Dysmey Post Archive > Pages for 2004 > Vickie's Birthday 2004 Edition

Vickie's Birthday 2004 Edition

birthday girl

Today is my sister Vickie's birthday, but she is somewhere in Washington State with my other sister Tina. Sometime this weekend they will begin the long journey home across the more neglected parts of the country: parts where farmers and ranchers and Lakota dwell: and fewer and fewer of them, too, as a corrupt American economy drains the land of its young people, who can't make a living there anymore.

It turns out the USB PC Card I got my sister crashes her laptop every time she uses it. That's a load of crap. But there's an upside to that: We found a USB port on the laptop, that we never knew was there. And it works after I tested my USB minidrive on it. Now Vickie can move her work data from the laptop to an external hard disk.


My department give a demonstration of the wireless development project to the library staff on Thursday morning. More people came to the demo than we thought, so that the room was almost full. The demo itself was a success, I think.

Part of the demo was the use of the department's handheld (a Dell Axim) to display the wireless test site. I made the site look as good as I could.

I myself am not satisfied with it.

One of my difficulties with ASP.NET is that I can made a page look the way I want it when I am making it, and ASP.NET interprets the page differently on cellphones (WML 1.x) and handhelds (HTML 3.2). That's what it's supposed to do. What it should not be doing is stripping tags and clumping paragraphs into a glob.

This is one of the major problems with ASP.NET. The other is an incompatibility between it and Openwave browsers (on many cellphones), which causes 'method not allowed' errors when the target server resends information to the browser ("postback"). These are issues that need to be ironed out before we can start building the site in earnest.


After a two-month absence (during which I moved back home and got a job), I went to the monthly Whoosier Network meeting in Indianapolis.

The feature serial was 'Full Circle', the first of the "E-Space" trilogy that signaled the end of Tom Baker's role as the Doctor. It was followed by the first episode of a very old movie serial based on the comic strip The Phantom.

fish and chips

After the meeting we went to this small eatery—a fish-and-chips place run by a couple of British guys. There were posters of football (soccer) teams all over the walls, and copies of the Union Jack on every table.

I ordered the fish and chips with curry. The fish was a big batter-fried chunk nearly a foot long. And the chips were exactly that: lots of chips of potato no longer than an inch. They are 'fries' only in the sense that they are deep-fried in oil; else they don't resemble the typical American bar-and-grill fries (let along the McDonalds/Wendy's type).

The fish and chips were served on wax paper imitating the newspapers that fish and chips are traditionally served on. Both were tasty.

As for the curry…well…it's not bad, but let's say I will order the gravy next time. I don't think my tongue will get used to Bharati (or British-interpretation-of-Bharati) spices.


And now for your Esperanto lesson.

The word for potato is terpomo. This literally means 'earth apple' in imitation of the French pomme de terre. There are all sorts of ways to cook this versatile tuber: bakita (baked), fritita (fried), boligita (boiled), rostita (roasted). From this state crop of Idaho and Maine we also get the following:

potato chips, the British variety : Chop them into long blocks, deep-fry them, serve them with fish.
French fries : Peel them (optional), slice them lengthwise into strips and deep-fry them. Serve with sandwiches (usually hamburgers). And no, I am not going to call them "freedom fries".
potato chips, the American variety : Peel them, slice them into very, very thin plates and deep-fry them. Serve with sandwiches. Americans can't seem to get enough of this very fattening food.
hash browns : Peel them, chop them finely, pan-fry them with onions, serve them with bacon and eggs for breakfast.
mashed potatoes : Peel them, cut them into chunks, boil them for an hour, and mash them up with milk. Garnish with butter, margarine, garlic or chive. Serve with beef or chicken.
potato soup : Usually made with sliced or chunked potatoes, milk, onions and sometimes meat boiled in a pot. Nowadays powered mashed potatoes often substitute for the fresh kind. Toscania terpomsupo is the zuppa Toscana they serve at the Olive Garden restaurant.

Copyright © 2004 by Andy West. All rights reserved. Written on 7 August 2004.