Magic Jewball

all signs point to no


Gang of four… cookies

Filed under : Judaism
On February 25, 2010
At 1:35 am
Comments : 3

In the midst of all my existential and epistemological readings, I’ve had another hugely important quandary on the nature of mankind to consider: which cookies to make for my mishloach manot this year. You know, the packages of treats Jews give to each other on Purim, which is this Sunday. The funny part is, I always have to gear myself up for a couple of days of full-on baking marathon, but this year, I do that all the time. But I think I’ve figured it out. Here’s the line-up!

1. Hamantaschen, of course. Three flavors, as always: raspberry, apricot, and Nutella. I am disappointed that my new discovery, Freezerves, will not arrive in time for the marathon. So I’ll have to use regular jam. And regular Nutella, but that was never a question. I’ve never actually tasted Freezerves but they sound awesome and I don’t want to tell you how much I paid for the sample.

2. In the all-important bar cookie spot will be Oatmeal Carmelitas. I would have made last year’s huge success, Paxilrose’s Chocolate Chip Crack (many of you know this excellent recipe), but because of #4 I had to go with something else. I love Oatmeal Carmelitas. And I don’t get a chance to make these enough, because everyone wants chocolate. I actually like caramel more than chocolate. Don’t tell anyone.

3. In the easy-peasy category, Peanut Butter Cookies. I always have one regular “cookie jar” cookie. Maybe a little homely, maybe something everyone makes, but when it’s just 25% of the total, it’s perfect. It’s the filler cookie because it doesn’t need to be rolled, filled, frosted, sandwiched, or manipulated in any way. I don’t count that sugary cross-hatch that you make. And I’ve made these a million times, too, so there’s no worry about how they will turn out. Before you ask, no one on my list has any nut allergies!

4. Filling out the container in the “something new and interesting” slot are these, Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Truffles. I’ve never made any kind of candy before but I use a similar recipe in my Cookie Dough Brownies so it seems a logical next step. Could these be as amazing as they look? We’ll find out!

Narrowly getting cut out of the novelty spot were Orange Spice Cookies but they had too much spice and when you are dealing with a small, confined container, spices and mint are out. Unless you want a lot of cookies which all look different but somehow all taste of spices or mint. I need an occasion to try those out, though. Someone please give me one.

And, of course, mishloach manot packages have to have foods from two different brachot, that is, foods that have two different blessings said over them. Cookies all come from the same category which is for things made of grain other than bread, so I need another. I usually stick a tea bag in there (the drink blessing), mostly because it’s easy, but also so you can make a dirty joke if you choose. This year I was at Target and briefly pondered raisins (the fruit blessing) but I hate raisins and whenever I get them in someone else’s package I’m dismayed. But they come in cute little boxes! So I was torn. And then I saw that they now have 100 calorie packs of Craisins. Mmmm, Craisins. So now it will be four kinds of cookies plus lil bags of craisins. Score!

I’ll let you know how it all turns out, hopefully with pictures. Only three baking days till Purim!

This song would have worked better if I were including cheap wine instead of the Craisins, but oh well.
Gang Of Four – To Hell With Poverty


Oh dear

Filed under : Student Life
On February 16, 2010
At 1:57 am
Comments : 3

Without making light of the tragic loss of life at the University of Alabama last week, I’d just like to highlight this piece of the story I heard on 1010 WINS this morning. They quoted a student who found the professor to be “disorganized and prone to rambling.” As well, she often went off topic and her exams had little to do with what had been lectured about in class.

I would just like to say that if this is a warning sign of a higher education instructor going nuts and shooting a bunch of people, the world is in HUGE trouble.

*with apologies to all my friends who are professors! xoxo

Led Zeppelin – Ramble On


Rock stars forgotten by Becca move on

Filed under : Music
On February 12, 2010
At 12:05 pm
Comments :Comments Off on Rock stars forgotten by Becca move on

I meant to write a snow day post but things have just been too busy and I barely have time to write this. That’s partially because despite TC being closed, my professor decided to give an assignment anyway. I love grad school! And now I’m going away for the weekend and should be packing right now.

Right now.


Anyway, you may remember my attempt to label everyone in the Band-Aid video and my failure to identify members of the band Status Quo who clearly attained not one bit of the fame here that they enjoyed in the rest of the world. Luckily, the Queen of England has slightly made up for my crushing blow by awarding OBE’s to the two guys I had trouble with, Francis Rossi and Rick Parfitt. I hope they can stop crying now.

Staus Quo honoured with OBEs by the Queen

This is the only song I know well by Status Quo. That’s because it was remade by Camper Van Beethoven.
Camper Van Beethoven – Pictures of Matchstick Men


Channel finally chooses logo reflecting its actual content

Filed under : Music,TV
On February 9, 2010
At 11:45 pm
Comments : 2

There’s a certain meme amongst Facebook groups of “when I was your age [insert cultural reference of today] not [cultural reference of yesterday].” Like “When I was your age, we had Kenan And Kel, not Drake and Josh” and “When I was your age, we had furbies, not herpes.”

When I saw this article today, I had a few variations of my own.

When I was your age, artists made videos but no one could see them.
When I was your age, I used to set my alarm for 6am to catch the airing of HBO’s Video Jukebox show with The Police video on it.
When I was your age, I spent my friend Caryn’s birthday slumber party glued to MTV; I’d never seen it before. They played Steve Winwood and Hall & Oates.
When I was your age, MTV had commercials on other channels, just so you’d know who they were.
When I was your age, we were excited when MTV came to our cable system.
When I was your age, there were VJ’s and they knew something about music.
When I was your age, there was a concert every Saturday night and a Special every Sunday night. I moped all the way home from my cousin’s Bat Mitzvah upstate because I missed U2 on the Sunday Night Special.
When I was your age, people really won on MTV.
When I was your age, Christmas was a time to say I love you with Martha Quinn and Billy Squier.
When I was your age, we finally got a VCR with big push-down buttons and I could tape Men at Work and Duran Duran.
When I was your age, Michael Jackson could light up the sidewalk and Courtney Cox was just a lucky audience member.
When I was your age, 120 Minutes played New Wave videos in the wee hours of Sunday night/Monday morning. I would have taped it but I couldn’t wait.
When I was your age, wubba wubba wubba, goodbye and God bless.
When I was your age, Riiiiiiiiiiico…. Suaaaaave.
When I was your age, we turned on MTV News as soon as we heard Kurt Cobain died.
When I was your age, videos were Buzzworthy.
When I was your age, I found out about Britney and the Spice Girls and the Backstreet Boys from MTV. And each time, that’s how I knew they’d be huge before they were.
When I was your age, we had Music Television, not Youth Lifestyle Television.

Now that I’m my age, artists make videos and you can see them anytime you want, but it doesn’t feel the same. Also, get off my lawn.

LA Times: MTV drops ‘Music Television’ from the network logo

This was the video I got up at 6am to see, before I’d even heard of VCR’s. Sorry about the commercial beforehand, it was worth it to get the original logo up there.


It is a special, special day in sports

Filed under : Sports,TV
On February 7, 2010
At 3:30 am
Comments : 4

Just ten days till pitchers and catchers report! (Well, the Yankees… your team may vary). I too will be toasting this event with a lot of snacking and so forth. I was actually invited to a party to celebrate what I assumed, naturally, would be this, but then I found out they’re watching some other hootenanny. No thanks!

I do like to see what chick flick programming the other stations will put together, though. I usually get Gone With the Wind but not, alas, this year. Instead we have a Law & Order marathon (but late model ones, boo!), Titanic, The Sound of Music, Dances With Wolves, and some other crap. And I do mean crap… like six hours of To Catch A Predator. Scary! I think I’m going to go with Get Shorty, which I’ve loved ever since I saw it on a flight to LA in the 90’s and they dubbed out the phrase “plane crash” and replaced it with “train crash.” I never knew he actually faked his death in the air until about ten years later. I hope I’m not giving anything away there in case you missed it when it came out in 1995.

But speaking of parties, here’s a song that I forgot even existed. The video is dumb but the song tells a story I know we can all empathize with. Except me. Sometimes I spend time in the bathroom at parties, if the bathroom is really nice. Or sometimes I’ll get out my cellphone and pretend I’m making an important call. But they didn’t have cellphones in Jona Lewie’s time. He just had the kitchen.