September 14th, 2021

Early Spooks

My last entry got double-posted and I had to delete one copy, so some of your comments are gone now. Sorry :/

This week is craaaazy.

I'm having my last few days at work, and that's one area of life where there's just not a lot to do, so I do what I can and try to kill time the rest of the time.

I've completed a spreadsheet of grocery stores, restaurants, and points of interest around each theater on tour.
It definitely doesn't encompass everything, and I won't get to do everything on the list either.
But it's a good quick reference in case I find that there's limited time to explore in a city.

Other than that my focus has been on the prep for making soft pretzels and caramels for my coworkers.
It is going to take up most of my weekend for sure.
I'm super nervous about it for several reasons, mainly that I've never made so much bread at once before, I've never worked with a caustic chemical like lye before, and I've never made pretzels before.

To kind of mitigate my nervousness I first tried asking a few questions about lye dilution and safety on my facebook bread baking group.
Big mistake.

"Well if you're so worried, why don't you just use baking soda?"
(times five, because multiple people felt the need to share this bit of wisdom one after the other waaaay after it had already been said and I had already given perfectly legitimate reasons for not using baking soda)

"The dilution in your recipe is wrong (said about a King Arthur Flour recipe). You need to do it MY way because *I* do it this way ALL the time and MY pretzels are PERFECT".
Followed by umpteen pictures of THEIR pretzels.

"If you're not experienced enough to be making pretzels then maybe you shouldn't be making them."
Wow really?

You get the idea. Never, ever ask questions on facebook unless you want to be beaten bloody with peanut gallery criticisms and commentary about everything EXCEPT what you actually asked about.

One kind soul actually did respond to say that she makes pretzels frequently, and has no problem with handling lye as long as gloves and eye protection are worn. No fumes either at the dilution required for pretzels. This was great to hear, I had been really worried about fumes. I thanked her in a PM and then deleted the pretzel post because I don't need to keep hearing about how I'm not making pretzels the way other people want me to make them.

Listen, if someone will buy me all of the ingredients, I'll make the pretzels however they'd like.

As I was still nervous, I did a lot of my own research and then finally sent a message to the person who'd written the pretzel recipe I'm using. Fortunately for me they are a kind, responsive human being who wrote back explaining and clarifying many steps of the process. I'm still a bit nervous, but at a more normal "doing-this-for-the-first-time" level. Getting reassurance from someone who has done this before was just what I needed. I'm grateful.

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On Sunday Jameson took us to Universal Horror Nights!


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