Archive for April, 2014


Hump Day

Hump Day MemeBut it doesn’t really count for me, because I am into my second week without classes.

Tomorrow is Labor Day.

The only thing that will move here in Brazil will be the right hand; raising glasses and stoking the BBQ.

I said that somewhere on one of my blogs already… can’t remember which one. So if you’ve read it before I apologise, if you haven’t, have a giggle.

There’s not actually a lot to write about, because I haven’t done anything. I haven’t even been to the supermarket.

I did get all rash and weed the front of the kerb, it was getting a bit long and hairy looking. So now it is clean and bald, just like me. I was absolutely stuffed after and had a second bottle of beer resting at the botequim until my heart settled back into its usual lazy rhythm. I get these bursts of energy from time to time, not so sure its good for one of my age.

I scored! No, I wasn’t playing football, and I didn’t find a strange lady’s shoes under my bed; I’m not that lucky. Someone had thrown a good TV stand out in the rubbish. It was missing a top, I had the perfect piece of wood at home. Now I don’t have to make a table for my laptop as I planned from an old PC case. Clorinha loves it, it’s got shelves to play on.

Queijo coalho on the grill

Queijo coalho on the grill

It’s 9:30pm and there is football on at 10:00, so you can guess where I’ll be. I might open a beer and grill some cheese.

I have three kebabs of queijo coalho (I can’t translate that really, the cheese bit okay, but the ‘coalho‘ is a type of cheese made in the northeast of Brazil). You can grill it, or BBQ it and it doesn’t melt and run everywhere. Served with a sprinkle of oregano or molho de alho (garlic sauce) it goes very well with beer. It will also, in all probability, make me burp and fart all night. Clorinha is in for a treat.

Recently, I have bought a couple of lots of frozen linguado (sole/halibut) fillets. I haven’t been entirely happy that it is, in fact sole/halibut. Certainly not what I was used to in NZ. The fish was soft and spongy, not at all like sole fillets. I even had the sneaky suspicion that it  was panga renamed.

lemon-sole-fillets

Nice pinky lemon sole fillets

But this fish was called Linguado do Pacifico (Pacific sole) and it was white bland and tasteless.

A bit of research and I found it is yellowfin sole caught and processed by a Chinese company who also export polaca do alsaca and merluza do pacifico to Brazil. Both of which I consider ‘rubbish fish’.

They’ve even managed to screw up the world of fish.

So, I am back to making a special trip to the fish market at São Bras; no more supermarket fish for me.

Football…

Later.

Testy Calls

avocados1I have developed a fad. Lately I have been eating/drinking a lot of avocados. I hope they’re good for me…

So I googled it. They are considered the healthiest food in the world.

Warning… piece of useless information about appear:

The word “avocado” comes from the Spanish aguacate, which in turn comes from the Nahuatl word āhuacatl, which was also the Nahuatl word for testicles. Yes, I suppose the shape is about right, although the size indicates you are boasting.

About the only thing they are not is an aphrodisiac. Which is a pity when you consider the origin of the word. The last aphrodisiac I tried was oysters… I bought a dozen and only ten worked, damn they were too expensive for failures.

beer-tankard-glass

Oh, woe is me

Both my students canceled yesterday, next class, Thursday. No, it’s not! This Thursday is another sodding holiday, Labor Day, May 1st. Next class, next Monday…

That means I’ve will have had two weeks without a class, who’s going to buy my beer?

Went out and had pizza last night. Waddled home like a pregnant duck.

I was full.

Couldn’t sleep, drank water like a fish, then at 1am I was up making orange juice to try and quench my thirst.

Finally dropped off around 3am.

Clorinha has learned a new trick

Clorinha has learned a new trick

I was woken at six with a paw in the face.

Andrew suggested she had a sense of humour… NOT FUNNY!

In the news, the IOC has branded the 2016 Rio Olympics as the worst preparation they have ever seen. A great advert for Brazil.

Saw a news report last night that compared productivity in Brazil with other countries, principally the USA.

Basically, it was saying that the methods used in Brazil are so far behind the times. A five story building in the US can be erected using prefab modules in two months, in Brazil the same building takes two years.

We also have so many public holidays here where the only thing that moves is the right hand; lifting ones beer glass or stoking the BBQ.

This whole affair with the Ukraine, if the pro-Russian brigade want to be Russian, why don’t they shove off to Russia instead of making the anti-Russian brigade into Russians against their will? I’m sure Putin will be pleased to see them on his doorstep.

Now they discover that mega-cities are too heavy. Bit late to discover that now. They are sinking because of the extraction of ground water, and the weight of the cities is more than the ground can support.

Once again, man is the author of his own folly.

It never ceases to amaze me how stupid man is.

I feel a nap coming on…

Later

 

 

 

Caffeination

coffeenate_1313_9_lIt’s Monday…

I have been here since Clorinha woke me at 6:am by sending a CD-ROM crashing to the floor, of course it couldn’t have been one of the old ones. It had to be the only SATA one I have. It is more than likely fornicated, thoroughly.

So far coffee has staved off anything further untoward.

*Makes mental note to brew more coffee*

Posting on my blogs is almost done for the day.

I must consider removing something from the freezer for lunch. I have a choice, sole fillets or catfood. I finished the flounder yesterday, pan fried, wonderful; I’ll be buying more of that.

Surprise, I found a piece of dead cow in the fridge. If I slice that up as a stroganoffy type thing, it should thaw nicely so that I actually have a chance of lunch rather than dinner.

Can’t remember if I have classes today. I’ll have to fire up the laptop and check my schedule.

Clorinha has discovered that she can climb out the bedroom window and jump or fall (not sure which yet, I haven’t caught her in the act) to the ground, then run straight around to the front door and mew to be let back in… She thinks it’s fun.

ClorinhasPrivateEntrance

Clorinha’s private entrance to her dirt box

She feels it gives her some privacy.

I feel a nap is about to happen…

Later.

 

Flora and Fauna

Should kittens be allowed cellphones

Should kittens be allowed cellphones

At the moment, the post title is blank. I had a title, in fact I had two possibilities, but a blanket of forget has descended.

I mentioned a couple of posts back, about the possibility of Clorinha wanting her own cellphone. We had a good talk about this, there was a lot of mewing and decided that she would only want to play Angry Birds or have that Flappy Bird app, so therefore a cellphone wasn’t really a necessity, but still she insisted. So I played my trump card, “look to use a cellphone you need opposing thumbs.” Evolution, please don’t hurry in this respect, kittens do not need opposing thumbs.

Okay, the post has a title now. The mental fog has lifted, at least partially. I still can’t think of the other option I was toying with.

The kitty toys strewn about the house have developed into flora and fauna. There are now two dead leaves and some pigeon feathers. The house next door has an open loft/floor and it harbours sodding pigeons, whose feathers tend to float down into my carport.

Wasabi, most people know it as hot green stuff

Wasabi, most people know it as bloody hot green stuff

I went out for sushi last night. Rash, I know, but wonderful. I haven’t had real sushi for more than two months. I am on good terms with the manager there, and I used this to advantage. The last few times I have had to asked for wasabi (that hot green horse radish paste) and gari (that’s the sliced pickled ginger). He explained that many people don’t use them, so they made it available on request.

I asked him if he knew why gari is served with sushi. He had no idea; the manager of an upmarket and, I might add, quite expensive Japanese style restaurant had no idea.

Gari made from young ginger root

Gari made from young ginger root

Do you?

Gari, the ginger, is used to refresh the mouth when changing food or fish types, so that you get the benefit of the new flavours.

It also has other functions; its antiseptic properties help guard against bad fish and can help ease your stomach from the nausea of over stuffing yourself.

Gari is usually made from young ginger, you can tell if it is pinkish. A tan/yellowy colour indicates older root. Many commercial products are older root artificially coloured pink. You don’t need that stuff, just grate ginger root and pickle with sugar and vinegar, easy.

There, that’s your cooking lesson for the day.

I see we have two new saints. The pope canonised to past popes. Honestly, do we need more saints? Too much of a good thing makes it very ordinary.

The sun has just gone out and I have wet washing on the line. Rain was forecast for today and tomorrow, looks like the weather forecasters have finally got their shit together.

Clorinha has found her father’s favourite place. The old drawer on top of the old fridge in the carport, she’s out there now asleep.

At night she prefers the back of the sofa

At night she prefers the back of the sofa

She’s a TV cat. None of my other cats have shown any interest in the TV, but Clorinha sits on the arm of the sofa and follows every move on the screen especially during a football (soccer) match with the players moving fast.

A final feline note. She met her first rat yesterday while we were at the botequim. She was exploring the long grass beside the smelly canal, and I saw her jump backward with all four paws off the ground. On inspection, it was a dirty brown rat bigger her. She looked up at me with a dazed “WTF was that?” expression.

Sun’s come out again…

Must be beer o’clock.

Later.

Twisted Knee

JWTwistedSounds like a John Wayne movie…

But it isn’t, dodging Clorinha in the kitchen this morning while making coffee, I twisted my knee.

My house is full of obstacles, kitty toys. Three plastic bags, a rubberband, a twistie off the bread bag, a gnawed supermarket receipt, one sock, a pen, my shorts, the printer cable has been pulled out, an empty ink cartridge pack  and my reading glasses.

Is it any wonder I need coffees (note the plural) in the morning?

bullshit-1000-2xI got 1000 Likes on Bullshit Corner a couple of days ago. For those of you who do not know my Bullshit Corner, it’s a bit like my Nether Region, but naughtier. Nether Region tends to be more G Rated.

Remember that old 1929 song by Irving Berlin, Puttin’ on the Ritz?

Even I wasn’t around when they published that one. But here, have a laugh…

Putin on the Ritz

Putin on the Ritz

I couldn’t resist that. The moment I saw it, it had to be posted.

This is my last pot for the day, at 11am, I am doing well. My morning has involved watering the plants, helping three Gulf Fritillery caterpillars meet their demise (they eat my passion fruit vines), fed the cat, washed some dishes (not all, or I wouldn’t recognise the kitchen) and had a nap.

Equal_Justice_Under_LawI discovered an interesting fact the other day. I was always under the impression that America was a God fearing country, but I find otherwise. American law has nothing to do with religion or religious views. In fact it even the words and principal ‘Equal justice under law’ cannot be found in any Judeo-Christian scripture. A very interesting post here.

The weather today… Woke at 7am, lovely sunny day, by 7:30 it had clouded over and I had to switch the light on to see the keyboard. 9am, lovely and sunny again, 10:30 dark and gloomy, now an hour later sunny again.

I have nothing planned, so the day should be a success.

My flounder didn’t last until lunch today. I had it for dinner last night, it was quite yummy.

I’ll leave you with a thought for the day…

watercoffeepotential

Later.

 

 

Taking the Next Exit

inspiration_sign

The coffee is not so gritty today.

Lunch is part way done. As is most of my blogging for the day.

Good bye my friends, our time together was so short

Good bye my friends, our time together was so short

After lunch I have to go and pay the rent.

I am late this month because of all the public holidays and that my pay was received on the eve of them.

Clorinha has decided that kitty biscuits are not good enough, she wants mince.

Yesterday I gave her the trimmings of a T-bone steak… not good enough. Today I gave her the trimmings of a pork chop… not good enough.  So I have relented and taken a small pack of mincemeat out of the freezer.

Damned finicky animal!

grumpycreditcardI’ll try her on fish tomorrow as I have taken some flounder out of the freezer for lunch. This beast could become expensive… but then she’s a girl, fast becoming a woman.

I’m waiting for the day when she wants her own credit card.

The Americans are going to screw up the net, by allowing fast lane services to be more expensive. Here in Brazil they have just had a conference about net neutrality, and differentiating services were specifically banned.

Interesting comment: Snowden screwed up the internet… I had to laugh, it was the Americans who screwed that up; Snowden just told us about it.

Now the Russians, along with the Germans and Brazil look as though they are going to split the net into fractions because of the American spying, now tell me that Snowden screwed it up; that ball falls directly in the American court.

Oh, the Home Office, those sadistic bastards, are at it again. Lately David Cameron has been spouting on about FGM (you know what that is? Female Genital Mutilation, look it up, it’s horrifying) and backing the cause to ban it and enforce the law in the UK. The British figures for this practice are shocking.

But the Home Office is going to deport a Nigerian mother and her two daughters (one of whom was born in the UK) today after she failed in her legal efforts to stay in England. In Nigeria her family are staunch supporters of FGM, and the woman is afraid, and rightly so, that her relatives will take the matter into their own hands and do it. The mother suffered FGM as a girl and she doesn’t want her daughters to have it done, but once she is in the hands of her relatives, it’ll happen.

If there was ever a cause for humanitarian consideration, this is it. David Cameron, pull your head out of your sanctimonious arse and stop this deportation!

These bureaucratic bastards need to be hamstrung.

Crimea is crying because the Ukraine has cut their water off, not right off, but reduced it drastically. The matter of overdue payments was overlooked while Crimea was part of the Ukraine, but now that it is, dubiously, part of Russia the Ukraine wants payment; rightly so.

This of course will be the ruin of Crimean agriculture, grape harvests and the like. They should have thought of that before becoming Russian. Crimea is now a Russian problem, let them give you water. You made the choice in your illegal referendum.

*climbs down off soapbox*

Time to go and finish cooking lunch.

Later.

The Big White Meat Monster

consul360This is the Big White Meat Monster that lurks in my kitchen.

At least that is Clorinha’s opinion.

Whatever she is doing, sleeping, washing, playing outside, tormenting my indoor plants or hiding in the old computer it only takes the whisper of the fridge door opening and there she is.

She’s going to do it hard for the next two days, she’s just eaten the last unfrozen morsel; it’s kitty biscuits from here.

I didn’t get here yesterday. I got most other places, but not here. So today, you are first up. You see, if I don’t get here, I actually feel guilty, I even toss and turn in my sleep with angst… or is that because Clorinha’s biting my ankles again?

Yesterday I made fresh coffee, but I boobooed, I had the filter inside out, so today’s coffee is full of grit; horrible. I am drinking more gritty coffee while I am converting some Clorinha clips.

I mentioned the other day that Clorinha had found a new hideyhole, in the defunct and gutted PC. Here she is coming out, not very exciting, but…

And here I managed to catch her about to savage the fan.

Clorinha deathknellforthefan

On with today’s news.

My first student has cancelled, my last student has cancelled. I wait for the middle student…

A week or so ago, I saw a new fish appear in the supermarket. Alabote, I had no idea what it was. But when I saw it in the second supermarket yesterday, it piqued my interest and I got a pack of fillets. Brazilian supermarkets are full of cheap rubbish fish, polaca do alasca (imported from China), panga (imported from Vietnam) and the like; sometimes they are the only ones available. So I am always on the alert for something decent.

big_22

Alabote – looks like flounder

I got home and googled alabote and discovered that it is flounder. I like flounder; let’s see if this flounder is like NZ flounder.

At least its eyes are in the right place, both on the same side of the head.

There have been riots in Rio again. This time over the death of a dancer from a Globo TV show. Copacabana was closed for several hours while the people from the slum above created blockades with burning rubbish. This makes a wonderful picture for tourists coming for the FIFA World Cup. Apparently, he was shot, by whom we don’t yet know. Two reports are on TV, one that he was shot after falling to his death, and the other that he was shot resulting in the fall. There is a lot of confusion over this. Of course his mother is blaming the police. There was a shoot out with drug dealers that night, but some distance from where the guy met his death, but that doesn’t matter, his mother is all over the TV blaming the police. Which is pretty normal for here, it’s always the police, other hypotheses are never considered.

Wonderful bikes, but wrong BSA

Wonderful bikes, but wrong BSA

BSA are in the news again.

No, not these BSA, although they were among the top English motorcycles in their time.

Boy Scouts of America…

They back to bashing homosexuals.

This time they’ve sacked a gay scout leader, who was strongly supported by the church scout group. Further, they’ve revoked the church’s scout group charter because the church’s views on homosexuality were not in line with BSA’s. BSA are full of bullshit. It is my opinion that the World Scouting Federation should revoke BSA’s charter because of their homophobic attitude and be done with it.

Hidden homes have become an issue in Britain. Hidden homes are where people are forced to rent store rooms, space above workshops and on industrial estates in order to live informally. The housing authorities say these ad hoc dwellers are a problem. I call BULLSHIT! The problem is the housing authorities, ergo the government,  not doing their job. Put the damn blame where it belongs.

I have always espoused that one may learn something new everyday or the day has been wasted.

A couple of days ago, I was browsing a photo blog that I follow, All Downhill from Here, and a photo caught my eye. Something strange. It was a wonderful photo of a wasp. Andrew’s photos are always stunning, usually of birds around Hong Kong, but this post was bugs.

Look closely

Look closely – thanks to Andrew for permission to use his photo

Can you see the little red parasites? I had never considered that wasps have parasites. You tend to think of wasps as wasps, end of the matter, but when you delve further, you learn something new.

That’s about my lot for the day, I need more gritty coffee.

Later.

I Flipped my Lid

Not in the colloquial sense, I literally flipped my lid.

acapIt was the lid of one of my water bottles that I keep in the fridge. While refilling my bottle, I flipped it and couldn’t find it. Clorinha found it in the morning and was batting it around the kitchen floor.

Today is not a public holiday, but none of the neighbours went to work. It is the day between public holidays, so why bother? Tomorrow is another; St Georges Day.

I’m back, I had a nap…

Now I’ve had a scrappy lunch. Not at all like I had yesterday. I went out to Braseiro and had a wonderful but bloody expensive lunch. Sushi to start, then the beef BBQ started rolling.

After my frugal leftovers and junk the past few days, I felt as though I deserved  a change. But truly after their last price makeover, it’s just off the budget.

I used to do it once or even twice a week, that’s R$240-480 a month; now they’ll be lucky to see me once a month and only at the cheaper price in the evening, which will cost me about R$60 per month. So who loses? Imagine if ten regulars adopted the same attitude…

keepcalmbeeroclockI’m off to have an after-lunch beer; yes, it’s beer o’clock.

BTW, they didn’t get their shit together, no rain yesterday, grey sky out there so maybe today.

banrapLast night was a noisy night, rap rap bloody rap until late. Seriously, it’s a menace.

So, later.

 

 

Tiradentes

Today is another holiday in Brazil…

This time, Tiradentes.

Tiradentes on the 5 centavo coin

Tiradentes on the 5 centavo coin

Joaquim José da Silva Xavier, was a leading member of the Brazilian revolutionary movement whose aim was full independence from the Portuguese colonial power and to create a Brazilian republic. When the plan was discovered, Tiradentes was arrested, tried and publicly hanged on 21 April 1792. Since the 19th century he has been considered a national hero of Brazil. Tiradentes means “tooth puller”, a reference to his practicing dentistry, amongst other things.

So we all get another day off, and another dollar poorer.

I should add supermarket

I think I need to bring out my To-Do list again.

Yes, I really need to go to the supermarket.

My vege basket is empty, my fruit basket is empty, my bread basket is empty and the fridge is empty.

Oh, it’s got water and beer…

Clorinha has figured out that tasty yummies (mincemeat) is kept in the fridge, so now every time I open the fridge, a little white kitten magically appears from nowhere. Now Clorinha is learning that every time I open the fridge doesn’t mean food for the kitty. One of life’s tough lessons.

Clorinha is exhausted and asleep on the sofa. She’s had her morning ‘bedlam’ racing through the house dragging yesterday’s underpants along the way. They’ve been in the kitchen, in the living room, under the bed, outside, inside, and they’ve come to rest on the coffee table looking rather dusty and bedraggled.

Interesting erroneous comment from David Cameron, “Britain as a Christian country…” Apparently, he’s wrong again. There are more non-Christians and non-believers in Britain than Christians according to statistics. So much for God, the Queen and the country.

So, I had better do some water-splashing so I don’t smell to bad, and head off to the supermarket.

Later.

Wanting for a Title

allpurposeinspirationIt’s true, despite four coffees. I can’t think of a title.

I’ll have to get another of those cans of All-Purpose Inspiration next time at the supermarket.

I read one of the stupidest things yesterday. Referring to help for prisoners to stop re-offending.  This is the stupid thinking of politicians (and society, I might add). The help needs to be before they ever get to prison. Once they get to prison, in the majority of cases, it’s too damned late.

Another political stupidity, food banks, David Cameron praising food banks for the work they do. If the government was doing its job there wouldn’t be a need for food banks!

Catch 22. A Christian was sacked for berating homosexuals by saying that the Bible says homosexuality is an abomination. The Christian was sacked  for homosexual discrimination. In turn the Christian is now claiming religious discrimination… and so the wheel turns.

Now, I put it to you that Christianity is a learned behaviour… therefore possibly unnatural. Homosexuality is not, but rather genetic. Think about that.

My list of things to do today is complete when I finish this post.

nothinglist

Should be successful

The rest of the day should go smoothly.

Lunch will be leftover mustard mince on toast. Yesterday’s lunch was mustard mince and chips, which was better than the reheated pepperoni pizza from Friday.

What lavish feast did you have on Good Friday?

Most Brazilians have fish. Salted cod is the choice. Personally I can’t stand the stuff, unless it is bolas de bacalhão (Cod balls), they’re quite tasty and go well with beer.

blosdabacalhao

bolas de bacalhão

Sometimes Raimundo makes them at the botequim.

Now, I do believe I feel a nap coming on…

my-bed

Later.

 

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