Tasty bake for breks

I have utterly surprised myself by making a meal. Two meals, even. But last night in the midst of world questing, my bf begged to use my computer for work stuff. (In fairness, he earnestly needed it and I ended up reinstalling his OS in addition to cooking. But I digress.)

So somehow I got into my head that I would try some “slow carb” recipes. Longer story. Short story is that I made breakfast for the next week! Here goes:

Egg wake and bake

This recipe is enough for two people for 3 days. I’m sure you could muffin-ize it too. 


❖ 1 lb breakfast sausage
❖ 1 can black beans

❖ 5 oz baby spinach 

❖ 1 /2 cup salsa

❖ 1 dozen eggs

❖ 8 oz carton of egg whites

1. Preheat the oven to 325. Grease a 13×9 baking pan. 

2. Brown breakfast sausage in a large skillet.

3. Once the sausage is done add beans and spinach and saute until the spinach is wilted.

4. Layer sausage mixture evenly along the bottom of the pan.

5. In a large bowl, whisk together eggs, egg whites, and salsa. Pour egg mixture over sausage filling

6. Bake for 45 minutes or until the center is no longer jiggly and a toothpick inserted comes out clean.

I’m gonna try to vegetatianize it at some point. I think a veggie sausage could work. 


Baby steps back

I realized last night that my schedule has been completely, 100% borked. Blame the winter, blame the rains, blame traveling. Something has thrown me way way off since… well a long damned time.

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Yesterday, I made a goal to get my unread emails down to below 1000. It was a modest goal: just handfuls of emails down and a huge glut to go. But I did it, dammit. I fucking did it.

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What’s the deal with my language thing?

Why? Why the hell am I still pretending I’ll ever learn even close to 50% of the world’s native languages? This:

If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart.”  Nelson Mandela.

I voted today. I can’t believe my country is coming even a little close to electing a ridiculous xenophobe. Now it’s more important than ever that if we can’t walk a mile in someone else’s shoes, we can at least understand what he’s saying when he tells us what it’s like.

More thoughts on languages

I’m super fascinated right now with languages: how many people speak more than one? Which ones? What would it take to be able to speak with 50% of the world’s population? 80%? Are there any speakers that are so staunchly monolingual that getting closer to 100% would require learning those languages?

I’ve started trying to answer some of these questions, cobbling together data from a few disparate sources.

This WaPo article starts to answer a few of the questions, but I’m not sure about their methodology. Do I really care? Meh. But here’s what grabbed me: “two-thirds of the world’s population share only 12 native languages“. Dannnnng. I had calculated it at 13, but for only 50% of the world. So ok, what are those 12 special languages one must know?


The Darling Dozen are Chinese (unfortunately they lump all dialects, which I think is short-sighted), Hindi-Urdu (which are separate in my calculations), Arabic, English, Spanish, Bengali, Russian, Portuguese, German, Japanese, French, and Italian.

This is mind-blowing to me. 66% speak a common 12 languages? Natively?? Dang. That seems like a home run. However, looking more closely, there are lots of nuances that need to be delved into there, like that Chinese isn’t a single language and, from what I understand, isn’t mutually intelligible from language to language. However, using Wikipedia’s 2010 numbers, Mandarin is 955M, Wu is 80M, Yue 59M, Jin 48M, and Southern Min 47M. I can live with that inconsistency of only about 200M. I don’t have a single clue about the differences between Urdu and Hindi, but at least Wikipedia says they’re mutually intelligible.

In fact, even over at Mentalfloss, they’ve got a different number: “more than half of the world’s population speaks one of just 23 languages”. This is far more languages than I’d calculated, but again, I’m using old 2007 numbers as from Wikipedia. Still, they found a cool graphic from a dude on the South China Morning Post:


I think the number of languages you’d need to speak with half of the world natively is somewhere in between those two figures, perhaps even back at my original guesstimate of 13. So much guesswork, though.

Ethnologue, which I would trust much further than Wikipedia or WaPo—or my own guesswork, has this as the breakdown, which includes Javanese in the top 12 languages, well above Italian. Here’s a snippet of their chart, with the final column on the right being speakers in millions:


Well, I suppose if the goal is to travel a lot and speak with as many people when you get there, a traveler should live in the Venn diagram overlap between most-spoken native languages and most-learned second languages. Here’s the second language learners, again from that WaPo article:


So if you’re aiming to strike up a conversation anywhere in the world and have a good chance to find someone who can bend your ear too, aim for English, Mandarin, Spanish, Hindi or Urdu, Arabic, and French.

Just the other day a friend told me he was nearing fluency with his Chinese (Mandarin), and already spoke Spanish pretty well. We had our conversation in English, and some quick math shows he can already speak with basically 1 in 5 people on the planet, in their native tongue. If we add in second language or learners to that, he’s looking at about 42% of the world’s population, or 2 in 5. Just one more language for him (the Hindi-Urdu two step) and he’s up to 49.88%. Wow!!

I wonder what one could do with this information…

Ice crystals tree tiara, streamed

Ok ok. I’m telling you that I streamed these, past tense. Let’s be honest: I’m still working on some technical stuff with the preso. But once I have a schedule, I’ll share it here. 

So I streamed making this one, and since I wasn’t basking in the storytelling and love with my IRL friends, it only about a half hour, per more usual. 


tall trees today