Moves to a New Server

Written by sethrobin on January 31st, 2011

In order to better serve the people, our benefactor has relocated the whole site to a bigger, better, faster, shinier server.

Огpомное спасибо, Comrade Robinson.


Curried Sweet Potato Bisque

Written by Monkeybrad on January 24th, 2011

A hearty dish for the people.

Once again, I come before you, not to entertain and enlighten, but to ask for your support. Although, it makes me a little uncomfortable to be so blatantly self-serving, I feel it is only fair that when I ask for other people to support and promote one of my projects, well, I probably should promote it myself. So, here you go.

I am always experimenting in the kitchen trying to come up with new recipes or new combinations of flavor. Sometimes things turn out pretty well and those I try to share, the failures I chalk up to experience and try to be all zen about, in an Edisonian sort of way. Today’s recipe was a great success, which I have been meaning to share with you for a couple of months, but it took a nudge from a friend to finally get me to write it down.

I discovered Indian food and curry late in life, but I fell in love with the flavor and I am trying to make up for lost time. Lately, I have added it to all kinds of dishes with varying levels of success, but my favorite new curried dish is this midwinter bisque made with sweet potatoes onions, bell pepper and lots of spices.

I first made this to serve at a friend’s gallery open house last fall and have made it several times since then, but I kept forgetting to document things. So last week I made myself focus, grabbed the camera and made a great batch of this bisque, just in time to get snowed in. About that time a friend mentioned that Instructables was having a Homemade Soup Contest that I should enter it, so I did. That’s where you come in.

They will be accepting votes from January 23-26 and the entries with the highest number of votes move on to actual taste testing.  I feel good about the quality of my submission and the finished bisque is really tasty and good for you, in order to get into the finals I need your help.  So please, take a moment to visit my Instructable and if you feel it is worthy, I would appreciate your vote.  It also helps if you rate the project, so please help me out, if you can.

As always, I thank you for your support.

Vote Here

Update:  After I submitted my project for consideration, it was not only accepted for the contest, but they featured it on their site for a day.  Pretty exciting, huh?

Bigger update: Not only was it featured, the recipe won First Prize.  Thank you all for your support, now go forth and make this soup.


What Dreams May Come…

Written by Monkeybrad on September 28th, 2010

Magic Fingers

It starts as the typical actor’s nightmare.  I am on stage, I don’t know the show, don’t know my lines.  Unlike the usual version, this time I don’t know the theatre or my fellow actors.  It is clear that it is some sort of avant garde thing, where the people on stage are reacting to things coming from actors in the audience, so I wing it.

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A Pearl of Great Price…

Written by Monkeybrad on October 21st, 2009


I do not normally engage in politically charged subjects here.  I like to keep this nice and light, a place for musings that hopefully spread a little joy and the occasional bit of wisdom, but I read something this week that I feel needs to be shared.  Since this is one of the few places where I can get away with saying anything I want, I am going to use it to help put a face on a problem our country currently faces.  I promise to go back to my usual pictures, recipes and homilies in my next post, but I beg your indulgence and your patience as I look a little deeper into an issue that I had honestly never considered until this week. Click to continue »


Going Organic with Tomato Basil Bisque

Written by Monkeybrad on October 8th, 2009
Taking the slippery slope into organic gardening...

Taking the slippery slope into organic gardening...

One of the best parts of Autumn is the harvest of the bounty of summer and the final payoff of all of those long hours in the garden.  It is a time when our kitchen kicks back into gear after it’s long summer break, at time for baking and best of all a time for soups and stews.  There is little more welcoming than coming home to the smell of freshly-baked bread and a pot of stew that has been simmering all day.  One of my favorite Fall dinners is my mother’s Tomato Basil Bisque with a grilled cheddar cheese sandwich on homemade sourdough bread, now that is serious comfort food.  Normally, by this time of year we have to rely on tomatoes that we canned earlier in the season, but here we are in the first week of October and we still have fresh tomatoes on the vine, so let’s take advantage of them. Click to continue »


Geocaching Secrets of the Great Apes

Written by Monkeybrad on May 1st, 2009

Fiery Gizzard

As many of you know, I have a real passion for the game of geocaching, and in my world passion=obsession, which leads to over-achievement and eventual burnout.  But I will have to say, my passion for this game has far outlasted most other things in my life, so who knows, maybe I will stick with it.  Whether it lasts or not I have had a great time exploring all over the U.S. tracking down these hidden treasures and getting to see some really great locations that I would have otherwise missed and I have met a metric bunch of really great people.  As it turns out, if you do something hard enough for long enough, people begin to think that you have some great knowledge or wisdom to impart.  I am happy to say that my tendency toward bombastic showmanship is occasionally tempered by my true desire to share and teach, and I have been been asked on several occasions to share the “secrets” to my geocaching success.  So I am sharing here, a little piece that I wrote to answer some questions for a “soon to be released” guide to geocaching, and if you make it through that to the end, I promise to share the real secret to successful geocaching.

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Recycled 55 Gallon Barrel Chair

Written by Monkeybrad on April 23rd, 2009

Does everything a "normal" chair does and more!!!

UPDATE: After voting  closed we were lucky enough to be selected as one of fifteen finalists.  Our design went on to win Second Prize in this international Green Design competition, pretty cool, huh?  I want to give a huge thank you to everyone who supported this project, we could not have done this without you.

I know I should not use this site for my own evil schemes, but since I am asking other people to help support this project, I figured I had better support it myself.  So here I am asking for your help, trying to mobilize the Monkey Nation for the greater good of simians and simian enthusiasts everywhere.  So what do I need?  I need your votes.

Here is the deal.  When I am not working on real work or GeoWoodstock or writing this blog or taking pictures or coming up with other crazy schemes, my hobby is working on real-world problem solving, on a small scale.  A couple of months ago, my friend, Seth and I were trying to find a way to recycle or reuse 55 gallon drums from my work and hit upon several things, but among those we designed and built some pretty cool chairs.

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The Road Goes Ever On…

Written by Monkeybrad on April 9th, 2009

The road goes ever on...

I got older this week.  OK , I understand we get older every second of every day and that I am older now than I was when I last typed the word “I”, but we don’t mark the passage of time that way.  We tend to take it in nice sizable chunks, usually years, and we count from zero.  So this week, I turned over another year on my internal odometer, which tends to make me more introspective and reflective than usual.  It is funny that I am more childlike and playful than I was 10 or even 20 years ago, particularly as I have reached an age where my Peter Pan routine is becoming a little unbelievable, even to me.  So as I lay in bed just after dawn Sunday morning, contemplating the last thirty seven years I suddenly remembered the best birthday present I ever received, the one that changed everything…

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Simplified Complexity and the Duality of the Lowly Pimento

Written by Monkeybrad on March 27th, 2009
Here comes the sun...

Here comes the sun...

Spring is a time to retire the heavy stews that kept away the winter’s chill and celebrate the season of the sandwich and nothing says comfort food like pimento cheese.  Now if your experience with pimento cheese involves picking up a pot of the processed grocery store stuff, then I can understand your lack of enthusiasm, store-bought spreads are like the movie adaptation of a book, they often share a name and precious little else.  Likewise, if you are reading this north of the Mason-Dixon line then there is a good chance you are unaware of this delicacy and therefore “don’t know what you are missing”.  It seems hard to believe, to anyone raised in the South, that this ubiquitous potluck dinner/church social/picnic/afternoon tea/school lunch staple is a “regional” dish.  To the rest of you I am preaching to the choir, but stick with me and maybe I’ll find some scripture you haven’t heard yet.

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Wanderlust and Soda Bread in the Season of Green

Written by Monkeybrad on March 17th, 2009


When March rolls around and Spring begins peeking at us from behind the trees, I begin to long for fields of green.  Soon enough the flowers begin to raise their heads from their long winter naps and the signs of the turn of the season become impossible to ignore.  It is about this time that one of my favorite holiday’s rolls around, when everyone gets to put on the green and pretend that they are one of the blessed people, if only for a day.  For me, St. Patrick‘s Day is not about drinking and carousing, although I have been known to do my fair share of that, it is really about the change of the year, a celebration that we have made it through another winter and that the time of bounty is ready to begin again, the polar opposite of Thanksgiving, if you will.  A time to consider what lies ahead and what this new year will bring.  Of course, if you would like to celebrate that with a raised pint, well as long as the beer is black and stout,  then who am I too judge.

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