Sugar rushes.

Part of my #glamorousshowbizlife managing an independent cinema involves spending the company’s money on mountains of chocolate and other sundries.

Because my car is not working all that well, lately, and as I’ve been wavering on the fixing vs. buying vs. not having a car thing for, like, two months (the new roof took priority) I’ve been doing this by bike. This isn’t ideal, because it limits how much I can buy at a time because my shopping panniers are a) not great and b) not really actually that big. One of those black Green bags from Loblaws can hold about 50% more than one of them. Last go around, I had to dump two boxes of 24 packs of Twizzlers and fit them around the other stuff in my backpack because the cardboard was taking up too much space.

So today I opted to go by bus, three giant Loblaws bags in tow. I missed the two helpful-to-get-to-the-cash-&-carry place ones at the same time (both were minutes early, my transit app didn’t warn me, and I was on the other side of the (very busy) road), so I took the next bus, which doesn’t actually go THAT near, and walked about twelve blocks.

And fucked things up there too. Thought I bought peanut Glosettes, no, I didn’t, just endless boxes of raisins. I didn’t realise we were perilously low on peanut butter cups (fun fact: these come in threes by default in Canada, SUCK IT). And I should have bought some more damned Twizzlers (I had space for those if I dumped them out of their boxes and into my shoulder bag).

At least it all fit in my bags. And I managed to lug them to the bus stop in time to catch a direct-to-work vehicle AND got a seat. And I’ve heard that carrying heavy things is one of the fastest ways to get in shape. But man, I have to do this again ASAP and I don’t wanna.

Maybe I’ll try by bike tomorrow.

Today’s kinda facts: Glosettes, for those not in the know, are an EXCLUSIVE TO CANADA thing (and the first autofill Google offers is ‘Glosettes gluten-free’, smh). To the furriners, they are a beloved, especially by old people, aka the bulk of our clientele, chocolate covered snack (raisins or peanuts). In my experience here, French-Canadians are especially fond, but I’m not sure if that’s a universal truth, and if someone asks for ‘Des Glos’, they almost definitely mean the raisins.

This got me wondering about other exclusive-to-Canada deliciousness, but beyond Vachon cakes (they are, like, the Hostess/Little Debbie’s/Tasty Kake of Canada, sorta, but, traditionally, with more lard), and Laura Secord candy (which is like the Canadian version of Fannie May, but older/better), Coffee Crisp bars, commercial, in-Canada-only sweet treats are not that common.

And yet Iceland has a ton of local candy? (Kropps are great, BTW). Maybe I’ll fire up Google translate and try to make sense of whether they are exclusives to the island.

Also, I remember this commercial, there again proving that I absorbed a lot of shit at age 4 that will never be forgotten. I wish it had left room for Physics and the ability to remember to return library books.

Melting pots.

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The Demon Weed.

I spent a chunk of my day off with Señor Malcolm Negocio aka the Artist Formerly Known as Rowan aka The Angel of Osgoode aka Mac. Read More →

Aldwych station.

‘Tis the season of Holidailies and, much like last year’s almost-successful run of daily postings (initially typed as ‘positings’, also apt), I am going to use this opportunity to nerd out a bit each day.

Oh, and there might be a bit of festive cheer and/or improvised/half-remembered recipes along the way. Read More →

Lizard people.

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Haute cuisine.

Because I’m broke as fuq because of roof business, I’ve been experimenting with subbing in beans for, like, everything lately. The latest is a black bean-based shepherd’s pie, which one person (hi Erica!) expressed an interest in learning more about. It’s still a Work in Progress situation, but the gist is this:

Chop up an onion finely. Sauté in a big pan with oil (canola, olive, whatevs) for a few minutes until it gets pretty transparent.

While this is going on, chop a big celery stalk, a big carrot, and, like, a cup’s worth of mushrooms into wee pieces. Chuck them into the pan with the onion, along with a couple of cloves of minced garlic.

Cook and stir for several minute. Throw in a big splish of red wine (or a smaller one of vermouth) if things are sticking (or, really, even if they aren’t), and let bubble mostly off. Then add a can (drained) of black beans and about a cup of vegetable stock. Leave to simmer for about 10 minutes, lid on, stirring occasionally.

While this is all going on, make mashed potatoes more or less however you would normally. I did not measure this bit. But make several cups worth. Set aside.

Preheat oven to 375F (190C).

Take lid off vegetable/bean mixture. Add some herbs of your liking (thyme, sage, and other ‘meaty’ spices work well so far) and salt and pepper. Smoosh the veg mix with a potato masher until it looks not-unlike refried beans, but with a few more chunks of stuff in it. If it seems soupy, turn heat to low and let things steam off for several minutes.

Spread beany stuff into a 9×13 glass pan.

Dump on a mix of frozen peas and corn (2-3 cups worth).

Carefully dollop spoonfuls of mashed potatoes on across surface of corn/pea layer. Spread as evenly as possible.

(Optional: Sprinkle some cheese on it.)

Cover with foil.

Either bung it in the fridge for later use (in which case, bake for 45 minutes lid on, then turn heat up to 425 and bake another 15 minutes to make for crispy potato top) or cook right away (25 minutes, then 15).


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What to do when it’s too chilly for lemonade.

Woke up earlier, unprompted, before 7:15. Not a terrible thing, because it means I’ve already had time to make, and eat, Posh Granola. Posh because the ingredients are a bit fancier than I would normally use every day, but as this makes almost four cups of the stuff (it can, in my experience keep refrigerated for a few weeks, and is probably freezable), you don’t need to blow through $10-15 of ingredients very often. Read More →


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Richard’s new cat friend moved in yesterday and within a half-hour of arriving, had done a GIANT poop in his litterbox, and within a half-hour of my arriving for a visit, was dozing derpily in my lap. I think this new feline situation is gonna work out beautifully. Read More →