Totally Unauthorized

A side of the film industry most people never see.

My own living history project

I have a very elderly (86) aunt who, by some miracle of genetics, has full recall of days gone by. She’s agreed to take questions about her experiences during the Great Depression and WW2.

She survived a ruptured appendix before the advent of antibiotics, potential starvation during the 30s (Grandma sewed for the WPA and stood in line for food rations), war rationing, and tons of other stuff.

She’s a wonderful lady and has a ton of stories to tell.

Please do keep in mind that said aunt was a child during the Depression and the war, so political questions will probably be met with “I don’t know”

But she does have a very good memory and is willing to let you all pick her brain about daily life during that period.

Don’t pass up the chance – she’s not getting any younger.

Leave any questions in the comments and I’ll pass them on.

Filed under: Non-Work, Off-Topic, , , , ,

Some interim reading for you

Since I’m currently unemployed and the blog has been very, very boring, I thought that I’d recommend some light reading written by a friend of mine which I just know will make up for my general suckiness (no pun intended).

Carly Milne , who has link over there to the right, has written a book about her time working in porn. Carly was a publicist (which I didn’t even know pornos needed) and has some hilarious stories to  tell. She’s fabulous, and we all need to work together so she can finally buy that 24 carat pool boy she’s always wanted.

Here’s the link: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00DCJZ4MU

My one foray into lighting for a porn was, well, interesting. It was well before I got into the union and couldn’t afford to be picky about jobs (“Porn set on an un-airconditioned stage in the Valley for not much more than gas money? Sure!”).

To be fair, I currently can’t be all that picky about jobs, but it’s totally not the same thing. At all.

I’m sure the plot (what there was of it) was the same as in any other porn and honestly all I remember was the broiling hot stage and one of the women telling us that one of her implants was leaking silicone into her body, but she couldn’t get them removed because then she wouldn’t work.

Also, in retrospect, the craft service table was unacceptably carb-laden.

You can buy the book for the low, low price of $2.99, or, if you’re an Amazon Prime member, you can borrow it for free.

Either way, I guarantee you won’t be disappointed!

Filed under: Non-Work, Off-Topic, , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Doctor Dreamboat to the rescue

A few years ago, my chiropractor retired.

Actually retired, mind you, not gave up the office and saw some patients on the side for barter.

I was concerned, as good chiropractors are incredibly hard to find.

Good chiropractors who take my insurance are like unicorns. I know they’re out there somewhere, it’s just a matter of what to use to bait the trap.

So, a month ago, when I went for a Groupon massage at a “wellness destination” in Santa Monica, I actually talked to the resident chiro and was impressed as he seemed very knowledgable about active people, plus he was super-duper cute.

Relax, ladies (and gents), he’s married. With kids.

He’s also the best chiropractor I’ve seen since Dr. Magic Fingers called it quits.

And, despite the Wellness Destination’s penchant for catering to the jet-setters, my co-pay after the insurance is shockingly affordable.

So, for the next few weeks, I’m going to be getting tortured by an incredibly fit and attractive man who knows just how to loosen up my hip flexors.

Sweet. I’m even hearing rumors of possible upcoming work.  Life is good.

Filed under: life in LA, Non-Work, Off-Topic, , , , , ,

Sitting while baking

As of late, I’ve been baking my own bread.

Mainly because I’ve got nothing but time on my hands while there’s no work and my toe heals, but also because I’m broke and $4 of flour makes a heck of a lot of bread.

As an added bonus, the oven in this apartment actually heats evenly* making bread baking possible. And cakes, but that’s a lot of sugar.  And eggs.

I tend to prefer the heavier whole grain loaves because I like the taste and the texture.

The recipe I’ve been making lately is for Grant Loaves. It’s a no-knead bread and has a really good taste.

There’s a recipe here: http://www.deliaonline.com/recipes/type-of-dish/bread/quick-and-easy-wholemeal-loaf.html

I make a couple of modifications:

The recipe is reduced to only make one loaf, not three.

I use three parts whole wheat flour to one part rye flour.

Instead of warming the flour in the oven, I  put the flour in my metal KitchenAid mixing bowl and set the bowl in hot water.

Flour, warming.

Flour, warming.

Occasionally stirring, this heats up the flour in about the same amount of time that it takes the yeast to start foaming.

I find that even ‘no-knead’ breads require a slight bit of kneading, but if, like me, you’re lazy, you can knead in the KitchenAid with the dough hook attachment. Goodbye, sore and sticky hands.

kneading, the lazy way

kneading, the lazy way

The other thing I’ve found about really heavy breads is that they take a hell of a lot longer to rise than one would imagine.  If the recipe states for it to rise 45 minutes, give it an hour, in a warm oven. This, in my experience, makes the bread lighter and not so much like a door stop.

Once this bread starts cooking, it won’t rise any further, so let it get to bread loaf size.

P1010530

Bake at 400F for 40 minutes, then turn out onto a rack (or an unoccupied burner on the stove) to cool.

Finished

Finished

I like to take peanut butter and jelly sandwiches on really long bike rides – they won’t spoil at room temperature, and this heavier bread wont get soggy. It also makes a great pancake substitute – slice, toast, butter, syrup. All the fun without the mess.

If you’re interested, the actual recipe I use is from The Practical Encyclopedia of Baking by Martha Day.
Reduced to make one loaf.

3 cups whole wheat flour

1 cup rye flour

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon active dry yeast

1 3/4 cups of warm water

1 teaspoon brown sugar

Sift the flour and salt together and warm slightly

Sprinkle the yeast over 2/3 cup of the water. After a couple of minutes, stir in the sugar. Let sit for 10 minutes.

Make a well in the center of the flour and stir in the yeast mixture and remaining water. The dough should be slippery. Mix about a minute (I mix it about 5 minutes), making sure all the dry flour is worked into the mixture.

Pour dough into  a greased loaf pan, cover with oiled wrap and let rise, in a warm place, for 45 minutes (or an hour). I turn the oven on ‘low’ and then when it starts to heat, turn it off.

Bake at 400 degrees for 40 minutes.

One of my neighbors (the nice lady who only speaks Farsi) will smell the baking bread and show up at my door with a plate, wanting the heel of the loaf, which she loves.

I’m happy to share – after all, she shares the tea her daughter sends her from Iran, which is delicious.

*The oven in the old apartment was a heartbreakingly beautiful early 1950s  O’Keefe and Merritt that had an… unpredictable cold spot. No baking there. Also, having to light the burners and oven with matches is a colossal  pain in the ass and I never want to deal with it ever again. Fuck design. I want functionality.

Filed under: Non-Work, Off-Topic, Photos, , , , , , , ,

Ouch and double ouch

I decided I’d finally had enough of the bathroom and cleaned the shower.

Since those ‘no scrub’ cleaner never seem to work, I have to get in there with some scouring powder and elbow grease to get the tub clean.

Once I’d scrubbed and rinsed and scrubbed again and was satisfied that I’d gotten as much funk off the tile as possible, I reached out of the tub to get the glass cleaner to start work on the doors.

I lost my balance, and toppled forwards. Lucky for me I caught myself on the towel rack before my face hit the floor, but in the process I got a toe caught in the metal track for the shower door and heard a muffled ‘pop’.

I decided to ignore it and finish cleaning the bathroom.

When I was done, the toe wasn’t swollen, but it was black and blue.

Really black and blue.

And hurting.

I figured I’d broken it, so  I put some ice on it and decided to wait it out.

Over the next couple of days, the bruising got darker and darker until  today I decided to use the health insurance while I still have it and go see the doctor.

Who told me what I already knew – the toe was fractured and would heal eventually.  No treatment needed.

At least it was good news.

 

Filed under: Non-Work, Off-Topic, , ,

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