Later On

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

Archive for June 28th, 2017

Jason Kottke: Mark Zuckerberg isn’t running for President; DIY abortions on the rise

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Written by LeisureGuy

28 June 2017 at 7:44 pm

Posted in Business, Politics

Jason Kottke on the interplay of government and capitalism

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A post at Kottke.org that’s worth reading.

Written by LeisureGuy

28 June 2017 at 7:01 pm

Posted in Business, Government

Rebirth of a knife

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Written by LeisureGuy

28 June 2017 at 6:21 pm

Posted in Daily life

Never lose hope.

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Written by LeisureGuy

28 June 2017 at 6:15 pm

Posted in Daily life, Video

Kevin Drum: “Let’s Cut the Crap: Trumpcare Cuts Medicaid Spending a Ton”

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And he shows exactly how (hint: thinking about inflation) the spending is cut, in real dollars, and has a chart showing the effects of that on people.

Written by LeisureGuy

28 June 2017 at 5:25 pm

The ‘i before e, except after c’ rule is a giant lie

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The rule doesn’t hold. The rule I learned is “I before E except after C and in words that sound “ey” like “neighbor” and “weigh.” But that isn’t even close. Christopher Ingraham reports in the Washington Post:

I before E, except after C.”

The familiar grade school mnemonic is a “supreme, and for many people solitary, spelling rule,” linguist Edward Carney wrote in “A survey of English spelling.” Its primacy has been acknowledged in English grammar textbooks from 1866 (James Stuart Laurie’s “Manual of English Spelling,”) until the present day (Bryan Garner’s “Modern English Usage”).

But like many, many other rules in the English language, it turns out this one is built on a foundation of lies.

A University of Warwick statistician named Nathan Cunningham recently decided to put the i-before-e rule to the test. So he plugged a list of 350,000 English words into a statistical program to see if the math checked out.

The first order of business is to check the ratio of “ie” to “ei” spellings — does i usually come before e? The good news is that it does — in roughly three quarters of all words with either an “ie” or an “ei” pair, the proper spelling is “ie,” as the rule would have you believe.

Think of words like “relief,” “grief,” “niece” or “believe.” The thief was up to a piece of brief mischief in the field, according to the chief.

“So far, the rule is serving its purpose,” Cunningham writes. “If you’re struggling to order an ‘ei’/‘ie’ pair in a word, there’s an approximately three to one chance that the ‘i’ will go first.”

All good so far! Unfortunately, it’s all downhill from here.

On to the second part — “except after c.” Cunningham selected all words in his data set with either a “cei” or “cie” spelling. If the rule were as accurate as we’d been lead to believe, you’d expect the “cei” spellings to greatly outnumber the “cie” ones, right? . . .

Continue reading.

Written by LeisureGuy

28 June 2017 at 4:27 pm

Posted in Writing

Time for more Glorious One-Pot Meals

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As regular readers know, I like a glorious one-pot meal, a description that serves as the title for Elizabeth Yarnell’s book. The blog now has quite a collection of various GOPM recipes, usually made on the fly.

Fair warnings about the book:

  1. The recipes are extremely bland. Crushed red pepper can help, but the idea and approach are so simple that you will quickly be making up your own recipes to use what you have on hand.
  2. She and her husband are, I assume, triathletes. She says a 2-qt GOPM serves two. For normal people it will serve four—and indeed she for some reasons uses four servings of rice in her recipes. I don’t use rice at all, but rather pearled barley, and I use 1/3 cup of the uncooked barley for the 2-qt pot.

Although Yarnell recommends enameled cast-iron, I find that plain cast iron works well, and the Stansport 2-qt cast-iron dutch oven is $20 at Walmart. You can easily remove the two wire handles (and easily replace them if you every want to hang the pot over a fire). Season it first. I highly recommend Larbee (leaf lard and beeswax) or Crisbee (palm and vegetable oil and beeswax) as the best I’ve found—and I recommend the puck over the stick and unscented over scented. See FAQ and instructions.

The enameled pot might be easier to clean, but plain cast iron cleans up readily with hot water and the Ringer, a piece of chain mail used as a scrubber. I wouldn’t use it on an enameled pot, but on plain cast iron it works like a charm, partly because it is flexible so you can feel when there is a spot with something stuck, so you know where to scrub. I clean the pot using just hot water, no detergent. Reseason the pot as needed. You can always start over by putting the empty pot in a self-cleaning oven and running a cycle. Rinse it out well, reseason, and it’s as good as new.

Friday will see another GOPM.

Written by LeisureGuy

28 June 2017 at 4:18 pm

Posted in Daily life, Food, GOPM

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