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About fairffaxx

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  1. The blonde woman in the Liberty Mutual ad who brandishes a pen & whines about how expensive it is to repair minor damage reminds me of the blonde actress in a cute red & white dress who appeared in the Liberty Mutual ad whining that only lawyers read the policies they buy. Is it the same person? If so, she seems to have gained weight & aged (just like real life!).
  2. Small Talk: The Wagon

    Red on the outside or on the inside? Doesn't really matter -- there are no true yams grown in the USA (per respected sources such as Alton Brown & Sara Moulton & the late great Vertamae Smart-Grosvenor) -- whatever you've got is fine for any American recipe.
  3. What's For Dinner?

    I miss helping at the polling place, but I no longer have the stamina necessary for the obscenely long hours. I remember how grateful we were to receive leftover Halloween candy on voting day, & now I always encourage people to donate theirs to those poor souls.
  4. That's the commercial with the excellent Etta James song "Something's Got A Hold On Me" -- not sure whose version of it, but it's a good one. Maybe the puppies would appreciate the ritual more if it were put to music?
  5. The Baking Topic

    I've only used the olive oil recipe for fruit pies & there's been no taste from the oil (mine isn't extra virgin or expensive, canola oil would probably work the same way). I'd forgotten about the herbs version for savory pies/tarts/quiches -- I'll try to get around to that soon.
  6. The Baking Topic

    Is it similar to this recipe using olive oil? Omit the herbs for a sweet tart or pie, of course -- & it's vegan, for when that matters.
  7. Trader Joe's

    Trader Joe's chocolate-covered espresso beans are a nice thing to have around on their own, but they're an excellent amendment of the very good Hearty Boys' Espresso Shortbread recipe, replacing the "1/4 cup espresso beans roughly ground". And I was grateful for the comment on the Food Network site that produced a much neater result than I'd otherwise be capable of:
  8. Mad dogs & Chevy fans go out in the midday sun?
  9. Favorite Commercials

    I hate their commercials too, but I've just ordered a woman's Tshirt from them because hope springs eternal that a good one does exist somewhere.
  10. Pet Peeves

    It's a term found in crossword puzzles as an example of the highly rare double vowel usage (not counting "ee" & "oo") in English -- see, also: aardvark (from the Dutch).
  11. Pet Peeves

    Thanks for the info on shredding, everyone. It all makes sense -- especially the part about cats going nuts over the machine's noise (that's one of my excuses for not running the vacuum cleaner....). I'm lucky to live in a city where the recycling services include shredded paper, so no problem disposing of it. Aldous Huxley would quail at our brave new world where we must shred our refuse in order to maintain our privacy.
  12. Pet Peeves

    Aren't home-sized shredding machines cheap? I got one years ago at Staples for approximately $20 & it still works fine -- even if I had a year's worth of documents to shred, it probably wouldn't take more than half an hour, then dump the stuff into the recycle cart for weekly pick-up. Why do people need professionals with special equipment?
  13. Or a blender. The only thing I've ever found it useful for was dissolving in cold liquid (lemonade, cocktails, etc.) rather than hot.
  14. Pet Peeves

    The best Halloween decoration I've ever seen was in a front yard that I passed years ago on an early morning walk in the twilight just before dawn. A clothesline was stretched diagonally from the porch to a tree in a corner of the yard. Hung on it with clothespins were a long black dress, a black shawl, a pair of striped stockings, a black fabric hobo-style shoulder bag, a pair of long black gloves, & a black witch's hat with a wide brim & a long pointed crown. No blood & gore needed -- just so subtle & clever & funny that I've never forgotten it.
  15. Chit-Chat

    I love the idea of giving books with personal inscriptions. But maybe there should be some way of avoiding duplication (especially since duplicates couldn't be exchanged at the store after being inscribed)? Something like an on-line gift registry, which guests could check to see which books had already been chosen, then enter their own choices for others to see. For babies, anything by Sandra Boynton is fun ("Barnyard Dance" teaches about animals & music) -- for a little older, "Pooh" & the verses -- for grade school, the "Little House" series & Lewis Carroll's "Alice" books. When I was in first grade, my uncle across the country sent me a gift certificate to a bookstore in my city & I splurged on Young Adult hardbacks that weren't available at my local library (biographies of Florence Nightingale & Elizabeth I). I suppose modern kids would have to order from Amazon, which doesn't seem like nearly as much fun but maybe they love that?