Sunday, January 24, 2010


Skiing is fantastic. It's like flying that is leg-controlled, favoring my bipedal body. It's amazing, so fast and powerful and thrillingly cold.


This post's theme word: inselberg (or monadnock in the US), "an isolated mountain or hill rising abruptly from its surrounding."

Thursday, January 7, 2010


I got some Yaktrax for Christmas. They're like snow tires or chains for footwear.
Awesome. Very good for climbing up packed, ice-slick sledding hill.

This post's theme word: swarf, "metal filings."

[Update, February 26: I lost one of my Yaktrax on campus this morning, the very first time it was snowy enough in Toronto to wear them. It just popped off my shoe, and I didn't notice until I walked onto a cleared street and felt only one foot clicking on the pavement. I retraced my steps and couldn't find it. This is sad. Next time I'll fashion a strap that goes over the top of the shoelaces and prevents this unfortunate occurrence.]

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

iTunes bonus song?

I just got an email from iTunes informing me that, because I had purchased an album online, I was eligible for an extra song, for free! I hadn't heard of this song (apparently it's a new single released after the album), but it's by the same artists and I like it.

Why didn't I see this advertised anywhere? It seems like it would be a good incentive to buy albums online, and there's no profit in keeping it secret. Although I guess this method did get me to blog about it, and blogs are the new social-media-netlinked-viral-buzzword-buzzword-buzzword advertisements.

This post's theme word: Pickwickian, "marked by generosity, naivete, or innocence," or "not intended to be taken in a literal sense."

Mead: honey, yum

R. and I sampled some "Ragnar's dry mead" tonight. It was good. It smells and tastes and looks like honey, but it's less viscous: it pours like wine. I liked it.

This post's theme word: xanthodontous, "having yellow teeth." Like the Vikings, probably.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Wintry driving

I drove to Toronto today through heavy snowfall and mostly uncleared roads (except for some parts of major highways). It took about 9 hours, which makes it the second-longest this trip has taken me. It was stressful and unpleasant. My iPod ran out of batteries and I had to listen to insipid radio.

This is what I could see after sunset (photo from the border-crossing waiting line):I made it fine, and probably earned a bunch of experience points.

This post's theme word: brindled, "streaked." My windshield was brindled by snow kicked up by the SUVs crazily overtaking my car.


I returned to school, to find that I lost 5 pounds, probably of muscle. From the two weeks of lounging about and not exercising. Weirdly counterintuitive, since I adhered to the family diet of cookies, pie, and curry for the entire vacation.

Now, watch as I get that back! Grrrrraaaaaah!

This post's theme word: pugilism, "boxing" (the sport).

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Mango tart

I made this mango tart, using this recipe as a guideline. It was a Christmas present for A.

This post's theme word: diastrophism, "The process of deformation of the earth's crust that produces continents, mountains, ocean basins, etc." I witnessed some local diastrophism while baking the tart crust.