Always ask the questions FIRST, M.R.!

clippersI popped down to my local supermarket and ran into one of the women who works there with whom I talk a fair bit. I gasped! – she was looking marvellous, with her hair so short it had obviously been done with one of these thinggies.

I’m very familiar with ‘em, as Stringer always cut his own hair using one. (What did I do with that …? – oh yes! I gave it to my GP. I’ll bet he hasn’t had the courage to give it a go, yet.)

Debbie looks so terrific that I was instantly seized with a desire to be rid forever of haircuts that I haven’t really liked since my extraordinarily expensive cutter sold her Macquarie Street salon and went down to Melbourne to become a mother and housewife.

Deb said she’d had it done as part of a fund-raising effort for breast cancer (and had indeed raised a fair bit); but as I hadn’t run into her for a fair while, and knew nought of any of the background, I merely raved endlessly and truthfully about how it looks and determined to do the same. We arranged that the woman who’d clippered off the hair of the several volunteers would pop ’round to my place and do it here, for a modest sum.

I got out Stringer’s favourite stool and positioned myself in the middle of the kitchen for ease of subsequent sweepings, and Debbie stood watching while Ros got going with all the covers and so forth; then picking up the clippers took out a swathe. Debbie said “Too late now to change your mind!”, with a laugh. As clumps of my hair fell, she added, casually; “My cut’s about four weeks old, now—” then saw the expression on my face and stopped. A moment or two’s silence on all parts …

Then I shrugged under my voluminous plastic cape (causing lots more hair to cascade) and said “Oh well; I suppose mine’ll look like yours in another four weeks …”, somewhat nervously.

And there you have it, my dears: if ever you decide to do something radical based on how it looks on or has affected another person, run by ’em all possibly relevant questions before taking any decisions about doing the same thing. Had I done this, I would’ve had Ros give me a #4, not a #2 …

And now, because you’ve been so patient and read all this rubbish, I shall reveal to you what a #2 looks like on this ancient bonce …

But you know what? – I don’t actually mind it at all!   :-)

My very real addiction

To start off with, here’s a nice little story about … well, my addiction (as ever, click on the image).

It would indeed be super if rude customers could be thus channelled into politeness, wouldn’t it? – but the shoe also fits the other foot …

How often when picking up my skim milk weak latte extra hot – for in truth I only really like my own coffee brewed in my own machine from my own beans – have I told myself “Right: I shan’t be passing this way again!” on account of the singular lack of friendliness shown by the ‘barista’? (The quote marks are there to indicate that imnsho many who call themselves this aren’t as good at it as I am.)


new-setupTHIS is the import of my post today!

If you refer back to a very early post I made, you will, I hope!, observe a significant difference between the two images …

Yes: the grinder. I never truly understood the enormous importance of one’s grinder to a coffee addict. But now I really, really do!

Whereas in my setup previously the grinder was an Australian Sunbeam EM045, which did a pretty good job and enabled me to produce coffee I thought was ace!, I’m now the proud possessor of an Italian grinder, a Le’Lit PL043MM – the last two letters referring to its capacity for almost infinite sizes of grinds via manual adjustment. It’s this joyous object that has put me in the happy position of being able to meet the very strict standards postulated by the Gaggia Users’ Group:

  • 14g ground beans (actually quite easy to weigh, once having weighed the group head)
  • 25 seconds of pulling the shot, resulting in
  • 28g espresso with most of it crema (achieved by weighing water in my coffee glass and comparing visually)

The Le’lit has only one disadvantage: when needing to adjust the grind smaller (which need occurs as the kilo of beans purchased grows ‘older’ throughout the month/less it takes me to get through them), one must do so WHILE GRINDING BEANS. This means I always lose some. Sighh …

But hey, the setup is now, I believe, as good as a solitary person can possibly have. I consume about 5 cups of coffee a day – my 28g topped with very hot milk – so there’s not much point in not having it top quality.

Note: I do realise that not everyone is as thrilled by coffee as am I, but one of the benefits of having a blogsite is that the maintainer of same can blog away to his/her heart’s content on any topic under the sun! Only if s/he is ruled by the number of ‘Likes’ with commensurate little gravatars will s/he become depressed by realising that those who appreciate the whole coffee-making process are not legion – not by a long shot. So perhaps if I add that when Chic was here, I never touched the little Spidem, as I didn’t have a clue about producing an espresso – why, then you might comprehend something of my satisfaction.   :-D