Saturday, March 31, 2007

My favorite $49.99 a pound steak

Gagliano's Market in Delafield has Wagyu filets on sale for half-off their regular price, a mere $24.99 a pound this week. They also offer a $5 coupon, so it was about $30 for three American Kobe Beef filet mignon steaks.

American Kobe Beef is a trade name for meat from Wagyu cattle, a type of beef that is well marbled and is a legendary delicacy of Japan. Until recently, the flavor and tenderness of Kobe beef could only be experienced by those traveling to to the meat producing regions of Japan.
The Foodologist wrote: Wagyu beef is world renowned because of its exquisite marbling. The large amount of intramuscular fat essentially helps the beef stay moist during the cooking procedure and helps give it a beautifully unctuous mouth feel whilst eating. It also has a slightly different flavour profile to conventional breeds. The only way to describe it is that is has a slightly ‘beefier’ flavour than your average breed.

Was it worth it? Yes!

These were the best steaks I have ever grilled. Steakhouse, make that expensive steakhouse quality beef, and I couldn't buy one of these steaks for that $30
at a steakhouse.

The Foodologist was exactly correct.

Don't let the word of this get out, or we are likely to see them going for $51.99/lb.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

K-Car of Tomorrow

NASCAR unleashed their COT last week at Bristol. Not only do the drivers hate driving it, but it looks like this.

I have that haunting feeling of deja vu. Where have I seen that body style before?

The race commentators kept mentioning a resemblance to SCCA race cars. I've never seen SCCA racing, but Google gave me this.

Okay, they both have a spoiler and a wing, but beyond that they are not even close.

Where have I seen that body style before? Eureka. Now it makes sense. NASCAR must have hired Lee Iacoca to design their Car of Tomorrow.

Dang. NASCAR got gipped. He recycled the Dodge Lancer.

#3 must be spinning in his grave.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

This would be illegal in Wisconsin

By a 5-0 vote, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission today authorized the NRC’s Office of New Reactors to issue an Early Site Permit (ESP) to System Energy Resources Inc. for the Grand Gulf ESP site near Port Gibson, Miss.

Successful completion of the ESP process resolves many site-related safety and environmental issues, and determines the site is suitable for possible future construction and operation of a nuclear power plant. The company filed its ESP application Oct. 21, 2003. The permit will be valid for up to 20 years. During that time, the company (or any other potential applicant interested in the site) must still seek NRC approval for a Combined License to build one or more nuclear plants on the site before any significant construction can occur.

There can be no new nuclear plants built in Wisconsin without a change in State law.

So very sad. Wisconsin Electric Power Company and Wisconsin Public Service Corporation put nuclear units on-line early in the 1970's and ran them efficiently and safely. Point Beach and Kewaunee even set the standard for nuclear plant operation for decades. By next year neither company will remain in the nuclear business.

Hat tip: NEI Nuclear Notes.
My favorite $1.99 a pound steak

I use an old butcher trick* for my cheap steaks. I start with a boneless blade chuck roast - on sale for $1.99/pound for this piece of choice Angus.

Then the roundish piece is split off from the roast along the natural seams and to produce a 1-1/2 inch thick ribeye, that is not a ribeye. This steak is actually the continuation of the "eye" muscle from the rib primal into the chuck primal. This is only the width of a knife cut from being a choice Angus ribeye steak.

That was the best steak I've cooked for myself in a very long time. While the texture is slightly different than ribeye, the flavor is excellent.

Don't let the word of this get out, or we're likely to see them going for $11.99/lb.

* Cutting Up in the Kitchen, Merle Ellis, (c) 1975

Monday, March 26, 2007

BLEG: FEMA + DNR = Trouble
Because people in New Orleans insist on living below sea level, floodplain maps throughout the U.S. are being redrawn. I learned of this completely by accident when attending a public hearing on a different matter.

I found nothing about this project when Googling JSOnline and haven't found anything elsewhere for that matter. Having looked at the DNR's Floodplain Mapping website I still have no clue as to what is happening.

Waukesha County was also no help and my call to the DNR has not been returned. Before I decide to become a Doyle campaign contributor in order to get an answer, can someone educate me on this project and what I need to do to protect my property?

Thank you.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Drive Safely (Updated)

I came home to this last night.

In the city of Pewaukee, two vehicles collided on Lindsay Road near Woodsedge Drive, killing a 30-year-old man and injuring a woman, the Waukesha County Communications Center reported.

Pewaukee Police Chief Gary Bach ordered officers to not release information on the incident until Monday morning, according to the Saturday night-shift commander.

The surprising part is that this is the first fatal accident on Lindsay Road in the 14 years I have lived here. Lindsay Road is heavily used by runners, joggers, walkers, and road racing cyclists. There are no sidewalks, and there isn't even a defined shoulder on much of the road. Until last March, the speed limit on this country road was 45 mph, far too high considering the road's narrowness, and blind hills and curves. The road can lull unfamiliar drivers into driving faster than they should. Locals know to drive slow and with caution.

About five years ago, I contacted my previous alderman about reducing the speed limit and my son sent the previous mayor a letter on the same topic as part of a Boy Scout merit badge. Neither did a thing, the mayor didn't even provide a response to my son. They must have been busy with other things.

Last March my wife phoned our new Alderman, Kathleen Novack, regarding our concern about the 45 mph speed limit. Within 10 days of her call, the new signs were up reducing the limit to 35. No one can ask for better response by an elected official than that.

Traffic enforcement by the City of Pewaukee has been effective when present, but 24/7 coverage is not achievable. I don't know the answer. Maybe rumble strips in hazardous areas.


Lindsay Road doesn't look like your neighborhood, but it is my neighborhood. I expect you to obey the speed limit here, just as you expect traffic to slow in your neighborhood. Here's the deal. If you quit driving 60 mph in my neighborhood, I will not drive 50 mph in yours.

UPDATE: There are several interesting comments on this fatal crash posted at the Pewaukee Patriot. This "accident" might not have been "accidental."

Saturday, March 24, 2007

La Carte de Mort - Online Edition (UPDATED)

Soon after I started working in Milwaukee, one of the engineers
I worked with was slapped around by the corporate diversity police for maintaining his "Map de Mort." This was a Milwaukee city map with pushpins at the locations of each homicide noted in the news. Somehow this instance of depicting reality was deemed to be racially insensitive.

Being new to the city, I found the map to be enlightening and a fair warning of areas of the city to avoid. The murder of Scott Huggins brought me back to my friend's map. I have started la Carte de Mort with the location of Mr. Huggins homicide.

I plan to maintain and update this map regularly. Hopefully this will not include the addition of many new digital pushpins.

UPDATE: I found a list of all 2007 Milwaukee homicides at this website, and used that information to provide an up-to-date map for 2007.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

The Nuclear Solution to Global Warming

After reading these Al Gore posts and the following quote from David Friedman at NEI Nuclear Notes I was struck by two illogical aspects about nuclear power and man-made global warming.
Nuclear power is the one energy source that does not produce greenhouse gases and, using current technology, can be expanded over the next couple of decades to replace many, arguably almost all, uses of fossil fuel. So anyone who believes that the great threat facing us, the threat we should be willing to pay large costs to deal with, is global warming due to greenhouse gases should be strongly inclined to favor nuclear power.
First, it is all too common for Al Gore and other carbon-phobes to also be anti-nuclear. This makes no sense. Nuclear energy is one of the great hopes to reduce carbon emissions and by Mr. Gore's logic, reduce global warming. Something more important than stopping man-made global warming must be on the Gore agenda.

On the other hand, it is my anecdotal observation that most workers in the commercial nuclear world are skeptical (at best) about global warming and the role of man-made carbon emissions in any warming. If anyone has a vested interest in promoting the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, it should be nuclear workers. More restrictions on fossil fueled electricity means greater demand for nuke power and greater demand for nuke workers. This in turn will lead to higher compensation for those working in this industry.

But these nuclear workers are probably more skeptical about global warming than average Americans. On the surface it doesn't make sense, but many also have financial interests in electric utilities burning fossil fuels and they have better science educations than most Americans. They can see through the hype and apply scientific thinking to the facts that are presented.

Friday, March 16, 2007

My new best friend

It just dawned on me that there will be no baseball park built near my home as long as the Butler Garter Snake is my neighbor. I'll need to be more careful when mowing so I don't hit any of these cute little guys.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

I am so glad I don't live in MKE County

This is beyond stunning.

Milwaukee County supervisors and Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker should get large pay raises to bring them up to the current salaries for Milwaukee alderman and Mayor Tom Barrett, according to a county report released today.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

State Champs!

Charger Robotics (including my Uber-geek son) won the FIRST Robotics Wisconsin Regional competition on Saturday. They will compete at the national championship in Atlanta on April 12-14.

Sad, but I had to go to Fond du lac to find a news report on the championship held in Milwaukee.
The Fondy Fire Robotics Team and its partners on Saturday won the Milwaukee FIRST regional robotics competition at the U.S. Cellular Arena in Milwaukee.

Team partners included Prior Lake, Minn., High School and Sussex Hamilton High School near Milwaukee.

The FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) program is designed to encourage interest in science and technology for students. The three-day competition featured 52 teams from Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana and Michigan.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Another Musician Dies at a Young Age

The Captain reports on the too early death of the lead singer of the rock band Boston. I don't know the guy's name name and don't care.

This guy may have been the Paul Whiteman of 1970's rock & roll. A very talented musician who gained fame and fortune by playing lousy music. Anyone who attended Prof. Leckrone's Big Bands class at UW should recall his disdain for Whiteman. The Paul Whiteman Band played overly practiced and overly precise "jazz" music. It did not swing and was not big band jazz.

Similarly, every note played or synthecized by this Boston guy was perfect. It was not rock. Boston represents everything wrong with 1970's rock music.

Thankfully this man won the war and changed it all.

The stadium rock fad is dead too. Rest in peace Boston singer. Burn in hell Boston band and music.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

No energy left for blogging

I am putting a lot of time and energy into updating the 5-year old business plan for the Short Game Golf Center I created as the capstone to my MBA program. I am on the agenda for the City of Pewaukee Parks & Recreation long-term planning meeting on March 14.

I have vested interest in this, since I'd rather have a golf course across from my home than a 5,000 seat minor league baseball stadium.

I'll try to find a way to post parts of the plan here.

Friday, March 02, 2007


Details available soon at Headless Blogger.

Be a part of the global warming solution.