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Ummm... Other?

Fagabeefy Fudge

Mid-Century Menu has gifted us this week with Beef Fudge. The recipe calls for 1 cup of roast beef, with the "crusty, dry parts removed". Ofc you would remove the crusty, dry parts. Nobody wants crusty beef in their fudge, c'mon now.

I mean, I would have never, ever, ever thought of this on my own, but maybe if you are the wife of a rancher and you have beef coming out of your ears, you think up ways to use it.
So, even though I had my doubts about the excited notes of this particular recipe ("It adds crunchiness! It adds nutrition! This is the only way my family likes fudge!"), I still got my beef ready.

And then her husband had to eat it.

"It smells steaky."

"Just eat it."

"I don't want to."

But, then...

"You're freaking kidding me."

"Nope, this is delicious."

"It doesn't taste like beef?"


"How can that be? It smells like steak!"

"I don't know."

IT SMELLS LIKE STEAK. Who cares how it tastes? It SMELLS. LIKE. STEAK.

This sort of reminds me of that scene in Chocolat when they have the big party, and they're pouring chocolate sauce over the meat. Like it's gravy. Chocolate sauce is so much not gravy. Just no.

By min | February 29, 2016, 1:14 PM | Ummm... Other? | Comments (0)| Link


Cinnaman used to be a good guy, but lately he's turned to crime and has been attacking our eggrolls.

By fnord12 | February 21, 2016, 11:25 AM | My stupid life & Ummm... Other? | Comments (2)| Link

Time to Shop for that Solar Generator

I'm looking at you, fnord12.

On 22 June, 2001, Tara O'Toole and Thomas Inglesby of the Johns Hopkins Center for Civilian Biodefense Strategies, organised a war game like no other. The two researchers, working with an array of bodies such as the ANSER Institute for Homeland Security, set out to simulate the effects of a biological attack on the US. The project was called Operation Dark Winter.

What they discovered was that the country was ill prepared to cope. Within two weeks there would be enormous civilian casualties, a catastrophic breakdown in essential institutions, and mass civil unrest. Food supplies, electricity and transport infrastructures would all collapse.


With all this in mind, the Guardian spoke to the academic and author Nafeez Ahmed, who has studied global crises and mass violence, and recently advised Ubisoft on the authenticity of its post-pandemic video game, The Division. We asked him, in the event that society collapses, what should we do. Here's what he suggested.

  1. Don't hole up alone with hundreds of tins of baked beans

    "There's a survivalist response which is 'I'm going to hide away all by myself'," says Ahmed. "You're probably not going to survive like that - you have to cooperate with other people. This may not be obvious at first because you may see others as a potential threat, but the moment you become a loner, you're likely to lose simply because you're now part of a dog-eat-dog environment.

  2. You need to go rural ... but not too rural

    "Generally speaking, when academics have run these scenarios on predictive models, cities are found to be extremely vulnerable simply because there are so many supply chains that are interdependent, and so many people there with you who are also dependent on these supply chains. People will be competing with each other for these scarce resources, which creates violence."

    However, the other extreme - total isolation - may also not be a good idea, for the reason given above. You need a group of differently skilled people who can work cooperatively in order to build your own supply chains and flourish.

  3. You need access to running water and agricultural land

    "In a scenario such as a pandemic, you need to be somewhere you can access running water and/or other sources of energy," says Ahmed. This isn't just for sustenance - fast running water can also be harnessed to provide power - as long as you thought to buy a small-scale hydroelectric generator. The problem is, most of us don't spend our weekends buying up on personal energy solutions - just in case. "If we're talking about a sudden collapse, then the chances are you won't have a solar power generator to hand," confirms Ahmed. But at least if you're near water you can drink it.

    "There's also the need to grow your own food," says Ahmed. "Again you're better off doing that with a group of people on a large area of land where you can apportion labour. That's not going to work as well in an urban environment."

  4. Establish communications

    The basic method of acquiring information will be a wind-up or solar-powered radio. However, to actually communicate with the outside world, or with members of your community, you may be back to walkie-talkies, two-way radios or even a citizen band radio - the problem there being that, in the event of a major catastrophe, you'll only be able to communicate with 1970s truckers. All of these will require electricity, so unless you've stockpiled batteries or fuel for a traditional generator you may be stuck. However, we're now seeing both solar and hydrogen-powered generators - and, of course, there's the nano membrane toilet which sorts both your power and sanitation issues in one go.

    "You could loot a PC World for broadband routers and then hit a garage or supermarket for some Pringles cans," says Bloch. "With those, you can probably build a reasonable network across a scorched suburb."

    Why a Pringle can? Well, it can be used to create a cantenna which would be capable of boosting a Wi-Fi signal from your computer.

  5. Don't necessarily trust the government or law enforcement

    "Never 100% always trust the military - especially when they're in your own territory," says Ahmed. [duh. i've seen Fear the Walking Dead and 28 Days Later. you never trust the government of law enforcement.]

    "The government has said that they need to have these continuity operations and we've said, 'okay I guess we need those' - we've given our consent by not really complaining about it. But at the same time, we know that's not the way we want the country to run.

    "So the moment we shift into a state where suddenly the police and army, this unelected minority of people, have all the power, and where all the political processes are suspended then, yes, there is a justifiable level of skepticism. Populations need to be asking, when is this situation going to end? At what point is this temporary suspension of our normal consititution going to lead back to the normal way of things?

  6. You may have to be self-sufficient for a long time

    "In a global pandemic scenario, you're looking at a long time before everything is safe," says Ahmed. "With influenza, for example, we're talking about a lead time of several years before society can get to grips with it all. If you really wanted to stay safe, I think you'll need to survive for a decade before civilisation sorts itself out."


And start figuring out that cantenna business. And find us some land by a lake.

By min | February 10, 2016, 12:15 PM | Ummm... Other? | Comments (0)| Link

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