Remember

On September 11, 2001, I was sitting in my office.

I had recently ended my morning call to my rather competent client, and hadn’t yet gone to do battle for my client with my rather incompetent management at work.

Things started getting strange out in the hall outside my door.  It was a buzz that was unnatural.   One of those moments that remains in your mind a long time afterwords.

Internet access got slow.

My immediate boss came in and asked me to check the news.

That was how I learned that thousands of people were in the process of being murdered by a terrorist attack in NYC, The Pentagon, and Pennsylvania.

Suddenly my incompetent management problems at a University on North Broad Street in Philadelphia became even more unimportant than they were before, it became a September Tenth Problem.

Later we had heard of this once ever commercial put out by Budweiser Beer.  This went out on the Super Bowl in 2001 during Half Time.

I missed it.  Then as now, I aggressively skip commercials.

If I see a commercial there’s going to be a compelling reason for me to watch it.

As much as I try not to share Youtube links, here it is in case you have not seen it.

The sheep does not fight. It fleece.

Happy Veteran’s day to all who are serving, and have served, of every nation.

First, a history lesson and perhaps a little alternative history.

If it had not been for the Last Bourbon King Louis of France, the history of the United States would most likely be very different indeed.

You see, The Continental Congress was running low on funds and managed to secure money from the French government of the time to continue the fight.

That benefited the French King since it helped the balance of power to tip somewhat in their favor against the British and King George. It also directly influenced France since that money came from somewhere, directly from some French pockets. In this case, taxes were raised. If you ever heard the saying “Let Them Eat Cake” it was referring to the poor at that time, in France.

That led to the particularly bloody French Revolution, the overthrow of the French Monarchy, establishment of the La Premiere Republique Francaise, the extermination of the French King and Marie Antoinette, the terror, and later Napoleon’s Empire and The French Conquest of Russia.

You can easily take that further and say that the added instability after his downfall caused the later upheavals, revolutions, and wars in Europe, all the way to this current day. Added poverty caused by the war, and Civilians always suffer most under a ground war in any given country. and the increased taxes and poverty to go to fight those later wars including the Russian Revolution, First and Second World Wars, Korea, Vietnam …

You get the picture. It is entirely possible to say that some of those wars, and some of the later new countries would not exist as a result of American Independence.

Even if I believe that this situation has been a benefit to my own personal life and existence.

Enough history and alternative history.

I did do a passing search and look around. I find no comment as to whether it is factual or not on Snopes or other places, however it is widely quoted. I’ve heard it said even by my own father who fought to liberate Manila and other places.

This would be my turn to quote the story.

Since it is veteran’s day, this particular story is quite appropriate. In my mind, it is more of a comment against officious people in positions of power and uneducated people than The French…

 

Passport? What Passport?

Robert Whiting, an elderly gentleman of 92, arrived in Paris by plane with his son.

At French customs, he took a few minutes to locate his passport in his carry on.

“You have been to France before, monsieur?” the customs officer asked sarcastically.

Mr. Whiting admitted that he had been to France previously.

“Then you should know enough to have your passport ready.”

The American said, “The last time I was here, I didn’t have to show it.”

“Impossible! Americans always have to show their passports on arrival in France!”

The American senior gave the Frenchman a long hard look.

Then, he quietly explained, ”Well, when I came ashore at Omaha Beach on, D-Day in 1944 to help liberate this country, I couldn’t find a single Frenchman to show a passport to.”

You could have heard a pin drop.

Crumpets and a Simplified Recipe

 If you write, everyone has their complaints and comments.

If you write about anything that has measurements, and are writing from one of the three Non-Metric countries, you will get some crank somewhere complaining about “You Should Use Metric”.

First, shut up.  You are being pointlessly rude.  Blog writers have no control over the government.  I wish we did.

Second in this case, this recipe is easier using Imperial Measurements.  “For Round Numbers.”

Actually, that’s not completely true, this recipe boils down to a bunch of ratios.  And of course the ratios are forgiving and flexible.  Since the local conditions may effect how much fluids your recipe will “take up”, you may add a little more or a little less the next time you try this.  For us, today, in a dehydrated house in Florida’s Dry Season, 14 to 10 was fine.  If you think that someone in a farmhouse in the 1700s used 2% milk instead of raw whole milk you just may need to relax a bit.

Crumpets.  The first time it was written down, that we know of, the recipe appeared in a cookbook in 1769.  Metric was not invented, and cooking was simpler back then.  No refrigeration, “critters” were in the house, measuring was a “guess”, and so on.

You have so much of this, you add double that amount to it and a spoonful of a third ingredient, and you are done.  Cook until it looks right.

That’s this recipe.

As for why the US does not use Metric?  We do, legally.  All “our” measurements are defined in Metric anyway.

The reason was that back when the French offered us an Official Kilogram the first time in the very early days of the Republic, the Official Kilogram was stolen by Pirates, and by the time we could get another one, it was deemed too late to get everyone to switch.

Seriously.  Pirates.  They must have thought that the ship was carrying Spanish Gold Doubloons and they got a Kilogram.  Probably made of brass.  Yarrrr!

 

Another case of the French helping out the United States that the people should realize here just how good a friend they have been throughout our history.

 

Thank you, France.

 

This recipe is all about Ratios. It also comes in two parts.  The yeast mixture, and the ratio of Flour to Fluid.

 

Simple:

 

  • Yeast and Salt – 1 Teaspoon.  I used a common one to measure.
  • Sugar – 2 Teaspoons.  Literally right out of the drawer.

 

  • Flour 10 parts
  • Water 7 parts
  • Milk 7 parts.

Now to codify this a bit to a proper recipe:

Ingredients

  • Yeast – 1 Teaspoon or about 5 Ml
  • Salt – 1 Teaspoon or about 5 Ml
  • Sugar – 2 Teaspoons or about 10 Ml

 

  • Flour – 10 ounces or about 283 Grams
  • Water – 7 ounces or about 198 Grams
  • Milk – 7 ounces or about 198 Grams

Process:

  • Add all ingredients to a large mixing bowl except the Flour.
  • Whisk the Flour into the mixture slowly until you have a smooth loose batter.
  • Cover the batter with a towel and allow to double in size and there are bubbles forming.

Cooking:

  • Preheat your griddle to about 350F/175C.
  • Generously grease the griddle with butter or oil if you prefer.
  • If your griddle begins to smoke, reduce temperature.
  • Generously grease the Crumpet Rings, if you use them, with butter and place on griddle to warm.
  • Add batter to the middle of the Crumpet rings until they are filled side to side but do not overfill vertically.  About half way up the Crumpet ring for a Crumpet.  Thicker Crumpets won’t bubble as well but will produce a slice-able English Muffin.
  • Cook Crumpets until they begin to bubble, then wait until the tops are rubbery and perhaps dry to the touch.
  • Remove each Crumpet from their ring gently, and flip it to the uncooked side.
  • Cook until they begin to brown.

Remember

It is September 11, 2015.

If you would like to explore the National September 11th Memorial Site for the Museum in New York, the link is here.

The 9/11 Commemoration Ceremony will be held in New York at 8:40 AM.  The link for the webcast for the event can be found at this page on the Museum site.

If you would like something perhaps a little more uplifting, the last remaining rescue dog is being given a Dream Day.

Yes, it has been 14 years.  It doesn’t mean we need to forget.