tacit: (Psych dude)
I had plans to go to the cinema with Jim to meet R (an ex-housemate), and R's friend Steve who, incidentally, I fancy the pants off. Jim was driving my car, because I was putting on makeup in the passenger mirror for Steve's benefit. I quite often give Jim my keys - I'm not a bad driver, I'm just aware that Jim is a better driver than, possibly, everyone. He also likes to keep an eye on how my car is running. He is fully aware that I don't notice things like squishy tyres or squeaky brakes, and he's probably the only one who ever checks the oil.

Turns out that squeaky brakes are a problem. A week or so ago I got into my car after parking it on a hill and the handbrake felt stiffer than it had been. I ignored it completely, and ignored the occasional high whine, but Jim was all frowny as he drove and telling me I ought to get it checked out.

And then we approached a busy roundabout in the middle lane, with cars either side of us and cars ahead on the roundabout, and the brakes failed. Like, failed completely. They were operating at maybe 10% - which is nothing! - and made awful, awful noises. Apparently we left the brakes disks on the road behind us when they fell clean off the rear wheels. We had no option but to drive onto the roundabout. We were going a little too fast for comfort even had there been no other cars. We missed two cars by inches, and got honked at by a bunch of people, but, somehow, nobody got so much as a scratch.

We were about 500m and two more roundabouts from Jim's house. I'd have rolled to a halt somewhere awkward and obstructive, but Jim felt safe to get us home - we went along at about 15mph and he slowed us with the gears - which also sounded awful but not as awful as the brakes. This is part of why he rocks. My panic response is the hit the brakes; his evolves in nanoseconds into using the gears to slow down. I was already informing him of how much I loved and adored him by about 50 metres past the first crisis.

We switched cars, and after the cinema Jim drove me home - which is an hour round trip - and the next day he pulled a sickie to fix my car, and delivered it to my house. ♥

So, a thank you cake was in order.

Photobucket
cut for cake )

In the past few days I have also:

1) seen Eddie Izzard live. You have not lived until you've seen an intepretation of how dinosaurs might have attempted to communicate Christianity's ten commandments. Arghh roar argh argh, roar argh! Grr!

2) gone to Alton Towers, (it's a theme park) and queued up a lot to go in a halloween themed maze with actors whose job it is to scare and shock, and on rollercoasters that made my knees go wobbly. But not as wobbly as being in a car when the brakes failed.

3) applied for teacher training, although I remain unconvinced that I want to do it. But the deadline was approaching so I thought I'd cover that base and zap off an application. Pros: a honking great bursary while I train and then an actual salary. Cons: crowd control, having a boss, having to work mornings, having to go to teacher training.

4) eaten out four times. But they'd all been planned for ages and as such do not count as a spree: spending; calorific; or otherwise.

Phew. I need a lie in.

tacit: (Psych dude)
There are a bunch of things I've been meaning to post about, and for some reason they are all to do with food.

1) In looking for my passport last Wednesday night (at 2am when I was leaving on Thursday morning, shut up), I found some bathroom scales on my bedroom floor. I weighed myself for the first time in over a year, and found that I weigh the same as I did when I finished the year of manual labour! HOW IS THIS POSSIBLE? I suspect every gram of muscle I had has turned to lard and migrated to my ass, belly and hips; there is no other explanation.

2) I have been obsessively doing 'Five a day' - that is, a minimum of five portion of fruit or veg every day. Generally, a handful is a portion. Juice counts as one, regardless of quantity (from a small glass upwards). This is the best food-related drive I have ever been on. I am eating so healthily! I used to normally have three or four portions a day and sometimes suck and have one. Or, um, none. Those last couple have really cut into my unhealthy snacking. My skin is great, my fridge is stocked with all sorts of exciting things, and I get to feel virtuous even when I've also eaten 100g of chocolate because I ate the fruit/veg, and that is all that counts! I don't know how it would be for weight loss, but for feeling healthy and energetic? It's fabulous. I am going to do it every day for the rest of my life.

3) I had an email forwarded to me that contained a recipe for a five minute mug cake. I timed it and really it was more like 7, but that was from the moment I started pulling ingredients from the cupboards to the moment the microwave dinged. I can't really resent those extra two minutes, you know? Cake. In a mug.

[livejournal.com profile] deltacephei and I tried the recipe and pronounced it most acceptable. We also tried it using coffee and walnuts instead of cocoa and chocolate chips. The mix was very wet with the coffee, so I added another spoon of flour and didn't notice the resulting cake texture being any different.

5 minute mug cake )

It lacked that crispy yumminess of the edges of a fresh oven-baked cake, but, you know. Five minutes. I can't complain. If I make it again, I will switch the cocoa and choc chips for a tablespoon of swollen stoned dates, as per my mum's recipe for the best cakes in the entire world ever. In fact, hmm. *hunts* She emailed it to me. Here, have a go. Seriously: THE BEST.

tacit's mum's recipe for Sticky Toffee puddings )

I think it'll work really well adapted to the mug cake because in my mum's recipe, the cakes have the wonderful flavour and the sauce provides the texture sensation. :)

4) I baked my first ever grown-up cake for my mum's 60th. It was good! I learnt how to make ganache. I planned to do more icing modelling, but I started so late in the evening that I just didn't have time. /o\ You can't tell from the picture, but the icing was smooth and the whole thing was a geometric joy - with a ton of chocolate and cake inside. \o/ I now have an LJ tag for cake. I posted a small slice of it to the other side of the world in the guise of Marie Antoinette, but that is another story.



5) At the posh French hotel my mum's birthday was based in, I chose a dessert that had a long description that I couldn't adequately translate, and an in-built menu translation that said, 'pineapple, pineapple, pineapple'. What with my recent fannish love for Psych, I didn't see how to resist. It turned out to be three things: a piece of hot pineapple baked in foil with a vanilla pod; a light pineapple mousse on a sponge base; and a shot glass of pineapple sorbet with something very boozy in it. *swoons* It had three pineapple leaves jabbed artistically into the mousse, swirls of something pineapply doodled on the plate, a rakish line of coconut flakes, and swirls of something bright red and yummy... I wish I'd had a camera with me, it was amazing.

I have not weighed myself again since I got back from France. I do not want to know.
tacit: (Default)
Because I think it's cool, here is (blurry) evidence of a birthday cake I made at the weekend. It took all of Saturday to make, and various households in the Nottingham/Derby area are still eating it, but it did look pretty good. You can't really tell how excessive it was from the pictures - it was about 30cm (a foot) tall, and even had icing ivy growing up the side of the house. Those little dyed marshmallow bushes had perfectly formed icing flowers on them. The roof was a victoria sponge with chocolate icing, and the walls were coffee cake with butter-coffee mortar, and between them they used a mammoth twelve eggs. Is was like Extreme Cakemaking, the sport.

I need a job.



And, because I know that at least [livejournal.com profile] dodificus finds stories of My Tragic Lovelife deeply amusing, I will share with you the latest.

I went off boys for a while after several excruciating first dates, but then met a guy (at a funeral!) a few months ago who reaffirmed to me that there are some nice, normal, single men out there, even if good chemistry is a bit more hit-and-miss. So, I rejoined my old standby match.com and have had email conversations with a few potentials - no bad first dates yet, because none of them were appealing enough to subject myself to that nonsense. And then I discovered that PWP guy was back on the market.

First off, let me reassert the opinion that he is absolutely gorgeous. Also, funny and kind and cuddly and smiley. I do not know what I was thinking when I let it fizzle out. He'd just come out of a long term relationship and I'd been single forever, so we were out of synch and he was reboundy. I do tend to freak out when I get a new guy - either my entire future happiness rests on the perfect construction of the next text message, or I am bewildered by not being single... or both - so we were a bit out of step at times. But, gorgeous! Wonderful! He even called me on my shit, once, which I appreciated - I'd gone from total!floozy to too!cool!to!text and he eventually sent a late night text going 'WTF?!' But in a good way that totally fixed my dumb behaviour. ♥ At lonely, life-hating times, he's The One That Got Away, who I kick myself over. And he's back on the market! \o/

I spent an embarrassingly long while constructing an email to him yesterday - light, breezy, non stalkerish; while in reality I was not feeling light or breezy, and very much stalkerish. I agonised to [livejournal.com profile] deltacephei and [livejournal.com profile] naye about what to say. The mail is still up in a tab, waiting for me to read it over with the distance of a day or two before I decide send/not.

BUT HE EMAILED ME FIRST!!! He wants to know if I'm up for a drink! I no longer care that we have very little in common. I'm gonna meet up with him asap.

I am keyboard mashing over a 3 line email.

\o/ !!! &hearts

Yes, it will blatantly all go pathetically wrong. But this part? Is FUN!
tacit: (Default)
So, it's been a slightly random week.

  • Housemate JJ started a new job designing tractor parts at his Dream Company - his eight year old brother is practically frothing at the mouth with excitement, and JJ's only a bit more grown up. C and I made him a cake when he heard he'd got it the picture's come out a bit orange - the tractor was bright yellow. Those rear treads are curly wurlys and the exhaust is liqourice. It was made to a tight two hour deadline, and took us more than a week to eat. Also, we were out of unsalted butter so I put lard in the icing. Shhh!


  • I decided to go to Barcelona for a fortnight from next weekend - C and JJ are going to Turkey so I'd be home alone and bored if I didn't arrange something. I'm going to do a week of Spanish classes with the aim of boosting myself into the third year evening class - I've dropped out of the second year twice and am not sure I want to learn the first (gusta) term's (gusta) syllabus (gusta) again. Me no gusta.
  • I sprained my elbow. Seriously, who does that? It was my own damned fault, obviously - I was chasing C (it was all perfectly reasonable and constitutes a valid form of conflict resolution) and there was an incident involved my hand around her ankle, her lunging around a corner, and my arm not quite following. Well. Parts of it did.
  • I shovelled two tonnes of hard core from one end of the workhouse to the other. Left handed. Three more to go. Oy.
  • I got a text from the long distance relationship guy from this spring. I really don't get the point of this text. It was basically just hi, are you single. To which I basically replied, yes, still single. And then he didn't reply. So, because I believe he's a genuinely nice guy who isn't just asking to snort and laugh about my extended singleness... what the hell does he want? Not conversation, not a booty call... what's left? Idle curiousity? Hmph. He could at least share what's going on with him.

Courses of bricks laid (mostly in the rain):

Zokutou word meterZokutou word meterZokutou word meter
15 / 58
(25.0%)

And we're concreting the downstairs floors this week! No more mud! Yey!

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August 2013

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