Saturday, September 27, 2008

KitchenAid Facts and Opinion (Update)

We have now owned our KitchenAid gas stove and microwave oven/vent hood for some time now. (See earlier blog.) Our opinion is that it is reliable, works well, has excellent programming built into it and we have used it for quite a number of exceptional meals. My only suggestion is this: get the black cooktop grates. We have the gray ones and with the heat and the splashing food, they eventually turn black on their own, while looking progressively worse as they change from gray to black. When they get all the way black things will be fine, meantime, it looks like we don't clean the stove very well. Otherwise, I'd buy the same units again. It's nice to have fairly expensive things that work.

Speaking of KitchenAid, we recently purchased a KitchenAid Professional coffee grinder. Another checkmark in the win column for KitchenAid. Killer brew every day and exceptional grind for home-brew espresso.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Wow! 54 Already

When last heard from, the Gare Bear had recently turned 53. Well, that brings up what happens when you turn 54. Time starts flying by so quickly that you can't imagine where all the time goes.

But I do know this. I now have one less year to make something interesting happen in my life. I've gotten into a routine of doing my crazy 12-hour shifts and just trying to recover in between while reviving one of my favorite hobbies -- that being handloading cartridges and shooting whenever I can. Unfortunately, it really cut into my bicycle riding which hasn't been good for the beltline. But, what I did do was procure my Colorado concealed handgun permit, which I consider to be a great privilege, especially being stationed in Boulder County, the self proclaimed capitol of the known liberal universe.

So, now, before I go harass elk this hunting season, I have a goal of getting back in shape. For those of you who have never done it, one of the hardest things I've ever had to do is pack out deer and elk from the back country, especially when the terrain is steep, rocky, muddy (that's the worst), or cold and snowy. It really makes one appreciate some of the hardships that native americans and early settlers had to deal with just to stay alive. Which leads me to another thought about early settlers -- when I look at much of the terrain of the west, I just marvel at the fact that those intrepid souls of yesteryear had the guts, toughness, and maybe stupidity to try to navigate the terrain by horse- or oxen-drawn wagons. You can't even negotiate much of it with modern 4-wheelers or off road vehicles. Some of the canyons and ravines can't even be traversed on foot. But the deer and elk do it like they are out for their morning jog. So, who's the higher species?

Interesting things going on, just for the record:
Obama vs. McCain.
Unprecedented financial crisis and debate over bailouts.
Interesting legal battles over Second Amendment now that the supreme court has rendered an opinion.
First Black presidential candidate. First female vice-presidential candidate. And it isn't Jesse Jackson or Hillary Clinton. You gotta love it.

Enuf for now.