Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

The Way We See the World: JELLOWARE

December 22, 2010


My friend Monica is involved with a design company based out of Brooklyn called The Way We See The World. In addition to sustainable body wax and signal-blocking cell phone sleeves, TWWSTW has come up with a new, edible alternative to solo cups called JELLOWARE:

Watch the video!

It’s a pretty cool idea, and if you donate to their Kickstarter page, you can get a set of Jelloware cups for your next party. Check it out:

Jelloware on Kickstarter

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What’s in the Fridge? DBA Edition

November 27, 2010

You haven’t heard from me for a while because I literally spend all of my time in the kitchen. If it’s not a meal, it’s brewing kombucha or beer, or making salsa or hummus or a homemade condiment. I think I’m losing my mind. I took a look into the refrigerator tonight and here’s what I found:

Leftovers from Thanksgiving

Tofu Turkey

My main course of tofurkey and stuffing from Thanksgiving

Tofu Turkey and Stuffing

Cooking Thanksgiving dinner is no easy task, vegetarian or not. This loaf of soy took almost 48 hours, after marinating and draining it twice, stuffing it with mushrooms, celery, and onions, and slow roasting it like a real freakin bird. I don’t think I deserve as much credit as someone who cooks a real turkey, but goddamn this one was an endeavor. I’ll be eating leftovers for weeks.

Green Bean Casserole

Green Bean Casserole

Green Bean Casserole

Everyone’s favorite vegetable dish at Thanksgiving comes complete with satueed onions and mushrooms, condensed mushroom soup, and French’s fried onions. Needless to say, not the most healthy thing on the table.

Cranberry Sauce

Dignified Cranberry Sauce

Dignified Cranberry Sauce

Another decadent excuse to be fat on Thanksgiving. Mix in some sugar, pineapple, orange, and apricot preserves in with your cranberry mush and you’ll end up with this sweet fruit cocktail.

Pickling

Pickled Eggs

Pickled Eggs - they sound better than they taste

Pickled Eggs

Hard-boiled eggs, vinegar, and beet juice. I’ve seen them on the Simpsons for like 20 years and have never tried them. Now I know why.

Pickled Celery and Onions

Hoping for the best with this one

Pickled Celery and Onions

Using the leftover juice from some spicy pickles, I made a new concoction for these veggies. Hopefully they’ll turn out better than the eggs.

Brewing

Kombucha

Kombucha - Lindsay Lohan's booze of choice

Kombucha

Anything made out of a mushroom culture that floats on top of fermented tea has to be delicious. Flavor it with cinnamon, not pickle juice.

D.B. Ale Beer

The Dark Brown Ale from the Wilkes-Beer brewing company

Beer

Hands down, best hobby ever.

Blending

Dijon Mustard

Mustard is the best condiment ever created

Mustard

Who knew it was so easy to make a homemade mustard? Just the mustard seeds, vinegar, and a few spices. You’ll never eat French’s again.

Hummus Competition

Hummus Competition

Hummus
Chick peas, garlic, olive oil, and tahini make up the base for both of these hummus dishes. After the vote, Stephanie’s plain hummus won out over my fancy artichoke and spinach hummus. Too much overkill?

Okay, leaving for Miami in 2 days, so everything must go!

The Urban Waste-Free Kitchen

September 8, 2010

Since moving into this loft, I sacrificed a few things that I had while in college, like a garden and a compost pile. It’s almost impossible to grow any sort of herbs or plants in this dark, musky atmosphere.

After checking out this video of the Flow 2 from Studio Gorm, however, I have some new ideas about reusing and recycling some of the massive amounts of waste that are created here. I’d recommend muting it, since the piano gets a bit overwhelming.

Generation “I”

August 22, 2010

The second most widely read article in today’s New York Times is called What Is It About 20-Somethings?. This is a psychological study of an emerging stage of post-adolescent, pre-adult life where aimless young people are striving toward personal goals, yet putting off the accepted adult responsibilities that was expected of previous generations. The article is based mostly from studies conducted by Jeff Arnett, a psychology professor at Clark University, who names this new phenomenon “emerging adulthood.” After reading through the ten pages of the article, I found myself agreeing wholeheartedly with parts of it that seemed to sum up a feeling I’ve had for two years that I couldn’t seem to put into words, but also disagreeing intensely with other parts that disgusted me entirely.

I think we’re seeing a trend in college graduates to pursue something other than the accepted norm: getting married, settling into a house, getting a long-term job, and having kids. The possibilities of travel, experimentation with different careers, enrollment in programs like the Peace Corps and Teach For America, or simply going to grad school for lack of anything else (sound familiar?), all seem more appealing than beginning what many people view as a “dead-end.” It’s true, while getting married and finding a permanent job may provide security and fulfillment, they prevent many of the other possibilities that an untethered life provides. More and more twenty-somethings want to pursue their dreams: traveling the world, touring in a rock band, building homes in New Orleans, or teaching kids in South Korea. While I know a handful of people that are married at my age (24) and are planning to settle down, the majority of my acquaintances scoff at the idea of adulthood, even the brightest and most intelligent.

I’m sure I’m not the only one that feels a pull in two directions: on one hand, I grew up thinking that after college, I’d get a successful career and be well-off financially because I excelled in school. On the other hand, the stimulation of exotic places, creative people, and the excitement of the unexpected triumphed over this well-worn expectation, and I followed that path instead. Is this an abandonment of values in exchange for self-indulgence, or a flowering of experiences to help cement life goals?

Arnett asks the same questions, and relates our generation to the 1960’s generation, as well as our parents’ generation. However, there’s something about today’s information-rich society that motivates us, whereas the counterculture of the 60’s seemed to cast off all responsibility in an effort to break away from societal norms. I think most people my age are heavily involved in passionate goals, and are working hard to achieve them. Many of my friends are working for their masters or doctorate, mostly in big cities away from home. Others have relocated in teaching programs to places like Singapore, Tokyo, Alaska, China, and South America. Many, like myself, are in limbo between college and the next step, trying different activities and careers to see which is the correct path. The uncertainty of endless possibility is both exciting and frustrating. With limitless options, how can one be sure they’ve made the right one?

So here we are, Generation “I.” We’re the ones that put ourselves first. We blindly and passionately follow our emotions and goals, perhaps too idealistically. We see careers mostly as “dead-ends,” and unless there is a way to integrate our passion into our career, it isn’t worth investing time into. We don’t believe in marriage, but will have meaningful relationships with a few different people, because everyone we date will feel the same way about their life own goals. A house with a yard and 2.5 children is ancient history.

Despite Arnett’s support for the generation “in limbo,” it’s difficult not think we’re doing something wrong. Society depends on contribution, and with so many people involved in their own egotism, how can we survive?

Hot Sauce from Hell

July 1, 2010


Straight from the depths of hell’s gnarliest kitchen, from such a twisted mind, it could only be conceived by Misfits’ guitarist Doyle Wolfgang Von Frankenstein, this hot sauce will shred your tastebuds and leave your ears ringing with the sounds of guitar solos.

When Danzig played in NYC, a bottle of this mysteriously showed up at DBA. I must say, the man knows his hot sauce. Unless you plan to see a Misfits reunion or check out Danzig solo, you can order Doyle Wolfgang Von Frankenstein’s MADE IN HELL hot sauce for $8.

Let the Handicapped Madness Begin

June 18, 2010

This one is for anyone who heard me raving about a “replacement for crutches” tonight:

You can't possibly make something look more lame than this

The Roll-A-Bout is available for the low price of $600. That’s right, a pair of handlebars, four wheels and a cushion. I’ll stick to my computer chair, thanks.

The City of Brotherly Love

January 7, 2010

Independence Day. What better place to spend it than the birthplace of our nation’s Constitution? With my first Saturday off in a long time, I hopped on Mega Bus ($15 round trip!) and arrived in Philadelphia for a crazy weekend.

The first thing I noticed about the difference between Philadelphia and New York is the simplicity. Here is a New York subway map (Excluding upper Manhattan, The Bronx, Queens, and Brooklyn):

And here is a Philly subway map:

Needless to say, the city is pretty small. I met Joe and Will, friends of mine from Penn State, in south Philadelphia. They have a 3 floor apartment with a studio in the basement. We walked next door to their neighbors’ BBQ and I discovered that they were from Dallas, PA. It’s a small world in Philly. South Philadelphia is sort of like the Bed-Stuy of Philly. Rent is cheap, it’s a bit shady (almost got hit with some fireworks while walking), and there are some really cool up-and-coming areas.

I made my way to West Philadelphia, the home of Drexel and Penn campuses. My friend Nira and I had brunch outdoors at the Marathon Grill and I made my way into center city.

Spent the day with my friend Jess. Ate dinner at the Banana Leaf, an amazing (and quick!) Malaysian restaurant on Arch Street. Then we made our way to the Art Museum for a free Sheryl Crow concert and some pretty alright fireworks.

The next day I met my parents for the Phillies-Mets game. On a hot streak, the Phillies managed to shut them out 2-0. I saw two homeruns from Jimmy Rollins and Chase Utley. Great game.



After the game, we walked from South Philly all the way to a bar in West Philly (an hour walk) called Fiume. It was an amazing, quiet bar with a bit of live music and an Ethiopian restaurant downstairs. We hung out in the park nearby for a bit before I left.

All in all, I think Philly changed my whole opinion on living in New York. I felt very slowed down (despite not working) and a lot closer to the people there. Maybe it’s because I really don’t have a lot of close friends left in New York. Maybe I’m just getting antsy again. I saw a job opportunity for an internship in Audio Engineering at NPR this fall. I’d have to move to Washington D.C., but maybe it would be for the best. I need something to concentrate my energy on anyway.

I also recently got a new digital camera, so from this point on, every picture on this blog (for the most part) will be taken by me. Since I’ve been linked to Brooklyn Vegan, I feel like I should be semi-professional.

Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance

January 7, 2010

1/18/09

There are few books I’ve read in my life that I consider important to other people. Ishmael is one of them. I thought Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test was one of them. It’s not. I thought Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas was one of them. It’s not. These are simply vaguely describing an emotion and attitude that is nailed down and exposed in Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance.

There is so much to this book that it is a great challenge to actually finish it. But damn, is it rewarding. In short, it is a philosophy lesson mixed into a narrative of a man and his son traveling cross-country on a motorcycle. The concepts touched upon are things I’ve thought about and killed myself over. The reasons why I couldn’t let music go. The reasons I can’t get a 9-5 job. The reasons why I struggle with existentialism and living in “the system.” It’s all laid out here, intelligently and relative to today’s mindset. I simply want to touch on some of the concepts that REALLY struck me as I was reading this:

1. Classic vs Romantic Mindset: This can also be described as technical vs aesthetic, structure vs surface appeal, etc. It hammers home the argument that these are NOT separate concepts. The thing that separates the two are the “quality” of the work. If things are manufactured without care or quality, then they are perceived by the consumer as useless or disposable. However, if something is evidently made with “quality” in mind, it is appreciated. Take a homemade mug or chair or table. If something is hand crafted by someone you know personally, it’s going to mean a lot more than something put together from a Target box. I think this goes for anything functional. A lot of the time, the surface aesthetic is slapped on with whatever current “style” or “fashion” is relevant, and this is often a cheap way to fake “quality.” It’s an interesting argument.

2. He does a lot of urban vs rural comparing. Fast people, fast cars, neon signs. I think this argument is presented best at the very end of the novel with this passage:

“The explanation, I suppose, is that the physical distance between people has nothing to do with loneliness. It’s psychic distance, and in Montana and Idaho the physical distances are big but the psychic distances between people are small, and here it’s reversed.
It’s the primary America we’re in[the west coast]. It hit the night before last in Prineville Junction and it’s been with us ever since. There’s this primary America of freeways and jet flights and TV and movie spectaculars. And people caught up in this primary America seem to go through huge portions of their lives without much consciousness of what’s immediately around them. The media have convinced them that what’s right around them is unimportant. And that’s why they’re lonely. You see it in their faces. First the little flicker of searching, and then when they look at you, you’re just a kind of object. You don’t count. You’re not what they’re looking for. You’re not on TV.
But in the secondary America we’ve been through, of back roads, and Chinaman’s ditches, and Appaloosa horses, and sweeping mountain ranges, and meditative thoughts, and kids with pinecones and bumblebees and open sky above us mile after mile after mile, all through that, what was real, what was around us dominated. And so there wasn’t much feeling of loneliness. That’s the way it must have been a hundred or two hundred years ago. Hardly any people and hardly any loneliness. I’m undoubtedly overgeneralizing, but if the proper qualifications were introduced it would be true.”

3. Pirsig puts the quality back in technical work. He talks of the “peace of mind” of finishing a long a grueling technical project, such as the repair of a motorcycle. Or a theremin. Or a bicycle. Or a calculus problem. It’s all the same. It’s the zen feeling of inner peace, and it’s related to an aesthetic that people today do not want to associate with technology. It’s not the technology that is in the wrong, it’s the mindset.

There is another great quote from this book in my facebook profile. I suggest reading that as well. This book has changed my life. I think it happened at a great point in my life. It fixed a haze of confusion and self-doubt and set me straight on a track of quality and motivation. It’s a VERY hard read, but very rewarding. I’m extremely satisfied and kind of have a great peace of mind after reading it. Ha!

Anyway, I need some pulp for a while. That was intense.

Kleeb Graduates College

January 7, 2010

1/4/09

Welcome to Kleeb Versus the World. This blog will be a mostly urban, socially progressive, musically-influenced viewpoint that will follow my activities following my graduation from Penn State University. I used to post to Live Journal in high school, with a tendency to make lists or long editorials about any relevant subject to that point in my life. My old posts can be found at http://www.livejournal.com/users/britches11596.

Since it seems that Blogspot is more mature (and convenient), I decided to retire LiveJournal and continue blogging here. I recently moved to Brooklyn on New Year’s Eve, 2008. I am living in the basement of an apartment in Bushwick with Drew. We have no jobs. We have drums, guitars, and bikes. We’ve been living on little food and scouring Craigslist religiously for free furniture and job opportunities.

The coming years of my life are going to be wild. I do not plan on getting a “career” any time soon, so long as I can pay my college loans and eke out an existence. So if you care to keep tabs on me, this is the place. If you care to check out my cooking blog, it is http://www.psupotluck.blogspot.com. It hasn’t been updated in a while. If you care to check out an interesting music blog, check out http://www.pukeskywalker.blogspot.com. I post to that occasionally as well. Other than that, everything will happen here. New life. New city. 2009.