Gather ’round children and heed my words. While you play with your sous vide, hydrocolloids, emulsions and foams; serving wagyu, caviar, foie gras, and truffles, you may gain a Michelin star, media fame, a cook book, a tv show or even a celebrity chef boxing match. If your life goes that way and stays that way, I hope you get all you can of fame glory and all that you deem good in the world. However, if you are like most, the best you can expect is a fleeting brush with recognition for your style, skill, talent, Je nes sais qua, and personal point of view. Regardless, and just in case, I suggest you keep your basic knife skills well honed. Happy Holidays.
Way back when…actually about 25 years ago…I served as “Pie Man” (maker of the daily selection of pies) for a Marie Callender’s, restaurant in Phoenix. Back then each Marie’s made all their own baked goods, daily, in shop. Continue reading
I remember once my Mom sent a letter to Jays potato chip company (A Chicago favorite) about some burned chips in a bag of chips. A few weeks later a truck arrived at our door, unannounced, delivering a sincere apology letter and several cases of free potato chips. When I was a kid, this kind of customer service was a more-common reaction for reputable product vendors. Continue reading
Another “small-swallow” frog in my “occupy-bucket” is a personal gripe about people who share the wild places that are left in the world and how we behave in them. I have been a wilderness adventure type person from childhood. I and all the enthusiasts I have ever known have shared the leave no trace philosophy of enjoying the wilderness. If you have done some casual hiking or camping, (if you are what we would call a touron), you may have met the enthusiasts when you accidentally dropped a piece of paper, walked on eroding grounds, or made too much noise while in the bush. The enthusiast will tell you all about Outdoor Ethics and Leave No Trace. Generally speaking the universally agreed rules for outdoor life are: Continue reading
I have been mulling the many and sundry philosophical issues brought about by the uncivil action known as Occupy Central, here in Hong Kong. While cogitating I have also been drafting. So far everything I have worked on has been through the “Frog Dinner” method (if you have to eat a bucket of frogs, eat the largest one first). However, this particular bucket of frogs contains so many large and sinewy creatures that I have been unable to choke down and fully digest any single one…until now.
I write to express my sadness at the passing of Tom Maggliozzi, of Car Talk fame. I listened to CarTalk for decades, even, while living at home, thus putting the rest of the family through the regular Saturday morning cackle of Click and Clack. They were one of my go-to podcasts for clever, kind, self-deprecating humour, that inspired me to think and act the same. Continue reading
I have many and varied thoughts on the current civil unrest in Hong Kong, many of which are still developing. However, as messages of concern are beginning to trickle in I thought I would let everyone know that my family, I and apparently pretty much every other person in Hong Kong remains A-OK. Continue reading
I often lose faith in humanity these days. Oddly it is for the opposite reasons that most people seem to be losing faith in humanity these days. I lose faith because I see a rabid willingness to: see others as demons or subhumans, cast blame, presume guilt, assume the worst, and be ready to commit, or ask the state to commit acts of violence before having possession of anything that could reasonably be considered fact of a matter. Continue reading
I have from time to time enjoyed some of Ricky Gervais’s humour. I thought Office and Extra’s were oddly funny and mostly enjoyable. I even liked some of his pod cast (when it was free) and stand-up, though I often found myself uncomfortable with what seemed to me to be a bullying and bigoted mindset.
Today, as with many days off we take Cody with us, for lunch, a walk, maybe a hike, some swimming, some running and good old family time. We have done so with Cody for nearly 12 years…all of his life. We have cared for Cody, trained him and had him certified to be off leash (one of the few in HK) we love and cherish him, always bring or buy him plenty of water and specifically are the best experts of his well-being. Continue reading
I grew up with Robin Williams, him being just enough older than me, to be one of the people I looked up to. I heard his comedy before he was even known for Mork and Mindy, and of course following that show and his further incredible career and success. I am sad that he chose the path he did, answering the most important philosophical question in the affirmative, especially because that does detract from his legacy. Continue reading