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October 2010
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December 2010

6 posts from November 2010

It's in the photograph...

Kapgar Photo Scavenger Hunt - Holiday 2010 EditionGuess what, folks! It's time to jump off that couch, throw aside your TV tables (don't spill your drinks, though), grab your cameras, charge your batteries, and blank out those memory cards! The Kapgar Photo Scavenger Hunt is nigh!

Each week throughout December and into the first week of January, I will present three challenge song lyrics. Interpret the lyric however you want and take a picture of something that is representative of that interpretation. You can focus on the whole lyric or just a single element. Whatever works for you. There is no wrong answer at all. I'm just curious how you will interpret what I post here. Don't worry, I will try to make them a bit easier.

If you'd like to participate, please feel free to do so. There will be three challenges per week. If you want to do all three, go for it. If you can only do one or two, that's good too. And if there's a week in which you are too busy to participate, don't feel bad about it. Come back the next week.

When you've taken your photos, you can post them to your blog, Flickr account, or whatever online service you use to share your photos with the world. You don't even need to be a blogger. I only ask that you then post links to your photos in the comments of that week's challenge post. Easy enough?

And if you want some motivation, there will be prizes this time! Each time you participate by contributing a photo to the cause, you will be entered to win a weekly prize. This means you can be entered up to three times per week. The weekly prize will likely be a gift certificate to Amazon or iTunes.

When all is said and done, there will be a drawing with all your weekly contributions counted up to create a cumulative total number of entries. One winner will be chosen at random to receive this prize. This prize is being furnished by my friends at CSNstores.com -- a $75 gift certificate for you to use on whatever item or items you want that they sell in their online stores.

Interested yet?

If so, let me know by leaving a comment. If you're a Flickr user, join the group I created just for the event.

Oh, and if you don't want to take photos, I can always use help picking lyrics. If you're interested, leave a comment telling me you want to be a Lyric Master.

Here's the list of weeks this contest will be open:

Please note that I've deleted week five from the list. Cutting it a little shorter than originally planned.

Lookin' good to you all?


Not just anybody...

As many of you know, my Hotmail account was hacked and spam was sent out to everyone in my address book. Thankfully that account hadn't been used regularly in years so a vast majority of you never received the message.

However, my Gmail account was also compromised the same day. Nothing has happened using it, but, nearly a week has passed and I still can't access it.

What this means is that I still don't have access to my full e-mail address list or my old Google Reader subscription list.

This is where you come in. While it's fairly easy for me to rebuild my Google Reader list from my blogroll, it has been a while since I've updated it. And I have no e-mail addresses at all. Can you all help me by leaving a comment on this post? No, you don't have to put your e-mail or URL in the body of the comment. You can leave that all in the registration fields for the comment. Your e-mail will not display, but your URL will show up as the link on your name in the posted comment. Thanks!

Help me, Obi-Wan Kenobi. I need help.


Like a record, baby, right round round round...

For many years, Katie and I have been using a tiny little food processor for our kitchen chopping needs. It's a great food processor, don't get me wrong... just really small. If we were ever prepping a large amount of food, we'd need to use the thing in phases and that just got to be a pain in the butt because you'd rarely have consistency.

A couple weeks ago, we finally took the plunge and bought ourselves a much larger food processor in the form of the Cuisinart Pro Classic 7-Cup Food Processor (model DLC-10S).

Food Processor 14

Geez, these things are not cheap. But once you've taken the plunge, there's no going back.

We used it for the first time last week to make large batches of guacamole and salsa. We like to make a lot of each and have it around for a while and even share with some friends. So if the Cuisinart can withstand all the chopping that would be necessary for Kapgar-scale batches, its place in our kitchen would be cemented.

Here are some photos of the affair. Bear in mind that I forgot to photograph the guacamole and only have shots of the salsa...

Cuisinart 05
Starting with the onions.

Cuisinart 04
Next come the tomatoes. Note the nicely chopped onion bed below
and Katie's blurred hand on the right.

Cuisinart 01
A blur of red through the feed tube.

Cuisinart 03
Adding more tomatoes through the feed tube while the rest is still blending.

Cuisinart 02
After everything is done chopping and mixing.

Cuisinart 09
Good stuff and perfectly made (the way that we like it).

This thing worked wonders with our Tex-Mex night. How do you say "hallelujah" in Spanish?

Here are some photos of the Cuisinart and all the stuff that came with it.

Cuisinart 07   Cuisinart 08
The blade is something you don't wanna mess around with and you don't want near kids. Click through on the photo to see how wicked the teeth are on that blade.

Cuisinart 11   Cuisinart 10
Other stuff includes (clockwise from top left in the first photo): dough kneading blade, detachable disc stem, stainless steel chopping/mixing blade, spatula, stainless steel shredding disc (cheese grater), and stainless steel slicing disc (4mm). In the right photo, we have what's called a flat chopping/baking cover.

Cuisinart 12   Cuisinart 13
The disc stem kinda confused me at first until the LEGO builder in me
put two and two together and got this.

Cuisinart 06
Or I could've just watched the nifty DVD that was also included. Stupid me.

This is a beautiful food processor and I'm so glad we got it. Especially considering we have Thanksgiving coming up and we're hosting this year.

It was also nice that we got it on sale. It was $50 off the list price at CSNstores.com.

My only complaint with the product is that it's not easy to store all the stuff that comes with it. Having some sort of case or pouch to store the extra blades and wheels and lids would be nice. At the very least blade edge covers to protect people as they feel around through their kitchen drawers trying to find them would protect from bloody finger tips.

As for CSNstores.com, I gotta admit I was a bit hesitant to purchase anything there. Why? Well, we've been burned by enough online stores in the past to wind up being very choosy about where we order online. 99% of our online orders are through Amazon or iTunes. Once you've found a place you like and trust, you rarely go elsewhere.

But we tried it anyway.

CSNstores.com is pretty much an online shopping mall. It's got a little bit of everything all broken up into individual stores to make browsing easier. If I could think up a product, I came pretty close to always finding it there.

The only problem was that even if I could find it listed on the site, it didn't always mean it was in stock. I was initially searching for a chef's knife that I had seen in a bricks-and-mortar store and they had it for a good price. However, it was on a 12- to 15-week backorder. So were most other knives I thought could work as a serviceable replacement. Heck, many other brands of food processor were also on backorder. I almost think that CSN would benefit from an advanced search option that would eliminate backorder and out-of-stock items in addition to the options for model, price, ship time, and user ratings. Just to make it easier to find what you want that is available for immediate shipping.

Speaking of shipping, this is where my mind was blown. I ordered the Cuisinart on a Sunday and had it in my grubby little hands that Wednesday. An hour after I got it, I received the shipping confirmation e-mail. No, not the delivery confirmation, the shipping confirmation. This can be perceived as both good and bad. It's good because the shipping was faster than anticipated. It's bad because their e-mail confirmation system needs to be tweaked a bit. For me to have received it on Wednesday, the shipping had to occur on Monday. Yet I didn't receive the confirmation until after I received the product. I'm willing to forgive this right now simply because I got the Cuisinart so quickly.

All in all, my reviews...

  • The Cuisinart Pro Classic 7-Cup Food Processor - 4.5/5.0 stars. I maintain that some sort of case or pouch for all the extra bits and pieces would be nice.
  • CSNstores.com - 3.5/5.0 stars. They have a great and varied selection of products, but a large number of search results came back as out of stock or backordered. And they need to improve their e-mail confirmation system. But I would certainly use the site again, especially if they come back with a better price than Amazon or my local bricks-and-mortar store.

'nuff said.

For the record, and to keep the FCC happy, this is a solicited and paid review.


It's alright if you love me, it's alright if you don't...

You know what? I'm not going to call this a Snippet Thursday: The Reckoning. Nope, not this time. I'll just call it a Belated Snippet Wednesday. Does that work for you?

Takeover
There are groups of people out there who fear that the United States is being overrun with immigrants or people of different races, religions, creeds, whatnot. Obviously these people are all kinds of whack in the head. They are fearing the wrong thing entirely. You wanna know what I'm afraid is going to take over our fair country? THE DUGGARS! Damn, the kids are having kids now. Another pregnancy was announced this morning on the Today Show. The growth of the family is going to be exponential from this point forward. It's only a matter of time before EVERYBODY in the USA is a minority to the Duggar clan. I can see it now... The United States of Duggar... I pledge allegiance to the Duggars...

Help.

Uno
Yesterday, my Tweep kimt205 Tweeted about an e-mail she received that asked the following...

Kimt205tweet

I agree, that's a good question. And it's one that can expand to more than just Twitter users. For those of you who are Facebook junkies or blog readers... what if you could only follow one person on those platforms as well? Who would it be?

No, I'm not fishing for you all to say, "You Kevin! Of course it's you!" I'm genuinely curious how all of you would answer. And, yet, it's a question I'm unable to repond to personally. I really don't know if I could do it. You?

Nooooooo
I love my wife. She's so cute. Take last night, for example. We went upstairs to see what recorded on the TiVo. Being Wednesday, she was expecting to find recordings of the latest Modern Family and Cougar Town. Imagine her dismay when there was nothing.

Me: Sorry hon. Nothing new.

Her: Noooooooooooooo!!!!

Me: Obviously they're on a break week.

Her: Noooooooooooooo!!!!

But you have to imagine her whining that word with a little kid's petulence and an oversize frown stretching across her face.

I do love her.

Ponzi
I've decided that the only way I'm going to survive in this economy and make my millions so I can retire by my desired age of 40 is to start my own Ponzi Scheme. Does anybody know how to initiate an effective Ponzi Scheme? Would you like in at the ground level? I'll share my profits. Just sign your name to all the associated start-up documents and we'll be rich in no time. Deal? Anybody?

Challenge
I'm thinking about starting up another Kapgar Photo Scavenger Hunt (No, this has nothing to do with my Ponzi Scheming). It's actually been a good six months now since the start of the last one and my initial plan was to do it every six. So much for that. But I can still get it close enough for government work.

My question to you, though, is should I run it in December or wait until the new year? On the one hand, we can get some pretty cool holiday photos. But on the flip side of that, you'll be contending with holidays and vacations and may have difficulty posting photos by the given deadlines. So, what say you? December Holiday Edition of the Kapgar Photo Scavenger Hunt or kick it off in 2011? Majority rules on this one.

Oh, and if it helps with the decision process, I plan to allow people to just post links to their photos on Flickr or other photo sharing sites instead of having to write it up as a blog post. So those of you with cameras in your phones can just post on the go, too. Does this affect your decision at all?

Snippets
Do you now see why I love Snippet posts? Absolutely no relation between the items I'm talking about whatsoever. Just completely random thoughts floating through my nogging now shared with the world via the wonder of the World Wide Web.

Sure, it's a train wreck of ideas, but I don't care. Do you?


I wanna be elected, I'm your Yankee Doodle Dandy...

Hey, did you know a World Series happened? Yup. Apparently it started and ended all within the last week. It saw the San Francisco Giants defeat the Texas Rangers in five games.

Did you know? Did you care?

The Onion doesn't think so if this Tweet is any indication...

Oniontweet
I didn’t care much either.

I doubt many people gave a shake about it except, maybe, people in the Bay Area and around Arlington, Texas.

No, I take that back. Texas didn't care. It's still high school football season down there. Baseball dies once the pigskin shakes away the dust of the offseason.

So that leaves the Bay Area.

Wait, I think I should even subdivide that a bit. The Bay Area residents that aren't fans of the Oakland Athletics.

Oh, and then there are those former Giants fans that are still jaded by the shadow cast over their team by Barry Bonds and his alleged use of performance enhancing substances. So, they probably don't care much anymore because they don't know who to trust in sports. I can't say I blame them.

Yeah, that should do the trick.

So, to the 742 fans that actually cared, I congratulate you on your team's victory! Kudos!

Speaking of sports oddities, the Minnesota Vikings canned Randy Moss either late yesterday or early today. This was a guy they just picked up from the New England Patriots on October 6. He played in two, maybe three, games (depending on when their bye week fell) before being declared a failure and being cut from the team.

I'm really not sure how to interpret this. On the one hand, I feel like Moss wasn't really given a fair shake. Less than a month with a new team is not nearly enough time to adapt to a new playbook and a "new" 42-year-old quarterback whose play this season has been middling at best. On the other hand, it's reported that it could be disciplinary in nature. But we all know what Moss is like. Hell, the Vikings unloaded him a few years back because of his bad attitude. So they knew what they were getting by bringing him back on the roster. If they thought that had changed, well they were just stupid, weren't they?

I think the only thing that truly surprises me is that Moss hasn't already regifted the Twin Cities with his twin cheeks again.

Today is election day and I still wasn't entirely sure who I was voting for in some races until I walked up to the polling station.

There were two guys I knew for sure that I liked and I did vote for them both without hesitation. But several others I was still in the dark about. No, it wasn't from a lack of knowledge about the candidates and their platforms. Hell, the more you know, the less you like them both in all honesty.

The question now is, did I place my trust in the puppies?

I guess you'll never know.

My name is Kevin Apgar and I approve this blog post.