Wednesday, January 18, 2006

I hate reading this kind of thing...
Because it just makes me mad. The responses it recieved shows me just how stupid we are as a nation and that really irritates me. It is pointless that I responded to it - I could never change the minds of people so short-sighted but I did anyway.

The question:
Our space program - do readers care?
Submitted by sblust on Tue, 2006-01-17 09:51.
It wasn't too many years ago that newspapers routinely put stories about the U.S. space program on the front page because we believed readers considered those stories important.
Now, stories such as NASA launching a spacecraft to Pluto or the possible discovery of a new planet often are relegated to play inside the paper, if they appear at all.
There is a fair amount of debate - including in The Gazette's newsroom - about the merits of these stories. What do you think? Are you still interested in reading about space exploration, or is this a topic whose day has passed?
Steve Blust, Executive Editor

My response:
Re: Space Program
Submitted by rainvalley on Wed, 2006-01-18 11:56.
If anything the space program should get a lot more coverage than it does!I am continually amazed by those people who say that money spent on the space program could be better spent at home. Where exactly do you think the money goes? Do you think it gets shot up into space and evaporates? You couldn't be more incorrect. I can tell you from personal experience where it goes.
!) Into research that produces so many of the things that we take for granted these days....all of our computers (and everything that runs with the aid of one), virtually all means of communication (radio and televison - for those of you who love cable it is a 100% product of the space race, cell phones...etc). Also most of the advances in medical technology is a direct or indirect result (the use of titanium, MRI,radiation treatments for cancer - the list is HUGE). On the home front frozen dinners (and the microwaves to cook them with)and even velcro for those of you who find shoelaces difficult.
2)Into the companies that produce all of the above.
3) Into the companies that sell all of the above.
4) Into the pockets of all of the employees that work for those companies. (one of whom was my Dad)
5) From the employees into the tax base..... which if I'm not mistaken funds all of the social programs...
Not to mention the fact that when we as a nation were very involved in the space program we actually had a direction and were bold in our discoveries. Now we go around in circles picking fights with our neighbors and wonder why we have no pride. We have become a country that would rather gold plate our gutters than reach for the stars.

Monday, January 16, 2006

An International Flavor-fest Weekend

We had a really nice, easy weekend and of course enjoyed more food at home... Saturday morning we had a good old southern breakfast. Biscuits, sausage, grits...the works. But I make my biscuits a little different - I cheat by using Bisquick but then I make up for it by adding about 1 TBS chopped fresh thyme and about 1/4 C finely grated Parmesan cheese - really really good! This time the grits were pretty hopeless...normally I do a pretty good job but I wasn't really accurate about how much salt I added and they were overwhelmingly salty. Oh well, win some loose some.
Saturday night was Sushi Extravaganza! David made his fabulous hand rolls (he's getting so good at those!) filled with combinations of cucumber, sweet red pepper, green onion, avocado, "fish tempura" aka Gorton's battered fish, and Crab. They look great and taste even better. We've also become edamame addicts - we polish off a bag of those in one sitting. I wrapped mine up with a Red Stripe (Jamacian beer) for a truely cross-cultural affair.
Sunday noonish - Brunch at The White Elephant Cafe - excellent of course! Sunday night I finished up cooking the turkey breast. For dinner that night I made a Turkey Chowder with Carrots, Celery, Onions, Bell Pepper, Green Beans, Garbanzo Beans and Eggplant (yeah I know...eggplant again!). I used some of the thyme and added some milk mixed with cornstartch at the end to thicken it. Worked great and gave it a nice creaminess. Finished off the last of the thyme biscuits with it for a wonderful Sunday supper. I also cooked the rest of the turkey breast at the same time - 1/3 went into a turkey and white bean chili. (Monday night's dinner).....can of white beans, 1 cup diced cooked turkey, can of Delmonte tomatoes with green chile, 1/2 a bottle of beer & a packet of taco seasoning....didn't have chili seasoning but the taco one worked just as well. Letting it sit in the fridge overnight really made it good! The last 1/3 of the turkey breast I just roasted in the oven to have as sandwiches or something later in the week.

When I think of all this I realize how much more interesting food has become with the accesibility of different cultural recipes and the spices and supplies to make them.

Friday, January 13, 2006

No More Road Food PLEASE!

We just returned from a whirlwhind trip to Dallas and back. We normally eat fairly healthy and the week's worth of road food has taken it's toll on both of us. When I asked David what he wanted for dinner last night he basically said "Anything homemade". I made a trip to the market and ended up with a huge turkey breast. I cringed at the $18 price tag but when I got to thinking about it that's almost 5 lbs of pure meat - no waste whatsoever. It's also keeping in line with our idea of losing some of the weight we've added during the holidays. So I guess we'll be having Turkey Extravaganza for the next few days.
Last night's incarnation was a curry spooned over long grain rice with turkey, red bell pepper, sweet red italian onion, eggplant (yes David there WAS eggplant in there!), carrots and celery. I use the Golden Curry paste - I generally don't like to use packaged food items but this is one I just can't beat with my own recipes! It is so incredibly good!! The only thing I usually do is add a shake or two of red pepper flakes to give it some extra kick. I topped mine with a spoonful of yogurt - something David says he "Just doesn't understand...". We had a salad on the side with a 'work in progress' salad dressing - I'm trying to duplicate the awesome garlicy brew from The White Elephant. Not there yet but not bad! All things considered it was a darn good meal.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

10 things I like about Augusta

ok so I can't come up with 10....
1. The houses – big white farmhouses with inviting front porches and rippled glass windows like the one we live in….

2. The wildlife – the deer, turkeys, eagles, foxes and other interesting creatures that we encounter on a daily basis.

3. The proximity to interesting places – 200 or so miles from a lot of great places from the Smokey Mountains to the coast including Beauford SC, Cedar Key FL.
4. The fishing – both local and coastal. We just can’t seem to get enough of it!

5. The flowers – almost all year round there are flowers in bloom and they are beautiful!

6. The Fresh Market – a good market makes life more enjoyable and these folks are top notch.

7. The abandoned buildings. Some are kind of sad but many offer a doorway to history that you just don’t find in most parts of the country.