Later On

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

Archive for September 4th, 2021

Cacao chia pudding with berries and/or nuts

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I blogged this previously, but it was hard to find because title doesn’t include the recipe name. And I did have a couple of enhancements. Here it is, tested and with enhancements to the original recipe:


• 2 1/4 cups water
• 1 cup raw cashews
• 5 soft dates (preferably Medjool), pitted and chopped
• 2 tablespoons vanilla extract
• 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
• 1/2 cup raw cacao powder (or use regular unsweetened natural (not Dutch process) cocoa powder)
• 1/2 cup chia seeds (white or black)
• 2 tablespoons maple syrup –
• 1 1/2 cup frozen blueberries or mixed berries or 1 cup walnuts or both

If the dates are hard, soak them in hot water for an hour to soften, then drain before chopping.

The pudding must be chilled for 2-3 hours before serving. It can be refrigerated for up to 3 days. It never lasts that long for me — and not because it spoils, if you get my drift.

Put into a blender the cashews, dates, vanilla extract, maple syrup, salt, and chia seeds and add 1 to 1 1/2 cups water and puree until very smooth. Add cocoa power and the remaining water and blend to mix thoroughly.

Pour into a glass storage container and mix in the berries and/or nuts. Cover and refrigerate for 2-3 hours, until set

You could chop the walnuts, but since I buy “pieces and halves,” quite a few are broken halves, so I just use them as is. A good chunk of walnut is not a bad thing.

Really tasty. But the total recipe is 77 WW points, so small servings work best.

Written by Leisureguy

4 September 2021 at 2:19 pm

DNA analysis of grizzly bears aligns with Indigenous languages

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This finding seems at first surprising. Lauren H. Henson, PhD Student, Applied Conservation Science, University of Victoria, and Jennifer Walkus, Council, Wuikinuxv First Nation, write in The Conversation:

Along the central coast of what is now known as British Columbia, Gitga’at, Haíɫzaqv (Heiltsuk), Wuikinuxv, Nuxalk, and Kitasoo/Xai’xais First Nations are monitoring and managing wildlife populations, continuing a legacy of stewardship of this landscape since time immemorial. Stewardship often represents an extension of long-term relationships with ecosystems and animals, including iconic species like mountain goats, salmon and grizzly bears.

A long-term bear monitoring collaboration between five central coast First Nations, the Raincoast Conservation Foundation and the University of Victoria has described a new connection in the long-known relationship between people, bears and the land.

On the central coast, genetic analyses have identified three genetic groups of grizzly bears — bears are more likely to be related to other bears within their own group than to bears in another group.

Link to language

Often, the presence of distinct genetic groups can mean that a landscape barrier is preventing animals from moving and mating. This research partnership tested traditional landscape features that had been found to prevent bears from freely moving in other areas, including landscape ruggedness, large waterways, snow and ice, and the presence of human settlements and infrastructure.

Knowing that the central coast looked very different prior to the disease and violence-mediated genocide that came with colonization, and that genetic methods can sometimes reflect longer timescales, we also incorporated archeological indicators of where people lived in the past.

Despite dense settlement and use of the coast by people in the past, the rugged landscape and large waterways, none of these features explained the pattern of grizzly genetic groups. However, the geographies of these three genetic groups strikingly align with those of three Indigenous language families: Tsimshian, Northern Wakashan and Salishan Nuxalk.

This finding was not a complete surprise to Indigenous collaborators, co-authors, and communities. Bears and people have shared resources and watersheds for millennia, emphasizing the potential for both to respond to and be shaped by the landscape in similar ways. This overlap additionally suggests that the pattern of genetic grouping may be more linked to what the landscape can provide in resources than what it can limit in resistance.

Knowledge sharing between bears and people

Elders pass on stories about people watching and learning from bears as they eat many of the same things and are also omnivores. Bears and people both learn from their ancestors what to eat and where. In some places, bears stay close to the home range and territory of their mothers just as Indigenous families traditionally have rights to manage a specific part of a river or watershed. These familial links to territories and sharing of knowledge suggest not only a parallel in resource use, but also a cultural equivalency between bears and people.

These findings also have management implications. The geographies of the three grizzly genetic groups do not spatially align with how grizzlies are currently managed by the provincial government. One genetic group is split in half by a current management boundary, meaning that that two halves of the same group could be managed differently.

Read more: Respect for Indigenous knowledge must lead nature conservation efforts in Canada

Incorporating genetic evidence into management plans can provide important information about population health and the ability of groups of animals to adapt to changes or stressors in their environment.

The findings of genetic grouping despite traditional barriers to mating, and the striking overlap between groups and Indigenous language families highlights the close relationship between bears and people. This overlap also emphasizes the need for local and Indigenous-led monitoring and management of grizzlies.

Traditional knowledge and conservation

Central coast First Nations are effectively . . .

Continue reading.

Written by Leisureguy

4 September 2021 at 12:13 pm

Capitalism, Cultural Disintegration, and Buzzfeed

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This video is somewhat dense (in terms of ideas per minute) and is well worth watching.

Written by Leisureguy

4 September 2021 at 9:00 am

WTF Happened In 1971?

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Here’s a collection of interesting data, already charted. The first chart in the collection:

Many more charts show the same inflection point in 1971. (The two videos in a previous post discuss some of this, as does the video in the next post.)

Here’s another:

Written by Leisureguy

4 September 2021 at 8:52 am

The radical power of the book index

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Michael Delgado writes in Prospect:

Index, A History of the
Dennis Duncan (Allen Lane)

Is Google making us stupid? This was the question posed by the American writer Nicholas Carr in a 2008 essay published in the Atlantic. “I’m not thinking the way I used to think,” he confessed. “Immersing myself in a book or a lengthy article used to be easy… now my concentration often starts to drift after two or three pages.” The internet, Carr posited, was to blame. “My mind now expects to take in information the way the Net distributes it.”

This argument has become something of a cliché, and Carr was self-aware enough to point out that this was hardly a new concern. Marshall McLuhan had said much the same thing about technology in the 1960s. Nietzsche’s prose, according to a friend of his, became “tighter, more telegraphic” after he began using a typewriter. A minor Venetian humanist lamented that the arrival of Gutenberg’s printing press in the 15th century would make people lazy, weak-minded and “less studious.”

Misoneism is the ur-fear. It’s understandable when it emerges as a response to paradigm-shifting inventions like the typewriter, the printing press or writing itself. A passage in Plato’s Phaedrus relays Socrates’ myth about the Egyptian god Theuth, who invented the act of writing. Theuth proudly presents his new creation to King Thamus, attesting that it “will make the Egyptians wiser and will improve their memories.” Thamus is unimpressed: “this invention will produce forgetfulness in the minds of those who learn to use it, because they will not practise their memory.”

It is difficult to imagine that what most of us see as a functional piece of scholarly apparatus, the book index, could inspire the same passions as these monumental innovations did. But as Dennis Duncan shows in his masterful new book, Index, A History of the, the birth of the index was a long and painful one.

Early indexes, concordances and distinctiones had been around for a long time before the index blossomed into something like its modern form. It was the arrival of printed page numbers that helped firm things up. At the Bodleian Library, Duncan gets his hands on the first extant example of the printed page number, in a short sermon produced in Cologne in 1470, and describes it as “the most intense experience that I have had of the archival sublime.” But 1470 was far from a watershed moment. Even at the end of the century, page numbers only appeared in around 10 per cent of printed books, and the index itself continued to be treated with suspicion. The Renaissance polymath Conrad Gessner balked at those “ignorant or dishonest men” who “rely only on the indexes” to gain information. A couple of centuries later Alexander Pope put it more floridly in The Dunciad: “Index-learning turns no student pale/Yet holds the eel of science by the tail.” The index, in these conceptions, is a shortcut, a cheat code that lets you digest a book without reading it in full. We are back to Socrates.

We do not think of indexes in this way nowadays. We have other concerns about technology, such as platforms like Blinkist that claim to distil the key ideas from an array of new books into bitesize podcasts. Notwithstanding Gessner, Pope and the rest, reading indexes from A to Z has not become common practice, and certainly isn’t considered a substitute for reading the book itself. But some indexes, as Duncan shows through a host of entertaining examples, can be enlightening, satirical and pointed in and of themselves.

It is these indexes—the ones that push the boundaries of the form and play with our expectations—that comprise the most entertaining parts of Index, A History of the. In one of those typically ego-driven episodes of academic score-settling associated with the Augustans, the Hellenist Richard Bentley in 1697 published a fine-toothed critique of Charles Boyle’s new edition of the epistles of the ancient tyrant Phalaris. In response, a gaggle of Boyle’s affiliates ganged up on Bentley, writing a hot-headed reply in which they accused him of “Index-hunting” in the manner of a “Second-hand Critic.” A young wit named William King added to this “A Short Account of Dr Bentley by Way of Index,” which includes multiple-page entries for, inter alia, “His egregious dulness,” “His Pedantry,” “His Appeal to Foreigners” and, perhaps most damning of all, “His familiar acquaintance with Books that he never saw.” This is bibliography as weapon, the expectation of dull objectivity associated with the index ingeniously subverted. The index-hunter has become the index-hunted.

There is in this anecdote a very particular, pleasing blend of nitpicking and linguistic flair that feels like a precursor to the cool passive aggression we so often see in the letters pages of learned magazines like the London Review of Books. Throughout the book, Duncan is aware that the index is a specialist area of interest. But by dissecting its history and its workings, he also shows that the vast majority of people who use indexes—anyone, really, who has ever read a work of non-fiction—take them for granted. His book is both an entertaining and edifying journey through index-history and a spirited defence of the index (and indexers) in the technological age. It is precisely because indexing is a rarefied sport that it is worth saving.

Not that it really needs saving. Yes, there’s the issue of money: indexing is not a lucrative practice, and the rise of automated software has provided a cheap alternative to human indexers. But as Duncan shows, software, at least by itself, is not much of an alternative. “A specialist indexer knows that it can be helpful to tag a concept even if it is not explicitly named… they can tell the difference—even without first names—between Marx, KarlMarx, Groucho, and Marx, Richard.” Nowhere in this book is the importance of the human indexer more apparent than in its own index, compiled by Paula Clarke Bain, which is a nest of metatextual easter eggs. The entry for “wild goose chase” tells us to “see chase, wild goose” (not dissimilar from the teenage Lewis Carroll’s playful index to his own handwritten journal, which had entries for “General, Things in, 25,” “In General, Things, 25” and “Things in General, 25”). Under “Indexers” we have the subheading  . . .

Continue reading.

Written by Leisureguy

4 September 2021 at 8:41 am

Posted in Books, Daily life, History

Art of Shaving Sandalwood and Penhaligon Blenheim Bouquet: Fine fragrances

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AOS Sandalwood is a very nice soap indeed, made by Valobra, as I recall. The sandalwood fragrance is very present and very nice. My Rooney Style 1 Size 1 did a good job with the lather, though the knot this morning struck me as enormous. This has a different sort of base knob, but it’s quite functional — just a bit more decorative. 

Phoenix Artisan’s Ascension is a remarkably good razor, highly comfortable and highly efficient. The handle’s chequering makes it feel crisp and solid in the hand, and the double-open-comb head glides easily across a lathered face. The end result was slant-smooth.

The splash of Blenheim Bouquet startled me a bit with the presence and freshness of its fragrance. This is an aftershave i should use more often.

A great way to start a long weekend. Hope you all have fun. Do watch these two very interesting videos.

Written by Leisureguy

4 September 2021 at 8:13 am

Posted in Daily life

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