28 thoughts on “September 8, 2020: Four Score And Ten Years Before That”

  1. The school year has sort-of-ish begun! The jalapeno (entering 5th grade) is doing in-person school 4 mornings a week under a modified hybrid plan. Most kids in grades 2-5 are doing full distance learning, but he was given the option to attend in person. We're not completely sure why he got that choice but he seemed good with it and I'm definitely happy with getting him out of the house some of the time. (Sounds like there will only be about 6 kids in his class for in-person learning, and I figure they're all old enough to manage the masks and social distancing protocols just fine.)

    The peperoncino is in a "pod" with two other 2nd grade boys and a nanny who is working 6 hours a week--9:30 to 3:30. We're rotating houses weekly and the boys are doing this week at our house because Mr. NaCl and I will both be around and can help troubleshoot and deal with tech issues, etc. There's a cost to this option, but hopefully it'll go more smoothly than things went last spring. And I'm really looking forward to those two weeks when the boys are at a different house...

    1. First day of school here too, but only for the kids new to a school, so K, 5, 7, and 9. The oldest at least had a "practice" run with the bus before school started when he started kindergarten, something that did not happen this year. I'm not particularly thrilled with the kindergarteners having to go by themselves but there will be plenty of staff to help the rest of the way. We did at least get to meet his teacher with a nice one-on-one appointment instead of the incredibly hectic open house in the past.

    2. Newbish's first day is today, too. He's very, very ready to get started.

      We were reading a couple of his "hey! It's your first day of Kindergarten tomorrow!" stories, and it sort of struck me how unlike real life, circa 2020 those stories are. "Getting all together and playing blocks?" No. "All hanging out in a big collaborative table?" nope. Hell, when I was talking with his teacher the other day, she was fretting over how exactly she was going to easily teach sharing and the like, since they're not supposed to pass objects between the kids.

      2020. Weird as hell year.

      1. how exactly she was going to easily teach sharing and the like, since they're not supposed to pass objects between the kids.

        Start now and should be ready around the end of the school year, plus a few more years.

    3. We started last week and it went mostly ok. My company is beginning a return to the office plan starting today and I was all "hell no" and got an exemption to stay home for the learnin' stuff. Also, the woman they were going to back when we were in the office (and who lives across the street) turned into the crazy person I had been warning my wife about, so we no longer have day care.

      1. The wife's preschool went back in operation last week. She has been obsessive about prepping her staff and her space and her kids' parents. So far, so good. Kids are divided into smaller groups with little interaction between them. No parents allowed in the building (other than for preview day) and they have to be masked up for drop-off. Masks and face shields for the teachers, lots and lots of hand washing for everyone. And she throws her clothes in the wash and takes a shower every day when she gets home.

        Meanwhile, this weekend at our State Capitol, thousands pray to start a super-spreader event.

  2. So, multi-day reverse sear was a success.
    1. Salted the steaks on the morning of day 1.
    2. I cooked two of the steaks on the afternoon and evening of day 1: one hour at ~200 deg on a rack in my oven, let rest, then sear ~1 minute per side in a dry, smoking hot cast iron pan.
    3. I cooked the remaining 2 steaks on the afternoon of day 2, just the 1 hour at 200 part, rested and returned to the fridge.
    4. I then seared those on the afternoon of day 3, rested and returned to the fridge.
    5. Morning of day 4!! Sliced. A beautiful rare/medium rare with good flavor.

    Bottom line: this technique (thanks, Alton Brown) can be spread over multiple days if circumstances dictate, with no loss in quality of results. You won't get the flavor from the grill, but you will get a tasty, tasty steak.

    mmm, steak.

    1. Now serve it on a long roll with some friend peppers and onions, maybe a little melted cheese...

      1. I'm trying to take some food pr0n lessons from you, Bootsy.

        It's a somewhat fussy technique (well, it IS an Alton Brown technique, after all. Not Kenji Lopez-Alt level fussy, but close). But it would be great for larger social events, (Remember larger social events? Some day again!) because you could prep a whole bunch of steaks in advance and then just finish them on a screaming hot grill or cast iron pan with a quick sear for service. Or, like I did, prep for slicing and service later.

        Lots of Maillard reaction going on because of the pre-salting. Nearly edge-to-edge uniform color/doneness. Nice crust.

  3. Current AQI in Sacramento is 423. I am regretting being in the office today. The air in my building is awful.

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