No not that kind.  Although arguably consuming copious quantities of cured meat products is just as bad for your long-term health.  But my death will likely be from cancer, stroke, or cardiac arrest anyway; and I’d prefer the last option.  So really, I’m just ensuring my selection bears out, even if I have to accept the inevitable sooner than I’d prefer.

Or I might accidentally drop my shotgun.  Who knows?  Life is my oyster (which is a meat I can’t eat, sadly).

Anyways–meat that I can eat!

Background: of all the ways I can cook meat, I lacked a reliable way to smoke it.  And while Alton Brown’s various cardboard concoctions appear effective on TV, I prefer something a little more permanent.  And less flammable.

Enter my bday present!

It’s electric!

After all, smoking is done at low temperatures, so I see little value in charcoal or propane, aside from mad pitmaster bragging points of course.  Nay, I’d rather let a thermostat do the work for me while I attend to other tasks.

And so far, it’s worked really well.  It might not be authentic, but no one’s yet argued the point while stuffing their faces with delicious smoked delicacies. such as salmon!  Chicken!  Ribs!  And…



Definitely better this way.  Smokier.  More nitrates, too!  Heart attack coming first!

Need to try leg of lamb, pork butt, and beef brisket next.  Take a deep breath.  It’ll be hard to move here soon.


Cottage Fish

It’s been a while since I visited the Wisconsin cottage, owing mainly to petty family on the in-laws side and arguments over continued ownership.  I don’t much care myself, but it’s important to Liz, and we were invited up by some of the more amicable ones.  And the kid likes swimming.

And I like fishing.

The biggest bluegill of the trip, and my first catch.
Yes, more bluegills.
And another.
Liz wanted a perch and I caught one. It then escaped the basket.
Liz caught a black crappie.
And her big bluegill.
I got one too!
Sunfish!  Pumpkinseed I believe.

And the kid got an ear infection.  It was a busy week.


Legislation and Compromise

It’s no surprise that here in America, land of the two party political system, much of our legislation is based on simplified dichotomy.  The “us or them” mentality makes identifying threats easier, as we don’t have to waste our precious brain power on trivialities such as long-term consequences; be it financial (Social Security) or environmental (climate change); letting us preserve it instead for more important matters like my fantasy football picks.

There are of course some who over-analyze issues, but you don’t hear much from them because instead of shouting over presumed injustices on the internet, they’re instead locked into quiet introspection.  They might join the online community occasionally, but as their input is based in logic rather than emotion, it’s uninteresting to read.

So defines Premise 1: the loudest people, whether digitally or corporeally, represent those of the most extreme opinions.

However, in order for a technologically-modern large society to exist, the laws of such a society must still seek a general compromise, else all will devolve to total collapse or dystopia (which always leads to a later collapse once the orgies and drugs run out).

Ergo Premise 2: the correct form of legislation is that which lies between the extremes, if the goal is societal preservation.

And here are two recent policy events to drive the point:

  1. Permitless concealed carry of firearms in Ohio.
  2. Rowe v. Wade.

Everyone legally allowed to possess a firearm in Ohio can now carry that firearm concealed without needing to first acquire a permit.  Constitutional open carry is of course already allowed, so this will remove ambiguity when interacting with law enforcement, eliminating a potential felony charge fabricated by our not-so-popular police force, and removing the individual interpretation over personal rights.  Win for the Left, right?

Well no, because it reduced restrictions on guns and any such loosening of gun restrictions is bad.

Okay, well what about the Right then?  Any restrictions on guns is encroaching on constitutional rights–don’t tread on me and such–, so this is good, right?

Nope.  The Right’s mad because it let more people into their club without having to pay.

Conclusion: no one’s happy.

Rowe v. Wade established abortion limitations and guarantees, preventing local legislation from banning it outright, but also restricting allowable timeframes and conditions.  So a state couldn’t prevent an abortion in the early stages, but they could limit later stage abortions to consider the mother’s health, and late stage abortions were more or less prohibited as at this point there was an ethical obligation to carry the child to term.  The Left was happy, since abortion access was now guaranteed.

No, they weren’t.  These were still laws on a woman’s body, and any such laws are a violation of an individual’s autonomy.

And of course the Right wasn’t happy, because any abortion is murder and therefore wrong.

Conclusion: no one’s happy.

In these two examples, no one’s happy.  But since “no one” represents only the extremists (Premise 1), then what they are are truly moderate policies.  And moderate policies, being compromises, are requirements for societal health and longevity–preservation (Premise 2).

Therefore, these two policies, one accused of Right-wing agenda and the other Left, are in fact neither, and good policy decisions.

(The repeal of Rowe v. Wade was neither moderate nor of benefit to society, as it violates this principle.)

And there you have it: my commentary on contemporary political issues, which includes my thoughts on the policies, without actually including my personal beliefs.  Do I feel either of these is wrong?  I’ll never tell, and you shouldn’t know, because that’s the wrong way to govern large populations.


It’ll Cost a Bundle

2 years prior, Liz planted garlic.  We then harvested that garlic the following summer.

Peasant Food

This year, that same garlic patch sprouted again.  Apparently, not all of the seed garlic had been harvested.  I’m new to garlic growing, so I’m uncertain if this is expected growing behavior or not.  Regardless, we sure did get a nice bundle, however unexpected:

Maybe the trick is to grow in patches and harvest every 2 years.  Or maybe it’ll come up again on its own.  Dunno.  Plenty of cooking to do in the meantime!