Sportswriter Jim Murray once wrote about Rickey Henderson, whose excessive batting crouch helped him to draw lots of walks:

Rickey Henderson's strike zone is smaller than Hitler's heart.


A recent New Yorker article in the Food Issue examined the knife-making industry and profiled Kramer Knives of Seattle. Bob Kramer is one of a select group of Master Bladesmiths in America (as credentialed by the American Bladesmith Society); there are only about a hundred. To pass the test, one's knife must undergo a grueling series of tests, from rope cutting to wood chopping to shaving hair.

There is a multi-year waitlist to buy one of Kramer's knives, used by the likes of super chefs like Thomas Keller (I myself am on that waiting list). He has collaborated on a more widely available series of knives that are sold exclusively by Sur La Table. The Chef's Knife from that series is a beauty (if you're looking for a last-minute gift idea that will just dazzle a loved one who loves to cook, that's a great way to go, though my mother always shunned giving knives as gifts because of the Chinese superstition that giving such a gift foretold the severing of that relationship).

Upgrading the dull chef's knife is one of the best investments a home cook can make. Dull knives make cooking a lot of work and leads to injuries when a knife slips. Proper knife technique is the other simple lesson a chef should learn. To properly capitalize on your knife's edge, the blade should be moving horizontally across the food being cut. Too many people just press down, and that's not how a knife is designed to work. Doing so exerts a lot of needless effort and is slow. Think of your arm and knife moving in a continuous elliptical motion, like the horizontal metallic bar on the outside of a train engine car's wheels.


I don't recall what things were like four years ago, but it feels to me like there are many more "letters to the President-Elect" in the media this time around, on topics from bailouts and reviving the economy to drugs, food policy, and education. I suspect this is the consequence of having a President we regard as well-read and thoughtful.


An old article from The Morning News, as seen back on Reddit today: How do you know if a girl loves you?

If you’re Gael Garcia Bernal: She loves you.