Monday Thoughts

So many thoughts in my under-caffeinated brain this morning. As I sit here, I have the local news running in the background. My brain is already turning to today’s work and writing and the fact the day will be disrupted because we have workers coming in to finish the last of the repairs on the garage. Then there’s the fact I’m still fuming over the lousy quality of a piece of beef I thawed and tried using for dinner last night–tried being the operative word.

Starting with the latter. I’m not the best cook in the world but I’m a pretty good one. I can count on one hand and have four fingers left over the number of times I’ve had to throw out a meal I’ve cooked¬† because it is inedible. Last night was the reason. Well, to be honest, I only had to throw out the frigging roast. The veg and gravy were fine. But the beef? Shoe leather would have been easier to eat.

No, it wasn’t overcooked. It was cut all wrong. The idiot butcher thought it a good idea to trim ALL fat off of a roast of all things. There was absolutely NO marbling in it. And, no, I didn’t choose it that way. Let me explain.

A couple of weeks ago, my son gave us short notice that he was coming into town. Between work and trying to get the house cleaned, I didn’t have time to go to the store. I placed an order for delivery from the one place I dared order meat from. Usually, when something ordered is out of stock, I get a notice ahead of time and am given the chance to accept or reject the substitution. Not this time. The groceries were delivered and I discovered instead of the 3+ pound roast I’d ordered, I had this thing–a vac-packed piece of meat that was supposedly a roast and barely came in at a pound and a half. No way that was large enough for the three of us, even if I supplemented it with salad, veg, rolls, etc. So out came the Instant Pot and the frozen full-sized roast I had in the freezer.

Fast-forward to yesterday afternoon. I pulled out the now thawed smaller imposter roast and opened the package. Hmmm, the cut looked wrong. It looked like someone might have asked the butcher to cut down a larger roast and he did a piss-poor job and this was left over. No fat. No marbling. No single, cohesive piece of meat. This was 1.5-lbs of meat that could fall into three pieces if you looked at it wrong. Which was misleading as I’d find after the cook because it was filled with gristle. Honestly, what it looked like was what I came away with the first time I tried to remove the bone from a pork loin.

Anyway, I cooked low and slow after searing the supposed roast. I brought it to a medium which is as rare as Mom will eat. Let it rest. Went to carve it and there was no way. The grain went every which way. It was filled with gristle. Hell, shoe leather would have been more tender. Neither of us could eat it and it went into the trash. So, no more ordering meat even from that particular store.

What else?

Shaking my head at the Dem politician who wants to impose a 1000% tax on what he terms as “assault weapons” because, you know, that will totally prevent the criminal element from getting and using an AR or similar weapon. I’m still trying to process the Uvalde situation. To say the response was fucked up is putting it mildly. I rarely find myself agreeing with Joaquin Castro about anything but, like him, I have to wonder why the district police chief–who not only ordered the officers not to breach the classroom but who arrived on the scene without a radio (really? WTF?!?), who had problems with cellphone comms, who apparently didn’t know how to communicate with the 9-1-1 call center and therefore didn’t know anyone was still alive in the classroom, and the list goes on because each day there’s a new excuse explanation for how it all played out–had not been placed on administrative leave while the situation is investigated.

Other than that, I’m not commenting on the shooting yet (or any of the others that have happened recently) because the only information we’re getting from MSM is filtered through their pro-gun control lens. As we’ve seen with the Uvalde tragedy, they are so quick to rush to judgment, they don’t verify information before reporting it.

I did take time over the weekend to watch the first episode of both The Staircase and The Gilded Age. The former, if you aren’t familiar with it, is the latest retelling of the events leading up to (and following) Michael Peterson being charged with the murder of his second wife. Colin Firth stars as Peterson. It was interesting seeing him in that kind of a role and he does an excellent job at it. The supporting cast is good and Toni Collette as Peterson’s wife is, as always, exceptional. It will be interesting to see how the rest of the mini-series plays out.

The Gilded Age was created by th same guy behind Downton Abbey. It stars, among others, Christine Baranski, and is basically DA in NYC. This isn’t the sort of thing I usually watch, but Mom likes DA and I thought we’d give it a try. I’m glad we did. Mom enjoyed it a great deal. I tolerated it. Baranski is excellent as always. It was interesting watching her as the haughty upper class “old money” and sniffing with disdain at the new money neighbors who have moved in across the street. We’ll be watching more, at least as long as Mom enjoys it.

I even sat down and played some Mass Effect Legendary Edition over the weekend. I needed some down time after the last few weeks. The ME:LE has been sitting in my games library for a while. Since I’m working on Destiny from Ashes right now, I thought it the perfect time to dust it off and see how it plays compared to the original. OMG, I love the upgraded graphics, especially for ME1. They didn’t muck with the plot–which is a very good thing. But ME1 now feels more like a newer game. The controls are a bit better, especially the camera. So I sank a few hours into it, enjoying a return to the ME universe.

I wrote the last two chapters of Destiny from Ashes over the weekend as well. Damn, it was difficult and for more reasons than this book ends the current story arc for Ashlyn and company. I won’t say anything more than that right now. Look for it July 14th.

And don’t forget that Jaguar Bound is out on Amazon and will be out on the other major outlets this week.

Twenty years ago, the world first learned of the existence of shapeshifters and other paranormals. It hasn’t always been easy but now Normals and Paras live in relative peace. Mackenzie Santos played a large role in making that happen. Mac has spent most of her adult life enforcing the law. Once she started turning furry, that law included Shifter law. Because of her and those like her, the world is a safer place.

Or is it?

A new threat appears on the horizon, one that puts both Paras and Normals in danger. Will Mac be able to meet and defeat this new challenge or will it turn into her greatest fear: war between Paras and Normals?

Check it out!



  1. Re: Uvalde
    What I don’t understand is why the city, county, state, and federal LEOs follow the directions of a mall cop equivalent? The professional Uvalde City Police should have taken command of the incident immediately.

    1. That is one of my questions. I want to see the agreements between the agencies, etc, especially between the School Cops and the local LEOs (UPD or SO). The Feds can’t technically come in until invited or there’s a federal crime involved, iirc. But there are so many unanswered questions and so many twists and turns and bad reporting out there that we might never know the full answer. Especially since, under the current law, with the perp dead, the PD isn’t required to release details about the investigation (again, iirc).

  2. Just spitballin’ here, but an excessive tax to arm oneself is likely to be afoul of the same reasoning that a tax to vote is unconstitutional. In both cases there is a fundamental human right, protected by the US Constitution, that can’t be usurped by the government because of one’s class. “Wealth, like race, creed, or color, is not germane to one’s ability to participate intelligently in the electoral process. Lines drawn on the basis of wealth or property, like those of race (Korematsu v. United States, 323 U.S. 214, 216 ), are traditionally disfavored.” Harper v. Virginia Board of Elections.

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