Metatalktail Hour: I can't stop me February 19, 2022 12:21 PM   Subscribe

For today's Metatalktails, I want to know what seemingly innocent thing you just cannot seem to stop, once you've started. I'm not talking about heroin, cigarettes, alcohol, or dark compulsions — just relatively innocent or otherwise mundane pleasures or purchases that for whatever reason seem to break your self control!

Something sweet? Something sour? A collection? Blooper reels? Shoes? Fannish stuff? Kitchen gadgets? Miniatures? Skincare products? Metafilter? Lays? Please indulge us with your demonic indulgences!
posted by taz (staff) to MetaFilter-Related at 12:21 PM (109 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

I’ve gotten into tinned fish recently. I mean I’m not ruined by it but it is a deep deep rabbit hole I have fallen into…

Also using ellipses…I can’t stop…
posted by bxvr at 12:33 PM on February 19 [8 favorites]


haha! Perfect. I wish I had added tinned fish ... and ... ellipses ... to the original post ... :D
posted by taz (staff) at 12:50 PM on February 19 [1 favorite]


Beef jerky (specifically the Jack Links brand) is my go-to vice. At around $6 a package here I'd be spending close to $200 a month just on that if I thought I could get away with it.
posted by Roger Pittman at 1:36 PM on February 19 [3 favorites]


Despite the high cost, I am unable to stop buying from Persephone Books. The books are just too beautiful.
posted by JanetLand at 1:45 PM on February 19 [8 favorites]


Giandujotti. I literally can only have them at the holidays, because I could eat an infinite amount, despite their richness.
posted by praemunire at 1:55 PM on February 19 [1 favorite]


The seed catalogs started coming in December and I'm totally out of control. I still have seeds from last year. I have more seeds coming from 3 different places in addition to 2 apple trees a blackberry bush and hardy kiwi vines. I put in 5 more raised beds along the sidewalk last year and people bring out of town visitors around to see them. Towards the end of the season it starts encroaching on the path. I really need to stop.
posted by BoscosMom at 1:57 PM on February 19 [12 favorites]


Husband baked me soft extra-ginger molasses cookies for Valentine’s Day. A huge batch. I could polish off four or five of the damn things in one minute. They were that good.

He’s probably going to make more this weekend. I know, poor me. I know.
posted by armeowda at 1:59 PM on February 19 [4 favorites]


Stickers! I would be sending the most beautiful cards and letters if I could bear to part with any of them. I just hoard them. So sad.

Also art supplies. And I barely use them, either.

I think I’m just in love with the potential.
posted by probably not that Karen Blair at 2:04 PM on February 19 [26 favorites]


or dark compulsions — just relatively innocent

So we can't talk about demon cocoa?
posted by sammyo at 2:21 PM on February 19 [2 favorites]


Art supplies,
Moon pies,
Word puzzles,
And, if there is
A man in the moon,
We will not nuzzle,
I have never gotten
Over the crush...
My ellipses will never touch his...
(Serious ellipses habit.)
posted by Oyéah at 2:32 PM on February 19 [7 favorites]


I’ve gotten into tinned fish recently. I mean I’m not ruined by it but it is a deep deep rabbit hole I have fallen into…

Yes! With a squeeze of lemon, some capers, and crackers. Parsley if I have it.

I love salty and sour. Pickled vegetables are may favorite: cucumbers, cauliflower, peppers, cabbage, and beets are my favorite. Pickled onions are great on almost everything too.
posted by ghost phoneme at 2:39 PM on February 19 [5 favorites]


Salt and vinegar potato chips. I tend not to buy them too often--or when I do, I buy them in individual small bags. This is because I know myself, and if I have a large bag available to me, I will stuff them all into my face until my mouth can taste nothing but vinegar and the salt has entirely desiccated my tongue.
posted by Mr. Bad Example at 2:59 PM on February 19 [13 favorites]


Drinking pickle juice. The idea seems to bother some people, but if I notice the jar of pickles in the fridge, my mouth starts watering and I have to have some.
posted by acantha at 3:00 PM on February 19 [7 favorites]


…my own fridge, obviously, not other people’s.
posted by acantha at 3:01 PM on February 19 [12 favorites]


Animal crackers! A while back I started having a small snack before bed so I wouldn't wake up hungry in the middle of the night or have weird low blood sugar bad dreams. This has been helpful. I've tried a few different little snack things, like those Amy's graham rabbits, or teddy grahams or a few other things but I've really settled on those really clunky animal crackers, like these. But these animals are so blobby and weird! The cat is larger than the buffalo! Some of them I can't identify. It's like half domestic animals and half African safari animals. So now it's become like a thing where I line them all up, choose an order to eat them in, remark on their oddities.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 3:03 PM on February 19 [22 favorites]


Oreos. I keep asking my wife to not buy them because if they are in the pantry I will eat way too many of them.
posted by COD at 3:04 PM on February 19 [4 favorites]


Stickers! I would be sending the most beautiful cards and letters if I could bear to part with any of them. I just hoard them. So sad.

I do this too. Same thing with graph paper, and fancy candles. If I use them, then they will be gone!

Mine is baked goods -- cupcakes, muffins, breads, pastries, etc. I will keep cutting little pieces off of whatever it is, until it's all consumed much faster than I would like it to be.
posted by Sparky Buttons at 3:08 PM on February 19 [5 favorites]


In other news, I got a new job! I start on Monday, and I am very, very very excited about it. I was recruited (a first) and will be a regional safety manager, so will be traveling around the midwest a lot. It will be the first time I'm not the designated safety person for one location, and thus really gets to know the people and processes for that location, but will be in more of a consulting role for 125ish different locations. One of my many dream jobs is to be a safety consultant, so, we will see how I actually like it. It's a big step forward in my career, and is with a company that is growing rapidly and doing good things - I am thrilled. Other than traveling, it's going to be mostly WFH, which is another first for me. I got my home office all set up, and really, I can't wait to start.
posted by Sparky Buttons at 3:13 PM on February 19 [52 favorites]


Come see the dogs if you’re in Peoria, Sparky Buttons!
posted by obfuscation at 3:24 PM on February 19 [2 favorites]


I love buying greeting cards - not Hallmark ones, the fancy stuff from Papyrus or Paper Source. I never give them or send them though. I cleaned my apartment recently and put together a stack of about 50 beautiful cards that I bought for babies that are now in pre-school, sympathy cards for people long gone, wedding cards for people that are now divorced, romantic cards for relationships that have been over for years (I'm actually holding onto a good one I bought 20 years ago).

I think I come by it honestly though. When my grandmother died in her 70s, we moved her desk into my childhood home and started going through the drawers. She had a huge backstock of greeting cards, the best was one for a Great-Grandchild's Birthday (her oldest grandchild was 16 when she passed so she was definitely planning ahead).

If you are having a momentous occasion, feel free to message me with your address and I will send you a lovely card. I have stamps and nice handwriting!
posted by elvissa at 3:31 PM on February 19 [15 favorites]


Might you like to join the Mefi card club elvissa? I did, partly so I can buy stickers and stamps and cards and postcards and have a reason to use them all. I don’t know if the recipients like my cards but I sure do love making and sending them.
posted by PussKillian at 3:52 PM on February 19 [5 favorites]


Looking at Twitter :(
posted by bleep at 3:52 PM on February 19 [6 favorites]


Hah I should have scrolled down one more post! Also my handwriting is terrible but yet I persist.
posted by PussKillian at 3:54 PM on February 19 [1 favorite]


Crab chips, therefore, I do not buy them. I inhale the entire bag in one crunchy smelly go, and smell like Old Bay for the next week.
posted by champers at 4:05 PM on February 19 [9 favorites]


Kishu mandarin oranges. They're about the size of a walnut or golf ball. The peel practically falls off. They have this intense orange flavor and are insanely good. They're hard to find and have a short season. I'm embarrassed to share how many I've consumed.
posted by Kangaroo at 4:40 PM on February 19 [7 favorites]


There’s this one website I keep crawling back to….
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 4:52 PM on February 19 [24 favorites]


I love buying greeting cards - not Hallmark ones, the fancy stuff from Papyrus or Paper Source. I never give them or send them though.

What is it about greeting cards? I do find it hard to resist buying lovely cards, but much in the same way I decided I didn't want to die with a mountain of lovely unused handmade soaps, I decided to just start using all my nice cards. So far the only ones I don't seem to be able to unload are the perplexingly large number of "get well soon" cards we seem to have and a hilarious "happy birthday motherfucker" card that delighted me when I bought it but then was too chicken to actually give it to anyone.

On another note, I don't seem to be able to stop watching "hairdresser reacts" videos. A professional hair stylist watches videos of people giving themselves DIY haircuts or colour jobs and comments on what they did wrong (or right) and how they could improve it next time. Last night I watched one and then another and before I knew it I had watched 10 in a row.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 4:57 PM on February 19 [6 favorites]


Fannish stuff?

Well, I do run a fan in the bedroom, even in the winter...

I tend to tippity-tap and rat-a-tat rhythmic patterns on walls and other things in reach with my fingers as I walk around the house or while I'm sitting at my desk - it's entertaining to hear the various tonal qualities of all the things I tap. I especially enjoy doing it with a knife on my cutting board while waiting to do some next prep step, because knives make wonderfully springy and lively drumsticks. This is a lifelong habit I haven't ever felt a need to stop doing.

Fortunately I manage to restrain myself when in other people's homes (remember back when that was a thing? *sigh*...)
posted by Greg_Ace at 5:04 PM on February 19 [1 favorite]


Dried mangoes. The Publix ones are hit-or-miss (you'll find a fair amount of unripe/super-tart slices) but the ones from Target are usually good. (Did I eat an entire bag today? Yes, I did.)

Also the Wholesome Medley trail mix. It's maybe a bit of a misnomer given the amount of saturated fat, but I love it anyway.
posted by johnofjack at 5:07 PM on February 19 [3 favorites]


Adult coloring books. My mom has Alzheimer’s and is in assisted living, and we’ll each work on a page or two when I visit her. We both enjoy it and it’s very relaxing. Every time I see one that I think she’ll like I buy it. I think I have reached critical mass at this point!

In other news, I started my new library job this week and I think I’m really going to like it. I took a small cut in pay/benefits in order to have a commute of less than 10 minutes. This is a HUGE plus for me—I had a job for 18 years where I drove 1 hour+ each way (basically an extra week of *unpaid* work each month)and it’s so awesome to not have that be a factor anymore.

I’d forgotten how tiring it is to start a new job but I’m looking forward to the upcoming week!

(Congratulations Sparky Buttons! New Job Buddies!)
posted by bookmammal at 5:12 PM on February 19 [26 favorites]


This is my resting state. I cannot resist anything at all pretty much.

A short list of things I could probably cut down on my consumption of:

Horrid terribly seriously awful reality TV
Trashy thrillers and mysteries
Awfully expensive candles and soaps
Junk food. It is junk? I eat all the bag.
posted by RobinofFrocksley at 6:05 PM on February 19 [5 favorites]


My kid has a peanut allergy. Since the time we found out about it when she was two until maybe a year ago we had no peanut products around the house. But a year ago it occurred to me that a) she's old enough and smart enough to know to stay out of the peanut butter and b) I am careful enough to not smear peanut butter on the couch.

So now I am keeping a jar of peanut butter around the house for the first time in about sixteen years and I cannot stop eating peanut butter on saltines. I want to eat all the peanut butter crackers!

I have a lot of catching up to do.
posted by bondcliff at 6:45 PM on February 19 [9 favorites]


Kind of surprised I'm not eating peanut butter crackers right now.
posted by bondcliff at 6:45 PM on February 19 [4 favorites]


Aaaaaaaarrrrrrggggghhhh cheesy poofs. I’m pretty sure a disturbing percentage of my body composition is cheesy snacks.
posted by Orange Dinosaur Slide at 6:54 PM on February 19 [9 favorites]


That is probably why you are an Orange Dinosaur!
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 7:08 PM on February 19 [12 favorites]


Buying fabric.
posted by Melismata at 7:26 PM on February 19 [6 favorites]


For a while it was Trader Joe's chocolate hummus. I have stopped buying it.

On YouTube recently it's been reactions to the Postmodern Jukebox version of Creep with Haley Reinhart. Especially the one from The Charismatic Voice, a trained opera singer who is both charmingly floored by the vocal and arrangement, and has the vocabulary to explain why it's so impressive. What is it about reaction videos?!

Plants V Zombies 2 on my ipad. I'm on Prehistoric World and it's getting hard and stressful but I keep playing! I have had to watch YouTube videos to win the occasional hard level, starting back in the Neon Mixtape Tour. Then it gets too hard again and I am DONE. Except it turns out I was not done. (I don't buy any of the stuff but I would gladly fork over $20 for a no ad version.)
posted by Glinn at 8:33 PM on February 19 [1 favorite]


Amazon purchases for my new puppy. So many dog toys. Treats. Leashes. A half dozen dog beds. I'm very deliberately avoiding the adorable doggy clothes because if I go down that rabbit hole, I'll be in big, big trouble.
posted by cgg at 10:34 PM on February 19 [8 favorites]


Is there anyplace one might view a pictorial representation of said puppy definitely not wearing adorable doggy clothes?
posted by taz (staff) at 11:27 PM on February 19 [7 favorites]


The two things that I will keep eating as much as I am served: white cheddar flavor grooved Cheezits, and banana pudding (ideally with chunks of banana and the occasional nilla wafer mixed in, as is traditional).
posted by JDHarper at 11:35 PM on February 19 [4 favorites]


Marshmallows. Can’t have them in the house, because they don’t last 24 hours. Also sour gummies. And skittles.
posted by Callisto Prime at 12:10 AM on February 20 [5 favorites]


I have a lot of these, though I'm in recovery for many of them. Cookbooks; status: recovered. Mostly. The truth is, I would still be addicted if either a) I lived permanently in a large place with many bookshelves, or b) I could copy-paste from ebooks. I do have a ton of digital cookbooks but they aren't useful to me because I cannot keep track of what recipe is in what book if I want to try or use it again, and I'm def not copying out by hand, and I can't send to (or paste in) my recipe manager app (Paprika). Maybe other people have figured out a way to efficiently index recipes they want to remember from ebook cookbooks, but I haven't.

Perfume; status: recovered. I just plain can't afford it. I don't even wear perfume all the time, and only really like very, very few to use myself, but man, I just love sniff sampling perfumes. I adore the little sample bottles, but even if I could just get tons of those paper sniffy things they put in some women's magazines, it would be great. But even with the relatively inexpensive sample bottles, with postage they comes out to be spendy, and I end up using (and then buying full size) maybe .05 percent of them. Also those perfume club kinds of things don't ship to my location. So, that goes into the Would If Rich category.

Tea; status: recovered. I would be embarrassed to tell you how much fancy tea I actually have in my house. It became burdensome, to be honest. I've stopped. Kinda had to. Now if I buy new, it's just the 3 or 4 basic-needs or mega-mega-favorites. I over-tead.

Coffee; status: moderating. I'm not quite sure who said it — I think it was my brother in law, though it might have been someone on mefi, but "Please bring me my bucket of coffee" is how I feel inside. I would drink it all day and all night, but since APPARENTLY that's not a "smart" thing to do, I have to "limit" my "consumption." I still find many ways to be ridiculous with coffee, though. Lately it's by adding a bit of vanilla paste and a teaspoon of Amaretto. Because I can't not be bad about coffee somehow.

Potato Chips; status: restraining the ravenous chip beast in the fiery volcano of my heart. I love potato chips so much that I can't have them. I let myself have them once a year, from Christmas eve to New Years day, and then no more chippy purchasing for the rest of the year.

Wine; status: just never you mind, Nosy Parker.

Pinterest; status: Girl gone wild. During all this quarantining and locking down, etc. and not even buying little items by mail, I turned to virtual shopping. For my virtual cast of characters, in my virtual little world I made up. I haven't had a pretend world since, hm ... I think fourth grade? But Covid is the author of my life now (my husband is immunocompromised, and we have to be extra-extra careful), so I make pages and pages of Pinterest for my exceptionally attractive people, and the places they go, the houses they live in, the vacations, their jobs and hobbies, their dramas and adventures, the food they cook, the art they buy, the clothes they wear. They have so many shoes! My people live a good life. I am a beneficent god.

Beads; status: so recovered. For a period of time I was crazy about beads, especially handmade or sort of "artisanal" ones. Just So Many Beads. That I was totally going to make a lot of things from. I did make several things, that I almost never wear, because I don't even wear much jewelry. But the beads, man. I was like a dragon with its treasure lair. I overbeaded. But then — poof, I lost interest.

Books; status: never gonna give 'em up, never gonna put them down. I'm still going to die with hundreds of unread books (and hundreds of read ones!) on my Kindle, but I've improved from buying books pretty much every single day. (not full price every single day!) But most people don't sneer at one for buying or reading books, so it's kind of a good "bad" compulsion.

That's most of it, I think. I'm really not the shopaholic I sound like from this (I mean, pretty much the opposite, really), but I do get stuck on some things. Let me know if you need some tea, or beads.
posted by taz (staff) at 12:55 AM on February 20 [17 favorites]


Maybe other people have figured out a way to efficiently index recipes they want to remember from ebook cookbooks, but I haven't.

I don’t actually use this because back when I tried it out initially it didn’t have enough of my books indexed, but it’s been a few years now so maybe I should try it again: Eat Your Books has this function, you can tell it what books you own and then search all the recipes at once. Membership is $30/year though.
posted by Bloxworth Snout at 1:33 AM on February 20 [2 favorites]


I'm always tempted by field guides, although I generally resist for money and space reasons. “Ooh, maybe I do need a guide to the grasshoppers of Britain and Western Europe… Flowers of the western Mediterranean? That sounds useful… I haven’t actually got a birding trip to Ghana planned, but you never know… Ferns, huh, I don’t know anything about ferns, maybe owning the field guide would magically transfer the knowledge into my head… ”
posted by Bloxworth Snout at 1:51 AM on February 20 [4 favorites]


Wow, normally it takes me half an hour to wake up, but the sound of a little dog horking up his dinner next to me in bed somehow had me up with a roll of paper towels in 3 seconds. So I’m gonna say my indulgence is dogs. After my last beloved expensive inconvenient pup passed, I went two years dog-free during which I could travel without trouble, sleep late if I wanted, stay out late if I wanted. But then I couldn’t help myself and I got another dog and now I’m wide awake at 5am.
posted by moonmilk at 2:26 AM on February 20 [12 favorites]


I generally resist for money and space reasons

I just did a count and apparently ‘generally resisting’ has left me with about 85 field guides plus the 16 apps on my phone. Although an inability to throw away old books is probably a bigger problem than the rate at which I get new ones.
posted by Bloxworth Snout at 2:57 AM on February 20 [4 favorites]


I enjoy slightly outdated, second hand tech gadgets... a little too much. When I got into Ubuntu Touch as a mobile OS, I also got into buying compatible phones... and now I have around 5. Then I found out that there is a nice and well-working UT app to interact with a Pebble smartwatch, so now I have four working Pebbles and some for parts.
I don't know how many Thinkpads live in this house and in fact I'm agnostic* with regards to that question: not only do I not know it, I'm fully convinced that it is beyond the grasp of human knowledge or observation.

* in the original sense of the word, not the modern 'I don't really care' sense
posted by Too-Ticky at 3:27 AM on February 20 [6 favorites]


I think if it was possible I would continue to eat sushi until I expired from a surfeit of it.
posted by Balthamos at 3:31 AM on February 20 [5 favorites]


I now own at least 38 copies of various editions of the 1927 best selling book that set off the trivia boom, Ask Me Another. (And quite a few copies of other books with the same name, none of which are worth opening.)

I found one in a thrift store as a teenager and rediscovered it ten years later. Then I found out there were three more volumes, so I bought them. Then I decided to digitize them in order to make an online version (still in progress for legal reasons), but I didn't want to tear up the original one, so I bought duplicates of each to scan. Then. . . I got into a habit of seeing if there are any for less than $5 every year or so and buying them for no good reason. It's been a few years, 'cause I'm entirely out of shelf space.

Most have some specific, personal thing in them. Often it's not too interesting, a "to my genius son, love Mom, Christmas 1946" and such. But, there are also people who've filled in the answers in pencil and made angry comments about the questions they dislike. And food stains. And all manner of bookmarks. Someone used ten pieces of personalized stationary from a high-ranking naval official to mark entirely random pages. (I'm tempted to use them to create a new conspiracy theory. But, it seems unfair to the guy.) There are postcard ads for businesses that went out of business 70 years ago.

There are also weird things about the publication dates that I don't understand. Several that have a 1927 notice also have questions that have been updated to specifically include new information from the early '30s. But there are also versions where the copyright notice has been renewed and noted.

I really, really don't need this many copies of the same books. If anyone wants one, send me your address.
posted by eotvos at 5:02 AM on February 20 [6 favorites]


Halva. I usually have no trouble eating just a little bit of things I really enjoy. I love chocolate cheesecake, for example, and I like eating it a sliver at a time, making a slice last for several days. But halva I cannot resist at all.
I don't buy wine gums or those sour balls that cut your mouth for the same reason. I'll eat the whole tin. My grandmother used to have a tin in her cupboard. The disappointment of opening such a tin, and finding it full of buttons, embroidery thread, and needles...
I've been indulging in buying luxury hammocks for my rats. So pretty!
I nearly bought a box of live crickets at the petshop yesterday. They sell them as reptile food. The petshop is enormous, garish, plastic and sterile. Depressing. Sad little animals in cages with nowhere private to hide. White tile floor and fluorescent lighting.
The tiny chorus of cricket chirps coming from the plastic box was just magical. Like a memory of a place I'd thought I'd forgotten.
Honestly if I'd stayed there longer I probably would have bought all the poor baby rats as well.
posted by Zumbador at 5:13 AM on February 20 [8 favorites]


(To be clear, and weirdly pedantic about my comment above - which I guess is not a surprise in a category called trivia - everything by Spafford and Esty or Leonard are worth reading. It's the dumb pun-based stuff and children's "riddles" with the same name that you should avoid.)
posted by eotvos at 5:18 AM on February 20


Also, I went for a 12km walk on thursday and was the first person to walk on a huge region of new fallen snow and see dozens of lake-mist-crusted ice trees. I also made a coyote friend. I didn't pet them, but only because of great moral restraint. They sniffed my fist and walked around me in circles and did doggy head-bob stuff in a way that made it hard to remember I wasn't interacting with a domesticated dog. Their tracks tell me they crossed a 6 lane highway just before meeting me. I hope they got home okay. I hope their lack of fear of humans isn't going to lead to trouble.
posted by eotvos at 5:25 AM on February 20 [14 favorites]


If you're looking for a way to cut back on the cookbook-and-art-supply-collecting habit (which I had until recently), I recommend having to move into a smaller apartment in the middle of summer.

(I am USING the art supplies that made the cut more, as well.)
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 5:52 AM on February 20 [2 favorites]


> Kishu mandarin oranges. They're about the size of a walnut or golf ball. The peel practically falls off. They have this intense orange flavor and are insanely good. They're hard to find and have a short season.

I note that you waited until February to share this; well played, Kangaroo.
posted by heyho at 6:55 AM on February 20 [1 favorite]


Cape Cod Salt & Pepper potato chips. I've instituted semi-weekly "make your own sandwich night" in our house just to have an excuse to buy the chips, because a sandwich without chips is not a meal.

Taking up cross stitching after a 20 year hiatus is slowly turning me into a hoarder of supplies and I've only been stitching again for four months. Between having access to an EPIC JoAnn's within driving distance of my home and all the AMAZING THINGS on Etsy/Ebay/Internet like project bags and notion bags and handmade thread catchers and fancy needles and hand-dyed fabric and floss and patterns (so. many. patterns) I am going to have to set a VERY FIRM budget for myself.
posted by theBigRedKittyPurrs at 9:29 AM on February 20 [6 favorites]


Maybe other people have figured out a way to efficiently index recipes they want to remember from ebook cookbooks, but I haven't.

I simply print them to PDF and drop them in to a Dropbox folder.
posted by COD at 9:30 AM on February 20 [1 favorite]


Art supplies. I like to try new things in art .I read about magic ink in some post and immediately was tempted to buy that.But thanks to the pandemic ☹️ I don’t walk around in art stores looking for new stuff anymore.
posted by SunPower at 9:43 AM on February 20 [1 favorite]


Fabric. so much fabric that I have no space to put it. also art supplies, but mainly fabric.
posted by buildmyworld at 11:11 AM on February 20 [4 favorites]


Shoe cleaning. Watched some videos for a couple of weeks. Got weird impulses to go to a decent shop for some supplies and off I went. Now I happily de-wax, de-stain, shampoo, moisten, seal and/or shine shoes, while listening to my podcasts. Who would have thought?
posted by ouke at 11:24 AM on February 20 [3 favorites]


Library books!!!
I check out way too many and never start or finish them all!
posted by calgirl at 11:57 AM on February 20 [6 favorites]


I don't know how many Thinkpads live in this house

24. Of which three Butterflies (one of them defective), and one ThinkNote. And hat's not counting three more broken ones.
posted by Stoneshop at 1:12 PM on February 20 [3 favorites]


Civ 5…Just…one…more…turn…
posted by iamkimiam at 1:33 PM on February 20 [2 favorites]


Lebanon balogna. It used to run about $4.00 a pound a few years ago at Aldi, but the price is up to about $7.00 a lb now, which is pretty tough for my frugal self to swallow. I could probably happily eat a Lebanon and balogna sandwich a day for the rest of my life and not grow weary of it.

My other obsession, which is a bit more of a slow burn, is Eastlake antique furniture. It all started with a painted "cottage style" bedroom set I bought when I closed on my 155-year-old farmhouse, and then it was a set of parlor chairs, a vanity chest for a bathroom vanity conversion project, a dining room table to go with the parlor chairs, then a sideboard, then another painted cottage style bedroom set...I'd still kind of like to find a chaise lounge and some kind of armoir or wardrobe at a minimum.
posted by drlith at 1:47 PM on February 20 [5 favorites]


When I was a kid I ate so many mikans that I turned yellow.
posted by sciencegeek at 3:09 PM on February 20 [3 favorites]


Junk food is a serious issue. The more artificial and engineered it is, the more I tend to like it. I've been good the past week at limiting myself to one helping a day (I won't say serving, because we all know that would be a lie), which is better than where I was December into February.

Cheese and cured meats are another. I could eat them at every meal and not get tired of them. These often require some effort (slicing, allowing to warm, or even cooking) so it's a bit easier to control.

I've basically had to ban myself from having blue cheese stuffed olives in the house. That never goes well.

Hmm, come to think of it, I guess I've got a generic salt and fat problem.

Oh, and Angband, an old-school Rogue-like (actually based on Rogue!) with a Tolkien setting. It's so easy to have open all the time when I should, you know, actually be working or something. I've been playing for at least 25 years.
posted by mollweide at 3:30 PM on February 20 [3 favorites]


I almost never buy sugar sweetened cereal for kid like people. I found some Count Chocula at the dollar store and bought a box. I opened it yesterday and sat there for 10 minutes shoveling it into my face hole. Did the same today. There is some left that I will send home with my brother tonight because he has stronger self control than I do.
posted by kathrynm at 5:00 PM on February 20 [7 favorites]


For me its bicycle parts. I wear out bike parts like some people - especially myself - can rip through a plate of fresh, hot cookies or a bowl of chips and salsa.

Even before the pandemic I was going through bike parts like crazy, but at the start of the pandemic someone helped me get an ebike conversion kit and I basically haven't been on a bus or other transit option since then and I've probably racked up 4,000 + miles during these times. I've also been in someone's car as a passenger so few times in the past two years I could probably count them on two hands and have some fingers left over.

And things being what they are with the global supply chain I've been buying consumable parts like chains, tires or brake pads before I actually need them and then trying to use up every last gram of the parts I have before swapping in the new ones.

And after converting to an ebike I go through parts even faster due to the extra loads, weight and available power at the drive train.

In the past 2+ years alone I've gone through about five chains, two rear gear cassettes, three rear wheels, and about 2-3 full sets of tires, and about 3 sets of brake pads.

For some financial perspective my bike cost about 1100ish brand new ten years ago, would probably cost more like 1500-2000 today. It came with decent upper mid range components. In those ten years I've likely spent something like 5-6k on replacement parts if not more. Doing just a full drive train rebuild with mid-range parts can easily cost like 300-ish or more.

I've worn out the rear rims in particular so much that I practically cut through the sidewalls and braking surface of the rims. I also just had to replace and get a wheel rebuilt on a new rim because I managed to thrash the previous rim so hard it was pulling spokes out through the spoke holes and reinforced spoke grommets.

My local bike co-op bike mechanic wizard was shocked and impressed and said something like "Well, I've only heard about this one but I've never seen it in person. You're about to rip your whole rim in half the long and hard way and it's a good thing you brought it in because this rim is definitely used up and an ex rim" because more than half of the spoke holes were cracked and starting to pull through.

If I had more money or income I could and would definitely spend it on even more bike parts. There's so much work I could do to keep my bike in tip top shape and make it better. After about ten years with this bike the only stock parts that are left are the frame and fork, my handlebars and the handle bar stem. Everything else has been replaced multiple times, and I mean *everything* from the headset bearings and cups to the bottom brackets to all of the derailleurs and cables and, well, *everything*. I've even worn out the cargo racks I've been using for most of this time due to metal fatigue, corrosion and heavy loads.

And even if I had my bike totally dialed in I could definitely see myself owning like 3-5 different bikes and upgrading and hacking the ebike side of things more. Like I wish I had a lot more and otherwise better ebike parts including extra battery units, better controllers and computers and more.

I also wish I had multiple bikes so I could have an unpowered fun bike for groups rides and trail riding for more exercise, and I definitely would also love an eMTB with full suspension and about 3000 watts of power to rip around some trails, and maybe a fat tire ebike bike for sand and snow, and also maybe a cargo trailer for hauling my housemate's dog around or hauling groceries.

And all that being said you'd think that I'd be, well, less fat with all the time I spend on a bike whether it's powered or not but the pandemic has done a number on me with all the isolation and comfort food eating and stuff, and I was never a lightweight or typically skinnier bike rider to begin with and have always been in the Clydesdale class of rider.

Which is great if you like bike touring and cruising around and mashing up hills, but not so great if you want to earn a Strava KoM on a route, much less fit my fat butt on a much lighter pro grade racing bike or something like that. My legs and calves are so thick they make very serious riders green with envy but they don't want the fat ass that comes with them. Anyway.

But I like fresh new bike parts so much that if someone presented me with a Brewster's Million's scenario where I had to spend like 10k to 50k USD in a week or a month or something on nothing but bike parts or bikes that I'd actually want to ride that weren't status symbols or pro grade parts or a pretty bike to hang on my wall - I could easily do it, even with stipulations like I had to do it all in person and not online, or it couldn't be spent on anything too extreme.

Shoot, I could easily spend 10k just on DIY ebike parts and extra batteries and stuff. It would be super easy to spend like 1-2k on some nice touring or tandem bicycle strength wheels and that would be reasonable for really good, strong wheels. It would be super easy to drop 500-1000 ish on converting my bike to one of those fancy "boosted" width rear axles and a 1x12 drive train.

And stipulations aside I could definitely spend 10-20k on something like a custom titanium frame touring bike or gravel bike between the frameset, wheels, racks, luggage and accessories and so on. Really good bike parts are stupid expensive these days, whether new commodity parts, custom bespoke parts or higher end parts, and really world class custom metal frames start at like 3-5k just for the frame and fork set.

If I had that kind of disposable income it wouldn't even be a challenge for me to spend that much on a really good, solid bike. As recently as ten years ago or so I would have thought spending this kind of money on a bike as flagrantly wasteful or overkill but after all of the bike parts I've worn out over the years it makes somewhat more sense.


I think you all get the point but to drive it home this is actually what I think about when I entertain any fantasies like winning the lottery that don't include charity or altruism.

In the selfish parts of these fantasies I'm not fantasizing about buying a yacht or a mansion, or fast cars, or nice clothes or watches and especially not fast cars.

I know exactly what I would do if I won a multimillion dollar lottery and none of it involves flying around the world or partying in Monaco or Vegas or any of that kind of thing.

I'd put almost all of it in a trust, buy a really nice custom frame titanium bike with all the bells and whistles and the best, strongest parts and would take off with minimal gear and a credit card and just ride wherever the heck I wanted to ride knowing I had the general financial security to choose between sleeping rough in a field or on the side of the road somewhere or stay in a nice hotel when I wanted a hot bath and a warm bed.

And then I'd go out and ride the whole planet one mile at a time for the rest of my life and would love every minute of it.


I'd also probably go out and be a roving trail angel and help people doing the same adventurous self-powered traveling to encourage them. Maybe do things like throw relatively lavish pizza and beer parties in the hiker-biker campgrounds. Or hook people up with new bikes or bike parts, help keep them rolling and safe and on their adventure. Or maybe offer to fund them take an additional month or so off of work to keep riding.

Like how incredibly awesome would it be to show up after a long day of bike touring to your planned campground stop looking forward to how good a simple, basic trail meal and sleeping in your tent or hammock - and instead you found something as lavish as a modestly catered BBQ and open bar? Or maybe you found a bunch of tents or hammocks set up for random trail comrades to use. Or maybe even a fairly paid massage tech ready to get to work.

Or maybe we could go all out and rent out a large group camp site to leave the hiker biker campsites alone and quiet and available, and do all of the above and it's a whole pop up mini-resort thing going on of the sort you can find at major music festivals for staff support, or on a major movie shoot. Or a major bike race or event!

Like full on craft services. A nice meal tent stocked for a menu of some healthy and hearty and really tasty basics with a short order cook, coffee and a barista, a tended bar, portable saunas and showers and so on. Maybe even a medic. Or also perhaps a bike mechanic.

And you suddenly and unexpectedly found out that after a long day of hot, sweaty pedaling you didn't have to do a darn thing but take a shower, pig out, hang out with your kind of crazy people riding on bikes and hit the sack. And it's all set up for the random dozen or so people that happen to roll through that location that night or weekend just because it's your lucky day? Not only did you get a hot bath, a massage and a great meal, but someone even cleaned or tuned up your bike for you?

That would be so. Fucking. Awesome.

Putting aside darker things like starvation and poverty, or even hard manual labor and dirty work and that sort of thing - if anyone knows how to make any decent hot meal taste better than it does after having fun while doing something like riding a bike or hiking all day I want to know about it, and yes I already know all about cannabis and eating delicious things while stoned out of my gourd.

Ounce for ounce, dollar for dollar I can't think of any fun and personal effort sort of thing that can make food taste better and relatively small luxuries feel any better than this sort of thing I'm proposing where a long day on the road or trail heightens all of your senses to the point that a jar of peanut butter and a bowl of hot ramen turns into something extraordinary and heavenly.

And working from there with that concept that an unexpected "trail angel" treat like hot pizza turns a $2 slice of pizza into something that's just priceless, and that the output of pleasure, joy and appreciation far exceeds the financial input.


I have been gifted enough to know people that would sometimes do this sort of thing if on smaller scales, along the lines of Burning Man's gift culture idea but independently and outside of it. Spontaneously and without any weird motives or strings attached or any weird ego fluffing stuff or motives beyond it being just a nice thing to do, share some really nice food and each others company.

And it definitely did not suck.

I think it would be a hell of a lot of fun to be able to do this kind of thing outlined above and specifically focused on bikes, bike culture and touring. All while cruising around on my on bike and keeping it low key, funky, dirty and sweaty.

Even if it was just a roaring fire, a couple of racks of beer and a small mountain of hot pizza, it would be fucking amazing.
posted by loquacious at 6:11 PM on February 20 [8 favorites]


Eponysterical? I really appreciate your contributions, loquacious.
posted by mollweide at 6:15 PM on February 20 [4 favorites]


Reese's peanut butter cups - but only the mini ones. They have the perfect ratio of chocolate to peanut butter. I've learned not to keep them around the house, because I will just devour the whole bag.

This happens with trail mix sometimes too - right combo of sweet and salty.

Also, a good book. I've learned to be careful about what reading material I choose to read right before bed, because too many times I've been all "I'll just read for 30 minutes before going to bed" then cut to two hours later and I'm like, well, only 50 pages left, guess I might as well finish it.
posted by litera scripta manet at 4:38 AM on February 21 [4 favorites]


This place. I just log in and suddenly I have been reading comments about other people's habits for this entire thread and after this I wil stalk the green for answers to questions and problems I will never have followed by a bit more poking at the blue.

This happens often. I blame all of you.
posted by AlexiaSky at 4:46 AM on February 21 [14 favorites]


Like some people upthread, I have historically used certain sites (MeFi, Twitter) way too much. I tried many a browser extension, but they all had various flaws that gave me in my weakest moments an excuse to stop using them. However, recently I have found what I believe to be the best one and it is managing to help me with my Twitter habit: Intention. Give it a spin and take better control over your internet time!
posted by Jpfed at 8:27 AM on February 21 [1 favorite]


(And while you're using browser extensions to help with Twitter use, consider Twitter Required Alt Text to make sure that you're adding alt text to your images, and Read Only Twitter if you find that, like me, you have much more of an urge to stay on Twitter after having commented there)
posted by Jpfed at 8:31 AM on February 21 [1 favorite]


Jigsaw puzzles. I just can't resist buying a few more when I spot good ones even though I already have plenty to put together.
posted by blueberry monster at 8:54 AM on February 21 [2 favorites]


I'm with you loquacious. The bike life is also a dream of mine. I also suffer(ed) from bicycle component acquisition syndrome and bike upgrade and tuning disease. Always going for reliability and long ride comfort over everything else (except color matching, which is proven by science to give you at least an extra watt of power for every color matched component).

The only thing in my experience that can improve the meal after the ride is to eat something you picked along the way. Privilege of living in a subtropical country, I could go touring for days with only a big bag of rice, some spices, and a small machete.

A route I did once went, over the course of a few days days, from 2,700 meters of altitude down to the beach. By the time I made it to the beach I had a pannierfull of avocados, peaches, wild cherries, mangos, guamas, nopales, prickly pears and pitayas and other cactus fruits, coconuts, chili peppers, dandelion greens

At the beach I caught an octopus in a tidal pool and several fresh water crabs in the mangrove swamp.

Rice cooked in reduced coconut milk on a red mangrove wood fire with crab meat and a bit of tamarind chili paste, witch avocado on top, with a side of wood roasted octopus and a fruits salad desert, after riding hundreds of kilometers for days, is one of the best meals I have ever had.

I hung my hammock where I thought the caimans would not get me, and spent the night feeling as contented as I have not felt for decades now.


My bike-for-life, the one that just fits your body geometry like it was bespoke, the one you spend years and years building up and tuning, got stolen 2 years ago. It had taken me 12 years and thousands of dollars to get it where I wanted. Steel frame because I can't afford titanium and steel is real. It had custom or modified everything. I had extra bosses welded and other removed. Custom built titanium handlebar by a welder friend, home anodized everything aluminum, custom cassette to give me exactly the gear ratios I needed with the dependability I like. Beefed up CNC chainring, hand bent super light seatpost to get just the right angle, adjustable leverage brake levers, stupidly oversized mechanical disk brake system, racks and cages to hold anything I could dream of carrying, waterproof panniers, "frame packed" hammock setup before frame packing was a thing. I miss my leather saddle. It had stretched so much that I had to add an extra long bolt to keep tensioning it, but it fit my butt like it was part of my body.

I was doing 80km rides in the city every weekend, preparing for taking all my PTO at work and doing a random 3 week credit card tour.

Random Tour being a term of art here. For my city rides I carry a d20 to make decisions. Like roll over 10 to start North. Or to pick from a table of options that has things for some weird kind of steeplechase: "Get to the tallest tree you can see, repeat", "At every juncture, pick uphill", "Follow the strongest smell, throw again for pleasant smell or bad smell", "Follow the route that keeps you in the shade", and these being mostly Sunday rides in a Catholic city, "Follow the sound of the loudest church bells" would keep changing the direction multiple times per hour.


After it got stolen I got a replacement bike, about $1,500 stock. After putting a few hundreds hours into riding it and hundreds of dollars into modding it, It just does not feel right. Something about the angles and the handling feels off. I got another bike with a similar geometry to the lost one. Gorgeous second hand hand built frame. Same story, over $2,000 in it and it is just gathering dust. Finally I got an inexpensive but well built single speed frame and built it up with second hand old but reliable stuff. Quill stem, loose bearing square taper bottom bracket, centerpull caliper brakes, a kind of rando style handlebar with a large rise, etc. I did add a flip-flop wheel for two gear ratios. Total cost was under $400 and it is the one I used the most.


But this is all in the past. Age and old injuries caught up and I need an expensive and slightly risky knee surgery if I want to keep riding for days on end. I can do slow Sunday Streets rides on flat roads with my kid, who is starting to outpace me, and I kind of do the road angle thing. I carry tools and common spares and have helped a bunch of people with anything from minor adjustments to truing tacoed wheels and rebuilding bearings.

I am intentionally staying away from owning an electric assist bike. That is a hobby that I can not afford.

Now I am finding joy in gardening (oh my am I a stereotype of busted knees old man), but me me being me, and to answer the question at the top of this post, I can't stop trying to grow and propagate rare or difficult plants. I started with lettuces, now I have 8 different rare chili pepper varieties in an indoor setup with grow lights and all that. I have bags and bags of all kinds of substrates and material to test. I am going as local, organic and low tech as possible. Instead of just buying perlite I got different grades of local volcanic rock, a mixture of pumice, scoria and other stuff, different grades of coconut coir, local clays and topsoil, etc... I built humidity domes and temperature and humidity controlled propagation boxes. In one box I am propagating rare philodendrons, in another I have other yet unidentified Araceae. I went on a fern spore collection spree and have a few that are in their sexual state already. I have a cactus germination setup with 30 baby L. williamsi and some other rare cactus baby from a seed packet I got on an exchange. I've been experimenting with the water retention and capillarity of a bunch of different materials and have build several models of self watering pots for different types of plants. Right now I am running an experiment on "moss poles", or moist tutors, but keeping it local sphangum is out of the question. I am using yute, wool, wicker, pumice, etc...

Luckily, the same environments I create for germinating and propagating plants are good for raising bugs, so I also have a cricket farm, a dubia roach farm, and a superworm farm to feed the family's bearded dragon.

So yeah, I guess the anser is whatever I start I can not stop.
posted by Dr. Curare at 8:59 AM on February 21 [3 favorites]


Foods that hurt me! I don't know why. Strong salt and vinegar crisps, pickles, very sour sweets. I just have an infinite capacity for vinegar and citric acid. They leave my mouth sore for days, but I love them and will eat them until forcibly prevented. I know exactly what will happen, but I've done it many times and will certainly do it again.
And knitting. Hyperfocus ftw! At least everyone I know is warmly dressed.
posted by BlueNorther at 10:11 AM on February 21 [3 favorites]


Maybe other people have figured out a way to efficiently index recipes they want to remember from ebook cookbooks, but I haven't.

I copy the recipe from the book to my computer's Clipboard and then paste it into a new, short-lived pastebin.com page. Then I grab my iPhone and load that page into the app Paprika, which can automagically parse a recipe and add it to my local recipe database.
posted by wenestvedt at 10:20 AM on February 21 [1 favorite]


Sometimes I will put a song on repeat for a very long time.
On occasion I have left whole albums on repeat for days, because they match the mood of the book or video game I’m in at the time.
Usually a few passes of a song will be enough to give my brain what it’s looking for, three or seven times through, but some songs I go back to that Repeatotron well again and again. A couple songs would fill a whole 40-minute bus ride to work, and on at least one occasion it’s been both to and back home from work, two days in a row.
posted by Mister Moofoo at 3:29 PM on February 21 [6 favorites]


Very spicy salsa. The refreshing kind where as soon as you pause, you feel the fire.
posted by iamkimiam at 3:43 PM on February 21 [2 favorites]


Ancho and chipotle chillis (in cooking) where nobody asked for them to be.

Marmite (other yeast pastes will do) and peanut butter together in anywhere that I think will take a pop of umami/savouriness.

Telling people who like ham/pineapple pizza to overextend with anchovies and jalapeños, too, for epic salty/sweet/hot/sour savoury.
posted by k3ninho at 4:18 PM on February 21 [1 favorite]


NUTS!

All my life I've loved crunchy nuts, and usually there's specifically one that I'm hitting on, for months and years at a time.

When I was a kid, it had to be peanuts, since that's the only nut that I knew -‌- the adults would horde their almonds, and it took a while to perceive the walnuts in cookies.

In high school I discovered the new macadamia nuts, and I'd get those little bottles of Royal Hawaiian (with the hula girl logo) at the supermarket, one of which I could devour in a single sitting.

As a young adult, it was almonds, but then my older brother (who was living in a house with a pecan tree) would bring me shopping bags of pecans, and he taught me the two-pecan trick for cracking them open. Still favored almonds, though; and this was about the time I learned the benefits of roasting them, in the oven. Now I roast all my nuts. For hazelnuts (aka filberts), it's the only way to go. 375°F for seven minutes, then rub 'em together between your bare hands to flake off the skins.

Later it was back to the macadamia, especially before, during and after my first visit to Hawai'i, where I got to visit the Mauna Loa orchards on the Big Island, which gave out free samples! At this time, I couldn't get enough of their honey-roasted variant.

For a while, I tried to shift to walnuts, for their Omega-3 Fatty Acid benefit, but they just don't cut it for snacking, I'm afraid.

One of my main delights with California, when I moved here in 1987, was the discovery of this little chain called Trader Joe's, which then as now had the best prices and an extensive collection of nuts. I was getting into the pistachio then, and this was one of the few stores which sold them shelled. (If this is also your quest, seek out your local "Mediterranean" grocery store.) At that time TJs sold chocolate-covered pistachios - yum-my! After extended pecan and hazelnut phases, I'm back there now.

However, any of the above will do, but Costco sells these reasonably-priced 3-pound bags of pistachios which may last me up to a week, augmented as usual with hazelnuts, pecans and almonds.
posted by Rash at 4:27 PM on February 21 [5 favorites]


How could I relate all that, and omit cashews?
posted by Rash at 4:40 PM on February 21 [3 favorites]


How could I relate all that, and forget about cashews?

For years I’ve been waiting to hear about some food plant or animal that induces forgetfulness in order to defend itself from repeated eating, or possibly eating at the wrong time, but apparently they all just poison or otherwise sicken you instead — and cashews, as befits a member of the poison oak/ivy/sumac/etc. family, are one of the more assiduous poisoners. But then, so are pistachios. And mangos.
posted by jamjam at 4:54 PM on February 21 [2 favorites]


For me, California means good tomatoes. And lots of other great produce, but not quite so uniquely. (The good bananas and good cherries are all imported... the non-Hass avocados less so.)

But, I've also very rarely lived in a place without Trader Joes, so the nut thing has always been easy. I'm currently addicted to Farmer Brand in-shell flavored peanuts. (Nan Ru is the flavor I can't stop buying every time I'm at the store. But the others are good too.) They make a hell of a mess and are a pain to eat. But, damn, they're tasty. I was talking to my spouse recently about the number of wet, slightly sticky, clearly uninspected peanuts I've eaten and the Aspergillus toxin. I think it was probably worth it, depending on how soon I die from it.
posted by eotvos at 5:08 PM on February 21 [1 favorite]


On occasion I have left whole albums on repeat for days

When I was in high school and had a decent stereo system for the first time ever, I used to listen to music all the time while I studied or read. Because I only had a few records (and the radio didn't play the sort of music I was into) I did a lot of endlessly repeated listening - especially on occasions where I'd just bought/been gifted a new album, I'd just devour it until I knew every note and every beat by heart. To this day there are certain albums that never fail to take me right back to that bedroom and mindset. It's an odd sort of nostalgia, since I was really unhappy and dissatisfied with my life and circumstances during that time. Doesn't stop me from listening to them because that music was my main source of joy back then, and I still love those albums.
posted by Greg_Ace at 5:18 PM on February 21 [3 favorites]


I’ve gotten into tinned fish recently. I mean I’m not ruined by it but it is a deep deep rabbit hole I have fallen into…

Same, though only enough to order from Patagonia's new line of tinned fish, and not yet so much to have ordered from Rainbow Tomatoes Garden, the darling vendor of the surprisingly active subreddit r/cannedsardines.

The seed catalogs started coming in December and I'm totally out of control. I still have seeds from last year.

Oh yes, this. I still have tomato seeds from 2014 that were surprisingly viable last year despite no particular care in storing them besides the general low humidity here in Colorado.
posted by deludingmyself at 8:17 PM on February 21 [2 favorites]


Reading. The local library system has switched to a renewal policy that let's me keep the materials for up to six months.
I do walk over and return them. It may take several trips, but it can happen. And I do avoid stacks of books. But it is such a rush to know that they are in my living room, waiting to be examined, at my leisure.
The check in process is hands-off and a delight, too.

Novels are lovely, especially when exploring a new series.
But comparing different crochet shrug patterns without rushing to get the books returned on time is priceless.
Then it's time to buy copies of the best of the bunch.
posted by TrishaU at 8:22 PM on February 21 [5 favorites]


But to answer the question: while I've barely gotten started, once the spring madness has truly taken hold, I cannot stop starting more and more plants. And then trying to find space for them all, even when I know there's no way we can eat 34 tomato plants worth of tomatoes.

Our new neighborhood has a produce donation program paired with a take a veggie, leave a veggie table one day a week during the growing season, and while some people might take this as an opportunity to grow fewer things, knowing they'll be able to swap some out for variety, I apparently have caught toxoplantmosis and now need to grow more. MORE!
posted by deludingmyself at 8:23 PM on February 21 [4 favorites]


...I'm not quite sure who said it — I think it was my brother in law, though it might have been someone on mefi, but "Please bring me my bucket of coffee" is how I feel inside. I would drink it all day and all night, but since APPARENTLY that's not a "smart" thing to do, I have to "limit" my "consumption."

Um, taz...
Here, we discuss findings from the longitudinal epidemiological studies about caffeine/coffee/tea and dementia/AD/cognitive functioning with a special emphasis on our recent results from the Cardiovascular Risk Factors, Aging and Dementia (CAIDE) study. The findings of the previous studies are somewhat inconsistent, but most studies (3 out of 5) support coffee's favorable effects against cognitive decline, dementia or AD. In addition, two studies had combined coffee and tea drinking and indicated some positive effects on cognitive functioning. For tea drinking, protective effects against cognitive decline/dementia are still less evident. In the CAIDE study, coffee drinking of 3-5 cups per day at midlife was associated with a decreased risk of dementia/AD by about 65% at late-life.
Caffeine as a protective factor in dementia and Alzheimer's disease
posted by y2karl at 9:10 PM on February 21 [4 favorites]


Thanks, y2karl! / goes to make another cup of coffee FOR MY HEALTH.

Dr. Curare, I feel like I could read a whole book about your bicycle travels.

Rice cooked in reduced coconut milk on a red mangrove wood fire with crab meat and a bit of tamarind chili paste, witch avocado on top, with a side of wood roasted octopus and a fruits salad desert, after riding hundreds of kilometers for days, is one of the best meals I have ever had.

omg. And the random touring! Awesome. ❤️
posted by taz (staff) at 4:08 AM on February 22 [2 favorites]


(also, I know it's a typo, but I prefer to believe there's a variety known as the Witch Avocado)
posted by taz (staff) at 5:35 AM on February 22 [3 favorites]


Oh lord. The shopping: Dresses, statement earrings, fancy sneakers, books, coffee mugs, tea towels, LPs (but in particular I can't seem to quit obscure-ish soul/funk reissues and similarly obscure-ish post-punk reissues), bright red lipsticks, especially if they are available while I'm waiting to pick up a prescription at the drug store, spices, too-clever-by-half egg cups, and we're not quite to spring yet, but as soon as we are potted plants for the deck.

Can't stop (the rest): fresh cherries, raspberries, dried mango, marcona almonds, many flavors of imported soft cheese, Reese's peanut butter cups, crosswords, jigsaw puzzles, regular reorganization/reshelving shemes for the afore-mentioned books and records, looking at Zillow every morning while still in bed, even though I've bought a house, coffee, drawing pictures of evening gowns in the margins of notebooks like I'm still twelve, daydreaming endlessly, popping knuckles, singing karaoke by myself in the powder room late at night on the weekends, thinking that I might be missing something fun, pretty much all the time.
posted by thivaia at 6:17 AM on February 22 [3 favorites]


I found this spicy Korean soup seasoning and I can’t stop making soups! Boil some water, dump it in, add some shredded cabbage, a couple glops of soft tofu, some green onion, some chopped bell peppers, and a bit of sesame oil… I got myself an addictive bowl of face-melting and addictive broth.

It WRECKS my stomach, but I keep eating it. I should stop eating it.
posted by functionequalsform at 8:33 AM on February 22 [6 favorites]


2 things, recently:

(1) Crochet. I just FINALLY learned how to do it, and it's ridiculously addictive, to the point I will delay going to bed to do "just one more row" of stitches. Psychologically it feels very similar to beating one more level in a video game.

(2) Anime of the "high school kid decides to learn a specific skill, and the show follows their journey from inspired amateur to practiced expert". It doesn't even matter what the skill is; lately I've enjoyed "Blue Period" (about learning art) and "Yowamushi Pedal" (about competitive bicycle racing). I will burn gleefully through all episodes of this sort of thing.
posted by aecorwin at 11:36 AM on February 22 [5 favorites]


Ooh, also recently: partner got me some of the Hot Ones sauces for our anniversary, and I am addicted to the "Last Dab" bottle. It is simultaneously very spicy and intensely flavorful (rather than just being pure heat). I keep trying to find excuses to put it on all the things because it's just delightful, even if (TMI) you pay for it later at the other end.
posted by aecorwin at 11:38 AM on February 22 [2 favorites]


aecorwin, thanks for the memory jog! Years ago when I lived in Asheville NC, a local chef made his own "smokin' hot" sauce for his restaurant that had an amazing flavor. Since I moved away I'd tried numerous times to either order some bottles to be shipped to me, or failing that find a similar recipe to try to recreate it myself. I'd been pretty unlucky on both accounts, but your comment reminded me to look again, and lo and behold his sauce is now available from this website! I immediately ordered a case of 6 bottles, I'm curious to see how long those last me...

It's not just a peppers/vinegar/salt type of sauce; not only does it used smoked peppers to add to the flavor, it's got garlic, carrots, ginger, and I don't know what-all else in there. Although I love spicy food, even "lowly" habaneros are the most heat I can manage, and the best part of this sauce is that you don't need a whole lot on your food to add some flavor along with the heat.
posted by Greg_Ace at 12:16 PM on February 22 [3 favorites]


These are so fun to read.

For me, I'm pretty good at self-control and willpower; I don't really know why, but I've never had trouble with it for most things: except for those rare insidious delights that roll over my willpower like tanks. Like, portion control has never been an issue for me, I can eat what I want and be done, it's fine, but then I stumbled on Lay's Limón flavored potato chips and that was all she wrote. I cannot stop myself when I eat those things. They are amazing and have made salt & vinegar so five minutes ago for me. The store near my house has stopped carrying them again, which I don't know if that's a bad thing or a good thing.

And like taz, perfume. I got into scent in a big way after my sister died, when I noticed I was buying all these soaps because the scents were reminding me of her, but I couldn't use that much soap. So a bunch of people sent me their BPAL decants, and then it just kept expanding. Once I start looking in the BPAL forums For Sale page, or go through decant sites like the Perfumed Court, I have to force myself to chill, because I have no money and I cannot afford all that crap. But I want it, oh, I want it.

It used to be shoes--I don't even like wearing shoes, but I love the designer stuff and the super cool niche ones and I really have to start a poshmark account and get rid of some of these crazy expensive ones--I have no social life and I work from home and there's no reason to have Dries Van Noten or Bottega Venetta boots hanging around.
posted by kitten kaboodle at 12:58 PM on February 22 [2 favorites]


Earworms. Earworms. Earworms. Earworms. Earworms. Earworms.

The worse the song, the harder it is to evict. There's a 1.75 hour repeating track of canned music where I work on weekends and its not often that I clear the earworm during the week; yet to only have it return with force the next weekend.

My bleach songs are failing me. Argh.
posted by mightshould at 2:48 PM on February 22 [3 favorites]


My go-to earworm solvent is usually Low Rider, but recently I had some very good results from Plastic Bertrand's Ca Plane Pour Moi - and it worked on "We Don't Talk About Bruno", so I think it's extra-strength.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 3:30 PM on February 22 [2 favorites]


a local chef made his own "smokin' hot" sauce for his restaurant that had an amazing flavor.

Actually, the restaurant itself didn't have much flavor at all beyond "dry paint" (don't ask me how I know). But the food inside, and the hot sauce, did indeed have amazing flavors.

(I figured it was only fair to call myself out on my own questionable grammar, since I so often deliberately misunderstand other people's ambiguous comments for comic effect)
posted by Greg_Ace at 4:51 PM on February 22 [1 favorite]


MINOR addiction to watercolor supplies but I am now being responsible and adding them to wishlists.

MAJOR addiction to tableware, but fortunately I've run out of storage space. I realized it was a problem when we moved and I was like, "We only have three sets of dishes to pack up" (everyday Corelle, wedding china, and Christmas stoneware) and realized, oh no, we have FOUR (grandma's inherited Corelle). I have twelve complete settings of daily china, wedding china, Christmas china, and grandma's china. Plus a lot of serving dishes and a bunch of accent pieces that I have like 6 settings of.

My mom once hosted a sit-down dinner for 50 with her wedding china and her grandma's inherited wedding china, plus her silver and her grandma's inherited silver. So I feel like my addiction isn't overwhelming as long as I can't host a sit-down dinner for 50. And honestly I'm at 48 for table settings and only 24 for silverware. I'm fine! It's fine! This is very normal and fine!

I am set to inherit at least 24 settings of china and silver, so that might make it a problem. Apparently my sister and I are going to split it, but I have a sneaking suspicion my sister might be like "WHAT WILL I EVER DO WITH CHINA?" and I will end up with 50 MORE settings and at that point I might as well start hosting state dinners.

(I use my wedding china at least twice a month, when I make a roast and we have fancy sit-down family dinners. But also, bone china is really hard to break compared to stoneware, so it's great for kids.)
posted by Eyebrows McGee (staff) at 6:16 PM on February 22 [3 favorites]


Also IN MY DEFENSE if I just have my family to dinner, we're now at 17, SO I NEED A LOT OF PLATES. (two grandparents, four children, three in-laws, 8 grandchildren) (plus usually my 5 more local fam who aren't immediate, so 22 on the regular.)
posted by Eyebrows McGee (staff) at 6:18 PM on February 22 [1 favorite]


My bleach songs are failing me. Argh.

... my go to earworm solvent...



I didn't know this is what you call it!
So obviously I'm not the only one for whom the usual how to get rid of an earworm advice (sing the entire song several times) just doesn't work?
All that does work is to replace it with something more acceptable.
All through the hard lockdown, my go to bleach song was the bass line of King Tubby Meets the Rockers by Ernest Ranglin.
These days it's Pappa likes Mambo or, if I can remember it, In the Mood (that's a dangerous one as I'm likely to stop doing whatever I'm doing to dance as I loop through that over and over again.
The various themes from Peter and the Wolf can be distracting too, not so much as bleach songs, but just calling them up from my memory bank. Especially The Wolf's theme.
Odd now that I think about it, earworms are often triggered for me by seeing or hearing a phrase (words that remind me of lyrics) but quite a few of my bleach songs are instrumentals.
posted by Zumbador at 7:05 PM on February 22 [3 favorites]


Oh, man! I absolutely get the earworm infestations. One of the worst instances was some time ago when I had Pumped Up Kicks stuck in there for literally days ... last thing at night, first thing in the morning ... aaarggghh. I tried a bunch of wormkillers, but then restless_nomad suggested the Hildegard von Blingin' bardcore version, and that actually worked. A+++ would bardcore again.

* looking back to the Slack convo about that, it was 4 DAYS I had the original on brokebrain repeat
posted by taz (staff) at 12:34 AM on February 23 [4 favorites]


Heh; there's a comment I left in an AskMe about earworms where I reported that the discussion had somehow infected me with six earworms at the same time.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 7:07 AM on February 23


I am in a sharing mood today. Warning, depressing comment to come.

taz, I've learned to tell stories of my past adventures in ways that sound entertaining and fun, some people like the stories, some even say they are jealous.

But in truth I was in a dark place not knowing how to deal with a broken mind. I was in more than one way making the ultimate bet: Do stupidly risky stuff and either get killed or get illuminated like that guy under the ancient fig tree. And since the part of illumination I really wanted was negation of the self, I can say I was seeking death in a roundabout way.

When I finished eating that meal from my comment above and went to sleep in my hammock, I felt so calm and relaxed I was kind of hoping I had eaten something poisonous from the tide pools and was going to die in my sleep. That would have been a good ending. I was disappointed when I woke up next morning.

As I got older I worried that I was losing my edge, I became more sedentary, became more afraid of taking risks. I got proper jobs, rented an apartment and furnished it, got monthly bus passes and worried about forgetting to pay bills in time. The risk taking was replaced by anxiety and depression.

When, under another username, I finally made it to my first MeFi meetup I was ready to hear stories and tell stories and have a jolly good time. But when I got to the bar and met the people, I realized that I was a tech worker who had done nothing in the last 5 years more risky or interesting than messing with a prototype method in actionscript and drinking a 100 IBU beer.

I am doing a lot better now, I find it kind of ironic that what finally allows me to be at peace and find contentment is the thing I spent most of my life running away from. Renting a house with a backyard, spending time with the family and the dogs, gardening, bird watching, owning a damn car!, cooking... and modern psych. medicine.

I still do the random touring when I can, sometimes on my bike, sometimes on foot. And it brings me joy and scratches some itches I have.

Sorry for being a downer, I'll keep telling my stories in the fun way, but maybe I will add a disclaimer like "If feel broken at home, you will still feel broken and sore when the lactic acid hits after the ride".
posted by Dr. Curare at 7:34 AM on February 23 [4 favorites]


My go-to earworm bleach/solvent (nice phrases) recently has been throwing on a Caballero Reynaldo cover
album. It's just slightly wrong enough, in a good way, that it somehow doesn't really stick. But, it easily disrupts other songs.
posted by eotvos at 8:46 AM on February 23 [1 favorite]


... my go to earworm solvent...

May I most respectfully suggest an alternative version to that of Our Callipygian Empress's:

Ca Plane Pour Moi - Telex
posted by y2karl at 11:01 AM on February 23 [3 favorites]


Now that the season is upon our household, I also cannot stop eating Cadbury mini eggs. Not the creme eggs, those are sweet goopy monstrosities I eat once every 5 years or so. But the candy candy coating on the mini eggs is just the most glorious texture to crunch. I would probably eat all kinds of snack foods with this exact texture. I wish there were a peanut butter M&M version of these.
posted by deludingmyself at 3:52 PM on February 23 [3 favorites]


I also made a coyote friend. I didn't pet them, but only because of great moral restraint. They sniffed my fist and walked around me in circles and did doggy head-bob stuff in a way that made it hard to remember I wasn't interacting with a domesticated dog. Their tracks tell me they crossed a 6 lane highway just before meeting me.

There were some researchers at the University of Washington, eotvos, who years ago trapped a coyote and put a radio transmitting collar on it. They then tracked it for months and never saw it. Not even the time it crossed the highway in front of.them at a distance of, oh, fifty feet. So you, my truly remarkable friend, have nth degree Coyote Fu. I am in awe.
posted by y2karl at 3:07 PM on March 8 [2 favorites]


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