August 30, 2011

Shakes, science, and sex, drugs, and rock n roll

Sooo, I survived my first earthquake. It happened about 12:30 last night and was a 2.9 on the Richter Scale. I didn’t know the Richter Scale went that low. It shook the house and knocked a book off my housemate’s desk. He was shocked it didn’t break any windows or knock out the power. I told him this house withstood the 1906 quake, a 2.9 is like a fart in the wind. He was sufficiently terrified that he has packed a duffel bag with a change of clothes, water, and some candy bars in case the “big one” comes. He said he doesn’t want to be running around hungry and in his “skivvies” when buildings starting coming down. I slept through the entire thing.

Anyway, today was my last day before real work starts so I relaxed and read in a coffee shop for a bit and then headed to the California Academy of Science (the place I was trying to find yesterday in the park). Turns out it was just around the next corner when I got hungry, lost interest, and found some doner kebab. This place is unreal. It was $29 (minus $3 if you show proof of public transportation to get there, which I had) and I thought this to be pretty steep. I was wrong, it was worth every cent. It is a natural history museum, an aquarium, a zoo, and a planetarium all rolled into one. I saw a slice of a 2000 year old redwood, a leafcutter ant colony, a shark and stingray tank (I almost dropped my camera into the shark tank), every type of underwater ecosystem in the aquarium, a 4-level rainforest/butterfly dome (which costs like $12 at another museum which will remain anonymous- and this one is much better and not extra $$), a black mamba- one of the most poisonous snakes in the world, penguins, an albino alligator and dinosaur skeletons resembling the ones in Smithsonian.

The entire building also has a living roof…2.5 million pounds of living biomass to insulate the building and soak up the elements. Incredible.The planetarium also is included in the cost; this is 45 minute show in IMAX form except the entire dome ceiling is the screen. It was narrated by Jodey Foster and took my awed colleagues and me from the beginning of the universe with the Big Bang to the origins of life in the deep oceans to the inside of a chloroplast. For biology majors and general nerds like me, this place is like a crack house for the late “Rack ‘em” Willy, may he rest in peace. I spent 5 hours there and felt like I owed the place more money for such an incredible scientific journey, so I bought a travel coffee mug with a wooley mammoth on it in the gift shop on the way out. Don’t make fun.

Since I have some time I’ll also tell you about my neighborhood: Haight Ashbury. Quite a place. For those of you who don’t know, it is the heart of the Hippie movement in the 1960’s. It is ground zero for sex, drugs, and rock and roll. I’m sure some of our parents’ generation got to experience it in it’s heyday and if you are reading this, I can assure some of the same people are still here, and they have yet to wash or cut their hair. The neighborhood is now known for its “alternative lifestyle.” It makes the Highlands in Louisville look like a prep school quad. Here are a couple shop signs:

And I love this street sign on the pavement in the park. It is professionally painted which suggests it was mandated by some sort of city government agency.

Ok, off to go grab a drink in Russian Hill with an old college housemate we will call Cristobal Peron. Hopefully these posts won’t taper too much after real work starts tomorrow. Miss you all…

August 29, 2011


I had orientation today. It was overwhelming. I also got my UCSF ID badge. Aaand enough about that...boring. After orientation I had a couple hours of daylight and decided to explore Golden Gate Park since my house is right on it's edge. This park is enormous. I was trying to see how far of a walk it would be to get to the science museum that is inside the park, but the blisters I began cultivating somehow steered me to a gyro shop. DONER. I don't know how it happened. Please see the post on the "Ode to Doner Kebab" for more insight into my obsession with the delicious treat. Followed by some baklava...just what I needed.

On the way home I realized it is possible to actually hike inside the city of San Francisco.

Also, luckily, my house is very close to the San Francisco Yard Bowling Center. The SFYBC! Thank God I got a place near such a sports mecca.

Here is a pic of my house. It is pre-1906 earthquake. Old.

Now Harold the Landlord is a nice guy but the man watches his bottom line. He refuses to pay for internet, even though the $70/month bill would be very easily distributed by adding $7 to the 10 tenants' rent. He did not heed my business advice and I am too lazy to call the internet company myself, so I have remedied the situation by frequenting the local coffee shops and cafes to use their wireless. For unlimited internet I have to purchase a $1.80 delicious cup of coffee, a $2.99 pint of Anchorsteam, or a $3.25 glass of pinot noir. Darnnnnn... I write this.

August 28, 2011


This is “Stud,” which is a great name by the way. I have commandeered my beautiful bride’s blog for a bit to update family and friends on my activities in San Francisco. For those who are interested in food and not San Francisco, I plan on eating here if it’s any consolation. I’m here for a month doing an away rotation in emergency medicine (the best medical specialty). I already did a month in the ED at UL so hopefully I won’t look like a moron out here. I will likely still look like a moron. Anyway, after breaking the new sunglasses Alex bought me for my birthday by snagging them in my 50 pound bag at the airport, I finally made it to the house where I will be residing. My cabbie was a great tour guide. He had a Phd in some sort of art field and drove cabs to help pay the rent. The “glass is half full” part of me: wow, even the cabbies have Phds here. The “glass is half empty” part of me: wow, even Phds have to drive cabs here to pay the rent. My landlord is an ex-hippie named Harold who has dreadlocks to his knees. The house reminds me of my old frat house, campus gas, but it’s a roof over my head and a comfy bed to sleep. I decided to jump head first into the whole bus thing and head downtown. The bus driver kindly walked me through the bus-riding process without laughing at the newbie…I was very appreciative. I made it downtown, tried to get my glasses fixed, then decided to walk to Chinatown. After a little hike I finally made it and found the place that had the most Chinese people eating and plopped down at a table. What better first San Fran meal than Mongolian beef? I didn’t take a pic so I found this one online…

Now if you know me, you know I LOVE spicy food, but if you order this, do NOT eat the red peppers included unless you want to die. This is for your own safety. I’m pretty sure they are there for garnish and a good laugh when a tourist decides to come in and doesn’t know any better. Please learn from my mistakes. I then decided to walk off the burning pepper from Hell that was in my stomach by walking up to Coit Tower for a nice view of the bay.

Amazing views. The walk down to the bay was very unique. It is a public set of stairs but goes right through peoples’ gardens and backyards. It’s about 1000 feet down wooden steps through gardens and thick vegetation. I didn’t take a picture but I felt like I was in the jungle. At the bottom, I walked past the piers back to Market street where I hopped on the bus and headed home. The people in my house: Roland from Holland doing research at San Fran General Hospital, Andrea from Romania who is a dental student, Toby from Pennsylvania doing an away rotation in trauma surgery, Deana from Germany doing research at Parnassus, Mupina from Mississippi doing a rotation in Surgery, and several other people I haven't yet met. We had a party for Deana’s birthday and some Dutch, Romanian and German people came over… Toby and I were the only ones speaking English.
Today, I scoped out the routes to get to Parnassus and General Hospital, and then headed back downtown again. That bus route goes right past Alamo Square and the "painted ladies." I didn't see Bob Saget

I then walked over to Nob hill to buy a used bike at a store where you can sell it back after a month...only to find the store had moved to Fisherman’s Wharf. I walked the 2 miles down the hill only to find that the new location hadn’t opened yet. Guess I’m bussing it this month. Great views though...

At Fisherman's Wharf, I was starving so bought a clam chowder bread bowl and then scarfed it before the pigeons could eat it/poop in it.

So good. I took the old historic cable car most of the way home and then walked the rest. For a parting thought, I passed my neighborhood Laundromat “Get the Funk Out” on my walk home in Haight Ashbury. Love it.

August 24, 2011

Daily Fluff

Another way Beau stays cool in the relaxing in the baby pool at the dog park.

August 19, 2011

Curry Mayonnaise

So back when I blogged, I mentioned that Stud was stirring like a mad man making sauces from the Good Stuff Eatery Cookbook.  Along with the Sriracha Mayo, Stud also made a curry mayo that has been delicious on a variety of sandwiches since it appeared in our fridge.

 Curry Mayonnaise
2 c. mayonnaise
1/4 c. curry powder
1 c. sweetened condensed milk

Measure. Combine.  Stir.  Done.

So the recipe in the cookbook calls for a whole cup of curry powder and since we had it, we used it.  It make CURRY mayo. I think from now on we will use more of a 1/4 c. when we make it.  We have used it on sandwiches and you can't use too much without the curry overpowering everything, but I like messy sandwiches.  So we have adapted.  The sweetened condensed milk is a great addition though - it makes it much more of a spread than just mayo.

August 17, 2011

Artichoke Pesto

I’m back!  At least for now.  Three classes plus work is really getting to me.  Whew.  But Stud and I have been eating, and Beau has been adorable, so I do have plenty of updates for you!  The first being some of my favorite things, pureed and tossed together.  Artichokes, basil, pasta.  So good.

 Artichoke Pesto
1 can artichoke hearts (frozen would be better…but I can’t find them)
1 c. packed basil leaves
1/8-1/4 c. pecans (really any nut will work)
3 cloves garlic
Olive Oil
Red Pepper flakes (optional)

Process the nuts, basil, garlic, red pepper flakes, and artichoke hearts together in a food processor until everything is pretty well chopped. With the processor running, drizzle in olive oil until the pesto reaches the consistency of a paste.  Cook the pasta according to package instructions and reserve about ¼ c. of the cooking liquid.  With all the good starch in it.  This makes the pesto more like a sauce than a paste.  Toss it the pesto with the pasta and extra liquid and enjoy!

I mean you can’t go wrong with these ingredients.

August 2, 2011

Daily Fluff

So work has been crazy busy and combined with class on Tuesday, Thursday, AND Saturday leaves little time for cooking or blogging.  But I have some good stuff to post...soon.  Here is a lovely photo of Beauregard to tide you over.  It's part of a new series titled "How Beau keeps Cool in the Summer."

How Beau keeps cool in the Summer - Chilling in the fountain in the Park!


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