Thursday, October 23, 2008

since i know you just visit to look at pictures...

i didn't bake the cake. i just iced & decorated it.
"swans". pate a choux body & wings filled with vanilla pudding, topped w/whipped cream, white chocolate head.
an army of cream puffs i made at home.

dean's list

the dean & me, we're like this ::crosses fingers::.

every tuesday & thursday after our sanitation class for the last few weeks, a fellow student & i have been visiting the dean with a list of grievances regarding the teacher...we'll call her CL (crazy lady) for short.

CL is hands down the worst instructor i have ever had. the worst. here are my reasons why:
  1. she touts opinion/ideas as fact. ex: stated that medical information (particularly info such as recent std check-ups) could be accessed via credit reports on request.
  2. seems to have no real knowledge of the info she's supposed to be teaching. ex: told the class that a HACCP is required for establishments that serve sprouts (it's only required for places that are literally sprouting plants) & that no food can be served on ice (it can -oysters, for instance- as long as the melting water is draining away properly, etc..).
  3. kicks students out of class for no reason.
  4. is highly unapproachable & extremely defensive when asked to clarify information.
  5. completely unprofessional.

i had the last of it last thursday when we had our 25 question quiz/review. she mentioned that it would not be graded & that we would not be going over the answers in class.


are you wondering how a pop quiz w/out going over the answers is a review? well, so were my classmates and i. the class then erupted into a cacophony if questions & concerns. trying to establish some order, i decided to talk on behalf of my class.

me: "ms CL, i would like to, on behalf of the students, discuss with you options regarding the review. the class understands that this quiz is not graded & that it is only a review. however, we would just like to ensure that the answers we've chosen are correct so that we can review what we know or will need to prepare for by tuesday's exam."
cl: "no, i can't go over the answers. And i can't tell you why. it's personal."

seriously, what sort of answer is this? not satisfied, i prod further...

me: "we're not questioning having to turn it in. if you'd like, we can turn them in first or even have the students switch papers and grade them in class" (although it wouldn't matter since the fucking things aren't supposed to be graded anyway, according to her).
cl: "no, you'll get them back on tuesday."

i pointedly state that it makes no sense for her to give us these papers back on tuesday when we're starting the exam that same day. her response, in a shrill & defensive tone (like she's scolding me) is "if you don't want to do the review, then pack your stuff up & go home. ALL OF YOU, GO HOME!!"

a moment after this eruption, she screams at me "FINE, you've forced it out of me. I made special arrangements with a few students that this could be their final exam. This was a personal matter & you've forced me out of it!!"

see why we call her CL?

i have 3 issues with this: 1. if it's a final test for a handful of students, it wouldn't matter if we went over the answers AFTER she had us turn the papers in. 2. her syllabus states that there is absolutely no way to make-up any assignments/exams or do extra credit. so this "special arrangement with a few students" is completely bogus & fucked up. & personally as a person who is paying her salary, i deserve to know that information. 3. i was livid that she talked SO disrespectfully to me. i was nothing but calm, articulate, & professional.

anyhow, long story stopping before it gets any longer, everyone in that class should thank another classmate & me for the 3.5 (or above) they'll be receiving after our pow-wows with the dean.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

COPS -seattle

there was quite a bit of traffic at 11:30pm, crossing the bridge on i-5. i sighed with a bit of annoyance, but could see from my distance 5-6 cop cars flashing all their lights so i hoped that everyone in the accident was ok.

but then as i slowly drove by, i could see it wasn't an accident.

it was a woman with arms crossed over the back of her head slowly walking backwards towards the cops -several of them with their guns pointed at her.


i checked the fire/9-11 reports log & it was an assault w/weapon situation. the voyeur in me wants more details.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

stiff neck

i think i've figured out one of the contributors to my neck pain: studying.

i don't have a proper desk & office chair, so i sit on the edge of my bed & perch over one book on my lap, another on a chair that's too hard to sit on comfortably for a long period of time, & maintain to fail sitting up while i type up my notes.

in addition to the copper pot & standing mixer on my christmas list, i'm adding masseur/massage therapist. preferably tall, lean, muscular, & named sven.

after watching b.clinton's guest appearance on the daily show (09/23)

as someone who understands the reason, significance, & importance as to why the presidency is limited to two terms, i have to say, i wouldn't mind overlooking another term (or few) for former president Bill Clinton.

today's economy

if you had purchased $1000 of Delta Air Lines stock one year ago you would have $49 left. with Enron, you would have had $16.50 left of the original $1000. with WorldCom, it would be down to $5. but if you had purchased $1000 worth of beer one year ago, drank all the beer, then turned the cans for the aluminum recycling refund, you would have $114 cash.

based on the above, the best current investment advice is to drink beer and recycle. it's called the 401-keg.

a recent study found the average american walks about 900 miles a year. another study found americans drink, on average, 22 gallons of alcohol a year. that means, on an average, americans get about 41 miles to the gallon.
-author unknown

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

leaving on a jet plane (maybe?...hopefully...?)

"does anyone want to go to spain next week?"

::raises hand:: umm, yes please.

"room & board is taken care of. you just need a current passport, some spending money, & to purchase the plane ticket...which is around $1400 since it's last minute."

::lowers hand:: i thought this was a rhetorical question.

our program was invited by the spanish consulate to partake in the tapas & wine festivities going on next weekend. so sad that i have neither a current passport or $1400. free housing, food, & wine!?!

oooh, chef harris, why did you tell us about this amazing opportunity? it's like you've poked me in the gut with a stick, repeatedly, for your amusement.

chances to cross the ocean are not yet dead. the baking/pastry program is working out the details for a study abroad/exchange program with a school in florence, italy. once they finalize the details (mainly regarding how credits would transfer/classes correlate to what quarter), i'm signing up. the cost would be the sscc tuition + room/board + spending amazing deal since tuition would normally be around $2200/month + $1300 for housing.

fruit tarts

these were done last week, i've just been lazy about getting them posted onto the blog.

aren't you impressed by my flower shaped by plum slices?

both tarts are decorated with a combination of kiwi, peach, & plums.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

burn notice


my first baker's battle-scar!

while adjusting a tray of thin pears crisping in the oven, i nicked my inner forearm on the sheet pan.

i love my 1-inch burn mark.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

gateau aux noix

a trio of lavender-walnut tarts.

gateau aux noix (walnut tarts/cakes) originate from grenoble, france (located at the foot of the alps) -known for their walnuts. this particular variation of gateau aux noix was often taken on longer trips & up the alps because it does not require refrigeration.

simple & lovely

i wouldn't have thought to combine the two flavors. the lavender is very subtle & doesn't leave that "i have perfume in my mouth" taste on your tongue.