Archive for March, 2010

Off the Grid

Posted in general weirdness, holy crap on March 30, 2010 by Nada

I spend a lot of my free time researching how to get off the grid, and when my friends find out I’m wasting hours on the internet, looking up Quonset huts and wind turbines, they ask, “Why? Why are you throwing time away staring at pictures of underground housing and solar panels?”

I usually bark, “2012. End of the Mayan calendar. Ever hear of that?” If I’m on the phone, there’s usually a long pause, and if I’m yelling at the person, they look at me like I’m a nut. To be honest, that’s not the real reason I want to get off the grid, but it’s one most people have heard of and can comprehend in some fashion. The real reason I want to get off the grid is not because I want to go green, or parts of the earth and its community services are coming to a close. The real reason is I’m cheap. Cheap. Cheap. Cheap. I fantasize not paying the mortgage, the electric bill, the water bill and the garbage pick up. I think about putting that money in my own tiny pocket. Call it greed, instead of green.

And I think it might be hard to go greed, I mean green, in the middle of Oakland, getting off the grid, camping in the middle of town in a house that looks like every other house but doesn’t need an electrical line or sewer connections.

I approached the Big Guy recently about taking the first step. “I think we need a composting toilet,” I said.

“Are you out of your mind?” he asked. “Can you imagine the stench?”

“No, not really,” I responded.

“Go outside, into the garden. Open the compost bin. Take a big whiff. That’s just dirt and grass clippings in there now. Imagine a load of poo,” he said.

Hmmm, I could see his point. Late last night in my ever vigilant search for grid greed, I ran across the incinerator toilet. It heats up to 1,200 degrees Fahrenheit. I was quite taken with the idea in the middle of the night, this morning, not so much. I kept envisioning these words coming out of my mouth, “Sorry Hon, I flushed the toilet and burned the house down.”

Best Steak Rub

Posted in food on March 28, 2010 by Nada

The Big Guy is a big carnivore, and also a pretty good cook. He’s declaring Adam’s Steak Rub as the best steak rub – in the world. Me? I have to agree with him on this, Delish! This is dinner tonight – flank steak from Farmer Joe’s (on sale, I might add) rubbed down Adam’s Steak Rub, grilled organic asparagus, and some big brown mushrooms. And for desert? Fresh baked apple pie. I’d call that a dang near perfect dinner.

Mr. Sincerity

Posted in animal on March 27, 2010 by Nada

That Durn Cat

Posted in animal, YouTube on March 26, 2010 by Nada

Cotton Candy?

Posted in BART, food on March 24, 2010 by Nada

The street vendor was sitting on the BART with his pole full of cotton candy. I tried to take a picture with my phone and got a blurry mess, but then I decided it was kind of unintentionally cool.

IPK and the Fixed Hoof

Posted in health on March 23, 2010 by Nada

I saw the podiatrist yesterday. Nice lady and funny too. She had broken her finger playing basketball so we compared war stories on breaking fingers and setting them ourselves.

I’d never been to a podiatrist office, and honestly, it’s kind of like going to the neurologist’s office. You don’t want to see most of the sad cases in those waiting rooms. They’re in bad shape, and in the podiatrist’s waiting room, they’re either in casts, dragging walkers, or limping.

Turns out, I have something called an IPK callus. My podiatrist had to pare it down with a scalpel, and then, cut out its core. Sounds gruesome, but the procedure didn’t hurt a bit. My foot is apparently a lot tougher than my skull. She said it was going to grow back eventually, and I could come back and see her when it did or I could walk across the street and buy something called a Ped Egg from Walgreens and pare away on the calluses on my feet myself.

I thanked her, paid her, and then wandered to Walgreens and bought the Ped Egg for $12.99. On the box it says, “As Seen on TV,” but I’ve never seen that crazy thing on T.V., and I have to admit my calluses are a point of pride for me, leftover from going barefoot on the farm. If there’s ever going to be an apocalypse, and shoes are in short supply I wouldn’t really need them. I have calluses as thick as any sole on a Payless shoe. I guess I should use the past tense here as in I “had” calluses. That Ped Egg got rid of ‘em. I hated to do it, but I didn’t want any more random visits to the Land of Gimp.

Ode to Bondo

Posted in cars on March 16, 2010 by Nada