Friday, August 27, 2010


I just want to know what she's feeling
I just want to know what she's doing
I just want to know why she left me here to die

There she stands
Up above
Looking down on me
I can't touch her
Her eyes are empty

I want to ask her name,
But she's already gone,
And it doesn't seem important,
With what she's left me with,
It screams

She's my sylvia
My helen,
My sweet josephine,
The empire is already wrecked,
We burned the world together

It's the silence that's killing me
The nothing where once before
Nothing but possibility stood

Wednesday, August 18, 2010


I really very much want to cook a brisket on Saturday using some of
the flavoring tips from Steven, especially using coffee grounds in the
seasoning. It's definitely worth a try since it's much easier than
grinding the peppers that I normally have to in order to make my


As always, thanks to Steven Raichlen for a wonderful recipe available


Source: Planet Barbecue by Steven Raichlen (Workman, 2010)
Method: Smoking/Indirect Grilling
Serves: 8 to 12
Advance Preparation: 4 hours to overnight for curing the brisket (optional),
then allow 8 to 9 hours for smoking the brisket and at least 30
minutes for it to rest.

1 beef brisket flat (6 to 8 pounds) with—very important—a cap of fat at least
1/4-inch thick
3 tablespoons dry mustard
3 tablespoons coarse salt (kosher or sea)
3 tablespoons cracked or coarsely ground black pepper
3 Tablespoons Worcestershire powder (see Note below)

You'll also need: 6 to 8 cups oak or hickory chips or chunks, soaked for
1 hour in water to cover, then drained; a heavy-duty aluminum foil pan;
heavy-duty aluminum foil

Trim the brisket so as to leave a 1/4-inch cap of fat. (Any less and
the brisket will dry out; any more, and the fat will prevent the rub
from seasoning the meat.)

Place the mustard, salt, pepper, powdered Worcestershire sauce, if
using, in a bowl and mix them with your fingers. Sprinkle the rub on
the brisket on all sides, rubbing onto the meat. If you have time,
wrap the brisket in plastic wrap and let it cure in the refrigerator
for at least 4 hours or as long as overnight.

To grill: If you are using a smoker, set it up following the
manufacturer's instructions and preheat it to 275 degrees F. When
ready to cook, place the brisket fat side up in the smoker. Add wood
chips or chunks to the smoker every hour, following the manufacturer's

If you are using a charcoal grill, set up the grill for indirect
grilling, place a large drip pan in the center, and preheat the grill
to 275 degrees F. To maintain this low temperature, use only half as
much charcoal as usual. (A half chimney-full.) When ready to cook,
toss about 2 cups of wood chips or chunks on the coals. Place the
brisket on the hot grate over the drip pan, fat side up, and cover the
grill. You'll need to add fresh coals an more wood chips or chunks to
each side of the grill every hour for the first 4 hours.

Smoke or grill the brisket until a dark "bark" (outside crust) forms
and the internal temperature of the meat is about 150 degrees F, 4 to
5 hours; use an instant-read meat thermometer to test for doneness.
Then, tightly wrap the brisket in a couple of layers of aluminum foil,
crimping the edges to make a tight seal. Return the brisket to the
smoker or grill and continue cooking until the brisket is very tender,
but not soft or "mushy," and the internal temperature is 190 to 195
degrees F, about 4 hours longer.

Remove the wrapped brisket from the smoker or grill and place it in a
warm spot. Let the brisket rest for about 30 minutes. This resting
period is very important; during that time, the brisket will reabsorb
its juices.

To serve, unwrap the brisket and thinly slice it. Spoon any juices
over the brisket and get ready for some of the most extraordinary
smoked beef on Planet Barbecue.

Note: Worcestershire powder is available by mail order through If unavailable, add 1 tablespoon more of dry

The Wind in the Willows

I have been reading this beautiful classic for the first time. Since I
got my kindle a few months ago(and now am very much in lust with the
new model that I don't have), I have been reading classic after
classic for free. I started with some fairy tales that were written by
the author of the Wizard of Oz, then some Irish fairy tales, then I
tried some Japanese fairy tales. I enjoy fairy tales a lot, because of
their brevity. I ended up not enjoying the Irish book at all, because
it didn't feel at all like it was broken up into tales, there didn't
seem to be any kind of cohesive narrative. Anyway, after those, I
tried my hand at The World Set Free, which started out amazingly well,
but got so muddled in the middle that I have given up on it. I was
totally lost, events began to run together, every so often another
brilliant line or prophecy would arise, and then the narrative would
become muddled again. Now I am on The Wind in the Willows and reading
briskly through it.

I used to watch the animated version that they played on PBS all the
time as a child. It was one of my great childhood memories, the music
and characters. I laughed a lot. There was a claymation, that I saw
the most, and then there was also a Disney animated version. Anyway, I
am at work, and I am going to go back to reading. I will post more

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