Old People - You can't trust 'em

I actually went out last night. Me? Yeah. My friend B got stood up for his half of a double-date and was looking for a good stand-in. Being as this was a _dancing_ event, he had a few requirements: 1. Pretty. 2. Dancer. Now, B knows 3 good dancers. The first one he knows stood him up for the dancing double date. The second dancer he knows is the OTHER HALF of the dancing double date. I'm the third.

So I get a phone call, scrounge up an outfit from my closet, truss up my hair and out I went. We saw a swing quartet in a very nice, subdued club full of ridiculous expensive drinks and waiters that just couldn't understand, "Just a soda, I'm driving." The music was amazing, spanning all of the major genres favorable in the teens and twenties (1910 and 1920s). Samba, bassa nova, standard Big Band swings, loungy pop-blues. It was great!

I mentioned it was a dancing double date. PRoblem was, there about 10ft2 of dancing space. Eventually, the three or four dancing couples traded off sets and every crammed in for the slow songs. I say _eventually_ because first...

B and I got up for a nice hoppy single swing. Think "In the Mood' or something along like that. We're "cutting a rug" when this old lady (>70) sitting at the bar hollers at us to SIT DOWN! SHE CAN"T SEE! See? Yes. She wants to _watch_ the music. Hrumpth. So we continue to dance, disregarding the old badger, and what happens? She actually gets out of her bar seat and attempts to PUSH us off the floor! Now, if I wanted to be technical, her hand on my arm is considered assault, which would have given me full llicense to defend myself and my dancing partner from this attacker, but I kept my cool and repositioned my feet in my calf-high, 3" heel asskickers ready to boot (or just arm pin) the old coot.

Here's where things get weird - the other dancing couples (who hadn't been dancing yet) got up and started encouraging is to KEEP DANCING! and to hell with the biddy. Thankfully, the song came to an end and the singer started talking, noticing the interference it he back of the room. We sat down.

Nothing much else happened for the evening, save the old biddy leaving about 10 minutes later, clearly the destination of many a poop eye from the dancing couples.

So... Poll.

How would you have handled this?

Poll #1170469 Handling the Old People

How would you have handled the situation?

Continued dancing, oblivious.
Sat down and stayed down.
Invited the old coot to dance. (When in Rome)
Called the cops for assault.
Bought her a drink - something with bitters.
Rallied the troops and filled that tiny space with dancers.

Something Else...


Baking Measurements

Just so I have it for the future, converts recipes from US Standard measures to Metric really quick and easy. I rely on their site a lot for converting recipes.

As a sidenote, baking by weight is MUCH easier than baking by volume - lady_fox taught me that. For the rest of y'all, baking by weight is a serious endeavor in the abuse of the Tare button on your scale. Recipe says "mix 250g flour, 1 t salt* , 200 g sugar and 125 g butter in a bowl." So you put your bowl on the scale and set it to metric and measure 250g flour right into the bowl. No sifting or leveling or nothing! Then TARE! and you're back to zero - add 200 g sugar right from the container. TARE! keep adding blobs of butter until you're at 125 g.

*I would like to point out, however, that measuring anything less than 2Tbsp is probably more accurate with a spoon than a scale. For example, 1/4 tsp salt weighs 0.625 g. Most scales are only accurate to 1 gram. (A penny weighs 2.6 g for comparison.)

I'm amazed how more likely I am to bake now that I work by weight. The big advantages are: 1. There's more accuracy in measuring compact-able things like flour and brown sugar. 2. You never need to wash a bunch of worthless measuring cups. 3. You can feel all Sciency in the kitchen with a scale.

The point of this post was not to blather about baking by weight - it was actually to post some REALLY great links. has published their conversion tables!
Baking Ingredient Conversions from US Standard Volumes to US Standard weights (cups to ounces, basically)
Baking Ingredient Conversions from US Standard Volume to Metric Weights and US Standard Weights

I keep a set of 3x5s inside my baking cabinet door with tables of converting flour, sugar, solid fat, brown sugar and honey. Super-handy.

The most beautiful woman in Italy

So this is how the Japanese find " the most beautiful woman in Italy." They picked a random babe on the street and asked her to introduce the most beautiful woman she knows to the camera crew. Then the most beautiful woman introduces the crew to the most beautiful woman SHE knows... and on and on and on...

Frankly, to me it sounds like some type of strange dating scheme - Meet a random chick in the bar - wine her up and get the number for her most beautiful friend... repeat.

As a sidenote, I'm finally over the flu and I'm now the US's largest producer of snot.

It's March 4.

I know posting that "it's March 4." may seem really obvious, but the thing that isn't obvious is that Spring is supposed to be creeping up on us. It's nowhere to be found. For the first time in 4 years, I'm NOT riding my bike today. I also didn't ride my bike yesterday. Yesterday there was fresh snow on the roads. Today there's supposed to be fresh snow on the roads, and it's still balls-out cold. (Don't balls go IN when it's cold? I don't understand that expression.)

To continue on my normal morning process of things, I'm camped out at a coffee shop for 2 hours this morning because this is as close as my bus will get me to my class at 11:00. I could be at home in bed still, IF it wasn't 17F outside and threatening to snow later. I could be listening to Jim Flemming on the radio and enjoying my toast and tea from the comfort of my pajamas. I could be curled up in bed with my husband dreaming of greener days in our future. But no, it's March already and I"m not riding my bike yet. Bike's tuned up and ready to go with a new chain and cassette. I've got hand built professional wheels with shiny new tires. I even put a fancy 2008 pleathora of stickers on it. (My other bike is a bike. Bell's Brewery.) I took the vacuum to my bike bag and cleaned up the toast crumbs and shredded tissues that were littering the bottom. I've laid out my underlayers and gloves and face mask and...


Stupid snow. Stupid winter. Stupid Wisconsin.

Bus survey.

Ooh. I got to respond in the bus system survey today. They have people riding the bus asking, "do you wanna take a survey?" Captive audience much?

I feel like the typical student-riding from downtown to home in the middle of the afternoon. I did leave a comment that I cycle commute March thru December and I only ride the bus in the winter.

S&A Goto Arizona!

S at Bunna Cafe. S at Bunna Cafe.
We found good people here. Kind. Good tea. [Unknown LJ tag] here's the couch that S wanted to tell you about.
Ostriches Ostriches
We got to feed the ostriches. We're somewhere halfway between Phoenix and Tucson at this ranch where you can pet ostriches, emus, deer and play with the lorikeets. I've noticed my pictures are out of order in this post, please excuse the chaos.
Hotel Scottsdale Hotel Scottsdale
This is the fancy picture of Hotel Scottsdale. Note the white railing and red doors in the background? There's a wide number of these old hotels from the 80s that were purchased by hotel groups and renovated for the new affluence in Scottsdale. This hotel used to be a red roof inn or maybe a Motel 8. The hotel next door (FireSky) used to be a holiday inn and down the road a bit was a Ramada converted into something ridiculous. Hotel Scottsdale is "near" (by 100 miles) to the Superbowl venue and they are then justified in charging $600 A NIGHT FIVE NIGHT MINIMUM for the superbowl. They're making $3000 for EVERY ROOM in their 125 room hotel. HOLY SHIT.
Camelback Mountain Camelback Mountain
That thing on the right there? That's a Mountain. We climbed it. Specifically the one on the Right we climbed, but we started at the base of the one on the left.
S&A at the Top of Camelback Mountain S&A at the Top of Camelback Mountain
Here we are at the summit. Of the mountain. We climbed on Thursday. Yes. We climbed a mountain. Yea! it took us about 3 hours up and down. S got home on Friday and he said, "I just don't know why, but my butt is sore."
Jess and Guitar Hero Jess and Guitar Hero
Jess rockin' out to Guitar Hero 3. On medium, so not quite "rockin" but doing something, anyway. I'd like to point out that her wrists are less inflamed by Guitar Hero than by house cleaning.
Our Villa in the Sun Our Villa in the Sun
We got good time lazing and increasing our Vitamin D levels at a villa at Hotel Scottsdale. Keep in mind we're at a glorified Motel 8 here. We enjoyed the hot tub after we climbed Camelback Mountain and then made ourselves comfortable on this nice double-wide chase lounge.
San Xavier Del Bac San Xavier Del Bac
The mission San Xavier del Bac south of Tucson, AZ. This place is breathtakingly beautiful. From the tourist book: Mission San Xavier del Bac was founded in 1692 by Padre Eusebio Francisco Kino. The original foundation was laid in 1700 and the present church was build during the administration of Father Juan Bautista Velderrain and Father Juan Bautista Llorens. The church took 14 years to build from 1783 to 1797. The church is startling white against all of the yellows (and greens this time of the year) of the desert.
San Xavier del Bac San Xavier del Bac
The interior of San Xavier del Bac. There was a major restoration effort completed in 1997. Within the church sanctuary there was the prominent retable with two smaller chapels on either side forming a cross shape. One chapel was "of the sorrowful mother" and the other "of the suffering savior."
Jess and the Lorikeets Jess and the Lorikeets
At the same place with the ostriches, emus, and deer there were these lorikeets. Probably 25 in a VERY large caged in area. Jess didn't like the birds so much, but they all flocked to her head and fought for superiority while using her hair as a weapon against each other (according to Jess). This was the ONLY time she was smiling. Soon the birds started pecking at her jewelry and she freaked out and bailed.
Behind the Iron Curtain at Sun Dog Liquors Behind the Iron Curtain at Sun Dog Liquors
Sun Dog LIquors maintains the iron curtain with beers from former Soviet Bloc nations behind it. Former Communist beer. Soviet beer. I'm behind the iron curtain.
R to L: S, A, Ms. Arizona 2006, Anthony, Jess, Ellie (Jeff is taking the picture.) R to L: S, A, Ms. Arizona 2006, Anthony, Jess, Ellie (Jeff is taking the picture.)
We ate at Red White and Brew in Phoenix (or Mesa or Tempe or something like that) and there, opening the door for everyone coming in and out was Miss Arizona 2006! She wasn't wearing a sash or anything but Jeff, an old family friend we went to meet, had eaten at this establishment a number of times before and knew the girl. I've searched all over the internet for a crowning shot or a head shot or something, but all I have found is there's about 11 different pageants that crown Miss/Ms Teen/Preteen/Senior Arizona USA/International/Native America. I can't find a picture anywhere. She's the smiling one in the middle (duh) next to all of us fat, pasty white, Midwesterners.
S and the Lorikeets S and the Lorikeets
S was feeding the lorikeets with nectar in a tiny cup. He was really into the birdies. I haven't seen him smile so much in a long time. He enjoyed the experience so much that he went back and paid another $5 to get MORE food to feed them again.

cute pink hottie

Aah, the irony.

I discovered today that Hello Kitty's birthday is Nov 1. Hello Kitty is a Scorpio! says, "A match between Scorpio and Scorpio can be either heaven or hell. On the heaven side, unbridled passion will attract you to each other. Initially, physical bonding is very strong — it will make both of you long for each other even from the outset. In most cases, two Scorpios fall in love with each other very quickly, and soon realise that there’s a possibility of a lifelong commitment. Another Scorpio instinctively understands your mind and heart, from the inside out. You can share your secrets with them. "

Me and Hello Kitty were meant to be!