Articles by " Adam"
1 Dec
2014

Kards Unlimited Calendar of Events: December!

gianttree

This pic­ture is from The Dai­ly Mail, but in spir­it, the dri­ver of that car is KU.

OH MY GOODNESS YOU GUYS.  IT’S DECEMBER AND KU IS SOOOOOOOOOOOOOO IN THE HOLIDAY SPIRIT!  WE LOVE THE HOLIDAYS AS MUCH AS ANY HUMAN BEINGS CAN LOVE ANY SINGLE THING!  AHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!  CLICK READ MORE TO FIND OUT WHAT WERE UP TO!

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17 Nov
2014

Let’s talk about the miracle of Homemade Bread!

Dear god, yes!

Dear god, yes!

Ok folks, here’s the thing.  I do not go in for this New Age, wheat­less non­sense.  Give me carbs and give me a lot of them.  I could eat noth­ing but bread for the rest of my life and die a hap­py man. This man could live by bread alone.  And the best kind of bread, the very best kind, is home­made bread.  Bread is one of the old­est cooked foods known to man (it’s approx­i­mate­ly 30,000 years old!) and there’s a good rea­son why.  Bread is freak­ing deli­cious.  Also it’s a way bet­ter way to eat wheat than just as cream of wheat or what­ev­er (ugh.)

So Novem­ber 17th is Home­made Bread Day, i.e. the best day ever.  So in hon­or of the best day ever, let me give you the recipe for my favorite home­made bread, Eng­lish Muffin Bread!  (From allrecipes.com which is the best web­site.)

INGREDIENTS:
2 cups milk
1/2 cup water
2 table­spoons corn­meal
6 cups bread flour
2 (.25 ounce) pack­ages active dry yeast
1 table­spoon white sug­ar
2 tea­spoons salt
1/4 tea­spoon bak­ing soda
DIRECTIONS:
1. Warm the milk and water in a small saucepan until very warm (125 degrees F/50 degrees C). Light­ly grease two 8x4 inch loaf pans; sprin­kle corn­meal inside pans.
2. In a large bowl, mix togeth­er 3 cups flour, yeast, sug­ar, salt and soda. Stir milk into the flour mix­ture; beat well. Stir in the remain­ing flour, 1 cup at a time, until a stiff bat­ter is formed. Spoon bat­ter into pre­pared pans. Cov­er and let rise in a warm place for until near­ly dou­bled in size, about 45 min­utes. Mean­while, pre­heat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
3. Bake in pre­heat­ed oven until gold­en brown, about 25 min­utes. Remove from pans imme­di­ate­ly and cool.
Here it is in all its toasted and buttered glory.  Bask in its amazingness.

Here it is in all its toast­ed and but­tered glo­ry. Bask in its amaz­ing­ness.

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7 Nov
2014

Get out your deerstalkers and greatcoats, it’s Sherlock Holmes Weekend!

This is an actual promo picture from the Cape May Holmes Weekend.  Yes, you need to be there.

This is an actu­al pro­mo pic­ture from the Cape May Holmes Week­end. Yes, you need to be there.

Yes, my dear Wat­son, Novem­ber 7th through the 9th is a week­end of Sher­lock­ian shenani­gans in Vic­to­ri­an Cape May, New Jer­sey.  But even though the actu­al events are hap­pen­ing out there (I was TOTALLY there this sum­mer, but it wasn’t Sher­lock week­end then sad­face) any­where is per­fect for cel­e­brat­ing how awe­some Sher­lock Holmes is.

Anyone with a mustache game this strong must have been awesome.

Any­one with a mus­tache game this strong must have been awe­some.

First of all, if you’ve nev­er read a Sher­lock Holmes sto­ry, read one right now.  This blog post will still be here when you’re done.  Sir Arthur Conan Doyle wrote some pret­ty baller crime sto­ries.  And while they’re not exact­ly what you will have come to expect from oth­er mys­tery writ­ers, they have this fan­tas­tic ten­sion and the char­ac­ters of Holmes and Wat­son are just so great.

They are so perfect it hurts.

They are so per­fect it hurts.

So now that you’re famil­iar with the source mate­ri­al, let’s talk about two of the recent adap­ta­tions of the­se works to the screen.  The BBC’s Sher­lock is prob­a­bly the best show that is cur­rent­ly avail­able.  Peo­ple are con­stant­ly com­plain­ing about how the series (which is what the BBC calls sea­sons, i.e. the first sea­son of Sher­lock is called the first series) are so short, but they kind of have to be con­sid­er­ing each episode is about as long as a nor­mal fea­ture-length film!  Fea­tur­ing the act­ing tal­ents of Bene­dict Cum­ber­batch as Sher­lock and Mar­t­in Free­man as Dr. John Wat­son as well as an absolute­ly flaw­less sup­port­ing cast, I’m real­iz­ing that this post is start­ing to sound like a review/commercial for Sher­lock so suf­fice it to say that every­thing about the show is per­fect and you need to watch it.

The oth­er impor­tant adap­ta­tion (IMO) is the duo (soon to be trio!) of films fea­tur­ing RDJ as Holmes and Jude Law as Wat­son.  Peri­od pieces as opposed to the mod­ern update pre­sent­ed in the TV show, RDJ and Jude Law are almost as per­fect as Holmes and Wat­son as are Cum­ber­batch and Free­man.  Plus the movies are a lot more star-stud­ded and have peo­ple like Rachel McAdams and Stephen Fry in them, so that’s pret­ty BA.

These two: also perfect.

The­se two: also per­fect.

So enjoy this week­end, my fel­low Holmes lovers!  And take heart!  Series 4 begins film­ing some time in 2015…  That’s not actu­al­ly good news, is it.  It’s ok, though.  It’ll be worth the wait, I’m sure.  In the mean time, enjoy the­se posts about Sher­lock from Buz­zFeed!  Here’s one!  Here’s anoth­er!  Here’s a third!

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1 Nov
2014

Kards Unlimited Calendar of Events: November

thanksgiving-dinner-21

Novem­ber might be the best mon­th of the entire year.  The weath­er is final­ly juu­u­u­u­ust the right mix of pleas­ant­ly brisk but still bright and hap­py, apple-derived and -fla­vored things abound, and, of course, Novem­ber has the year’s best hol­i­day, Thanks­giv­ing!  (Sor­ry, Christ­mas.)  There’s plen­ty of oth­er great times in Novem­ber, though!  Click READ MORE to find out what’s going on!

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30 Oct
2014

They write the books, you read the books, everybody’s happy!

Novem­ber 1st is Nation­al Authors’ Day!  An author is to book lovers what a great chef is to gour­mands, what an oasis is to dehy­drat­ed desert trav­el­ers, and what a favorite ted­dy bear is to chil­dren.  Amer­i­can writ­ers, from Hawthorne to McCarthy, from Poe to Hem­ing­way, have iso­lat­ed, dis­tilled, described, and defined Amer­i­ca, what it is to live here, and what it is that makes Amer­i­cans who we are.

It’s pret­ty much impos­si­ble for me to pick a favorite Amer­i­can writer, so I’m going to give you my top 5!

grrm

5.  George R. R. Mar­t­in! — Not nec­es­sar­i­ly part of what you’d call clas­sic Amer­i­can lit­er­a­ture, but my fan­ta­sy obses­sion runs too deep for me to men­tion favorite Amer­i­can writ­ers and not include him.  If you love the TV series (i.e., if you have a pulse), give the series that the show is based on, A Song of Ice and Fire, a try!  They’re pret­ty great!

edna

4.  Edna St. Vin­cent Mil­lay! — Since she’s not a nov­el­ist, she’s again some­one you might not think of as a clas­sic Amer­i­can author, but Mil­lay is my mother’s favorite poet and she is there­fore a big part of my lit­er­ary his­to­ry.  Her work is deeply affect­ing; a true emo­tion­al roller coast­er.  If you’re not famil­iar with Millay’s poet­ry, read The Bal­lad of the Harp-Weaver.  It will make you cry, though, so just be advised.

mary

3.  Mary Robison! — Her post­mod­ern nov­el Why Did I Ever is prob­a­bly my favorite book that I ever read for a class.  Report­ed­ly writ­ten over the course of sev­er­al years with each sep­a­rate snippet/section/vignette on a sep­a­rate index card, the book is hilar­i­ous and touch­ing and the eas­i­est read of any great book ever.  Get on it.

kurt

2.  Kurt Von­negut, Jr! — To any per­son who reads Eng­lish, this man needs no intro­duc­tion.  Cat’s Cradle is one of the best books ever.  That is all.

donna

1.  Don­na Tartt! — Full dis­clo­sure, I have not found time to read The Goldfinch yet.  I am, how­ev­er, com­plete­ly in love with The Secret His­to­ry.  For a per­son whose oth­er favorite books are LotR and Pride and Prej­u­dice and The Count of Mon­te Cristo, I nev­er real­ly knew that I could find a (rel­a­tive­ly) con­tem­po­rary, non-his­tor­i­cal, non-fan­tas­tic piece of lit­er­a­ture that I would love as much as I love those oth­er books.  But I found it in The Secret His­to­ry.  That book rules.

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27 Oct
2014

You want ‘em, we got ‘em! Halloween hats for all!

Every­one knows that the per­fect hat is inte­gral to any good cos­tume.  Hats make win­ners or losers.  The hat is the king of Hal­loween.  With that in mind, a few cus­tomers helped us employ­ees show you some of the best ones. Enjoy!

It's a fez.  Dylan wears a fez now.  Fezzes are cool.

It’s a fez. Dylan wears a fez now. Fezzes are cool.

Our friend David preferred the pirate king look.  It suits him.

Our friend David pre­ferred the pirate king look. It suits him.

Everyone, meet Keira the confused robot!  (She wasn't sure how she could look robotic, but I think she nailed it.)

Every­one, meet Keira the con­fused robot! (She wasn’t sure how she could look robot­ic, but I think she nailed it.)

Lorax-Athena reminds you to be kind to the environment.  She speaks for the trees and you do not want to hear that disappointed tone.

Lorax-Athena reminds you to be kind to the envi­ron­ment. She speaks for the trees and you do not want to hear that dis­ap­point­ed tone.

This is JP's attempt at a stern Prof. McGonagall face.  (It pretty much is just her normal face, you guys.)

This is JP’s attempt at a stern Prof. McG­o­na­gall face. (It pret­ty much is just her nor­mal face, you guys.)

Viking-Yogi will pillage your heart with his cuteness.

Viking-Yogi will pil­lage your heart with his cute­ness.

And I am ready to stalk some deer.  And/or dangerous criminal masterminds.  #MuntjacsOrMoriarty

And I am ready to stalk some deer. And/or dan­ger­ous crim­i­nal mas­ter­minds. #Munt­jac­sOr­Mo­ri­ar­ty

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9 Oct
2014

Happy 1,832,668th Birthday to Count von Count!

the-count_3

He’s the hap­pi­est, friend­liest vam­pire ever.

I think I’ve delin­eat­ed my feel­ings about children’s tele­vi­sion pret­ty clear­ly on this blog.  The short ver­sion is that I am in love with PBS and all it delight­ful­ly edu­ca­tion­al and adorable pro­gram­ming.  And one of the pow­er­hous­es in both adora­bil­i­ty and edu­ca­tion­al­i­ty is Sesame Street.  Seri­ous­ly, is there a bet­ter way to teach chil­dren to count than with a pur­ple vam­pire-type guy with a sweet East­ern Euro­pean accent?  I sub­mit that there is not.

Plus he has pet bats named Grisha, Misha, Sasha, and Tattiana. Yes.

Plus he has pet bats named Grisha, Misha, Sasha, and Tat­tiana. Yes.

 

That’s why today, Octo­ber 9th, is so impor­tant!  It’s the birth­day of Count von Count!  Aka The Count!  Ah ah ah!  The Count was always one of my favorite char­ac­ters on Sesame Street as a kid.  For one thing, he had a cape, which obvi­ous­ly enhanced his awe­some­ness.  Plus, he had a sweet accent!  What’s not to love?

 

 

 

I still love all those things about the Count, plus I also love that all his songs have this great Roma vibe that is total­ly rock­in’.  Basi­cal­ly the Count is a guy to cel­e­brate.  So make sure you keep care­ful count of your cel­e­bra­to­ry drinks in his hon­or tonight!  (Thir­teen!  Thir­teen shots!  Ah ah ah!)

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29 Sep
2014

Notes from Our September Book Club Meeting!

gifskirt

We had a real­ly great dis­cus­sion about Aimee Bender’s “The Girl in the Flam­ma­ble Skirt.”  Even though the book left many of us feel­ing con­fused and slight­ly let down, there was a lot to love in Bender’s writ­ing style and the book def­i­nite­ly made us ask a ton of ques­tions about gen­der roles, the ways dif­fer­ent peo­ple deal with dif­fi­cult emo­tions, and what the heck was going on with the guy who lost his lips.

It was real­ly cool to add such a staunch­ly post-mod­ern short sto­ry col­lec­tion to our Club’s reper­toire, and I for one will cer­tain­ly be pur­su­ing a few more Ben­der books in the future, if for no oth­er rea­son than to find out if she’s always so frick­in’ weird.  Some of the sto­ries almost every­one liked were Marzi­pan, about a fam­i­ly deal­ing with the deaths of loved ones in very strange ways, The Heal­er, a tale of two mutant girls who grow up in a small town, and The Ring, about a wom­an, her lover/fiance/thief, and their quest for real­ly great presents.

We decid­ed unchar­ac­ter­is­ti­cal­ly quick­ly that our next book will be Mar­garet Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale, which is one that at least a few of us have been mean­ing to read for a long time.  Its dystopi­an world will hope­ful­ly sate October’s appetite for the macabre and weird, and it’s def­i­nite­ly a clas­sic, so we’ll be expect­ing a big turnout and a spirit­ed dis­cus­sion!

handtale

One last point of order: the love­ly KU couch will be tak­ing its win­ter vaca­tion start­ing today, so our next meet­ing will be held on Octo­ber 19th at 6 p.m. at the Shadyside Cof­fee Tree Roast­ers (right next door to KU!) and we’ll be send­ing out our usu­al email reminder with par­tic­u­lars closer to that date!  Hope to see all our favorite book club­bers (that’s all of you!) then and there! <3!

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