Damn Heat

36-37 every day in the Yucatan Peninsula. Almost wrote penicillin; heat-related type. Good time for free writing exercise. Maybe jog those neurons and get them to fire in some interesting combinations.

Digital fartz. Can’t stop listening to BWV 118, Bach motet, best version seems to be Suzuki. Not on YouTube? Only Spotify. Grabsnabble. https://open.spotify.com/track/1srvdyzq57OOX3LP9PzXUW?si=TVTi-1ssS3yEfi-GSFpqJA life-changing fuck yeah corporate plug!

Snifflesnaff. Down to one of my last bags of Indonesian coffee. Every bag is pre-ground and a ticking time bomb. Each new French Press tastes just a little more off than the previous one. Drink it fast or it will eventually no longer be worth drinking at all. This could probably pass as a metaphor for something, but it’s too hot for me to know what.

It’s 6:44 PM and the temperature has cooled to a crisp 33 degrees. Surprised I can’t handle the tropical heat like I used to. Aging? Or just perception? Probably listening to 18th century funeral music isn’t helping me to stay cool.

Nozzlespluff. Poomadoompadongles. Perhaps I shouldn’t make coffee in a plastic French press. If the C-word (not the sexist one) should strike me down, will I blame pouring near-boiling liquids into a plastic receptacle? Shatterproof, though.

SHANTALOOLA! Free writing serves as an attempt to escape the mundanity of everyday life. My basic animal needs are too easy to meet, and it’s too easy to leave the remainder of my time an unstructured, sprawling mess. Fucking Whatsapp. SPLANT THAT ZANGLE!

A long time ago, there lived an elk. I can’t remember the rest of the story but it was a good one. Why is the human body programmed to self-destruct? Intesting snafapaloo you’ve got there, buddybondraggle!!!

Gotta finish that coffee, milk that lattice of snickering possum-eaters, sazalalazafapanzapanatantazangalandaglandalandaloon. As your grandpa used to always say! Maybe.

Cat and Car: A Study in Ethics

Last night, I went hunting for a late dinner in Mexico City. It was a Sunday night, so most of the food shops in my neighbourhood were closed. I decided to roam a bit more than usual, and had to cross a busy main road. While waiting at the light, a black-and-white cat ran recklessly into oncoming traffic. Before it could go past the midpoint of the road, it got knocked flat by a car.

A local man waiting at the light with me glanced at me with shock and horror. We watched the cat lay limply on the road as cars continued to zoom past it, their tires coming horribly close to its immobile body. The seconds I spent waiting for the light to change felt like hours.

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Sorry, But Your Food Isn’t Very Good

I loved living in Manila, but it wasn’t for the food. Or to put it more charitably, living in Manila is what made me love cooking.

Now, I’m not saying that there isn’t great food in the Philippines. I’d put the seafood, vegetable dishes, tasty soups and amazing tropical fruits in Davao City on par with most of my favourite food anywhere. The kinilaw (kind of a Filipino ceviche) is absolutely amazing, and damn, people in the southern Philippines really know how to barbeque a chicken. I don’t even eat pork, but I understand they really know how to roast a pig, too. Bicolano food is a little one-note, but it’s seriously hard to go wrong with chili and coconut milk, and good pinangat is one of my favourite dishes, period.

But on average, the food in the capital is pretty dire. In terms of freshness, variety, nutritiousness, serving size, and value, the typical food of Manila just isn’t very good. Homestyle cafeteria-type places (or karinderya) can occasionally be very good, but the food on offer tends to be chunks of pork slowly fermenting in a various semi-indistinguishable brown sauces for hours on end. They are served in tiny plates alongside huge portions of low-grade rice, with the heavy sauces of the food used to add some flavour and colour (yellow or brown) to these mountains of broken rice grains. Read More