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Classic Games (Games)

Journal Journal: tonight's dinner 1

Once again, I'm in a South Africa mood. On another site where I hang out, we're doing a Secret Santa, and a few days ago, I got my gift - South Africa-themed random items. Among these items, a CD filled with interesting South African music, including The Click Song...

Anyway, RoF doesn't care about music. Only food. So on to the recipe...

A few things first. A little warning - this is meant to be made a day ahead of serving time. I didn't do this (didn't read the recipe carefully enough before making it :). The dish was still quite delicious...

Also, the recipe says serve with pasta. I made pan-fried potatoes and salad to go with the dish and it worked out nicely.

Braised chicken thighs with red wine, sun-dried tomatoes and balsamic vinegar

(Serves 8)

16-18 chicken thigh portions (ca 2 kg)
2 tbsp olive oil
2 onions, thinly sliced
salt and milled black pepper
2-3 cloves garlic, crushed
1/4 cup shredded basil leaves, or 2 tsp dried oregano
125 g sun-dried tomatoes
3 cups chicken stock
1 cup dry red wine
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar

Trim excess fat from the chicken. Heat oil in a heavy, ovenproof casserole and brown the chicken on both sides over a medium-high heat, in 3-4 batches. When finished with each batch, remove chicken and set aside.

Reduce the heat and add the onions, some salt and pepper. Cook gently for 5-10 minutes or until very soft but not browned. Add small amounts of water to avoid browning, if necessary. Stir in garlic, herbs, and sun-dried tomatoes. Add chicken pieces to casserole. Add stock and wine, and bake in oven at 160 C for about an hour or until chicken is done. Remove from oven and allow to cool. Refrigerate overnight.

Before reheating the chicken, remove any congealed fat from the surface. Bring to a simmer on top of the stove. Check seasonings. Stir in the balsamic vinegar, and continue reheating on stovetop (or in oven at 160 C) until chicken is heated, about 20-30 minutes.

Serve with hot small pasta sprinkled with shredded basil or chopped parsley.

Recipe source: Cape Town Food

We drank Groot Constantia's 2004 Cabernet Sauvignon with our meal and it was a lovely match.

RoF is very stuffed and happy...

Classic Games (Games)

Journal Journal: field to feast 1

I love this blog. It's very interesting and RoF-friendly...

Tonight's dinner came from this blog - the spaghetti with beetroot pesto. With a side salad. (I was in the mood for something vegetarian.)

Well, I had too many beets in it (or too little of the other ingredients) but it was still quite good. I will definitely make it again...


Journal Journal: you can't end the year without wishing someone dead... 3

To the bastard(s) who did this:

I hope you die a slow and painful death. Because you most certainly are not worthy of living. I'll save the lives of malaria- and sleeping sickness-infected insects before I even consider saving yours. Which I would never do. In fact, I hope that it's my and only my blood or bone marrow or whatthefuckever that can save your life, but I refuse to donate any of it, never ever to a penguin murderer, and instead, whisper into your ear, "karma is a penguin!"

Christmas Cheer

Journal Journal: so far so good... 4

God jul from the penguinette in Oslo!

First things first... my stash (picture here :-) We opened presents yesterday, according to Norwegian tradition, though a bit earlier than what is traditional as we had to get to our shift at Alternativ Jul. Anyway, I got the following:

  • from boyfriend of tuxette's mother: a necklace (black band) with a purple heart-shaped pendant (will try to show a pic of it some day, as I really don't know how to describe it better
  • from my parents: money (for travel... uh, saving for a bigger shoebox :)
  • from boyfriend of tuxette: a Polar F4 Fitness Heart Rate Monitor and a Nikon Sportstar 10X25 DCF (binoculars)

The binoculars are something that I really wish I had when we were in South Africa, to look at the birdies. I'm glad I have them now though. They're nice and compact; perfect for travel. The heart rate monitor will also be nice for doing more effective training... I'll probably test it out within the next week (before all the New Yesr's resolutioners infiltrate the gym)...

boyfriend of tuxette got from me:

  • Twins leather shin guards (SGL-3)
  • Essence of a Land. When we were in Stellenbosch, we learned about this book while listening to the news. We wanted to get it while we were over there, but at that time the book had just come out and not all the bookstores had it. Most of the bookstore staff we asked hadn't even heard of it. It was eventually "forgotten", until I peeked through my written travel notes again. And then I thought "Aha! I know how to really surprise him!" My biggest fear was that boyfriend of tuxette would suddenly remember the book hehe...

He also got some cool cufflinks from his mom. And we both got a hand-made glass penguin from some friends of ours...

As for Alternativ Jul... I was doing cleanup/dishes stuff, taking dirty dishes, cups, and cutlery from the dining area to the kitchen this time around; I had done kitchen duty for the past 2 years (at least) and it was time for something new...

I don't mind doing the physical work; it's actually quite "nice" to do when you have a sit-on-your-fat-ass IT job otherwise. I'm in shape for it because of all the exercise I do, and it's not a problem for me. However, some of the male volunteers (and even one woman) seemed to think that the crate-like thing (not sure what they're called) with dirty dishes was too heavy for me to carry. I found that extremely offensive, and it left me annoyed for a good part of the evening. There were a few other girls doing the dishes run, and they weren't having any problems either, so I don't know where these twats got this idea that we can't lift things... but whatever...

The only real disaster on our watch was one of the guests kicking over a bucket we used to empty the contents of glasses and coffee cups into (we had to do this before setting them up on the plastic whateveritscalled to take to the dishwasher). But we managed to get the mops quickly enough and things were OK in the end...

It was pretty calm and quiet this year. Perhaps it's because of the mild weather; the guests don't feel they need to stay indoors all the time. We also had more volunteers this year and perhaps it was easier to "keep control" because of that. I don't know. But tons of food was eaten and loads of gifts were given out, as usual, and there's a lot food and other stuff left...

We have another shift tomorrow. We'll see how that goes...

Christmas Cheer

Journal Journal: 'Twas the Night Before Christmas... (fill in the blanks) 2

(for celebrants and non-Christmas celebrants alike. Be creative!)

1) A huge box arrives on your doorstep with lots of stickers that say Live Transport all over it. It's big enough to have a person in there! You open it right away to find ________.

2) It's Christmas Eve. You and your special person are cuddled up together to watch _______ on the TV. You're both feeling a little tipsy. Your partner leans over and whispers "You are so hot," to you, but in your drunken state, you think you've heard "________."

3) It's Christmas morning. You wake up and slip on a pair of ________s. Your surprise-package partner has fixed _______ for Christmas breakfast. Overjoyed, but dreadfully hung-over, you immediately ________.

4) You've planned a huge Christmas gathering for Christmas night. On your guest list, you've invited _____, ___, ____ (etc.) but, it's just your luck, _______ shows up instead.

5) The day after Christmas, you find _______ has passed out in the eggnog and _____ is alseep under the tree with a couple of Santa's little helpers.

Christmas Cheer

Journal Journal: On the first day of Christmas... 1 true love gave to me
A penguin in a baobab tree...

On the second day of Christmas
My true love gave to me
Two Cape turtle doves
And a penguin in a baobab tree...

On the third day of Christmas
My true love gave to me
Three Guinea fowl
Two Cape turtle doves
And a penguin in a baobab tree...

Uh... OK, I'll stop now...

(Who, me? Still obsessed? ;)

Christmas Cheer

Journal Journal: freaky turkey poetry 2

Ode to a freaky turkey...

Be nice to yu turkeys dis christmas
Cos turkeys jus wanna hav fun
Turkeys are cool, an turkeys are wicked
An every turkey has a Mum.
Be nice to yu turkeys dis christmas,
Don't eat it, keep it alive,
It could be yu mate an not on yu plate
Say, Yo! Turkey I'm on your side.

I got lots of friends who are turkeys
An all of dem fear christmas time,
Dey say 'Benj man, eh, I wanna enjoy it,
But dose humans destroyed it
An humans are out of dere mind,
Yeah, I got lots of friends who are turkeys
Dey all hav a right to a life,
Not to be caged up an genetically made up
By any farmer an his wife.

Turkeys jus wanna play reggae
Turkeys jus wanna hip-hop
Havey you ever seen a nice young turkey saying,
'I cannot wait for de chop'?
Turkeys like getting presents, dey wanna watch christmas TV,
Turkeys hav brains an turkeys feel pain
In many ways like yu an me.

I once knew a turkey His name was Turkey
He said 'Benji explain to me please,
Who put de turkey in christmas
An what happens to christmas trees?'
I said, 'I am not too sure Turkey
But it's nothing to do wid Christ Mass
Humans get greedy and waste more dan need be
An business men mek loadsa cash.'

So, be nice to yu turkey dis christmas
Invite dem indoors fe sum greens
Let dem eat cake an let dem partake
In a plate of organic grown beans,
Be nice to yu turkey dis christmas
An spare dem de cut of de knife,
Join Turkeys United an dey'll be delighted
An yu will mek new friends 'FOR LIFE'.


gobble gobble gobble!

User Journal

Journal Journal: yet another meme... 6

1. If you had to live in a different state than the one you live in what would it be?
Considering I don't live in a US state, this would have to be country. Since I'm so in love with South Africa for the time being, I would like to try living there, despite all its problems. Otherwise, Finland (!!!)

2. If you were on a plane that crashed, would you rather be stranded on an island or a desert?
Island. Deserts scare me...

3. What "catches your eye" first in the opposite sex?
eyes...where I find any sign of intelligence...

4. How much do you think a guy should spend on an engagement ring?
I don't care for rings... and I absolutely positively do not want diamonds that have been obtained by child slave labor, in case anyone is interested...

5. How old do you want to be when you retire?
I don't think I could ever "retire" per se... I would just be doing different things...

7. Would you rather be the smartest person in the world or the most attractive person in the world?
Smartest. Combine that with evil... ;-)

8. Do you think tattoos are hot?
Not after I saw that freak at that Engen station in Hout Bay...

9. What was your first pet?
A blue budgie...

10. Where did you go on your first Spring Break?
Hmmm...don't remember...

11. Are you scared of spiders or snakes?
No... they're scared of me because I'm like "ga ga gooooooo" when I encounter them...

12. What was your first job?

13. What is in your front, right pocket?
I don't have a front, right pocket...

14. Do you put up a real Christmas tree each year?
They don't fit in shoeboxes :-(

15. How many blankets are on your bed?
now it's just my duck down winter comforter which is too warm (even with the windows open) with the abnormally hot "winter" we've had in Oslo...

16. Do you have a TV in your bedroom?
fuck no...

17. When was the last time you received a card in the mail?
my last birthday...

19. Who was the last person that text-messaged you?
boyfriend of tuxette

20. Who was the first person you saw today?
boyfriend of tuxette

21. Do you have any awards hanging on your wall?

22. Do you own glasses?
just sunglasses for the time being...

23. When is the last time you shaved something on your body?
I shaved my pits yesterday... did you really want to know that?

25. What was your first vehicle?
a VW Golf...

26. Do you miss high school?
hell no...

27. Are you more of a neat or messy person?

28. Do you think that everyone should have a cell phone?

29. Do you remember your first family vacation?
the first family trip I remember was a camping trip where chipmunks were crawling up my legs to get to the peanuts I was feeding them...

30. Ever been in a fight with a best friend?

31. Ever puked in public?
oh yeah...

32. Would you prefer dinner and a movie or bowling and ice cream?
both ;-)

33. Do you sleep with your door open or closed at night?

34. How far do you live from work?
15-20 minutes walking...

35. Do you believe in afterlife?
does reincarntion count?

36. How many credit cards do you own?
only one...

37. Would you move to another country tomorrow, if you were offered a $100,000 job?
which country? USD $100000 doesn't go far in some countries and very far in others...

38. How many kids do you see yourself having?
probably zero

39. Were you a trouble child?
yes and no... I knew very well how to get away with things and lay the blame on others...

40. Do you like butterflies?
I like most beautiful creatures...

41. Can you shake your booty?
I move, it shakes...

42. Do you shower at night or in the morning?
mornings plus after evening krav maga training sessions...

43. Where is your favorite place to eat?
Hmm... lots of places... it depends on what I'm in the mood for...

44. What did you wear to bed last night?

45. Do you have to sleep with something "ON" every night in order to sleep?
I need silence and darkness in order to sleep...

46. On average, how much TV do you watch a day?
too much...

47. Do you have any piercings?
ears, navel...

48. Would you rather go snorkeling in the Caribbean or hiking on the Appalachian Trail?
hiking... I'd rather dive than snorkel...

49. Have you ever taken karate lessons?
the closest is Tae Kwon Do, as a teenager...

50. Do you think if you got married, you would ever get a divorce?
hope not...

It's funny.  Laugh.

Journal Journal: three times the harm 2

boyfriend of tuxette and I graded to practitioner 3 in Krav Maga tonight...

I have a nice little lump on my cheekbone from where an elbow hit the frame of my sports goggles, bruised up shins and at least one huge bump that will be noticable when wearing nylons, a nasty cut on my thumb, bashed-up forearms... I can't wait to go to work tomorrow and show everything off... :-/

btw - how many lives do penguinettes have anyway?

Classic Games (Games)

Journal Journal: more RoF porn

my latest entry

I've got one more entry to go and then the Western Cape/South Africa trip report will be complete... *whew*

User Journal

Journal Journal: joining the meme of the month club...

1. What is your occupation? Corporate Whore

2. What color are your socks right now? red

3. What are you listening to right now? the beautiful sound of silence... no wait. The clickety-click of my keyboard...

4. What was the last thing that you ate? spinach, 1/2 red pepper, and a chicken breast

5. Can you drive a stick shift? yes

6. If you were a crayon, what color would you be? bruise-purple

7. Last person you spoke to on the phone? a colleague

8. Do you like the person who sent this to you? do I have to answer this question?

9. How old are you today? 35

10. Favorite drinks? water, good red wine

11. What is your favorite sport to watch? rugby

12. Have you ever dyed your hair? yes

13. Pets? no

14. Favorite food? roast duck breast mmmm...

15. What was the last movie you watched? Happy Feet

16. Favorite holiday? those obscure religious holidays in the spring that are nothing more than an excuse to have a day off and drink

17. What do you do to vent anger? punch and kick ;-)

18. What were your favorite toys as a kid? don't remember

19. What is your favorite: fall or spring? fall

20. Hugs or kisses? both

21. Cherry or blueberry? mmm...Norwegian blueberries...

22. Do you want your friends to send this back? huh?

23. Who is the most likely to respond? don't know don't care

24. Who is least likely to respond? don't know don't care

25. Living arrangements? shoebox in the middle of Oslo

26. When was the last time you cried? like really cried? Don't remember...

27. What is on the floor of your closet? lots of crap

28. Who is the friend you have had the longest that you're sending this to? huh?

29. What did you do last night? went to the movies, came home, went to bed...

It's funny.  Laugh.

Journal Journal: knife fighting... 7

On knife fights, from one of my favorite self-defense information sites:

Not to put too fine of a point on it, but fighting is stupid. And the very idea of "knife fighting" goes beyond stupid and lands in macho, moronic fantasy. And don't even get me started on what I think about successfully "fighting" empty handed against a knifer. It is simple common sense that a knife is dangerous. Yet, every year thousands upon thousand of people go to seminars and schools and are taught both knife "fighting" and how to fight barehanded against a knife! And they *believe* this BS!

During the last part of Krav Maga training last night, we all paired up and did some knife fighting. No fancy techniques (or techniques at all), no flashy moves (unless we were lucky enough to get them in) - just good old fashioned, down and dirty "just go after your opponent and get her/him" attack-mode fighting. First knife vs. knife, and then knife vs. empty handed. We were instructed to "maneuver to cut" every time we touched our opponent with the knife. During the knife vs. knife fighting, we were also instructed at one point to use our other hand to hold our neck area, as if we had been struck with the knife and bleeding, as well as using our other hand to hold the thigh area to hinder severe bleeding. It's amazing how something like that can limit your ability to move and maneuver. Imagine how it would be like if you were in pain and blood was gushing out...

Let's just say there's a lot of merit in the above quote and what is stated in the rest of what Marc MacYoung writes about knife fighting. My partner was another woman, slightly bigger than me but not that much bigger, so it's fair to say we were evenly matched. I managed to get a lot of "hits" on her, she managed to get a lot of "hits" on me. Sure, we can giggle and say "dammit, you got me" and "if this were for real I'd be dead" and stuff in class. Which is kind of the point I guess. It's so much "easier" when you're using training knives instead of real knives that can actually cut you, and even with the training knives it's not all that easy... How far would any of us gone had this been a real knife fight and we had gotten slashed for real? (Or worse yet, if the fight was with someone bigger and stronger than us?) The right slash in the right place with the right amount of force and...

Fortunately, I'm not the kind of penguinette that has this overly macho need to go around picking fights, with knives or otherwise. I can defend myself against knife attacks to a certain degree, with blocks and counter-attacks and distancing myself and the such, but if ever confronted I'll gladly take MacYoung's first recommendation... RUN LIKE HELL...

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