Week 44 – Cubs Win

#304 The Pint Pot

30 October 2016 // Eugene, Oregon

Gray mornings call for a classic Irish Pub. Thank goodness for The Pint Pot. An Irish coffee and a full Irish breakfast are exactly in order.

Here are a couple other things making me pretty happy this week.

I discovered that Terrence Malick’s film To The Wonder was streaming for free on Prime, and I loved it even though it wasn’t the most accessible of movies. In typical Malick fashion, it was full of amazing visuals, cryptic layers of meaning hiding beneath simple-but-poetic dialogue, and Javier Bardem being a priest. The film itself was so beautifully shot, despite being set in mostly sterile, suburban environments… but I kinda think that was supposed to be the point.

And on the other end of the spectrum, there’s that YouTube video of a dog’s favorite Gumby chew toy being brought to life by it’s owner in a Gumby costume. I’ve lost track of the amount of times I’ve watched it, I love it so.

And then there’s freaking baseball. What a game.

#305 Chill Halloween

31 October 2016 // Eugene, Oregon

Happy Halloween my friends. We had a laid back dinner with friends kinda night, but I had some good reads to help me keep the day all spooky and such.

Also, we had zero trick or treaters! What’s going on, modern day children? I even heard some kids trick or treat at the door right across from us, never to come by.

Now I’m stuck with the dangerous prospect of endless fun size candies around the house.

#306 Grad School: Five Weeks

01 November 2016 // Eugene, Oregon

During my undergraduate college days, I signed up for the most eccentric classes I could. Middle Eastern Cooking. Japanese Horror Movies. Leadership and Team Building. Thanks to that I got a bunch of pretty neat experiences and learned some fun things.

Grad school makes it harder to go off the beaten path, but not impossible, and during my two years going for a Masters’ I’ve still wound up studying and gaining some knowledge in some things I never would’ve expected.

When I started, I was surprised to find I’d have to learn another language. I speak about five to some degree, but because I haven’t learned many of them in a classroom setting, I don’t have them on my transcripts. So, on a whim, I signed up to learn Hindi/Urdu. I can’t say I speak very good Hindi, or much at all, but I learned a bit about how to read the script and can utter some really basic phrases.

I’ve also learned a ton about local governance, especially when it comes to public finance and budgets. That’s thanks to my nonprofit classes being taught closely alongside public management classes. If it sounds dry, it kind of is, but I actually feel like I understand local government and things like tax considerations way better. I can also empathize with different opinions way better, and that’s always a good thing.

Also, by teaching a course on Africa twice, I’ve gotten quite familiar with some of the topics we’ve covered. One of these includes life in Mali. As a country, it doesn’t get many visitors, and I don’t envision myself being able to make it there any time soon. Glad I could learn a little bit through the process of teaching.

#307 Cubs Win

02 November 2016 // Eugene, Oregon

So… that… just… happened. Not only did the Cubs break their 108 year old curse, but they also put on the most dramatic game I’ve seen. And I watch a lot of baseball.

I guess this means the apocalypse starts tomorrow, but that game was so much fun, it’ll have been worth it.

Deanna and I don’t have live TV so we went to go and watch at a nearby sports bar, and my what a great decision. I got to befriend several old-guy-pub-dwellers, one of whom called David Ross’ home run a second before it happened. (Not to be outdone, I called the camera panning to Bill Murray a second before that happened). The girls next to me had the best Jason Kipnis specific trash talk. And they’re right… he probably does smell like Axe body spray! We all came as strangers, and left as friends who all never got around to exchanging names.

The Phillies will always be my team, but like any good racism-hating, loveable-loser-lovin’ American, I wanted this year to be the Cubs’ year. (Especially since the Phils’ had a sliver of a percent chance of being any decent). Baseball will feel kinda weird without a mindblowingly win-deprived team, but I’m sure the Cubs fans don’t mind.

#308 Gorgonzola Ravioli

03 November 2016 // Eugene, Oregon

Never has developing a recipe given me as much of a difficult time as this ravioli. What you’re looking at is my third attempt.

This item of my cooking challenge was scheduled for last week when all the ravioli burst while boiling and I settled for frying up an odd mix of squash and cheese and noodles. Then earlier today, the filling soaked through the noodle sheets making them too sticky to shape.

I had to restart a third time and was pretty late to an afternoon class, but finally, I got something I could be pleased with. And Deanna was really pleased and said it was one of her favorites from this year’s challenge.

Sometimes I can get pretty stubborn about working on something until it comes out right. But I did learn a valuable lesson: use flour liberally.

#309 Oakshire

04 November 2016 // Eugene, Oregon

Let’s talk about something a little more pleasant for most people- beer!

I’m in a MBA class on startup planning (Random, I know. Long story.) Our project right now revolves around beer deliveries and we need to do a little market research.

I’m hoping to conduct some interviews so if you’re a beer consumer- I’d love to hit you up with a few questions! No need to be the biggest hop head, but if you are, great! Message or comment or something and I’ll get in touch.

Also, I’m pretty sure Oakshire is taking over as my favorite brewer in town. We’ve got a lot of good ones but their seasonal stuff gets so creative!

#310 McKenzie Beer Festival

05 November 2016 // Eugene, Oregon

I had a chance to go to the McKenzie Craft Beer and Cider Festival. If you saw my post about my startup project… market research! And that meant I got to do a lot of tasting.

After a pretty fun night, here were my favorite three beers/ciders.

Old Craig Ale by Ordnance Brewing   This beer definitely had an old vintage- tobacco-and-leather sort of quality, but in a good way! (I guess those typically don’t sound like good beverage flavors) Lots of spices and brown sugar left this tasting a lot like winter candy.

Nut Crusher Peanut Butter Porter by Wild Ride Brewing – If you like the taste of roast peanuts or peanut butter, this would be a great beer. They come on STRONG. But in a good way. And the brewery rep gave me a little garnish of a Reese’s cup to go with it.

Doc Fields Banana Mango Cider – I was suspicious over this this cider, I thought it might be a little too much like a fermented Jamba Juice. Turns out it was a pretty good cider and I’d love another taste.