Crunchy Crusty Goodness

30D12369-7C64-40B1-BEB8-EEB36D16B0AA_1_201_aOur old boy Mister B got valley fever a little over two years ago. It hit him hard: coughing, fever, listlessness and loss of appetite … he was miserable, and so were we. Once he started taking fluconazole for it the symptoms went away, but one of that medication’s long-term effects is diminished liver function, so now he takes a med for that too.

The vet called yesterday with the latest blood test results and for a change gave us good news: no more valley fever, no more fluconazole. He has to continue with the liver medication, but he’s responded to it well and when the current prescription runs out, no more of that either. We’re beyond happy. Our two other dachshunds, Fritzi and Lulu, have valley fever and also take fluconazole; we hope they kick it faster than Mr. B did.

To celebrate, we’re taking Mr. B in next week to have his teeth cleaned. He’s gonna love that.

The fungus that causes valley fever lives in the ground in the southwestern U.S.A. Dogs get it nosing around in the dirt (people can get it as well, which is a good reason not to stick your schnoz in the soil). Even though all three of our dogs got it, they got it separately and at different times … it’s not contagious, and doesn’t pass from dog to dog or dog to human.

Yesterday was a kitchen day. Braised short ribs cook all day in a 200°F oven, so I was up prepping them before sunrise. Donna made creme brûlée, her first attempt ever, melting the sugar crust with the kitchen torch we got for Christmas for this specific purpose. I took a bite out of the creme brûlée so you can see the custardy filling: it was light and smooth, with a touch of vanilla flavor, and the melted sugar crust had just the right amount of crunch when I broke it with my spoon. We haven’t cooked together for a while, and I’d forgotten how much fun it can be.

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Of course such a fine dinner called for its own special celebration, so I marked the occasion by messing with the cooking blog and breaking it. Not going to bother linking to it since you won’t be able to see it anyway. With any luck (and some help from a patient webmaster friend) it’ll be working again soon.

For my birthday, still two months away, I’m adding another wristwatch to the collection. This one’ll be a casual dress watch, a simple automatic with a white dial and leather strap. The watch I picked, now set aside on my Amazon wish list, is an Orient, a Japanese brand similar to Seiko.

18C0524F-832B-4E6D-BF57-AE1F3FD0E0A7Two weeks ago the plastic shell on a favorite old Casio G-Shock quartz came apart. I superglued it back together but don’t think it’ll hold up. Wondering what G-Shocks go for these days, I went online and found this Casio quartz dress watch, almost identical in appearance to the Orient I’ve set aside as a birthday gift. And it was only 28 bucks! How could I resist?

A sensible person would quit while he’s ahead, forget about the Orient in the bush and settle for the Casio in hand. Give you one guess what I’m going to do.

2 thoughts on “Crunchy Crusty Goodness

  • Good grief. A friend forwarded an article about people in California catching valley fever from just standing around, breathing in blowing dirt as the land dries up in a multi-year drought. I haven’t heard of this happening in Arizona, which has been dried up for thousands of years. But it probably does, and now there’s another damn thing to worry about.

  • I hope there is a program that can help with your “wrist watch problem”. Be of cheer, you are half way home by admitting the problem!

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