Saturday, December 31, 2011

Android Synth software

Gizmodo dropped a link to some software to play with on that new Android tablet you know you got for Christmas.

The tool called Audiotool Sketch looks like it could be pretty cool for those beat nerds out there.

On the market page there appear to be several related synth tools in the market so don't feel like this is the only one, it was just the first one I'd heard of.

Friday, December 30, 2011

Saveur is trying to kill me

I've suspected it for some time now, but this post proves it.  Saveur is trying to kill me. With food.  Dead.

Hot Crab Dip with Pita Chips


3 tbsp. unsalted butter
1 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 red bell pepper, cored and finely diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 shallot, finely diced
2 tbsp. flour
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated parmesan, separated
Juice and zest of one lemon
½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
½ tsp. Old Bay seasoning
¼ tsp. celery salt
1 lb. lump crab meat, cleaned
1 scallion, finely sliced


  1. Preheat oven to 350. Butter the inside of a 8" x 8" baking dish. 
  2. In a 12" skillet, melt the butter and olive oil over medium-high heat. Cook the bell pepper and shallot until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the flour and cook, stirring, to make a roux, about 3 minutes. Whisk in the heavy cream until the mixture comes to a boil, about 1 minute. Reduce to a simmer, cook until thickened, about 1 minute. Remove from the heat and add 1/3 cup parmesan, lemon juice and zest, salt, pepper, Old Bay, and celery salt. Gently fold in the crab. 
  3. Transfer the mixture to the buttered baking dish. Sprinkle the top with the remaining parmesan and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until the top is browned and the dip is bubbling. Garnish with the scallions and serve with pita chips. 

 NOTES: To make your own pita chips, cut fresh pita pockets in wedges and toss with 4 tbsp. of extra virgin olive oil, salt, and pepper. Cook at 400° for 12-15 minutes.

Compare and contrast

I heard the Ghostland Observatory song today, and swore it was a cover of a Queen song. I heard Freddie Mercury in there so loud and clear, it was startling. I don't know if this guy has the chops for it in other ways, but tell me if you hear it too.

Ghostland Observatory, sad sad city

Queen another one bites the dust

For the international set


Another one bites the dust- Queen from Franco Belharch on Vimeo.


I waffled for quite sometime, but finally decided that I want to have this.  I choose to fund this kickstarter project as an alternative to building a dual-temperature logger for my friends basement.  Should he choose, he is welcome to get the moisture sensor at his own digression.

I'm pretty excited that I will likely see this relatively close to my birthday in 2012.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

To understand is to perceive patterns

Sort video post and the dude is a little breathy, but this is what it means to be passionate about technology and research.  The minutia will eventually reveal itself as useful, we just need to be persistent in our pursuit of these advancements.


Questionable Content AI bill of rights

I read a lot on the internet.  Probably more than is healthy, but every now and then you stumble on something really unique and passionate.  One of the comics that I follow is Questionable Content, and it has it's moments of mindlessness and others of angst, but the author wrote out this whole speech as support to a comic that he drew.  He envisioned a world with an AI, and envisioned what it would be like to live side by side with that AI and wrote a speech about equal rights.

I thought it was pretty interesting, I hope you enjoy the comic.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Not indie at all

Nerdy music that Sub-radar will probably like.


I think I've mentioned it before, but given how unbelievably poorly this law is shaping up I thought it was time to post a little round up and information on what you can do should you find this proposed bill as abhorrent as I find it.

First Gizmodo has a pretty solid run down on why this bill is murderous for the internet as we know it.  The gist of it is that because sites that host infringing content typically are not US sites, court orders and take down notices do not have force of law.  To make it so rights holders have a way to see their interests looked after (keep in mind who the government works for here kids) they can have that sites DNS records blocked or erased without due process (remember foreign entities) with no appeal process.  This fundamentally undermines the way that DNS and the internet works and is from an infrastructure point of view a very bad way to implement this.  We would be following in the footsteps pioneered by The Great Chinese firewall.  Not the best role model, I would say.  Next up there is third party transfer of liability, that is a legal way of saying that if the search engines don't expunge records that rights holders get taken down fast enough they can be sued for the infringement that they are "facilitating".  Finally the whole framework amounts to a tool that can and in the hands of companies like UMG will be used to stifle free speech.  It literally blows my mind that a congress that claims to be in the business of lessening the power of government would like to handover such a huge power grab to private companies.  Or it would blow my mind if it wasn't business as usual over in congress.

Gizmodo has a link to a petition you can sign to ask Obama to veto the bill.

Gizmodo also has a story up of all the companies that are supporting this bill so you can know if you still want to give them your patronage.  The most notable of them is the Registrar GoDaddy, they have caught a decent amount of flack for this so I don't feel the need to pile on any more.  I will note that I have chosen to take my business elsewhere.  Yeah broken websites for a little while, but I think it is important enough to take the time to do.

Now I would like to post a link to a video that has a pretty decent attempt from one of the bills co-sponsors on what they want the bill to do.  They are trying to extend a physical metaphor to police the internet is the short story.  Once again Congress just doesn't understand the technology they are trying to regulate and should not be allowed to work on it.

Not covered in this post is the related and already passed 2008 Pro-IP law used to take websites down currently.  This is a really strange use of ICE and Department of Homeland Security, (read excessively broad interpretation of the Patriot Act powers).  Some people have gone as far as suggest that the current USAG should face criminal charges for his mis-use of laws.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Frozen Banana desert

Sometime ago I stumbled on a recipe for making a healthful 1 ingredient cool desert.  I probably should post this in the summer, but what the hell it sounds good to me right now so here you go from

  1. First freeze some bananas,
  2. Slice said frozen bananas and pop them in the food processor or blender
  3. Blend until smooth
  4. ?
  5. Profit!

I have made it a few times so I can attest to how close to ice cream the texture is, and for a "healthful" desert it is pretty good.  My problem now is my food processor is broken so I haven't been able to make this in a while, but it's fun and usually surprises people with how good it is.  To make it less healthful I would add some Nutella or just straight up chocolate syrup.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

2011 Movies

I've seen a couple of these types of videos, but here is the one I'm going to roll with for today.  I looked over the Wikipedia List of 2011 films and was surprised by how many I had watched.  A years is a really long time apparently so.  The video has samples of all the movies and this Tumblr link has the list of them as they appear in the movie and the music they used.

What did I watch this year?

The Green Hornet and Rango, from totally legit sources ;) are the two movies I couldn't bring myself to finish opening 15 or so minutes of each.

In the theater I watched The Lincoln Lawer, Xmen: First class, Captain America, Money Ball, and the Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows.

At home I watched The Kings speech.

Movies I'm embarrassed I watched all the way through but sure as hell didn't pay to watch: Thor.

Movies I hope to watch sometime maybe when they show up on Netflix otherwise Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum I tell you.

The Mechanic, Adjustment Bureau, Sucker Punch, Paul, Water for Elephants, Drive, The Rum Diary, Harold and Kumar, Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Melancholia, and Warrior.  I also want to watch Sleeping Beauty (totally for the art reasons not because I want to see Strawberry Fields naked I swear).

How about you?  Anything I missed that I really should have given consideration?

Friday, December 23, 2011

You kind of knew it had to be true

So I'm about to spoil a great movie for you and I have to apologize for that.  It's not that I want to, but the video shows Raiders of the Lost Ark is a shot for shot recreation of another movie.  I had to stop in disgust after about 5 minutes.

Damn you Indy!!!!

Source: Binary Bonsai.  This guys is a huge star wars fan, his archives have fan made documentaries about the Star Wars movies that are better than anything Lucas would produce himself.  If that's your gig, you should really give this guy a read.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

What the what?

I really have no idea what I am looking at here, my mind is busy pooling on the floor below my desk.

Soup and pictures

A little late but fuck it we'll do it live!  First off the soup recipe

3 slices stale bread, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
2 T olive oil
1 T fresh herbs chopped each: 

  • marjoram leaves/stems
  • rosemary leaves
  • savory leaves/stems
  • tarragon leaves/stems
  • thyme leaves/stems
  • oregano leaves/stems
3-5 heads garlic, roasted and pureed
2 bay leaves
1 t black peppercorns
Kosher salt
1 C dry white wine (drink remainder while cooking)
8 C Basic Vegetable Stock (see below)
4 C cream
8 oz Gruyere cheese, grated for garnish

Preheat oven to 550 F and sip wine.
  1. Toss bread cubes with 2T olive oil. Spread out on baking sheet and toast until golden/crispy for 5-10 min. Sip wine.
  2. Add herbs, pureed garlic, bay leaves, peppercorns, pinch of salt, wine (continuing to sip the remainder) and stock to soup pot. Mix well and let it reach boil over med.high heat. Once boiling, lower heat to med. low and simmer 30 min.
  3. Pour soup slowly through strainer and into storage container. Discard herbs from strainer. Clean out soup pot. Refill with strained soup. Add cream, stir well and let soup reach a simmer. Sip wine.
  4. Serve topped with few croutons and nice portion of grated cheese.
  5. Open new bottle of wine to serve with soup.
So first up some pictures of roasted garlic and thoughts.  If you read around on the internet you find people recommending your roast your garlic in muffin tins.  I will say that it does make the cleanup pretty easy, but the garlic cloves in contact with the outside edge gets over done and very brown.

Here is some of the garlic peeled and getting ready for the soup pot.  I roasted the garlic the night before so that I could get the soup done more quickly for company.

Once the soup and bread crumbs are in the bowl I put the cheese on top and put it into the oven on broil.  It turned out less bubbly than I like but I had to turn down the oven to do my candied pecans for the salad and didn't wait for it to heat back up to melt the cheese.   The salad was a spinach salad with craisins, candied pecans and a strawberry vinaigrette.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Anthony Bourdain

Chef Bourdain is getting a graphic novel?  If you're a fan of No Reservations or have read any of his books you probably know who this guy is.  If not, I really enjoyed his show on traveling and world cuisine.  He really, really wanted to be an author and call an the cool roots of various writers with dark personalities, but over time his own voice came out of the experience of traveling the world and finding people's culture through their food. It is great to see him progress as a person, and interesting to see how experiences can change you.  I would definitely read the novel for novelty sake alone, so here's hoping its good.

Fun trivia fact, I had tickets (not cheap tickets mind you) for a show Anthony did here in Seattle a few years ago, that happened to land on the night of the wedding of a good friend of mine.  We never managed to find anyone to use the tickets and we never left the wedding so I've already spent a good deal of money to not watch a show by this man.

I'm making the Garlic soup so I will post pictures and the rest of the recipe tomorrow.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Holy swollen throat batman

Yesterday was a total wash for me, and I hope tomorrow is a better one.  First we have all staff meetings with the yearly instruction on how to effectively sexually (or otherwise) harass you co-workers and a recognition lunch.  Well you would think it being my 5 year anniversary I would be excited to get my little attaboy plaque to hang up, but instead something in my lunch tried to kill me.  2 sweet benadryl later and give or take some EMT's and my building's security officers standing around watching if I'm going to kick off or live to see another day and I decided to go home rather than slip into a benadryl coma at my desk.

So in short Fuck you Fennel (I think it's the fennel otherwise fuck you mystery allergen).

Monday, December 19, 2011

The 90's were 20 years ago

I'm sure you know this empirically, but has it hit home for you?  It did for me on Sunday I watched the PJ20 Pearl Jam's Twenty year documentary on netflix.  If you haven't yet DO IT.

Jesus it makes me feel it today, talk about a band that was a part of your life for such a long long time, part of your College, part of your High school memories, part of your Middle school memories that great white buffalo that you never got to see live even though they are from what feels like your back yard.  Songs I sang and still sing with my wife before she was my wife.

Fuck yeah talk about a great night, also my son is going to be a complete bad ass.  He slept through that whole one hour twenty minute documentary turned up way too loud like a boss.

I hope this video works for most of you, I have a different version for the international people but this song just cuts me up inside.

International version

Pearl Jam - Footsteps (live video) by melkome

Friday, December 16, 2011

Arcade Fire

I think this qualifies as another just ignore the video type of song, but I think the song is pretty solid.  Infact just ignore the youtube version and check out the international version, that video is sick

International version

Arcade Fire - Sprawl II from marina i on Vimeo.

Beer books for random interest

I have a huge glut of links for books related to beer, if this isn't interesting to you move along nothing to see here.

Homebrewers Companion is a general purpose book that has A-Z on brewing beer and gives you an introduction to beer, beer science, the equipment and process of making beer.  There are plenty of other books in this vein, this is the one that I started with so it's the one I recommend.

Clone Beers  sounds like a pretty simple premise, a book that has the extract, mini-mash and all grain equivilents of 150 commercial beers.  If you see it on the store shelves and want to try your hand at making it (and fail at using the internet to search for these yourself) a handy book has those covered for you.

Brew Ware seems like a book that I should own but the reviews make it sound out of date. I'm mostly using this as a placeholder to look for an updated version of this book.

Brew Like a Monk is a future looking book for me.  It is about informing you about the Belgium style of brewing.  I think the style I brew is more in the British tradition of brewing, and the contrast to the way the two schools approach their beers is radically different.  Beer as we know it that descended from the English tradition evolved because of taxes and regional flavor preferences.  The Belgium tradition was more about the yeast and what it could do, and coaxing the flavors out of the

Designing Great Beers is another future looking book, it's for that time in my life where I stop modifying recipes and take the plunge to creating my own beers. I look forward to the creative process, and hope that in a few years when I feel confident enough to try my own recipes parts of this book will feel like old knowledge for me.

The Homebrewer's Garden . Nuff said.

The Science of Beer is a popcorn type of book. There probably won't be a lot of knowledge to glean from it, but the read will be fun. It's sort of a history book on when advances in technology made parts of brewing better or more efficient.


Thursday, December 15, 2011

Roasted Garlic soup round 1 - The stock

A few years ago we discovered an amazing soup at a local restaurant that really knocked our socks off. It is presented much like a French onion soup with Gruyere melted on the top of it. We where very enamored, but they only server it during December so we set out to make it ourselves. It turns out that the mother of friend of mine had a copy of the now out of print cookbook that this restaurant had put out so we went to work recreating it. I've made it several times now, and everytime we learn something about the process and how to make the final product better. The stock is the most labor intensive part of the process so decided to make a tripple batch of it recently so we could make it for ourselves during the winter and spring.

The recipe is as follows:

2-3 yellow onions (skins on) washed and quartered
2 shallots (skins on) washed and quartered
2 med-large leeks, including green parts, washed and roughly chopped
2 heads garlic (skins on) washed and broken up
6-8 bay leaves
1 bunch each, including stems,washed:
  • oregano
  • parsley
  • thyme
2 T kosher salt
1 T black peppercorns
2 C dry white wine (a third bottle in this process)
3 carrots, washed
1 bunch celery, washed, leaves, heart and bottom included
1 parsnip and 1 turnip, washed and quartered
  1. Assemble 10-quart stockpot, colander/strainer, cheesecloth and 6-8-quart storage container(s).
  2. Place onions, shallots, leeks, garlic with 2 C cold water in stockpot. Cover pot and place over high heat until water begins to boil. Reduce heat to med and simmer 15 min or until vegetables become soft.
  3. Add herbs, salt, peppercorns, and wine to pot (take a swig). Once water is boiling, reduce heat to med-low, keep partially covered and allow to simmer 2-2-1/2 hours.
  4. Once liquid has turned dark brown color, remove from heat and strain through colander into storage container(s). Allow contents of pot to drain a few minutes before discarding remains from colander.
  5. Clean soup pot and place strainer lined with cheesecloth over it. Slowly pour stock through cheesecloth. Stock is finished. Have some wine!
  6. You can use stock now or cool in an ice bath, whisking until it cools sufficiently for storage in refrigerator or freezer.

Here you can see my 7½ gallon pot loaded with vegetables and getting ready to boil.

To make the processing more effective I choose to use a stick blender to break the vegetable pieces down for straining.  I started straining around 8pm and while I wasn't "finished" I was done working on it around 3am.  It is probably close to 3 gallons of stock, not all of it is fully processed the lightest color in the bottle is what you are aiming for, the darker colored containers on the left are still in need of processing.  I froze everything and will strain the dark ones as they are thawed, but I estimate that each stack of broth should feed 4 people.

I'll post the recipe for the soup later, I was trying to find a picture of the finished product somewhere but apparently I didn't ever take a photo of it.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Beer Labels

I had an experience this weekend where I had a few leftover beers from a batch in bottles but I had not labeled the caps the way I normally do.  I was pretty sure it was leftover crap pale ale aka the not so pale ale, but without a label I had no way of knowing what I was about to drink.  I've been thinking about labeling for the flare, but every label adds to the amount of time it takes to clean bottles, so I've stuck to labeling the caps.

Lifehacker posted a link to a service that is offering a simple layout tool for making beer labels, and I'm tempted to give it a whirl but purchased labels are not going to be nearly as convenient printed at home.  For one you will have to try hard to get the correct number of labels with can be a pretty big guessing game, and for two it will make blending and trying different things as you split batches harder.

If this helps you, or you have a use for it more power to you.  I think I'm looking for a print at home solution for the time being.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Chest Freezer Conversion

So one of the pieces of equipment that I consider most important to my brewing process is the chest freezer I have running on a temperature controller.  I could not brew several styles of beer without the ability to precisely control the temperatures during fermentation, but the way I did it cost me about $60 on top of the cost of the chest freezer.  I found my 7 cubic ft chest freezer on Craigslist for about $125 it was only 1 year old and the people that owned it had to get rid of it because they where moving.  To control the temps I bought a Johnson temperature controller from Amazon for about $60, I sure wish I had seen this Instructable project back when I was considering this purchase it might have saved me $40.

The project neatly integrated the temperature control unit into the body of the chest freezer, and it is a different style than the one I used but it is cheaper and a cleaner finished project than mine turned out to be.

Monday, December 12, 2011

500 Actual Posts!

So time for me to revel in some sort of a personal accomplishment here.

This dear reader will be my 500th post!  I thought I had passed it before, but that is because the new blogger interface is kind of confusing.   The short story is that I had 500 posts and drafts the last time, now it is 500 honest to goodness posts here on this bloggy blog.

Next up for reveling, I recently-ish passed my 100th follower.  Trish ish I think was number 100 so here's a shout out to her blog.  I trying to get through the back catalogue of her blog to catch up on what's going on.

And finally things are shaping up to look like another rhymes with Froogle Madsense check coming my way so thanks to everyone that comes by and tolerates the things I choose to write about!  Also, I was reviewing my "labels" I saw that I have one for Mudkips.  I find that hilarious.

That is all.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Sugar High

So this is a little old but I have to clear out these gd drafts that haunt me.  Gizmodo posted a gallary of images for keeping your sugar high going.  One called to me with the power of a thousand fat kids.  I give to you:

I know what your thinking, my arteries screamed out for mercy too, but damn it I love me some mini-doughnuts.

Friday, December 09, 2011

Karate, appropriate anytime

If you don't get why this is so damn hilarious, well you have no sense of humor.

International version hopefully

Band of Skulls - The Devil Takes Care of His Own (Official Video) from Vagrant Records on Vimeo.

international version 2

Band Of Skulls - The Devil Takes Care of His Own by BangOn

Rocket Stove

I'm not much of an "outdoors" type, but this project on how to build a rocket stove piqued my interest because I recently finished my keg of IPA and will need to brew again in the near(ish) future if I want any more beer and buying Propane is annoying. My trouble is that I frequently need a second pot of water getting hot, or staying hot for some of the silliness I've been working on while brewing. When I try to do large batches of grain I have to take all sorts of steps to ensure I don't waste leftover sugar that is in my grains. My thought is I could build a medium size one of these and use just a little bit of kindling to keep the second pot hot for when I need it.

This project (video below) is for a fairly small and compact version, mine would likely be a bit larger in finished form but the principles of  the design are very similar as you scale up.

Thursday, December 08, 2011

Cider Syrup update

After I wrote about it the other day, I decided to try my hand at making cider syrup.  The first lesson I learned is that you don't have to be afraid of applying heat, I had it at a fairly low boil and after an hour it was not even reduced by half.  After turning it up and letting it get to a rolling boil things progressed faster, but it still took me about 3.5 hours to get 1.75 gallons reduced.  I ended with more than 32oz of syrup so I'm only at 1/8 or so.  It's a little runny, very sweet and packs a heck of an apple punch.

And now for some strange boiling pictures.

In the first picture, if your crazy like me you will see a huge monster mouth, and see that this pot was really full when I started.  (this is a perspective shot)

Now you cannot see anything because the damn pot is boiling and steam is hard to see through.

Finally you will see the end product, the reduced cider cooling down so I could pour it into something and not burn the F#ck out of my hand.

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

Pointless but entertaining.

And it comes to be

And it comes to be that the soothing light at the end of your tunnel is just a freight train coming your way....

Metallica and in particular James this is the way I choose to remember you.

A hopefully working international version

Metallica - No Leaf Clover by metallica

If not another one for good measure

Metallica - No Leaf Clover from mert ataol on Vimeo.

Cider is bubbling away still

From humble beginnings I started this little cider journey I'm on.

But a heavy hand with the acid blend gave me a cider that was still.

Patience, planning and hard work paid off and you can now see the milky and cloudy color as evidence the yeast is working away.

I've been a bit of a lazy blogger and not getting pictures as I go, so here you go, pictures of my cider in process. It's been bubbling away pretty actively so it may be several weeks before it's ready for the bottle. From the one gravity reading that I took of 1.071 on just the raw juice, and I was 1.066 or more on the brown sugar water the final product will be in the range of 7-9%abv. The first gallon of brown sugar water I measured really nicely by weight and after that things got a little loose.

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Dual temperature logger

So I updated my poor neglected Project blog with one of the things I'm thinking of working on.  This is really just a post to let you know you can read it over here.

I don't know if I'm going to post often over there or not, the posts there tend to be really iceberg type of posts. What I write only encompasses 3% of the work I'm talking about undertaking, so they become huge time sucks as I work on finishing what I talk about starting or actually start.

Monday, December 05, 2011

Puppet movie

This looks kind of creepy and pretty interesting.

The Narrative of Victor Karloch [Official Trailer] from Kevin McTurk on Vimeo.

Also, I'm sorry.  You'll know why.

Homebrew with your kids

A while ago Lifehacker posted an article that really makes me excited for the future when my son is older.  The thrust of the article is that by taking away the mystery of alcohol you can help destroy some of that allure that draws kids to start drinking.  If their attitude is, "hey that's just a crappy version of the stuff my dad makes" they won't be trying it in unmonitored situations.

My hope is that I can give some sanity to my son, I know that I never really had a problem with underage drinking and where I lived the attitude was pretty relaxed.  The parents didn't encourage us or buy it, but we had a safe place to be and no one was allowed to leave if they drank so we didn't get into situations with driving.  Personally I really only got "drunk" maybe 2 or 3 times in all of High School, and it wasn't really a big part of my friends agenda.  I'm not saying we didn't play cards and drink beer or booze, but almost never was it a blackout fest or do stupid shit.  Just that we did it for the most part sober.   I think that the group of kids that was 4-8 years older than us partied so hard, we didn't want to end up like them so we where all pretty mellow.

Friday, December 02, 2011

The Weekend

I'm not sure who to blame for this artist being in my head, but I call this artist the writer of "cheater anthems".  Seriously I don't think there is a single song I have listened to that is about being faithful to someone, so enjoy if that is your thing.

The Weeknd - The Knowing (Official Video) from xoxxxoooxo on Vimeo.

1.5 mile wifi booster

This sounds a little like snake oil, but I'll bite Engadget posted a link to a Wi-fi range extender.  The claim is that is can boost the signal up to 1.5 miles!!!!  For the price of $180 I'm inclined to give it a whirl (Though from my understanding of wireless you would need one on both ends of the connection to make this work).  My parents have a few acres and the shop that is far enough from the house that it doesn't get signal from their access point in the house.  I had considered a number of solutions for this, but the one that was the least work was burying some fiber in a conduit and getting 2 fiber to copper adapters (I am actually qualified to terminate fiber so this is less insane than it might sound).  Wireless would be a hell of a lot less work, but something about this makes me not believe it will work.

What do you think?

Thursday, December 01, 2011

Chris Brown Parody anybody?

I'll just leave this right here....

Airlock monitoring project

So hack-a-day had a project up that perked my ears right up the Airlock monitoring project will measure the frequency of the bubbles in your airlock so you don't have to check so frequently on your fermentation.  This project combines 2 things I love electronics and beer!

There are two parts an optical sensor that measures the passing of a bubble and a pressure sensor.  I don't think the pressure sensor is all that useful, so the optical sensor should be sufficient for the purposes that I envision.  No just need to scrounge up some free time.

Oh shit! it's alive

Don't count the kid out yet!  I came home to the glorious sound of my airlock bubbling away, I got anxious in the rapid cell growth phase and was going to dump out the cider when I got home!  Turns out the stuff took off and is happily bubbling away at about 13 bubbles a minute or one every 4-5 seconds.  This is pretty good and solid fermentation.  It was probably both lowering the PH (even only slightly) with brown sugar water, and adding a hardier yeast.  The champagne yeast is a higher attenuating yeast tolerant of up to 18% abv, and grapes are naturally somewhat acidic anyway.  I started this little experiment with some Nottingham ale yeast, that attenuates to about 8% abv, but I was hoping for some more complexity than the champagne gave me last time.

This batch is out there and may not be the most drinkable thing I've ever made, but damn it the yeast lives and that just makes me smile so hard right now!  I had been researching additives that would lower the PH, and found calcium carbonate and potassium carbonate are relatively cheap ~$5 and used to balance highly acid grapes, the brewstore guy warned me that the calcium carbonate would add an earthy flavor to the finished product.  I bought some, but when I got home and heard the fermenters bubbling I could hardly stop smiling.

So the good news, I didn't freak out when it wasn't working and kept the process clean, sanitizing things as I went.  There is a really good chance that this batch will turn out as good as it is able to because I was levelheaded in my dealing with a bad situation, and sometimes a funky brew is fun.  If it is as sour as I think it is, and attenuates all the way it could be in the 8% range it will be like a sour kick in the face for drinking.  Champagne yeast ferments with a dry finish, so sour with a dry finish might work out to be kind of fun.  Good thing I only have 8 gallons of the stuff to play with.  Maybe I'll get freaky and brew something else to blend it with, I have all that pumpkin in the freezer that needs to be used for something or even open up some of the cider from last year and blend them.  Aged with young and sour?

In all it was a fantastic day, the boy only screamed at me for like 45 minutes, and Tuesday night I got to sleep for about 9 hours uninterrupted (love you honey), minus the stupid truck needing to get repaired (yeah I didn't need those $120 dollars any way right? sob.)

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

It was bound to happen

Ugh, what a awful week already.  So my truck wouldn't start on Tuesday so yeah for not work, boo for repair shop bills.  That is pretty sucky, but in more serious and sad news, I have finally actually failed in my attempt to produce booze.  This isn't just I missed the style or some such, I messed up so much that the cider is so acidic no yeast can survive the environment.  I was trying to make a more interesteing flavor in my hard cider and mixed in about 3/4lb of Acid blend.  I've since learned that it should have been about 3 tablespoons for the size of batch that I am working on.  So I over did it by about 50-90 time too much acid.  This stuff is tart, like rot your teeth sour patch tart.  I started with a 3 gallon batch and then upped it to 5 with more cider, then took it to over 8 with brown sugar and water.  The water is so base it doesn't register on my ph strips and the cider is so acid it just reads the lowest reading after diluting it as much as I have.  I think 1/2 a gallon of what I have in 5 gallons might still be too acidic.

It's a sad day for me but, the every dollar at this point is good money after bad.  For grins I might have gone to buy another huge thing of brown sugar and make a sugar wash to add 1/2 a gallon of this stuff to just to see if I can get any mileage out of it, but with a car in the shop I think my hobbies are on hiatus for some time.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Stop Censorship

If you live in the US and haven't heard about SOPA/PIPA winding it's way through the congress and senate then what rock are you living under? can fill you in, but the long and the short is they want to be able to blacklist sites like Youtube if one copyright owner claims your video of lip-syncing is infringment.  No due process, no safe harbor, just bam, blacklist.  As written I don't believe that there is a way to contest being blacklisted, much less any testimony on how to make this work with out completely crippling DNS as we know it.

It's nasty legislation by onery old men, looking to strangle the internet that causes them so much trouble.  The trouble is we like the internet a hell of a lot more than we like them, so spread the word.

Also here is a bloggy compatriot that recenly blogged similarly on this issue.  Thanks R for keeping up the good work putting this info out there.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Indie I promise

The preview thumbnail made me very suspect of this video, but it was indie music lurking on the song.

International version for you.

All Grain Attempt #1

Man this post has been sitting in drafts for a long while.

After trying several passes at the extract brewing process I decided to give all grain a try. After reading, and reading, and reading some more, I decided to forgo adding more brewing vessels (mash tun and lauter tun or a combo mash/lauter tun) and try the brew in a bag method. I knew I would be giving up a few points of efficiency (the % of sugar extracted from the grains) I figured that with enough effort I could eventually work my way up to around 80% efficiency as I have read reports of some people achieving 90% with the brew in a bag. I only did a single protein rest at 155° F for 45 minutes before pulling and squeezing the grain bag.  I tried to do a straight all grain version of the Mac & Jack's African Amber given it popularity so with the help of my local brew store I converted the recipe, bought some grains and gave it ago.

I cannot find my notes on this, and it was before I started using software to keep track of my efforts so I don't have much to go on here, but here is the recipe.

It came out ok, but was no where near as good as the extract version I brewed originally.  I imagine that a few things contributed to this.  I think my first all grain I was 68% efficient so there was probably a lot of unfermentable sugar left in the wort, and I don't think I dry hopped this one like I did the extract version which gave it a less floral nose.  The color was too pale for what I felt it should have been, but otherwise the beer was drinkable and I believe I'm down to only a few bottles left.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Cost of Commuting

I've read about the cost of commuting before and the demands that it puts on your life and health, but Lifehacker had a post that talks about dollars and cents the cost of commuting and breaks down how much more you should consider paying for a house that cuts your commute time.

The blog is quite long and goes through several scenarios, but the argument is well laid out.  I am curious about cases where rent is exorbitant (West Coast Mega cities), and the cost of living offset.  Some places are ridiculous to live, because groceries are expensive and then there are the Urban Food Deserts.  I'm sold on the premise of the argument so don't mistake that, I'm just questioning some of the simple math that may ignore other cost variables.  For instance the previous receptionist at work here made kind of a pittance, and was commuting almost 2 hours each way in a financed BMW(no joke), bitched about how expensive the boat was, and cost of living ect and rolled her eyes at me when I talked about not working in Downtown Seattle when she lived so far away.  She made some snark about the worse wages, I wish I had this article then to show her.

Anyone think it's a load of blarkey?  I'm up for discussion, if you post your long thoughts on your blog or just in the comments I'll respond.

Friday, November 25, 2011

We Can Recycle Plastic

This is a pretty cool ted talk about recycling plastics. Both videos are the same talk, the one from the Ted Talk website should work for everyone, but in case below is a youtube version.

Youtube version.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Freeish hosting for simple web pages.

I'm not sure if everyone had a need for this, but sometimes it's nice to have a quick and simple way to put something up on the internet.  Lifehacker has a post on how to use dropbox and some helper services.  The beauty of this would be for sites that have very static content and low daily traffic.  For a Free Dropbox account you get 10gb a day, and a pro you get 250gb a day.  It's an interesting idea, and cool way to get simple pages up on the internet without paying for hosting.  I don't know how complicated you can go with this, but I imagine if you can use scripts and CSS you could probably link it to one of the backend dataservices type of site like like Amazon or similar and store data in the cloud.  I imagine this would be exceptionally unsecure, but could be useful in a pinch.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Alternative Thanksgivings

Saveur has some interesting Thanksgiving day menus up on their site, might be useful for people looking for idea for tomorrow.

They have a Mexican inspired menu, includes a chili rubbed turkey and jalapeno cornbread.

A French inspired menu, with Turkey Confit and roasted squash with sage bread crumbs.

A Vegetarian inspired menu, with wheat berry pilaf and pumpkin cheesecake with gingersnap and hazelnut crust.

A Southern inspired menu, with southern mac and cheese and crusty buttermilk biscuits.

A Thanksgiving for two menu, with stuffed turkey breast and cranberries with port.

The menus are pretty diverse, and some of the recipes are interesting enough I may try them someother time.  My menu for Thanksgiving is already pretty set.  I am on the hook for a brined turkey and mashed red potatoes.  My mom is making sweet potato puff (this is ridiculous sweet potatoes and coconut just saying), my mother in law has the biscuits, corn, green bean casserole and pumpkin pie.  I have room and thought space for one more thing, I made boiled cider over the weekend so I may try for an apple tart or something fancy pants.

Are any of you doing something fancy for Turkey day?

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Dark Night and game theory

Mind Your Decisions had an interesting little discussion on the opening scene of Dark Knight and game theory. It's been quite some time since I watched the movie so I had actually forgotten the opening sequence. Anyway it was an interesting read, and it's always fun to watch the opening of The Dark Knight.

Real movie

I'm not sure how I feel about this, Gizmodo says there is a real movie in development based on a comment thread on Reddit.  It sounds gimmicky, Marines vs Romans, but more power to them I suppose.  I would rather it was fleshed all the way out into a book or graphic novel before it gets picked up by a studio to be debauched and ruined, but hey that's the positive outlook you can expect from me.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Disturbing Indie of the day

So I don't know if you needed to be disturbed right now or not, but your about to be.

I think that the reason that this is disturbing for me is the way the video slows down between when he is singing.  The juxtaposition of movement and intense unblinking staring is jarring because humans have a very hard time remaining still even for short periods of time.  This makes the intense menacing, or more menacing than it would otherwise be.  Small non-verbal movements betray us as human, and it is feedback that we process subconsciously, seriously try for just a few minutes and see how intensely hard it is for you to not move.

Suuns "Red Song" from Topher Manilla on Vimeo. Sauce

One month old

So today marks the first month of my son's life.  Not much to say really, but I felt like the event shouldn't pass without notice.

He squirms and poos, and well generally is a baby, but here's looking forward to when your little brain starts to get to the point of understanding the world around you.  I cannot wait to blow your mind with the things in this world, really look forward to having someone help me make stuff.

Cider Syrup

image via Saveur (credit MacKenzie Smith)

So another gem from the people out in Brooklyn. I'm kind of a cider whore as it is, so if someone posts a way to use it that I hadn't thought of you know it's gonna get crazy for me. This is boiled cider, or cider syrup. They do exactly what you imagine it is they do and boil apple cider down until it is the consistancy of maple syrup and use it for cooking and making cocktails. Saveur turned me onto the idea no doubt with their cider syrup and whiskey toddy, but this blog really made the idea sing. They call it cider molasses, and use it on ice cream or in tea, and the idea that I'm most excited to try mixed with soda water on the rocks.  The picture is whiskey and cider syrup, with a very fancy ice cube.

Thanksgiving is at my house this year, and one thing I am working coming up with is a desert to wow the family.  Barring that I may try to wow them with awesome drink options, either way I believe that will be some boiled cider in my house soon.


Saturday, November 19, 2011

long video of tv and movies

I think Sub-Radar might like this one.

Friday, November 18, 2011

We Where Promised Jetpacks

I have to say that as far as band names go this has got to be top 3 for me.  Seriously, where are the jetpacks!

We Were Promised Jetpacks - "Human Error" from stereogum on Vimeo.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Exploded Flowers

This is really kind of brilliant, and the link to this person's website and you will see several flowers blown to bits.  As far as art goes this is really a different take on your standard flower picture, and I love the deconstruction.  There is art in the the way this person chose to present these flowers and I think I've said enough about them so go on click over and see them.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Moment of Peace for your day

I honestly don't care if this is forced or over the top euro-hipster, the melody spoke to me in a moment that needed just a tiny bit of peace. It worked for me, I'm sharing I barely care if you don't like it.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Are your hands this useful

The video and music are dramatic, the viewpoint romanticized, but damn it here is a guy just freaking doing it. That is exciting.

Made by Hand / No 2 The Knife Maker from Made by Hand on Vimeo.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Friday, November 11, 2011

Why don't I ever know anything?

So I just say that Puscifer (Maynard James Keenan's other, other band (Tool and A Perfect Circle you jerk you really should know this)) was in town for a show on Monday.  Now I doubt I would have gone, but it's hard to plan if you don't know it was coming. The link above goes to their site that plays the whole album, but here is a video for good measure.

Puscifer - Momma Sed (Official Video) from Ryan Hopman on Vimeo.

Thursday, November 10, 2011


From time to time I long for something other than soda, and consider trying to brew Kombucha.  I've read about it before, and kick around the idea every time I read about it on the internet, but now that I have the facilities to actually brew things this may be the time that gets me to start a batch for myself.  Like I said the health benefits are dubious, but I've said it before fermented stuff is great for your gut, and it has to be better for me than my daily sodas.  The other day I found Fentimans Shandy Soda, and have been longing to make something lightly alcoholic that is not beer for consumption.  In general my beers are 4.5% and up, the Shandy was .5% yeah less than 1% alcohol, and the Kombucha is .5-1.5% on average.

Because I love me some Mad Fermentationist I checked and sure enough the guy had cultured some Kombucha, made some that was malted, and even tried a fusion with the Flanders Red style beer and Kombucha.  It's kind of sad to me that everything that I find interesting in the Beer science world this dude has done about 3 years ago.  Sigh, nothing new on heaven and earth I suppose.

What do you think, healthy wacko food or interesting science drink?

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Making your own sea salt

So there is a Lifehacker author that apparently knows how to push my buttons, they posted an article on making your own salt from sea water. I really think this is a cool idea, but the first sentence makes me think that this utopia doesn't exist.

If you live near a non-polluted source of salt water...
So basically the best I think most of us can get is to claim that our water is cleaner than the water near the Deepwater Horizon oil spill (link in case you where dead for the last year and just suddenly found yourself alive). Anyhow it's a cool idea, and I may give it a try just because it would be fun to see the salt drying.

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Corruption all over

Wow, I am a little stunned about learning that Olympus has been hiding investment losses for 20 years!  That is pretty amazing feat of accounting and collusion by so many people would be required to pull this off.  I don't have any witty commentary to add, I just cannot believe that they where able to hide it for so long.

Sony loosing money?

Not to sound smug, but here is another company that I am not a huge fan of.  Sony has repeatedly treated their customers poorly with proprietary formats and crappy drm software, now they are projecting a loss, in the same breath I hear Lenovo is posting a large Q2 profit.  I realize that Lenovo inherited the legacy of IBM, but they have built some really solid products on their own right.  The Lenovo Ideapad U260 is the computer I give to my executives and they love it, core i5 with 4 gb of ram.  Its tiny and wicked fast, and looks damn sharp.  I have several Sony products but my house is boycotting them until they stop with their go fuck yourself attitude about consumer standards.  SD card won the format war, get over it Sony.  They sank millions of dollars into seeing that the HD-DVD standard failed (fuck you very much for that one Sony) in part because it wasn't technology controlled by them

Saturday, November 05, 2011

Friday, November 04, 2011

Life in a Day

This is a crazy youtube project it's an hour and a half, so strap in for this but it is assembled from 80,000 clips from users edited by Ridley Scott.  I'm at 10minutes and it's strangely compelling so far.  I guess I'm hoping for something interesting to evolve, but as long as the music keeps up I think it could be fine as it is.  Thanks gizmodo, I'm surprised Engadget didn't post this given they posted an announcement for the project.

Thursday, November 03, 2011

Occupy Seattle Oped

There is a local blog for Seattle called the Seattlest that has been chronicling the ups and downs of the occupy Seattle protests here in my back yard. On of the recent posts really nailed some points that I think spoke to why I think they are alienating the majority of people that should agree with their cause.  He notes that the problem with the people that attend are the ones that want to make it a festival and/or have a different ax to grind (legalizing Marijuana, or immigration or some other cause).  This makes the people there protesting the large financial institutions ability to affect their lives look silly, and turns people like me off to the whole thing.

I'm not going to go stand next to somebody championing a cause that isn't even tangentially related to the task at hand.  His article is really well written and references Orwell, so you know the man is very well read, sorry I'm a sucker for either Orwell or Mark Twain references.  Both men had a lot to say about contemporary culture and I'm surprised how much I like them the more I read by and about them.

Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Does Glee have a color?

Another Day, another Mac trojan.

I know you had plans today...

I know you had plans for today and I'm really sorry but you should just go ahead and cancel them.  I give to you Gifanime.  I made myself stop at page 75, but I swear I cannot stop scrolling.  The blog has the continually load the next page feature, it's maddening.

Sob...So much potential

Rub salt in my wounds over the glorious would have been, could have been great product Cnet had to detail the demise of The Courier. I'm almost too broken up over this to speak, if you haven't seen the concept video I posted it previously, you should give it a look. It was amazing.

The trouble was apparently Bill freaked out because it didn't do email! Fucking Email! It was a companion piece to the windows universe, not a stand alone and Billy boy couldn't see past email to build a completely different product category.  It makes me sick, and sad.  Farewell sweet prince, we will never know you.

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

Ted Talk

Apologies ahead of time before you hit half way this guy will put you to sleep, he comes off terribly arrogant, and delivers poorly.  The tech is cool, but each piece is a building block for the next and the end game may surprise you.  11 minutes in I don't hate him, I want to work with or for him.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Black Keys - Lonely Boy

If you have somehow missed The Black Keys, prepare your earholes!  I love the dirty fuzzed out guitar and vocals, retro rock with a new coat of paint.  Sorry internationals, I cannot find this one anywhere else.  Looks like The Black Keys managers are watching the internet like hawks.

The new Google Reader Kinda Sucks

So the screenshot below will illustrate my problem with the new google reader and expose my ocd tabbing and crap ton of stuff open. In the new interface I have 567 vertical pixels to view content on.

<slow clap> way to fucking go google</slow clap>

I have 900 vertical pixels on my display, I waste 84 by not browsing in fullscreen for the tabs and the address-bar and my bookmarklets.  Your google+ uses 29, and then you waste 177 on whitespace that could be displaying the content that I use your product to view!!!  I'm not overly concerned about this, as I read more on my android tablet using Feedly, and for Chrome I'll install a user script to fix your fucking retarded design choices.  But I really would hate to see what this looks like on a netbook.

Hope you fix this soon, because it is a failure in my eyes.

Stop it MS Research

Alright a slightly long video and then some discussion on this vision for the future.

Things that are being worked on that could be workable, some day in real time. One example is the real time translating glasses. They would link to something (say your smartphone) that had computing power, but this is something that is being worked on (interestingly by a Microsoft competitor). I do think that this could be a viable, and useful product in the future.

 Awesome and bittersweet, but kinda makes me sad. In her hotel room the lady picks up a dual screen device that looked too much like the God Damn murdered in its sleep most awesome product concept that Microsoft has had in a very long time and should fucking make it The Courier.

 Really hard, like really, really hard: smart objects interacting (the taxi cab passenger window for example). This is actually got sub-parts to make it work so: Proximity based real-time networking? It wasn't made apparent, but how did that smart object (taxicab window) know about her meeting? Have you ever tried to sync your phone to a bluetooth device? It is never that easy. Somehow that communication had to be brokered, and someone or something had to make the decision that it was an acceptable risk to pair her information hub (smartphone) to an object in a public space. The Smart object had to be smart enough to speak the language of the phone (woman in the video is native English and the country she is in is not, but also now how to look at her datebook and appointments (which had to have the address of her meeting entered correctly) then determine the physical location of the taxicab and use some locator device to know that that building was in view of the passenger to show them this information. The amount of backend intelligence to make that (near pointless) little infographic on a taxicab window blew my mind. Mapping services are somewhere between ok and shitty most of the time, standards for communicating datebook info are "loose" shall we say (hey vcard and vcalender) gps and triangulation are spotty in cities (spotty is being somewhat generous as far as I'm concerned) and orientation let alone identifying a building on the outside of the car that is a great distance away, God Damn. Cool, but very hard.

 Next up the visiting worker that collaborates with that other man. He walked in took out a tablet and throws information to another device. Again real-time proximity networking. Have you ever tried to get on someone else's wireless network? It sucks, some people have made QR codes for quick connecting to networks on smartphones (the security implications of this make me want to cry and again I chuckle that it is Google's android that has a working prototype of a quick connect technology). I made some assumptions so bear with me, but the colleague with the tablet is from out of town, and this is the first time he has been to this office. From that assumption set I think that he had to bet onto the local Wireless network, assuming they work for the same company (a possibility) two locations are very, very unlikely to have the same wireless password, let alone ssid, and security setup. But assume that the security setup was following best practices, you can get onto the wifi and get to the internet, but to work with other devices that are on the wired network you have to use a VPN to get to those devices (security isolation of WIFI is common in large companies). All of the details of how they connected aside what he actually did is mind boggling. He took information from an open document on his device (assume the connection details where worked out) and pasted into an open document on a different computer! Holy batshit, not real-time editing the same document from two locations, he pasted across applications across computers! God I hope no one works on a product to make it do this, the insecurity of this model scares the living daylights out of me!!!  Similar types of interactions are made in the home where the daughter takes info from her tablet and moves it to the counter. I'm willing to assume that some setup and implicit trust brokering could be pre-configured for those devices. I can tolerate that this type of interaction could not only happen, but someday will. In the future, in your house. At work, your IT department would have a stroke reading the speck sheet.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Prepare your Mind

Because it's about to be blown!

Image via Geeks Are Sexy

Yes, that is delicious math right there.  Also we all know that Π ⋅ r!2, Π are round. Cornbread r2
For those that are not huge nerds ! is the logical "not" operator, so it says pi are not square. Pie are round, cornbread are square.

Friday, October 28, 2011

More hand drawn videos

This one is not a great as some of the other videos of this type I've watched, but I'm a sucker for this type of presentation.

Robotics video of awesome

So robotics is an amazing field of study, and I look forward to a day when this technology is available for use in commercial and personal settings.  There are lots of things that are hard to do, physically because of limitations of our little meat sacks and there are lots of things that are hard to do with robotics because of the limitations of there dexterity.  The type of robotics shown in the video will really change the way work is done and I'm all for it.  However watch the video and guess if you can see what my 2 problems are with it.

#1 I feel bad for the old dude that they picked to show that see good enough for a whipper snapper but greatly extended the usefulness of a old duffer like me!  It's local news in a sparely populated surprisingly conservative for such a bunch of hippies state, but right off it's pandering.  My Grandpa turned 78 this year, man is a great grandfather and will likely live long enough for his great grandkids to actually remember him.  I'd wager for the better percentage of people reading blogs he has a more active social life and that he's more active than them too.  My Grandmother (his wife) is a few years younger (72) and still runs a tanning salon largely on her own as well as being the accountant for their church.  She recently performed in a local musical!  Age is a touchy subject for me because I see them and think it has as much to do with how you choose to live your life as anything else.

#2 rather jarringly he calls the robot suit a slave, and does it repeatedly.  Slave still being a very socially loaded word on it's own, really disturbs me in light of movies like Terminator, and Blade Runner.  It is a really dangerous way to treat something, right now they are non-sentient but attitudes are pervasive.   Let's not start the war with robots by calling them slaves as we work to develop them.  Call them robotic tools to accomplish work, or personal mechanical assistants, hell anything  that isn't slave I suppose.

That is all.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Tick Tock Mac's Tick Tock

Another Mac Trojan, this time ported from Ye Olde Linux.  I promise I'm not smiling as I type this.

Elbow-Grounds for divorce

Youtube disabled embeds so here's hoping this works for everyone.

Elbow- 'Grounds For Divorce' (Dir. Dan Sully) from Dan Sully on Vimeo.

There's a hole in my neighborhood down which of late I cannot help but fall
That's a great lyric.

When to use CFL's

Lifehacker one of my favorite blogs, offered up this tidbit of knowledge I never even considered on when to use CFL's to extend their life.  The basic gist of their advice is that enclosures that don't allow ventilation such as recessed can lights and fully enclosed sconces are not good candidates for CFL light bulbs.

Good to know.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Brilliant party bowl for halloween

It's a tiny bit of a Martha Stewart I realize, but that is kind of an awesome use of a Pumpkin.  I doubt it's something I'll be using this year, but tap that one away for a Halloween someday in the future.

My uncle has a garden that is about an acre in area so we ended up with 12 small-medium pumpkins.  Out of 3 I managed to collect 11 1/2 cups of pumpkin for baking pies and maybe if the inspiration takes me a pumpkin beer.  If I do a pumpkin beer I am going to try to clone New Belgium's Lips of Faith Kick, which is a blended beer of Sour barrel aged beer and a tart pumpkin cranberry ale.  It is freaking amazing.  For the West Coast (of the USA) readers I suggest you check it out you can find it using New Belgium's Libation Locator, I had it on draft, but I am sure it will be nice in a bottle too.  This is an extremely accessible sour beer, not hard to drink like a Gueuze.

My brother is working to help me polish off the remaining 2 gallons or so of Mac & Jack's Clone in my keg before it gets stale, and because I think it is ludicrous to have more than 2 kegs of beer in my chest freezer.  I don't drink beer with any kind of velocity so I need people to come drink with or for me.  In particular the friend of mine that was going to start making beer with me decided to stop drinking while his wife was pregnant and hasn't started again now that the baby is here, so the person that I was sort of expecting to drink with me often is not playing anymore.