Thanksgiving 2020

This is a… different year, so all new recipes this year. No repeats.

Turkey — I’m going to break it down and cook sous vide, then chill, and put it on the smoker for an hour or two to get some smoke and color.

Gravy (no recipe, what am I, a newb?)

Buttermilk Biscuits w cheddar and scallions

Cranberry sauce (as I always do, molded in a can for the proper appearance)

Caramelized Onion mashed potatoes

Roasted Carrots w Harissa + Crème Fraîche

Corn Casserole

Cornbread Dressing w Sausage and Sage


Pumpkin/Butternut Squash Pie, using Stella Parks’ crust recipe

Apple pie (okay, these two are repeats)


Spent a chilly spring break day in NYC with my daughter, mostly at MOMA. The shot above is one of my favorite bits of exhibition design: you enter the gallery approaching a wall. As you get closer, you can see that there’s a crowd on the other side looking at something intently. Drawn to find out what they’re looking at you finally see that it’s van Gogh’s The Starry Night, like you’ve seen before, but this one is the real thing. Even though I know this, it hits me every time.

My main goal was an exhibit on computer art starting in the 1950s, but it was too small and left out way too many important things (no Harold Cohen?)

Xmas Miracle

Xmas eve, 1989, Singapore. My family is on vacation in Asia, and we’re invited to my Dad’s office holiday party in Singapore. On the walk from our hotel to the hotel where the party is being held, my sister and I receive a long talk on how important our behavior is (but really I think it’s mostly directed at me) and how it will reflect on him, and that we especially need to eat the food that is served because not doing so would amount to a huge insult that would impact his career.

The event is huge — several hundred people, at least. My family are among the dozen or so westerners in the hall. The master of ceremonies for the evening is local Singaporean TV celebrity/ventriloquist Victor Khoo. Continue reading “Xmas Miracle”

The Island of Misfit Toys

I’ve given this a lot of thought.
Santa, horrified by the abominations that are the Misfit Toys (perhaps created as part of a secret North Pole research program that went awry), has banished them to the I of MT where he was confident that no one would ever learn of their existence.

Little did he know at the time that Rudolph and Hermey, shunned by the mob mentality of the elf & reindeer communities would stumble onto them and promise that Santa would come and save them.

On Xmas eve, flying through the fog, Santa had no idea until they landed that Rudolph was taking a detour to the I of MT to save his mutant friends, so he had no choice but to smile grimly and accept the new payload or risk the exposure of his plot.

Note that we never see where the Misfits end up — they’re each handed an umbrella (wait — each? Look again — the bird who sang about not being able to fly does not receive an umbrella!) and pushed out of the sleigh into the fog, not knowing until far too late that they’re the first ones out because the sleigh is still over the Sea of Japan.

They spun in.

There were no survivors.