Category Archives: Food & Restaurants

Photos of the day #potd

Trying to stick with this this year.  My other resolution is to procrastinate less, so aaahahahahahahahahahahaaaa *snort*  we’ll see how that goes.  Anyhoo, photos for days 1, 2 & 3 of 2016.

1/1/2016:  Yeti Feet!  (Barbered soon thereafter.)

Image: golden retreiver dog's paw with much long hair sprouting through her toes.

1/2/2016:  Dumplingpalooza!

Image: close up of a pair of hands making dumplings next to a silver bowl of stuffing and a bamboo steamer of completed dumplings.  Can see that the person is wearing a Wonder Woman logo shirt.

1/3/2016:  Random photo of orange piping.

Image:  Close up of bright orange piping arrayed vertically in the photo.

Amy’s Recipe for Perfect Iced Coffee

  1. Use Equal Exchange French roast coffee in a French press to make approximately 1/2 cup too much exquisitely  strong coffee in the early morning.
  2. Don’t drink all of it.
  3. Sometime in the afternoon, poor remainder over ice.
  4. Enjoy!

Kitchen technology

In yesterday’s installment of “adventures in remodeling,” we packed up our kitchen.  For the next few weeks, we’ll be camping out in the living room, cooking with a single burner and a microwave.  In other words, the same way we’ve been cooking for the past 20 years, but in the living room.

Just kidding.

Sort of.

This process required us to pack up everything except a small collection of kitchen equipment that we’ll use in our living-room camp-out.  I thought it was telling that our first two must-have choices were a martini glass (Tim) and a colander for pasta (me).  What we’d want on a desert island.

As I packed up the various drawers of random kitchen equipment, I came across a couple of interesting items that I think I tossed in the boxes coming from my Dad’s house in 1997.  I find them funny for a variety of reasons, not the least of which is: my father essentially didn’t cook.  He knew how to make his own standard breakfast (two fried eggs over easy; burned* & buttered toast); a couple of standard dinners (hamburgers;** steak; roast chicken****); and vacation food (lobster*****).  I don’t think he was unable to cook; he just liked those things and didn’t see any reason to expand his food horizons.  When he and I traveled to China in 1981, he survived largely on packaged peanuts.

Anyway, here are some of the tools I inherited from Dad.  First, a snicker for your inner 11-year-old:

Image: scissors-like tool with two scoops at the end, in package that reads "Swedish & Cocktail Meat Baller."

If the meat baller weren’t enough, he also had a melon-baller, though from Spain or Mexico, so we miss the English-language snicker.  I love  “¡¡si!!” on the packaging.  Whatever problem this tool is solving, we are clearly intended to be very happy that it has solved it.
Image:  tool with very small scoop at the end; packaging is in Spanish.
I loved the idea of a culture so into eating sardines that it would develop a single tool for opening the sardine can and eating the contents.
Image:  Tool still in packaging that permits opening a sardine can and eating the sardines using the single tool.
What is this and why did Dad have one?
Image:  unexplained tool with hook at the end.
What is this and why did Dad have two of them?
Imate:  Two identical tools consisting of a handle and an approximately two-inch by four-inch set of parallel blades.
Prehistoric food processor:
Image:  small cylindrical grating blade in a plastic housing with a turn handle.
And finally, just a couple of cool, old, weathered kitchen tools:
Image: old cheese parer with handle and single blade.
Image: weathered bottle opener.
Image:  Old style jar opener.
Image:  close up of old style jar opener showing the words  "jar wrench wizard."
In conclusion, show of hands, how many people think I should (1) learn how to use the white balance****** features of my camera and software; and (2) get some real lighting equipment:
Image:  Camera set up to photograph objects on a table.  Lighting comes from a desk lamp on top of a cardboard box on top of a stool.


* Intentionally.  And when he ordered bacon in a restaurant, he would go to great pains to insist that it be burned as well.

** Classic divorced dad moment:  he wanted to make hamburgers for us; little shits that we were, we*** wanted McDonalds.  Dad: “OK, then, if you want a McDonalds hamburger, I’d be happy to step on your burger before I serve it to you.”

*** And by “we” I mean “Bruce.”

**** IIRC, Dad’s recipe called for dowsing the chicken in butter every five minutes while it roasted.  No question, that was an excellent roast chicken.

*****  Steamed; dipped in butter.

****** This has to do with the temperature of light, not some weird-ass reverse affirmative action.

Access success and fail in Helena, with random Helena photos

I spent part of last week in Helena, Montana on a new/old case in which CREEC is joining the ACLU National Prison Project and the ACLU of Montana as co-counsel on the case of Langford v. Bullock.  The Langford case was brought and settled in the early 1990s, but the implementation period is ongoing with respect to a claim under Title II of the ADA.  CREEC is lending its expertise in this area.

Image:  four people standing arm in arm.  From left:  a middle aged white man with red-blond hair and a gray goatee wearing a tan suit jacket and open collar shirt, an younger middle-eastern man with short hair wearing a button down shirt, a young white woman in a gray t-shirt and blue scarf, and a middle aged white woman in a yellow shirt and multi-colored scarf.

Jon Ellingson of the Montana ACLU, Ajmel Quereshi of the ACLU NPP, and CREECsters Sarah Morris and me.

Sarah and I flew into Missoula, met with Jon and Ajmel, and then all drove over to Helena.  The meeting went well, and left me a few hours of Wednesday afternoon for a leisurely stroll around Helena.  As I’ve mentioned — among other places, in my Ramps of Route 1 post — I love to observe the small ways that small town small businesses find to provide access.*

First up:  Taco del Sol on Last Chance Gulch Street.**  I love not only their tile ramp

Photo:  Sidewalk sign showing a big, wooden sun with attached smaller signs reading "Tacos Burritos Nachos Fish Tacos and more" and another reading "Beer and Wine."  Next to the sign, a door into a restaurant with a sloped tile ramp leading in.

but that, even as a small restaurant, they made Braille menus available.

Photo:  wooden box containing menus; a sign on the side reads "Braille menus are available for in-store use."

Also the carne asada burrito was fantastic!

Last Chance Gulch was a sort of pedestrian mall that did a great job ensuring the one or two steps of rise at most stores was ramped.  The giant plush bear added an extra touch at the Lasso the Moon toy store.

Photo:  front of a toy store with a large stuffed bear, accessible with a sloped entryway.

And accessible ice cream!


Helena had a couple of hilarious access fails, as well.  Flower pot access fail:

Photo of two-way ramp in front of the door to an office building with a giant flower pot at the top of the ramp.

Pink flamingo access fail:

Photo of store with level entry, which put a flower pot in the door, and in the flower pot, a large plastic pink flamingo which is pitching face first into the door width.

And major design brain fart fail:

Photo showing ramp down to lowered area of pedestrian mall; there is a single step up to the ramp, however.

The photos below were just randomness from my walk:

Photo of moorish style design in an arch at the Civic Center. Photo of detail from a painted outdoor wall showing an ashtry with a half-smoked cigarette. Photo of a brick wall and text painted on the adjacent wall reading, "Memory Wall:  The Historic Chinese Community of Helena." Photo of large red pickup truck with the license plate "BG JNSN."

And my photos could not capture the beauty of the mountains, but I tried:



*  As with the original post, I have to offer this disclaimer, because every now and again some defense-side attorney (hi, guys!) may read this:  I did not evaluate these ramps for compliance with the Standards.  I don’t know their dimensions or slope.  If you try to introduce this as evidence in one of my cases, I will file a Motion for Judicial Notice of Completely Missing the Point.

** Not kidding!

Photo:  traffic light and street sign reading "Last Chance Gulch."

The Pioneer – a restaurant/access review

A divey bar with excellent food and access to the roof deck – what could be better?!

Tim and I have been coming to The Pioneer for a couple of years now. It’s not far from our house and had a nice patio where you could chill with good drinks and snacks in Colorado’s dry summer air.

It’s a college bar – hence the name, after the University of Denver Pioneers – but if you go early enough, you won’t be overwhelmed with students and it has terrific Colo/Mex food – far better than the décor would suggest. And the margaritas are fantastic – so fantastic that I only go there on my bike.

Image: photo of purple girl's bike locked to railing around patio in previous photo.

Sometime last year, we noticed that they were adding a roof deck on top of the patio. “Oh well,” we sighed, “I’m sure it won’t be accessible, but then it’s an old building and we can still drink margaritas on the patio.”

This week we’re on staycation, chilling at home, getting various house-related things accomplished, avoiding work email, and — when the mood strikes us — wandering up to The Pioneer in the middle of the afternoon.  We settled in at a patio table and then, just for the heck of it, asked if they had an elevator.



“Yes, we do, but someone needs to find the key.”  I was so blown away by the fact that they’d installed an elevator that I did not stop to comment on the fact that it would be great if their disabled customers could use it independently.

Morgan — our extremely friendly & helpful waiter — found a key and, well, “elevator” turned out to be a mild exaggeration.  Here is the door to the “elevator” on the roof deck.

Image: photo of the door to an open-air wheelchair lift.

And the, um, view from the “elevator” at the roof deck level:

Image: View from top of open air wheelchair lift toward the houses beyond the roof deck.

Tim:  “Am I almost up?”

Me:  “Yes, if by ‘almost’ you mean ‘about halfway.'”


Once we got there, we were glad we’d asked, and so very glad The Pioneer had installed an “elevator.”

Image:  left side - a bar under an awning; right side - picnic tables with umbrellas.  A white man in a flowered shirt and using a wheelchair sits at one of the tables.

Short restaurant review:  I had the goat cheese quesadillas — they were spectacular.   Tim had the veggie burrito (shhhh don’t tell) with mushrooms, poblanos, and potatoes.  Also really really good.  And margaritas all around.  And you canNOT beat the view:

Image: view over the railing of the roof deck to a 7-Eleven store.

Seriously, as a restaurant we can walk/roll to and stumble/weave home from, with delicious food and a friendly staff, we love the Pioneer.  Slightly less sarcastic photo of the view looking south:

Image: panoramic view of roof deck.

And of course, The Pioneer himself:

Image: larger-than-life-sized figure of a "pioneer" a white guy with a beard and a DU sweatshirt, holding a stein of beer in one hand.  His arms are open to the roof deck and he is smiling.


Extra bonus Father’s Day waffle photo

Image:  older white man in a flowered shirt sitting at an outdoor restaurant table, smiling with his arms outstretched.  On the table in front of him is a plate of waffles and bacon, with ice cream on top.

My father-in-law Denver Fox celebrates Father’s Day by ordering*

Image: cropped photo of menu item: "Bananas Foster Waffle: Buttermilk Waffle, Banana Rum Caramel Sauce, Pecans, Pecanwood Bacon"

with a side of whiskey brickle ice cream.  Because Father’s Day!

Tim and I had an amazing omelet with a crawfish pepper sauce.

None of us ordered but all of us were entertained by

Image: cropped photo of menu item:  "Gator Benedict: Alligator Sausage, Johnny Cakes, Marinated Green Tomatoes, Poached Eggs, Hurricane Hollandaise, House Potatoes."

All at Fourteen Seventy-Two on South Pearl Street in Denver.


* I had to find a way to include the name of the dish, because I kept reading it “Bananas Foster Wallace.”  You too, right?