Good news, everyone! The catalytic converter on my car has gone bad, and now my emissions control unit is throwing gang signs at me. Apparently it overheated due to a rich fuel/air mix, and the ceramic honeycomb inside has melted and knocked loose, which would explain the rattling for the past 2 weeks. I have no choice but to get the entire integrated exhaust manifold / catalytic converter replaced at high cost.

I seriously need a job. Money’s running tight.

On that front, I have a few job leads, a couple that are in the background check phase. That’s all I’m going to say about that at the moment.

Currently, I am showered and winding down from walking all over the neighborhood racking up footsteps (and pinching my bad disc). I need more exercise.

Was going to work on this song I’ve been writing since Wednesday, but I don’t have enough time tonight before bed. I need to get up at 7am which, if you’ve seen me at all during the past 6 months, is fucking early (gotta get my car to the shop for service since the part is in). Music-wise, I’m racing the clock because the audio software I’ve been using for everything, it turns out, has a time-limited press demo serial key, and that key expires in 6 days. That’s barely enough time to mix, test, mix, test, mix, test before I’m ready to share. A fully-licensed copy isn’t available because the version I have is obsolete, and the newest version is over $200, which is something I can’t spare without shame.

Pressures. No wonder my chest feels like an elephant is sitting on it.


Really has been a Solitary Saturday. Spent all but 3 hours of it inside my apartment, mostly working on music. The song I wrote Wednesday has commanded a large chunk of my free time (which is fine, since I have a large chunk of it). The problem with spending so much solitary time is that I’m inside my own head and end up talking to myself. Even when I was at the cafe this evening, I just didn’t want to be with those folks, so I couldn’t catch a wave on any conversation that happened. I mean, I have stuff to say, but it’s not anything I think anyone would want to hear. I could express myself on FB, but nobody wants to see those posts. I could try IRC, but nobody’s on anymore. I really don’t want to express myself here, because it’s a blog, and blogs are stereotypically full of emo ranting, and I’m trying to not be stereotypical with my blog, but but but.

Yeah, save it for a paid therapist. Nobody else cares. Got it.

Things are great, and everything is fine. Thanks.

Red Wine Vinaigrette

closeup image of a bottle of red wine vinaigrette
Red Wine Vinaigrette, experiment 1.

I’ve been experimenting in the kitchen. Decided as part of my lowered-carbs diet (mandated by The Good Doctor), I should eat more salad greens. Well, Ranch dressing is pretty bad for you (even though it tastes awesome), and I like “Italian” dressing, so I figure why not learn how to make my own vinaigrette without all the corn starch, corn syrup, preservatives, and nonsense mixed into the prepackaged bottles?

This recipe makes just over 8 ounces.

  • 3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil (or your favorite oil)
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar (or your favorite vinegar)
  • 1 tsp dijon or yellow mustard (as emulsifier)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp (1 clove) minced garlic
  • 1/2 tsp minced white onion
  • 1/2 tsp minced red bell pepper (green is OK too)
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper
  • 1 dash of lemon juice (optional)

Combine everything together into whatever container you can seal. I have an empty 8oz store-bought dressing bottle. Seal the bottle and shake for a few minutes and serve immediately. Some people prefer to use a blender for a finer, longer-lasting mix; as long as there’s enough emulsifier, it’ll stay mixed long enough to eat. Feel free to play with the oil:vinegar ratio (some people use 2:1 for a stronger vinegar flavor – my first bottle was this, so I’ll dial it back next round) and play around with whatever seasonings you like. My seasoning selection was educated by the ingredients lists on several store-bought brands (also, I’ve recently become a fan of crushed red pepper). As long as you stick with the base recipe of oil, vinegar, salt, pepper, and an emulsifier, you are free to season as you’re pleasin’. You can find out more behind the science of vinaigrette at The Food Lab (thanks to Andrew K. for the link).

Teen Dispirit

> whois phaysis.com
Domain Name: PHAYSIS.COM
Created on: 14-Apr-00

My blog is now a teenager. It has earned its angst.


Hey kids. Administratus here (it’s really Shawn in a circus mask). Making a few performance upgrades and look-and-feel changes to Phaysis. It’s all in the name of delivering you, our beloved and adored, a kinder, better reading experience.

  • Comments now have avatars to help you follow threads (we consider anything with 1 or more comments a “thread” — our bar really is set that low).
  • There’s now a link at the top of the right-hand column reminding you that you can subscribe to our RSS Feed with your feedreader of choice so you can be sure to automatically get fresh content the moment we make a new post.
  • And finally, I’ve enabled caching so the site gets served to you faster than before.

It’s all because we love you. Thanks for helping us usher Phaysis.com into its 13th Year.