I stepped away from Instagram on purpose a couple months ago to reset and evaluate what the platform was doing for me. I had become increasingly frustrated with the amount of obvious spam in my DMs. I hadn’t had a real conversation with a real person on Instagram in a few months. I didn’t want to become a video content producer and that seemed the way that folks making the sort of art I was making managed to breakthrough. I was bored with the hustle that wasn’t returning a net positive. I had made a few friends, but let’s be honest… social media friendships are mostly an illusion. Even the ones I thought I’d formed with people local to me were essentially vapor. I’d say I’m as much to blame, but I’m not. I tried. I showed up.
I was tired of being a party to a relationship that was overwhelmingly one-sided. Literally and figuratively. I was tired of being a product sold to advertisers. I was tired of the guilt I felt when I wasn’t posting material for my mostly-collage-centric followers. They didn’t give a shit about the recipe’s I was having a blast learning to make. The simple proof was in the sheer number of followers who’d spontaneously combust every time I made a post that wasn’t a collage.
Whatever. It is what it is. In the end, I had been thinking more and more about what I was actually getting from Instagram. And I realized it wasn’t very much beyond a timeline of my life, and I could realistically and more accurately reflect that elsewhere online if that’s what I really wanted.
So, I decided to take a break.
A couple of months later, when I realized that I didn’t really care about Instagram anymore I began plotting my final escape.
The idea was to return to the old days and setup a WordPress blog to become my primary online presence and walk away from the walled gardens that are your average social media networks. My own space would allow me to do whatever I wanted, however I wanted. I own a couple dozen or so domains and maintain an account with a webhost where I can play around with pretty much any open source web application I want. It wouldn’t take much effort to hang out another shingle.
Here I am again. Blogging. Everything and nothing.
This isn’t about followers or monetization. Its an outlet for whatever I need. Art in progress, house projects, culinary adventures, random lists, photographs, and memories.
17 x 11
1 part peels to 1.5 parts sugar by weight.
Coat peels with sugar in a jar. Allow to sit out on a counter for 24 hours. Strain the resulting liquid from peels into a storage container or bottle.
Peels can be dried and used as candied garnish.
Plant Shelf Unit
Three hours later.
WIP: At the Barbershop
I’ve been holding this barber pole piece for ages with plans to do something with it for the guys at my shop. I’ve been going to same place for almost five years now.
They sang happy birthday to me when I walked in for my 49th. Great guys.
Something of the Eternal
I finally made something.
And a third piece in progress.
- 10 Mint Leaves + 1 Lime Wedge
- Add 2 Lime Wedges + 2 Tbs Sugar
- Muddle Again
- Add Ice
- Add 1.5 oz Rum
- Top off with Club Soda
- Garnish with Lime Wedge
Shenandoah Easy Hikes
- Little Calf Mountain – MP 99.5 – 1.7 mi OAB
- Blackrock Summit – MP 84.4 – 1.8 Mi
- Loft Mountain Loop – MP 79.5 – 2.1 mi loop
- Pocosin Trail – MP 59.5 – 2.5 mi OAB
- Limberlost Trail – MP 43 – 1.3 mi loop
- Millers Head Trail – MP 42.5 – 1.5 mi OAB
- Little Stony Man Cliffs – MP 39.1
- Thompson Hollow Trail – Outside the Park
- Snead Farm Loop – MP 5.1
- Fox Hollow Trail – MP 4.6
Try a Little Tenderness
She Crab Soup
She Crab SoupYield: 2 servings
- 3/4 Cup Whole Milk
- 3/4 cup Heavy Whipping Cream
- 1 ea Sweet Onion, small, diced
- 1 ea Celery Stalk, diced
- 2 ea Garlic Cloves, minced
- 1 ea Small Lemon
- 1/2 pound Lump Crab Meat
- 2 tbsp Butter
- 1/2 tsp Salt
- 1/4 tsp Ground White Pepper
- 1/8 tsp Ground Nutmeg
- 2 tbsp All-Purpose Flour
- 1/2 cup Clam Juice (or Chicken Stock)
- 2 tbsp Dry Sherry (plus some for garnish)
- Fresh Parsely, chopped (plus some whole sprigs for garnish)
- Add milk and cream to a bowl and allow to sit at room temperature while you prepare the remaining ingredients.
- Finely dice the sweet onion and celery and add to a separate bowl. Mince and add the garlic as well.
- Zest the lemon and set aside.
- Coarsely chop the parsley and set aside.
- Pick through the crab and remove any shell pieces. Reserve 3 ounces of the crab for serving (1-1/2 ounces per person).
- Melt the butter in a cast iron pot. Add the onion, celery, and garlic. salt, ground white pepper, and nutmeg. Cook until the onions and celery are softened, but not browned. 5-10 minutes.
- Add the all-purpose flour to the cat iron pot, stirring to coat the onions and celery. Cook gently, making sure not to brown the flour too much. Deglaze the pot with half of the clam juice or chicken stock. Cook until the liquid mostly evaporates. 2-3 minutes.
- Add the milk, whipping cream, remaining clam juice or chicken stock, and the lump crab meat to the pot. Make sure to stir very lightly so as not to entirely break up the crab meat. Bring to a light simmer and cook, whisking often. About 10 minutes.
- Remove pot from the heat, add lemon zest, chopped parsley, and dry sherry. Stir to combine. Taste and season with additional salt or white peppers as needed.
- Add 1-1/2 ounces of crab meat to the bottom of each of the serving bowls. Ladle the warm soup on top. Float a teaspoon or two of the dry sherry on top of the soup and garnish with remaining whole sprigs of parsley.
Serve with toasted crusty bread or oyster crackers.
Leftovers can be stored in the fridge for up to two days.