Monthly Archives: August 2009

Lentil and vege curry

I usually use recipes to cook, and am quite unimaginative in that department. That doesn’t mean I can’t cook. On the contrary, I’m a great cook! But I have found that when I cook stuff without instructions it usually ends up a bit bland, or wrong in a variety of ways. I have to admit that MasterChef jolted me into action with regards to this – I have tried recently to cook without recipes. I haven’t had a great deal of luck, but there is one recipe I would like to share. I’ve been making this for a couple of weeks now just because its so delicious. Cheap too which is a bonus 🙂

These are the ingredients you need: Red lentils, 1 zucchini, 2 carrots, 2 or 3 medium-large tomatoes, any other veges you want, 1 onion, 1 tbls garlic pulp (about 2 large cloves), 1 tsp each of turmeric, brown mustard and cumin seeds, half a tsp of turmeric, 1 tsp of garama masala, salt, plain peanut butter (the stuff that is 100% pureed peanuts – no salt or sugar in it)

Put a generous amount of oil in a hot pan (I find that a combination of olive and mustard oils is great for curries). Turn the heat to medium. When the oil is hot, add the seeds. When seeds start popping, add the diced onion and stir until onion goes soft, about 5 mins. Add the garlic pulp (make sure it’s quite watery otherwise the garlic will just stick to the bottom and burn) and stir for a bit. Add roughly chopped carrots and zucchini. Add ground turmeric and some salt. Stir until veges coated. Add chopped tomatoes and a generous tbls of peanut butter and mix. Cook until tomatoes have gone mushy. Add rinsed lentils and some water so that lentils can cook. Cook on medium-low heat until done. Add garam masala at the end and salt if necessary. Yummy with brown rice.

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Gender testing!?

The result of Caster Semenya’s preliminary ‘gender testing’ reveals that she has 3 times the ‘normal’ amount of testosterone for a woman. Woop-de-doo. Surely that’s not a great surprise. I think if you tested every single female athlete, especially ones that require a lof of muscle for their sport, you’d find high levels of testosterone in most of them.

There is a very good article in the SMH today in the Health and Science section that puts it out there plain and simple – there are lots of different combinations of chromosomes and hormones in people. But this does not necessarily make a person male or female:

Several degrees of androgyny.

The problem with Semenya’s testing is that seems to be this undecurrent of thought that female athletes who appear manly (?) are suspect. What of male athletes? Of course, men who appear womanly will not be tested, because less testosterone and more of those damn passive, fat-inducing and hysterical female hormones are no good to an athlete. But what about men who naturally produce three times the amount of testosterone that is ‘normal’ for a man. Should there perhaps be a new athletic category for those male athletes? The ‘uber-male’ might be an appropriate title for this category. In which case, what category do women like Semenya go into? Should there be a new category called the ‘uber-female’, or should she just compete with the men? Where does it end? Where are the boundaries? In other words, what are they going to do with the results of this ‘gender testing’ they are subjecting Semenya to??

3 million a year for being a shockjock

Kyle Sandilands and dreadful humiliation of a 14 yr old on air have been in the news a lot in the last week. I have always despised Kyle Sandilands and have long believed him to be the ‘scum of the earth’. For me, he seriously represents all that is wrong with contemporary humanity. He disturbs me greatly, but what disturbs me even more is the value our society seems to give him. He is nothing. Let’s see, he is not intelligent, he is not good-looking, he is not originial or artistic or creative, he is no good at sport, he is not funny, he is not philanthropic – in short, he is nothing. He is a white middle-class man, and that’s about it. Let’s be honest, if he was NOT a white middle-class male, he would not be where is he today – he would have needed at least one of the elements I have listed had he been say, a woman, or not white.

Anyway, I read in the SMH yesterday that his combined annual income from tv appearances and his radio show was over 3 million dollars. Let me get this straight, Kyle Sandilands earns over 3 million dollars a year for being nothing.  It makes me want to vomit.

I am often disturbed with the amount of money some people earn for what they do. It seeems to me that our capitalist values are upside down. The jobs that are important, necessary and hard are paid the least, while arseholes like Sandilands are rewarded for being nothing. Take childcare workers or aged carers – in Australia I think an average full-time wage in those industries is  $35K-$40K . The teaching profession is known for its low wages despite teaching being surely one of the most important jobs out there. I know medicine is an important profession, but do surgeons have to be paid hundreds of thousands a year?? Why? At the beginning of the 20th century, teachers and doctors were paid the same. Why have our value and reward systems changes so much?

Anyway, back to Kyle Sandilands,  the fact that someone like him is rewarded both monetarily and by means of social and public recognition I think is an indication of how warped our contemporary value system has become.