Po’Daddy Rice Cooker Mac and Cheese

In a rice cooker put:

  1. 1 cup dry pasta (elbows are usually cheapest, but shells or ziti or whatever is fine)
  2. 2 cups water
  3. 1 or 2 slices of american cheese. (I’m not a big fan of american cheese,but it melts better than any other kind and if you look at the ingredients, you’ll see that they’re not all garbage. The good kind is just melted colby cheese mixed with milk and then refrigerated. The bad kind has “corn solids”¬†and oils and floor sweepings added.)

Turn it on. The pasta cooks in the water and the water boils away until there is so little left that the pot gets above 212°F (100°C), which signals the cooker to turn off. By then, the cheese is all … Read the rest

Events Calendars for Kennett Square and the Brandywine River Valley

Kennett Square area
The Land Conservancy for Southern Chester County
Brandywine Valley YMCA
Bayard Taylor Library
Anson B. Nixon Park
Historic Kennett Square
Longwood Gardens

Northern Delaware
Delaware Museum of Natural History
Brandywine River Valley
Wintherthur
Mt. Cuba
Hagley MuseumRead the rest

The Post Office: The most secure communications network in America.

We’re familiar with the concept of ‘security through obscurity’, meaning if you make something difficult to find it becomes less likely to ever be seen (like a needle in a haystack).

But there are additional forms of security that paper mail offers over telephone and email (and all other digital forms).

These include, ‘security through inconvenience’ and ‘security through bureaucracy’.

The first is achieved by making the content as cumbersome as possible to discover. Think of a spook whose job it is to sift through all of your email messages, suddenly presented with a stack of paper correspondance. Even if the paper mail is written on postcards – open to the world to see – the mail could take an afternoon to sort through, while a … Read the rest

A Silver Bullet

I returned the following morning. I always do, or try to, after a night like last night. Sometimes I leave something behind.

Once I found my shirt hanging from a tree. I asked some local boys to throw rocks at it to knock it loose. They happily obliged.

Another time I left behind the smashed window in the door of a butcher’s shop. The next morning, the owner was taking inventory and I offered to help sweep up. He shrugged and turned away. I whispered an apology and then bought the last fresh ham from his wife. I had a bit of a stomachache, but knew I would eat it later.

But this morning at the gas station, I couldn’t find any evidence of misbehavior. In … Read the rest

Aloha Dispatch Month 5

Prince Kuhio Day:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prince_K%C5%ABhi%C5%8D_Day
It is one of only two holidays in the United States dedicated to royalty, the other being Hawai’i’s King Kamehameha Day June 11.

It’s a big deal too. It’s a day off regardless of the day of the week. Most holidays get shifted to the nearest Monday or Friday in order to be more convenient for businesses. But people are out for PKD no matter when it falls.

Only three states existed as independent republics prior to joining the U.S.: Vermont, Texas, and Hawaii.

Unrelated to Hawaii, a unique work-related experience happened to me. I had to move 107 records from an Excel file into a database. It took a lot of massaging of the data to match the structure … Read the rest

Russian Unicorn

I don’t remember a spoof ever being so much better than the original (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1AJmKkU5POA) and unline Weird Al’s parodies, the music in this isn’t at all related to the original.

Some of the “BLR”s are the funniest stuff on YouTube (Like their Spiderman one: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D7jtpy0lfBU)… Read the rest

Hilo Bay Cafe

The best meal we’ve had in Hilo, possibly the best we’ve had on the island. It’s a shame we didn’t discover it much sooner. It’s just slightly too far to walk, so we wouldn’t have gone much anyway, but we would have taken guests there.

It’s not cheap. Dinners for the three of us are consistently in one of three levels: around $20-$25 for all of us, around $50, or around $70-$80. This meal (with drinks and appetizers but no dessert) was about $90.

But the quality of the food was at a level I would expect in NYC or other cosmopolitan area. The dishes were all varied from each other, full of flavor, and each plate had a range of flavors and textures. The interior … Read the rest

Big Island Candies

Big Island Candies makes and sells high-quality chocolate.

It’s located just off of Kekuanaoa st, which takes you from the airport onto Kilauea ave. I’ve passed it many times without realizing it was there. It’s a large facility and they make the chocolates right there so you can watch the candies being made. The image of several white-coated workers dipping cookies into enrobing chocolate is not quite as exciting as the Willy Wonka movie would suggest, but it’s still fun.

A lady by the door hands out samples before people are even completely inside and that sense of sharing and generosity is nice. There are lots of high-quality chocolates and some novelties such as chocolate-covered fortune cookies and even chocolate-covered squid.

The downside when I was … Read the rest

Aloha Dispatch Month 4

Driving a white minivan: boo!
Driving a white minivan to a volcano: yay!

I learned a fact about tsunamis. They stink horribly.

The water that goes into a wave comes primarily from the part of ocean just ahead of the crest; a trough appears because there is a wave behind it.
So a very large wave, such as a tsunami, takes an enormous amount of water just ahead of the crest.
People who have experienced tsunamis say they know when one is imminent because the water level at the shore starts droppping quickly, like a sped-up ebb tide.
A tsunami that is large enoughtakes so much water ahead of itself that the ocean floor is sometimes exposed – all the muck that has sat at … Read the rest