Doctor Who Doctor Review: Colin Baker

Oh Colin Baker, who’s fault are you?

I had wondered before starting in with his episodes if I would agree with the common wisdom that he’s the worst of the doctors since I tend to disagree with Who fans about what makes a good episode good.

But yes, this is the worst of the doctors, however, that doesn’t mean he’s bad. He’s just not right.

Let’s forget the idiotic coat (which Colin Baker opposed) and focus on his unpleasant nature. Perhaps JNT, et al, wanted to return to the ascerbic and authoritative doctors of Hartnell and Pertwee. Perhaps they just wanted to update the doctor to a more “’80s” type of character. Whatever the reason, he’s generally a bit of a jerk and a largely incompetent one at that.

On the other hand, he does serve as a good transition between the thoughtfully intelligent Peter Davison and the unassumingly clever yet threatening Sylvester McCoy. You can see that they were trying to go somewhere with this character but hadn’t quite worked it out yet. It would take another 20 years to find the balance they were looking for in Chris Eccleston and see it truly come to fruition with Matt Smith.

Ultimately I feel sorry for Colin Baker as he seems to be a better actor–if only marginally–than his performance as the Doctor displays. His performance as Commander Maxil in Davison’s Arc of Infinity is still camp but enjoyably so. But as the Doctor he spends his time whinging about stuff and yelling all of his lines.

But perhaps he yelled his lines just to get Peri and Mel to shut up.

On to the current ranking of Doctors of whom I’ve seen all episodes:

  1. David Tennant
  2. Peter Davison
  3. Jon Pertwee
  4. Chris Eccleston
  5. Paul McGann
  6. Colin Baker

I only have one episode of Patrick Troughton to go, I just finished Tom Baker, and I’m nearly done with Matt Smith. I’ve decided to jumble these up a bit to get a better perspective on these guys.

Doctor Who Doctor Review: Peter Davison

Time for another Doctor Who Doctor Review: Peter Davison

I’m waiting to watch the last available Patrick Troughton episode before I review him, and still have season 16 of Tom Baker to watch (which I forgot). But, I’ve also moved through the Davison years and am in the midst of Colin Baker now. And boy, there’s someone to be in the midst of.

Anyway, Kate is totally right in her assessment of Davison: He really is quite good. Despite his youth and some of the foolishness associated with the JNT era, Davison makes an excellent Doctor who displays a concern for others not properly seen since the Trought. This ties in well with my pondering a more realistic ordering of Doctors based on behavioral age–despite his youth he is one of the most mature and thoughtful doctors.

This is particularly apparent in the way he handles the almost singularly awful companions saddling this era. Peri? Tegan, to a lesser extent. Pretty bad. Awfulbot, of course (aka Kameleon). And Adric. Even Wesley Crusher cheered when Adric couldn’t stop that ship from crashing into the Earth.

As I think it’s fairly apparent that the actors have some say over how the Doctor behaves, I believe we can attribute the fifth Doctor’s kindness and quick-wittedness to Davison–at least to an extent. After all, this is the guy who played Tristan Farnon in All Creatures Great and Small. Indeed, this Doctor seems less like an eccentric playful alien a la Tom Baker and more like a kindly country veterinarian.

It also helps that–despite the JNT-ness of it all–Davison enjoyed some of the best episodes of Doctor Who. I’d argue that season 20 is one of the best seasons all around with compelling and original episodes like Arc of Infinity, Snakedance, Mawdryn Undead, The Five Doctors, and the excellent Enlightenment. Other terrific episodes include Kinda and The Caves of Androzani which fully deserves the praise it gets.

So, here’s my current ranking of Doctors of whom I’ve seen all episodes. I realized I forgot to include Paul McGann last time, so I’ve added him and taken off Tom Baker until I see season 16.

1. David Tennant
2. Peter Davison
3. Jon Pertwee
4. Christopher Eccleston
5. Paul McGann

Honestly, though, I think I can safely say that the Trought might take the top spot or at least number 2.

Doctor Who Doctor Review: Jon Pertwee

I’ve just finished watching all of the Jon Pertwee episodes of Doctor Who. While there are no bad doctors, per se, I find his portrayal to be one of the weaker ones. His bad qualities of being rather patrician, snippy, and generally a bit insulting sometimes outweigh the fact that he’s one of the few cool Doctors. The gadgets are a bit silly, too (Whomobile).

On the other hand, he is fun and rather charming–there is definitely something plainly likeable about him. When paired with Sarah Jane Smith he became more enthusiastic, but how much of that is Elisabeth Sladen?

My current ranking based only on Doctors of whom I’ve seen every episode:
1. Tom Baker
2. David Tennant
3. Jon Pertwee
4. Chris Eccleston

On to the Trought, who I suspect will rank highly. I also need to finish one season of Matt Smith, but he’s probably above Pertwee for me.

Handy Milk Substitution Chart

For those times when you’ve got two milks and need something else….

Add the following to 1 cup of skim milk to approximate 1 cup of:

  • 1% Milk:
    1.5 tsp heavy cream
    1 Tbsp light cream
    2 Tbsp half & half
  • 2% milk:
    1 Tbsp heavy cream
    1 Tbsp + 2 tsp light cream
    3 Tbsp half & half
  • Whole Milk:
    2 Tbsp heavy cream
    3 Tbsp light cream
    4 Tbsp half & half
  • Half & Half:
    5 Tbsp heavy cream
    5 oz light cream
  • Light Cream:
    9 Tbsp heavy cream

You can basically halve the amounts if you have 1%, quarter them if you have 2%, and so on. More info… Continue reading

Emco Compact 5 Mill/Lathe

I have an Emco Compact 5 Mill and Lathe combo I purchased from a friend. However, I’m not sure what standard fittings it uses. So, I’m using this page to keep track of what they are as I find out.

Mill Collets:

ESX25 or ER25

 

More to come as I figure stuff out…

Chicago Pizza Recipe

Chicago Pizza Recipe

Prep Time: 6 hours, 30 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 7 hours

Serving Size: 9" pan serves 2 people. 12" pan serves 4.

This Chicago deep dish recipe has proven to be surprisingly authentic and quite delicious. It has been compiled from notes found on various recipe sites and has been largely informed by someone who appears to be a professional Chicago pizza chef.

Ingredients

    Base dough recipe. Multiply quantities as needed (see note 1)
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 6-7 Tbsp warm water (note 2)
  • 3 Tbsp oil (note 3)
  • 3/4 tsp yeast
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp Kosher salt
  • Dash of cream of tartar (for Gino's East style)
  • Base Pie Ingredients (per cup of flour):
  • 3/4 cup shredded Sorrento whole mozzarella per cup of flour (note 4)
  • 3/4 cup shredded Sorrento skim mozzarella per cup of flour (note 4)
  • Approx. 1/4 can 6-in-1 Tomatoes
  • Other toppings (e.g., pepperoni, prepared sausage)
  • Crushed garlic
  • Basil
  • Oregano
  • Red pepper flakes
  • Grated parmesan
  • Lou Malnati's 9" Pan quantities:
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 13 Tbsp warm water (192 mL)
  • 3/8 cup corn oil
  • 3/4 tsp EVOO
  • 1 1/2 tsp yeast
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp Kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded Sorrento whole mozzarella
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded Sorrento skim mozzarella

Instructions

    Crust Preparation:
  1. Mix sugar, water, and yeast in large mixing bowl. Let stand while prepping other ingredients until the yeast begins to bubble.
  2. Add flour, oil, and salt and mix for 1 minute
  3. Knead for no more than 2 minutes.
  4. Let rise for about 6 hours. Can let dough rise in cool oven with light on.
  5. Punch down, then cover and let the gluten relax for 10-15 minutes or so.
  6. Pie Preparation:
  7. Preheat oven to 500 degrees.
  8. Grease pan using either corn oil, olive oil, or butter (for Lou Malnati's-style crust)
  9. Press crust into pan or roll out crust for Giordano's-style pie.
  10. Parbake at 500 until very lightly browned.
  11. Set oven to 450 degrees.
  12. Even spread the cheese in the parbaked crust
  13. Add meat and other toppings on top of the cheese
  14. Spread a layer of 6-in-1 Tomatoes
  15. Sprinkle garlic, oregano, basil, etc., on sauce.
  16. Bake at 450 for around 30 minutes. Experiment with time and rack placement because home ovens act in very different ways.
  17. Let cool for five minutes before slicing to allow cheese to harden slightly.

Notes

1. One cup of flour is listed as a base. Multiply quantities as needed. 12" pan = 3 cups. Lou Malnati's 9" pan = 2 cups (available here: http://www.tastesofchicago.com/category/lou_malnatis_pan_spatula).

2. The amount of hydration depends on the age of the flour, humidity, etc. I usually use 6 1/2 TBS. You can add more flour or water as necessary.

3. Most Chicago restaurants cheap corn oil. Some people prefer extra light olive oil, but you can also use a mix. Gino's East, for instance, uses 95% corn oil and 5% EVOO. This mix seems to give the best flavor. Canola is acceptable as well.

4. Use a total of 1 1/2 cups cheese per cup of flour. Sorrento is readily available and a 50/50 mix of whole and skim is very good. Sorrento comes in blocks and is easily be shredded using a food processor. Other options include: Stella or Frigo Mozarella 70-30 Mozzarella/provolone blend for Home Run Inn style

Schema/Recipe SEO Data Markup by ZipList Recipe Plugin
http://www.mphtower.com/?p=381

Getting closer to importing Emax disks into my ESI-32

image

For a while now I’ve been trying to find a way to recover my old Emax floppies. Here’s the deal: The ESI-32 can import Emax stuff but can only do so via the hateful SCSI. So, I have to take the floppies and import them via OmniFlop to an old computer and then transfer them via EMXP then, hopefully, export them to a SCSI drive.

My dad had this SyQuest 135MB EZ Drive sitting around and, heavens to Betsy, it worked! At least, it connected to the E-mu.

Now to try loading the EZ Drive disk with samples via the computer.

Tom SwiftKeys (by Karen Brown Brown Brown Small Sauce Pan)

A while ago my friend John and I were playing with SwiftKey on our Android phones and made a game out of letting it finish our sentences for us.

The rules were: You can start the sentence, but after that you can only select from SwiftKey’s three displayed choices. Some of them ended up insightful whereas others were… a bit odd.

SwiftKey stuff is in italics. Also, I would love to do pictures for these.

Tom SwiftKeys:

Morgan Freeman, the only way to get a chance to win a pair of boots.

My plan relied upon a monster.

Can’t wait for a couple weeks ago.

Spare the rod and spoil the evening.

To be or not to be, that is the first time I got a triple word score.

A bird in hand is worth a try.

Laugh, and the whole world laughs with you. Cry, and the whole world laughs at you.

A penny saved is a pretty stupid question.

It ain’t over till you see the taxpayers money being put to good use.

When the moon hits your eye like a big pizza pie, that’s fine with me.

Walk softly, but carry a high quality lunch.

A penny saved is a great opportunity for a few minutes ago.

It was the best of times, it was the first time, in my opinion.

You can lead a horse to water polo.

Give me liberty or give me some banter.

I regret that I have but one life to give for my own interior design company.

The only thing to fear is the first week in a new form of an undergraduate degree.

Today is the first day of the rest of your own public transport.

Call me Ishmael, and I will not receive any other questions about your business advice.

A stitch in time saves you money on your mobile phone.

In the beginning was the word, and it was really a problem for the last week.

Never say never mind.

A horse walks into a bar. The bartender says, “Why is everyone spelling names wrong?”

Why did the chicken cross the road? To see more details about this product.

A rose by any other name would still smell of you who don’t want to come to my house on Saturday night.

Ladies and gentlemen and all ships in my room.

Give a man a fish puns, boys, we’d like to see them too.

 

Don’t worry, be proactive.

It’s a beautiful day in the neighborhood a beautiful day for a while. Chain Link Exchange. Chain Link Exchange.

Mary had a little more than one club.

Charles in charge of supper and drinks.

People who live in glass houses shouldn’t have said they would like you.

A friend in need is a freak.

Rome wasn’t built in the morning.

Absence makes the heart grow tired of thinking about you.

All good things must come to my friend’s birthday party.

Old habits die, but I don’t.

The grass is always greener in my room, which is why I enjoy painting portraits.

That’s a fine kettle drum concerto competition.

Don’t kill the goose that lays the golden brown shoes.

Any friend of yours is a friend who has a spare ticket for sale.

Where there’s smoke, there’s no reason to believe in Christianity.

Do unto others as you would have been sucked out of my piano teacher.

Do or do not, there is no width or height limit.

May the force be in touch with me and my dad.

Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice as much as possible.

Where there’s a will, there’s no need for your business idea.

I just called to say I love this trip to China.

Put that in your pigeon hole by this Friday.

Frankly my dear, I don’t think having a hard copy of your life is a good idea.

If it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck it’s not too late for us to do it.

How now brown door?

 

Also, thanks to Lauren, Skip, and Geoff for helping with these. (Or at least listening to them.)

 

Think You Know What the ‘BA’ in BA Baracus Stands For, Fool?

Below is a Facebook exchange from yesterday that got a li’l silly.

I first posted this:

"I pity the fool who don't maintain a spreadsheet or use a BPM to for requirements tracking" - BA Baracus (Business Analyst Baracus)

Mr. T., certified Business Analyst

Then my friends and I kept this joke going (I’ve shortened their names and removed links to FB where desired):

  • Geoff: “Did you say ‘no whip’ on that mocha?”
    - Bachelor of Arts Baracas
  • MPH: “Please return your tray tables and seatbacks to their original position… suckas! .. Wait, what am I doin’ on a plane?!”
    - British Airways Baracus
  • Geoff: “¡No me gusto aroplanos!”
    - Buenos Aires Baracus

Kurzweil K2000 Service Manual and Other Data

I’ve started working on repairing the messed up K2000 I got for $25 from Guitar Center. There was a service manual available online, but it was just an image scan. Thus it was really a pain for searching through. This reminds me why I hated using print manuals back when I repaired synths. Not that there was any option, of course, but I wanted to search for things.

Anyway, I’ve OCRed the K2000 manual and I’m also putting together an Excel spreadsheet listing all of the test points. At some point I’ll add this into the K2000 manual.

In the meantime, here’s my OCRed version of the manual for anyone who’s interested in it.

Kurzweil_K2000_K2000RS_Service_Manual_OCR

And here’s the listing of K2000 test points that I’ve discovered so far:

K2000 Test Points