I keep thinking that we're still in recession only because I know the government has been gaming the GDP figures for years and the definition of GDP is itself constructed to make our economic situation look better than it actually is.
* * *
I figured out what's wrong with the bratwurst I made the other night: grease.
See, when I grill them, the grease comes out and drips onto the coals, catching fire. It leaves the skin with crispy char marks. (Carcinogenic? Yep. But my ancestors survived by searing meat with fire, so I love the flavor. In all probability I am not significantly hastening my demise, either, so F it.)
But in a casserole, embedded in kraut, whatever grease that escapes the sausage just collects in the bottom of the pan; and most of it doesn't run out at all since the sausages are cooked relatively slowly. I mean, it takes me 15 minutes tops to grill them; it took 70 to get them baked through.
I'm used to the bratwurst being relatively dry; a lot less grease is left behind in the sausage when I grill them. That's why they taste wrong.
...still not going to cook them that way again.
* * *
A late winter snow shower deposited about three inches of global warming. I didn't even use the snowblower; I just grabbed the shovel and pushed it off the driveway. It took me perhaps twice as long as it would have with the snowblower, but I need the exercise anyway and I didn't want to bother with that loud-ass stinkpot for three lousy inches of snow. (I love the thing, don't get me wrong, but it's noisy and smelly.)
It's melting on its own, but I didn't want it to melt halfway and freeze into a sheet of ice. As I shoveled, I noticed it was leaving a thin layer of very slippery slush behind, and I worried that I'd have to salt--but by the time I was finished, that thin layer had melted. Score one for me.
* * *
So I'm laying in bed, trying to sleep, when a thought jolted me awake.
WTF ever happened to my RCA DVD player?
In 1999, I traded a bunch of computer work and some money for a nearly-new RCA DVD player. A friend's wife needed an upgrade and a bunch of other stuff done, and they didn't have the wherewithal to get a new computer or to take it to someone. They were preparing for him to be deployed to Germany (he's in tanks, or was the last time I talked to them) and I figured the DVD player probably wouldn't do them any good there, anyway.
Sometime later (2000, I think) I bought an Apex DVD player. I'd found a site where I could buy an EPROM which disabled the region coding and MacroVision, so I could watch movies without having to reconfigure my AV system when I wanted to watch a DVD; and the RCA fell out of use. Besides, the Apex could play VCDs and CD-Rs; the RCA couldn't. (In fact, if you put a CD-R into the RCA, you ran the risk of erasing it.)
But I cannot remember WTF I did with it.
It's probable that I gave it to someone; but it's equally probable that it got stuck in the coat closet in the living room and was left behind when I moved out. I just can't remember.
It's not that I particularly need the thing; I have like four DVD players immediately to hand and can lay my hands on at least one more without having to search. I'm just bothered by the fact that I don't remember what I did with it.
Fine time to remember: more than seven years after I moved back to Illinois. Oh well.