Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Shiny Coat

Brr, it's getting cold here- we actually had snow to "welcome" us back from a weekend up in Portland ME.  Portland has amazing food culture, I was shocked at how many good restaurants there were for a small town. And you can get the NY Times home delivery!  Too bad there's not a world class scientific research institution for the Scientist to work at, or we'd be there!

Now I'm resolved to try to make Pane au Levain using natural yeasts and a sour starter.   I've never loved "sourdough"  which I think tends to be kind of harsh, and I'm nervous about having the keep the starter fed etc, but it's worth a try if the bread is anything like the bread we got at Standard Baking company...

Somehow in my travels I managed to wench my back though, which made biking to work a bit tough.  I'm fine spinning along, but pushing off and really mashing on the pedals to go fast is a bad idea.  As I limped along at a low speed I was thinking about a big flaw in vehicular cycling.  To VC,  you have to be able to be aggressive, move fast, all the time, be able to take the lane.  Some days you just don't feel up to it,  and if VC is your only option, I can see why so many people don't want to bike.

I did get to try my new shiny coat. It's a "platinum color" with a metallic sheen, which turns out to be re quite reflective.   I was hoping that this would be my winter coat, and I washed it in a water-repellant solution to try to make it "sprinkle proof" .  Unfortunately it's not very well sewn, and I've already torn the lining out in two places in three rides.  Oh well,  at least it's as shiny and reflective as I hoped,  Maybe I can sew the lining back in where it's coming apart.  Might take in the sides at the same time to give it a bit more shape.  Another project


  1. I love Portland ME; we lived there for a bit and still visit occasionally. But yes, not a whole lot of jobs in that area, regardless of industry really.

    Sour dough bread is one of my favourites, but I would not have the patience for making it - would no doubt poison everyone with that scary "starter" business!

    Re the quality of the reflective coat - could you reinforce the lining somehow? I've done this on badly sewn clothing.

  2. I am really nervous about the snow. How was biking in it. I had a herniated disk last winter and couldn't bike or do much of anything from November through February as a result. I biked through a bit of the spring melt but had problems in some late afternoon refreezing snow mounds on my way back home from work for weeks until it was all gone.

  3. Filigree, I may try reinforcing the lining with panels of iron on interfacing at critical points like at the back vent, the sleeves- I just wasn't looking for a sewing project right now, especially on a coat that has other issues (funky fit, silly peter pan collar) I really like the shiny, but, I'm not sure it's completely worth it.

    SRAB- It didn't accumulate at all, and I spent the afternoon watching it fall from inside with a book and a glass of wine :)
    Although I bike throughout the winter's cold, I don't really bike if there's ice or snow on the road. I'm just too nervous that a car will skid into me. It's a surprisingly small amount of time that I can't ride regularly, even up here in Boston.