All posts by Greg Bueno

Things I’ve bought after years of watching Good Eats

  • A digital thermometer
  • Tall plastic containers in which I can soak chicken pieces in buttermilk (for Southern Fried Chicken, which I have never been able to make very well.)
  • Large plastic containers in which to dredge chicken and pork in flour. Also for storage.
  • An iron skillet
  • A cooling rack
  • An aluminum cookie sheet because I shouldn’t use non-stick when broiling
  • Splatter guards
  • Silicon spatula
  • Pastry brush
  • Separate cutting boards for vegetables and meats
  • An oven thermometer
  • A fry thermometer

The only indication my cooking has improved is the fact I no longer get sick eating my own cooking.

The unopened DVD list

If I can get behind with my TiVo-watching, there’s little to say — if any at all — about my DVD viewing. I’m not the kind of person who just throws in a DVD on a weekend. I’m usually pre-occupied with some kind of work that ties me to the computer. As a result, I get more entertainment from my media player than I do from the DVD player.

That doesn’t stop me from buy the occasional DVD from time to time. It doesn’t mean I actually get to watch them.

So I figure I may as well make a list of DVDs I own but have yet to open. I’m including movies as well. At some point, perhaps I’ll crack them open and revisit what made me like that particular story in the first place.

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Between asphalt and waves, give me waves

I’m enough of an Alton Brown fan to catch his short-run series, Feasting on Asphalt, but I can’t say AB’s trips across the country and up the Mississippi River really engaged me all that much. But I’m absolutely digging the third incarnation of the series, Feasting on Waves.

With the other two series, you essentially had fat Americans frying shit to holy hell. It really got boring after a while. But Feasting on Waves actually features foods that are new and unknown — indigenous fruits, local cocktails, exotic locales and colorful people. (Or people of color, for that matter.)

I find that far more interesting. If anything, Feasting on Waves is much like Anthony Bourdain’s No Reservations, minus the hard-boiled tone, plus AB’s self-deprecating humor.

If AB never travels across the US for the next installment of this series, it will be too soon. (Although Feasting on Waves II ought to focus on Hawaiʻi.) I’m wondering, though, if a trip through Mexico or Canada is the next order of business.

Follow _S_A_R_A_H (i.e. the smart house from ‘Eureka’) on Twitter

My usual reflex when I get a new Twitter follower is to block anyone I don’t know personally who has a Twitter slut ratio of at least 2 to 1. The Twitter slut ratio is calculated by dividing the "following" number by the "followers" number. Most new Twitter followers these days are spammers or attention whores trying to sucker users with low internal bullshit detection meters into following them.

(I don’t believe it’s proper Twitter etiquette to follow anyone who follows you. I do believe it’s proper Twitter usage to follow people you genuinely want to follow.)

Today, I said I didn’t want to return the Season 2 DVD set of Eureka I bought impulsively last week. I need the cash though, and maybe when I’m a little more flush, I’ll reinvest.

Then a Twitter user named _S_A_R_A_H started following me. I was about ready to block _S_A_R_A_H when I noticed the Twitter slut ratio was roughly 1 to 1. Then I read _S_A_R_A_H’s "About Me" info and realized it’s the Self Actuated Residential Automated Habitat from Eureka. In other words, it’s Sheriff Carter’s house! _S_A_R_A_H is following me on Twitter!

OK, this kind of thing would be considered Pepsi Blue on Metafilter, but still — the folks who market Eureka are incredibly clever. For the first season, they spoofed infomercials with products designed in Eureka. Now, an intelligent house is using Twitter to keep in touch with viewers.

I already like the show, but this kind of fan outreach is just cool.

Of course, now I’d feel bad if I returned that Season 2 DVD set.

Viewing habits, or lack thereof

I’ve seen a lot of press in the news about the effects of the writer’s strike. The break in production resulted in a loss of viewership from which the networks have yet to recover. It’s tough to keep up with appointment viewing when the appointments have been canceled.

I have to say the break made me re-evaluate my viewing habits. With nothing to watch during the strike, it was easy for me to focus my attention on other endeavors. TiVo also has made it easier to wean myself from anything that isn’t absolutely essential, which these days means Battlestar Galactica.

I just spent today catching up on the last four episodes of Brothers & Sisters. The shows have been waiting on my TiVo for a good month now.

Being a TV whore was a lot easier when I didn’t have a TiVo to unshackle me from the futon, nor a lengthy hiatus that made me not miss anything at all.

The summer premieres of shows I like don’t happen till the middle of July, and I’m now caught up on the fall shows. So it’s a good time to review and preview in bullet points.

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Not much of a TV whore if I’m not really watching …

This site is really dead. I could give a whole bunch of reasons, but honestly, the 2007-2008 season has been rather boring. If anything, the writer’s strike was probably the only drama worth following this entire season. And TiVo makes it too easy to feed the apathy — why sit in front of the TV if I’m not in the mood to watch something in real time?

The only show to which I was truly addicted was Bleach, a Japanese anime shown on [adult swim], but it ran out of dubbed episodes many months back. I had to resort to finding fan subs from the Evil Sharing Networks to get my fix. (I finished the Soul Society Arc, but I figure I’ll wait to start a new storyline when [adult swim] catches up.)

So between a lackluster season and disruptive labor disputes, I’ve had no incentive to blog about TV. That’s not to say I’m shutting down this site. No, I think instead I’ll wait to see what happens next season. For now, I’m sitting the rest of this television cycle out.

What little I had to say about this season can be expressed in various bullet points.

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Knee-jerk reactions: 2007 fall season

I just wanted to jot some notes down. As if I have the luxury of time to write a real entry for this site:

  • Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Get rid of Adam Beach and bring back Mike Doyle, please.
  • Desperate Housewives Still can’t fucking stand Gaby and Susan. I kind of liked how they were softening Edie last season, but oh well — it was nice when it lasted. I think the Season Pass is going to get removed at some point.
  • Law & Order: Criminal Intent This show is still CSIzed, but at least it’s not as heavy-handed as last season.
  • Bleach Goddamn, I hate the Don Kanonji episodes.
  • Dirty Sexy Money I should care about a bunch of bored rich white people, why?
  • Pushing Daisies Could have sworn I programmed the pilot to be recorded.
  • Chuck So far my favorite new show, even if Matthew Bomer is shown only in passing.