Print Story My Confession
By atreides (Sun Dec 07, 2008 at 08:30:19 PM EST) (all tags)
I've been keeping a secret from you all and I feel that this is the time to unburden my soul.

In my life, I have fired rifles and shotguns. I've fired off M-16s, M-203s, M-60s and the one and only Ma Deuce. I even got to fire an AT-4 once. But with all that shooting, I had never fired a handgun. That is, until Saturday night.

So a friend of Welsh Girl, Party Girl and Okie Girl was having a birthday. Another friend of theirs, someone who likes to make birthdays an occasion, arranged a party at Red's Indoor Range. Originally I wanted to go but didn't have the money. That and Welsh Girl was having a "tupperware" party. But Party Girl and Okie Girl talked me into it by fronting me the money. So I rented a Glock 17 (didn't have time to borrow something from my weapon hoarding friends) and popped off some rounds. And it was lovely. Well, except for the part where Okie Girl accidentally pointed a loaded weapon at me. That sucked. But everything else was lovely. Handguns are a lot harder to shoot than bigger arms. But a little practice should fix that. And since I good handful of people enjoyed it, I foresee this becoming a group thing. And I would have fun going with a group once a month or so... Heck, might even try to get Welsh Girl out there.

Other than that, well, I made apple pie this morning. Learned a few things from it...

1. More cardamom is better than less.
2. More butter or some vinegar make for a better crust.
3. Need to get a rolling pin so I don't have to borrow one from my neighbors.
4. Need more flour in with the apples to firm up the filling.

Get to make up for all that tomorrow. Have to make another pie tomorrow for Tuesday. Let's see how that one comes out.

Felt the baby kick for the first time Saturday night. I finally have experienced physical, non-technological proof that something is in my wife's belly. :)

Welsh Girl, while flipping channels, ran into and watched Bring It On for the first time. Discussing how silly it was, I mentioned that I wouldn't mind being in a Gabrielle Union/Kirsten Dunst sandwich. She thought they were both too girly. But you know what? I don't hate girly. In fact, I kinda like girly. I don't think I could live with it all the time, but I like a little bit of girly from time to time.

Got more packing done for the move. Definitely need some more boxes. I've already filled 18 (of which 14 are books) and I'm going to need more. Guess I'll be making some late night sojourns to the grocery store to hit up the stockers.

Thursday I'm going back in for dental cleaning and whatnot. Will be heavily medicated (Jeebus bless Halcyon) and, if I am able, will attempt a drugged diary. However, I expect to spend the rest of the day in bed sleeping it off so no guarantees.

Not entirely happy with the new place right now. I can accept the fact that certain parts of it are not in perfect repair (like the fact that the added on sun porch doesn't have drywall on one wall) but there's one BIG sticking point. You see, there's this sun porch that's been built on to the house. it's got a sliding glass door. Unfortunately, that door is completely unsecured. And by that, I mean it's off it's track and anyone can pick it up and waltz in. This is a problem for several reasons. The primary one is that, it's got two doors and windows leading into the rest of the house in it. Sure those doors have three locks each, but if someone gets in there, they can work on breaking in with nobody even noticing. That's unacceptable. The second reason is more personal. That room was supposed to be "my room". It's the room where I can paint and store minis. It's where I'm going to have a table big enough to play 40K of have people over for rpgs and such. And I can hardly store my books and minis and all that in a room that I can't even lock up. Sure, that's not what a real thief wants, but all it takes is a vandal or some kids and I'm out years of work and thousands of dollars of stuff. Now you'd think that we could get the management company to do something about it. But according to them, the owner doesn't want to spend the money to fix it. Apparently, it's something about busted rollers and needing custom work and costing $2K and after all the money he just put into repairing the pool, he doesn't want to spend anything right now. That and the back end of the house is settling and if he spends the money, he'll just have to spend it again in a few years so why bother at all? Well, that room was a BIG selling point for me. As far as I'm concerned, fuck the pool. I'd rather have the 300+ square feet that room represents secured. Had I known that, I would have very hesitant to even sign the lease. But that's an issue I don't want to get into right now. This is big enough to have qualified as a deal breaker for me. But now I guess I'm going to have to make lemons out of lemonade. I'll figure out some way to fix it enough to secure the room. And believe me, if I can't, I will not be a happy camper. This will be the second big money item that Welsh Girl and I will have gotten together where I didn't get the major thing I wanted from it. Not happy. :(

Anyway, I'm tired. I'm gonna go snuggle up against my warm wife and get some sleep.

That is all.

< If it looks like we were scared to death | Footprints in the butter >
My Confession | 28 comments (28 topical, 0 hidden)
Guns? by dark nowhere (2.00 / 0) #1 Sun Dec 07, 2008 at 10:11:47 PM EST
I've fired a few, mostly rifles. I'm a decent shot, but not too interested in guns.

When I was in school a friend of mine told me his dad had a Thompson, an Uzi and something else I didn't believe, especially taking our latitude into account. It was at an age where kids would bullshit each other about stuff like that. To my surprise he actually had all this stuff when I went to his place. You're 14 years old, holding a Tommy Gun, is this awesome? (Y/y)

Weapons in general? I've a bit of a blade fetish. I only have one knife though. I bought a nice katana, 'cause I know how to use one (not extremely well, but better than any other class of sword.) My sister just won first place for her katana form in a tournament, actually.

About 40k, I don't play it, but don't those space marines look badass? I've always thought that.

See you, space cowboy.

In order... by atreides (2.00 / 0) #5 Mon Dec 08, 2008 at 04:30:26 AM EST
1. I like guns but I don't love guns. That's why I let my friends have the gun safes instead of myself. If the shit hits the fan, they'll have the weapons and they know I can use them.

2. Well, I was in the Army a number of years back. A lot of that stuff was required in Basic and requalifications. The REALLY heavy stuff I got to shoot off at a field exercise at Hunter-Liggett in Cali. That was an awesomely tiring 4 days...

3. I like blades. When I was young and stupid, I owned a few swords. I'm past that now, but I keep a lovely kukhri as home defense.

4. I love 40K. And yes, I have a 10K point Marine army and I still want more...

He sails from world to world in a flying tomb, serving gods who eat hope.

[ Parent ]
Apple pie with cardamom? by Dr H0ffm4n (4.00 / 1) #2 Sun Dec 07, 2008 at 11:09:06 PM EST
Surely cinnamon is THE spice for apple pie?

Recipe fail! by atreides (2.00 / 0) #4 Mon Dec 08, 2008 at 04:18:01 AM EST
Not even the Colt 1911? by georgeha (2.00 / 0) #6 Mon Dec 08, 2008 at 04:59:49 AM EST
I'm disappointed in our armed forces.

My uncle is a gun nut (and other uncles own many guns each), I've fired plenty of handguns and rifles and shotguns, though no recent machine guns or anti-tank weapons.

something is in my wife's belly by wiredog (2.00 / 0) #7 Mon Dec 08, 2008 at 05:08:12 AM EST
Have you, and her, seen "Alien" yet? ;)

In the Army I fired M-16, M-203, M-14,M-60, M-2, M3A1 Grease Gun (that was fun!), M1911. Also the LAW and the Stinger.

Earth First!
(We can strip mine the rest later.)

Whoops by Phage (2.00 / 0) #8 Mon Dec 08, 2008 at 05:30:37 AM EST
I was imagining you custom-spraying small British cars in your porch there for a minute.

Lockable steel cabinets ?

That's not a bad idea... by atreides (2.00 / 0) #12 Mon Dec 08, 2008 at 07:02:06 AM EST
...but I was also hoping for bookshelves for many RPG books I've accumulated over the years. That and the lockable shelves would probably be expensive and we're a little cash poor. Of course, I might consider using some Christmas bonus on them... Definite possibilities...

He sails from world to world in a flying tomb, serving gods who eat hope.

[ Parent ]
surplus office furniture store by clover kicker (2.00 / 0) #14 Mon Dec 08, 2008 at 07:31:43 AM EST
How dirt cheap did you manage? by atreides (2.00 / 0) #15 Mon Dec 08, 2008 at 09:09:52 AM EST
like $20 or something by clover kicker (2.00 / 0) #19 Mon Dec 08, 2008 at 02:24:44 PM EST
But this was her own company moving offices and using the excuse to buy new furniture, I have no idea what the market rate is. Ours is a little scuffed with a couple of rust spots even, but it's still perfectly solid and functional

A quick google found some upright file cabinets on ebay for ~$25, this looks like an unreasonably low price for a new lateral cabinet.

[ Parent ]
Anytime you want to go out by blixco (2.00 / 0) #9 Mon Dec 08, 2008 at 05:40:04 AM EST
to a range, let me know. I'm down on ammunition right now, but that can be remedied.  Plus I have an M-9, so your service weapon experience will be 100 percent.

In re: Bring It On, that's one of my favorite non-explody nothing to do on a saturday afternoon movies.

"You bring the weasel, I'll bring the whiskey." - kellnerin
We should organize an official Husi... by atreides (2.00 / 0) #13 Mon Dec 08, 2008 at 07:04:28 AM EST
Or creepy. by blixco (2.00 / 0) #17 Mon Dec 08, 2008 at 11:45:17 AM EST
One of the two.

"You bring the weasel, I'll bring the whiskey." - kellnerin
[ Parent ]
Let's do it after Christmas by riceowlguy (2.00 / 0) #21 Mon Dec 08, 2008 at 03:22:16 PM EST
while I'm still visiting.

I'll bring my S&W 41 .22 target pistol.  VERY easy to shoot tight groups.  Too bad it's too big (size-wise) and too small (stopping-power-wise) to be a concealed-carry sidearm...

Or I'll bring my Ruger Red Label O/U 20ga shotgun and we can bust some clays if the weather is nice.

I'll bring the camera to record it all for posterity, if you wish.

[ Parent ]
This is sounding more and more awesome... by atreides (2.00 / 0) #23 Mon Dec 08, 2008 at 08:43:37 PM EST
I'll be out of state by blixco (2.00 / 0) #25 Tue Dec 09, 2008 at 05:29:55 AM EST
until the 1st, then swamped.  Unfortunately.

"You bring the weasel, I'll bring the whiskey." - kellnerin
[ Parent ]
cardamom and apple filling firmness by ObviousTroll (2.00 / 0) #10 Mon Dec 08, 2008 at 05:58:01 AM EST
I've never tried putting cardamom in apple pie. I'll have to look at that.

As for the filling - the key is using the right kinds of apples. I usually use a 50-50 mix of sweet apples (like honey crisps) and granny smiths (nice and firm even after cooking), I never have to add any flour or corn starch.

Dear User: Please replace this text with a witty or insightful saying before using this software.
100% Granny Smith on my end... by atreides (2.00 / 0) #11 Mon Dec 08, 2008 at 06:59:12 AM EST
...though honey crisps are not bad. I shall take you advice under advisement.

He sails from world to world in a flying tomb, serving gods who eat hope.

[ Parent ]
Tame. by notafurry (2.00 / 0) #16 Mon Dec 08, 2008 at 11:28:52 AM EST
Try Braeburns next time, with more cinnamon and cardamom. Not as sweet, but a very tangy, almost a spiced apple cider flavor.

Also, the secret to perfect crust - no oil, use butter or lard (I prefer butter), as little water as possible, and about a TB of apple cider vinegar mixed with an egg as your main source of moisture.

Oh - and freeze the butter. Seriously.

[ Parent ]
Don't use oil... by atreides (2.00 / 0) #18 Mon Dec 08, 2008 at 12:15:51 PM EST
...but I use shortening instead of lard because a few people I know are vegetarian/buddhist. Cold water and a little vinegar finish it off (when I don't run out of vinegar). Why frozen butter though?

He sails from world to world in a flying tomb, serving gods who eat hope.

[ Parent ]
Shortening will not work as well by notafurry (2.00 / 0) #20 Mon Dec 08, 2008 at 03:14:13 PM EST
Just the way it is. The fats and the liquids are out of proportion and you can't get the right mix with shortening... which is part of where the frozen butter comes in.

The trick is, you don't want the butter to combine with the flour until it's already in the oven. If they combine in the mixing stages (I mean beyond the gross physical senses of "mixing") you get a flat, bread-like crust. Might as well be a pancake.

If, in the oven, the butter melts as it combines, you get that delicious light, fluffy, layered pastry crust. A good pie crust has many paper-thin layers, not one thick layer, and this is the best way to get that. The crust itself also shouldn't be too sweet; it should be rich, almost savory, and the sweetness comes from the filling and maybe some cinnamon and sugar on the top.

Your vegetarian friends shouldn't have any complaints with butter, although lard is clearly not in the picture. After all, if they're okay with the egg... Also, for the Buddhists, look into butter made from goats milk. It's not quite the same, but it will do the job. If you're going to adjust your cooking to accommodate your friends' tastes - and who doesn't? - you might as well adjust it in ways that still gets the best results. Vegans, however, can go find their own tofu desserts. ;)

[ Parent ]
oh dear! apple varieties! by misslake (2.00 / 0) #22 Mon Dec 08, 2008 at 06:57:30 PM EST
i am shocked that no one uses northern spy apples. honey crisp? seriously?!?
and granny smith are so sour!

northern spy. they are the very best pie apples.
you can remember because it rhymes, spy for pie.

extra peeling bonus because spy apples are so large i have gotten an entire pie out of two of them.

Northern spy? by atreides (2.00 / 0) #24 Mon Dec 08, 2008 at 08:59:07 PM EST
You know, Welsh Girl drags me to specialty produce stores for crap and in all the time I've been doing that, I've never seen or heard of a "northern spy" apple. That leads me to believe that your suggestion is some sort of Canuckistani plot, prompted by the dissolution of your government. However, you seem to like pie so that's a mark in your favor. There IS a group of people who don't like pie. They're called "Communists". I will have no truck with such people.

He sails from world to world in a flying tomb, serving gods who eat hope.

[ Parent ]
hmmmmm.... by misslake (2.00 / 0) #26 Tue Dec 09, 2008 at 07:38:23 AM EST
i know it is the most important pie apple in ontario, near where i grew up, there is a big apple on the highway and they make all thier pies out of spy apples.

wiki has a brief article on it:

perhaps it's not available commercially in the usa.

[ Parent ]
Secrets noted for further analysis... by atreides (2.00 / 0) #27 Tue Dec 09, 2008 at 07:41:32 AM EST
I'll see if I can get my wife to look for some when she goes produce shopping next...

He sails from world to world in a flying tomb, serving gods who eat hope.

[ Parent ]
it might be an ontario thing by misslake (2.00 / 0) #28 Tue Dec 09, 2008 at 07:44:44 AM EST
I see the possibilities... by atreides (4.00 / 1) #29 Tue Dec 09, 2008 at 07:51:15 AM EST
...but believe me when I say: Cardamom for the win!

He sails from world to world in a flying tomb, serving gods who eat hope.

[ Parent ]
My Confession | 28 comments (28 topical, 0 hidden)