Monday, August 19 2019

minecraft, files, carbonara, and plans

Dear Journal,

Good morning to everyone, and happy Monday! Marissa and I are heading into a long stint of busy weekends. The theme of this weekend was definitely "rest while you can". We did as little as possible, taking every chance we could to sit on the couch as a family and keep a low profile. It was definitely relaxing, but the Sunday scaries were palpable, and not even just on Sunday.

We squeezed a lot of time out of this weekend to play Minecraft. It's funny how Marissa and I are already exhibiting different approaches to wilderness survival. I'm sleeping on a bed in the middle of a random island and spending most of my time in my mine, where I've just kind of dropped things where they're most practical and have opted to take care of the aesthetics later. Last night I wandered over to Marissa's house, where it seems she's going with the opposite approach. There's a giant winding staircase that leads far into the sky to a platform. Sure, not as practical, but a hell of a view.

I also caught some time to clean up the plex server. I combed over my movie collection and fixed up some misnamed files. I couldn't be more pleased with the new file server. On Friday, I spun everything down and added two more drives into the storage pool. To free up USB ports, I had to move the boot drive, and for the most part everything was perfectly in tact when it powered back up. Next time I get a chance, I'm going to set up both the router & file server to automatically reboot something like once a week at three in the morning. Even though a good system shouldn't need frequent reboots, it's a good way to ensure everything is correctly configured and self-healing, and that especially comes in handy with unexpected reboots, like power outages.

Also did a bit of cooking this week. I made carbonara last night, which was a luxurious pasta made with egg, grated cheese, and pancietta, but I made the fatal flaw of over-salting the pasta water. Combined with the salty pork, the whole thing just tasted like a sodium party. I packed up some for my lunch today, but I think my fingers are still swollen from yesterday's portion, I may just be eating out for lunch today.

In my defense, there are way too many videos encouraging you to make pasta water "taste like the ocean", but not nearly enough videos warning you about over-salting. Which is especially a problem if you use the pasta water in the sauce. Because this has happened a few times already, I need to find time come up with my own formula for a balanced salt-to-water ratio. Currently my process involves me adding salt incrementally to a big pot of water, stirring and awkwardly lapping it with a spoon to check for flavor. I haven't tasted the ocean in a while, maybe my reference point is just a little out of date.

This week is the intern's final week, so I have a lot of planning and coordinating to do to transition them out of the summer program. We're also going to have them over at the end of the week for a pizza party. As a joke, I adapted the term "pizza party" at the beginning of the internship as kind of a vacuous promise for them getting their work done, so I thought it would be funny if I actually threw one for them at the end of the year. This Friday, we're going to have them over and make a sfincione together.

I was also hit by the realization that I have less than two weeks to get everything together for my high school reunion. I have a few dangling email threads full of suggestions, but in the interest of time I may just have to start making some decisions. I'm sort of glad it snuck up on me, to be honest. It's one of those commitments that's been sort of looming over my head all summer and I'm partly relieved it's already here. Plus, it shouldn't be too difficult to plan. It's just a pot-luck at my high school with a few dozen people.

In case you too have a busy week ahead, I hope you got some you time in this weekend. The hectic end of summer plans are converging right in front of us in a perfect storm, but look on the bright side. At least you don't have to dread it any more - it's already here, and by the end of the week, it will be half gone.

Have a wonderful week, everyone.