-born American citizen who just turned 19 and who described how he spent a week being interrogated, beaten and tortured by unknown captors — remains in custody in Kuwait despite not being charged with any crimes or wrongdoing of any kind.  As his lawyer said in an interview with me on Tuesday, it is the Americans, not the Kuwaitis, who are responsible for his ongoing detention by virtue of placing him on the U.S.’s no-fly list — likely, they believe, in order to enable his ongoing interrogations by the FBI without a lawyer or other legal protections to which he’d be entitled if he returned to the U.S.

Yesterday, Mohamed’s lawyer told me that while American officials do nothing to help him (and much to ensure his ongoing detention), Mohamed was visited again by FBI agents and “interrogated aggressively for hours despite repeated requests that the interrogation stop until his counsel is present.”  He added that “at one point during the interrogation, the two agents started screaming and yelling at Gulet inches from his person,” and that “a Kuwaiti official actually intervened at this point and directed the agents to calm down and not treat Gulet like they were.”  As he put it:  “Gulet has to rely on agents of the government that probably executed his torture to protect him from his country of citizenship.”  The photograph of Mohamed in detention was taken by his brother yesterday.  A letter sent by Mohamed’s lawyer to the Attorney General regarding the details of the FBI’s conduct is here.

If Mohamed is guilty of anything, then he ought to be charged and prosecuted.  Forcing this 19-year-old to remain imprisoned and subjected to ongoing interrogations without the slightest explanation — particularly after the ordeal to which he was subjected — is a true travesty.  Denying his  constitutional right to return to his own country through a secret, unexplained placement on the no-fly list is even worse.  The American government has the obligation to assist its citizens in these circumstances, but in this case is doing precisely the opposite.   His attorney has written another letter to the Attorney General, but it appears as though legal action is necessary to redress his plight.

(2) Jacob Appelbaum — the WikiLeaks volunteer who was detained and interrogated for hours and had his electronic goods seized the last time he attempted to re-enter the U.S., and who was told that this would happen each time he left the country and came back — indeed encountered similar treatment on Sunday when he returned home from Iceland.  This time at the Seattle airport, he was again detained, questioned, and had his electronic goods taken — all without a warrant — though this time he purposely traveled without a laptop or cellphone (the only item he had with him was a memory stick onto which he embedded the Bill of Rights).  Appelbaum recounted his ordeal yesterday on Twitter, and BoingBoing has collected his narration here.

(3) This morning, the Bradley Manning Defense Fund announced that WikiLeaks has given the fund $15,000.  That brings the total raised for Manning’s defense to more than $100,000, which guarantees that he will be able to pay for a vigorous defense.

UPDATE:  Regarding the issue I raised yesterday of the false claims being circulated about WikiLeaks’ role in releasing a diplomatic cable concerning Zimbabwe, The Guardian, through its deputy editor, Ian Katz, has a good, straightforward explanation of this episode and the issues I raised.  I don’t agree with everything Katz writes there, but kudos for addressing the issues with such clarity and transparency.  I wish all news organizations were willing to respond with even a fraction of that candor and openness when challenged.

On a related note, Armando at TalkLeft deftly highlights the key issue in this whole episode.

Written by Leisureguy

13 January 2011 at 1:17 pm

Prairie Creations Gentleman’s Pipe

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Above you see the tiny brush collection, Wee Scot on the right and boar/badger combo brush on the left (the brush I used in this shave a couple of days ago. This morning I used the middle brush: a tiny Omega badger brush. It worked up a fine lather from Prairie Creations Gentleman’s Pipe—this one is tallow plus lanolin.

The brush held ample lather for three passes, and the Apollo Mikron did a fine job with its still-sharp Swedish Gillette blade. A splash of Floïd and I’m good to go.

Written by Leisureguy

13 January 2011 at 10:31 am

Posted in Shaving

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