Tag Archives: what

I survived Pestaurant

Yesterday was Pestaurant Day in Mathallen here in Oslo. Pestaurant is an event where you can get free samples of foods made from insects — or what we here in the west have been conditioned to think of as pests.

Insects is one of the more obvious answers to the question of what a growing humanity will eat in the future, and the sooner we start treating insects as food rather than pests, the better. Pestaurant Day is a start.

So, what was served at the Pestaurant?

Locust falafel with tabasco and yoghurt
Locust falafel with tabasco and yoghurt

These are locust falafel with tabasco and yoghurt, and I had a hell of a time getting a picture of them. They kept disappearing before I could focus!

I thought they tasted pretty nice, but were way too spicy for my palate.

Ant chocolate
Ant chocolate

Very sweet white chocolate, with some nice crunchy bits in them. The crunchy bits were ants. Yup, those little black bits in the picture, that’s it.

Cricket cake
Cricket cake

Lovely chocolate cake with crickets. Very nice, but the whole cricket on top turned into a very dusty, dry powder when crunched.

Absolutely delicious chocolate & banana bread with mealworms. Would eat by the kilo.

I also asked for and got some mealworms separately. Just like the crickets, they turn into dusty powder when chewed. They’re much better as an ingredient.

Crickets fried in coriander and chili, topped with mango sauce. Tasted like spices and mango. I didn’t experience the dry texture with these; I think the sauce gave enough moisture to prevent the dryness.

Not all that special by itself, but I could see this working as part of a larger dish.

Honeyroasted locust
Honeyroasted locust

Of all the dishes, the honeyroasted locust with pistachio nuts was the easiest to get my hands on. I can’t imagine why. Tasty and crunchy, but all the flavours could’ve been a lot stronger.

In addition the prepared locust, I got one that was much earlier in the preparation process. Alone it didn’t really taste of anything, it was all crunch and no flavour — which seems to be a theme for the insects used in this tasting.


There was also a mealworm takoyaki being served, but that one disappeared before I could even make it to the table, and it wasn’t refilled during the time I was around. A great shame, as everyone kept saying how delicious it was.


My boyfriend couldn’t come along due to work, so I grabbed him a consolation prize on the way out: A delicious lollipop.

Lollipop

Nom nom.

Ugh, Superdrug

It has already been established that I did a mighty amount of shopping during our pre-christmas trip to England. I did a good chunk of it at Superdrug, a beauty chain with some pharmacy services, that offers a lot of cheap makeup brands that I can’t get back home. Now, I like the products Superdrug carries. I don’t like the actual shops at all.

There are two reasons I don’t like the shops, and they are closely connected. One is that there is a lack of upkeep in the shop. Missing or used-up samplers are rarely replaced, and the shelves are equally rarely cleaned and tidied. Second is the costumer base — cheap makeup means lots and lots of teenagers. These teenagers do not give rat’s ass about how they leave the place. When they use samplers, they spread product over half the shelf. If they can’t find samplers, they’ll just open the product they want and try it, putting it right back if they don’t want it. Y’know, behaviour that most other shops would consider theft.

The two factors combined means the average Superdrug is a filthy mess. The only reason I go back is because it’s months between each visit, and in that time I manage to convince myself it’s not that bad. This is wrong. It is that bad.

During our trip, I shopped at two different Superdrugs. Both gave me problems.

At the first Superdrug, I picked up a Bourjois mascara and a powder. The mascara is a gimmicky type that comes with a small battery-powered motor that rotates the brush. Sitting down in a coffee shop post-shopping I noticed the battery cover and the battery was missing, and they were not lying loose in the bag. Back to the shop with it. The cashier offered me a replacement, but the only possible replacement had been left turned on, letting the battery run down. I got a refund instead, with the shop keeping my receipt.

With no receipt, I’m sure you can imagine how trilled I was when I later found out that the mirror in the powder compact was cracked. The powder itself was covered in plastic, so there shouldn’t be any glass bits in it…

At the second Superdrug, Sleek was my main target. I grabbed two three-shades compacts of blushers. The compacts were boxed, and I didn’t want to be that rude person opening boxes. Bad mistake to make at Superdrug.

I didn’t open the blushers until I got home, and found this:

Three pans of makeup with finger marks in each pan.
Marks not made by my fingers.

Finger marks in every colour. Someone opened both of these, sampled the colours with their fingers, then put the compacts back in the box and back on the shelf. Ugh.

I’ve definitely done all the beauty shopping I need for a long time.

Security theater: Liquids edition

I travel several times each year. As I travel with hand luggage only, I’m getting used to running into the limitations on liquids:

Liquids in hand luggage

There are restrictions on the amount of liquids, creams and gels that can be carried in hand luggage onboard all flights. A maximum of 1 liter of liquid, creams and gels are permitted in hand luggage. Each item must not exceed 100ml. Liquids, creams and gels must be packed in a separate transparent re-sealable bag must be presented at the security checkpoint.

The helpful signs at the airport’s security checkpoint usually show a nearly empty bag, where a tube of toothpaste, a stick of deodorant, and maybe a small bottle of perfume have plenty of room. When I’m flying out, my bag does in fact look a lot like that.

But when I’m coming home from a week of shopping? We’re playing for keeps, darlings.

Security theater: Liquids edition

Said signs also say “do not overfill”. It’s not overfilled if I can close it without bursting a seam. Serious Tetris skills certainly doesn’t hurt.

Here is the lot, unpacked:

Security theater: Liquids edition

With some determination, I could fit:

  • Moisturiser (75ml and the biggest item in the lot)
  • Two bottles of liquid foundation
  • Deodorant
  • Two mascaras
  • Four lipsticks
  • Traveldose of Lemony Flutter
  • Concealer
  • Two gel eyeliners
  • Eyecream
  • Perfume
  • Dry shampoo (not even sure when or why I picked this up, but uh, it could come in useful, I guess)
  • Eye shadow base
  • Samples of lip plumper, lip primer, and eye primer
  • Handwash
  • Eye pencil (which probably didn’t need to go in this bag, but it’s big and I didn’t feel like potentially getting my bag searched for the sake of one bloody pencil)

Let’s not get into the non-liquids I purchased, although packing all of those was certainly an art in itself…

Support gymnastics, Tumblr edition

I keep a tumblr blog as a place to keep “cool stuff I found on the internet”. I’ve been filling it with stuff for over five years. It has the mish-mash of cat pictures, youtube videos, links and quotes that you would expect from such a blog. One day, completely out of the blue, it was suspended.

Saturday, 3rd November, 2012

I get an email from IFTTT notifying me that my Tumblr channel is offline. This has happened a couple of times before, so I see no reason to panic. It’s usually some minor issue that’s easily fixed, or just a temporary problem that will fix itself with some waiting.

IFTTT happens to be down for maintenance when I see the email, so nothing I can do at that very moment, anyway.

Sunday, 4th November, 2012

IFTTT is back up, so I pop in to reactivate the Tumblr channel. Not a problem, this should only take a minute. Log in, click big reactivate button, get redirected to Tumblr…

Your account has been suspended.
To find out why, please contact support.

Hum. That’s odd. I have no reason to assume this is not a mistake or glitch of some kind. There’s an email address provided, so I drop them a quick note — from the address associated with my account — asking what’s up.

Half an hour later, I get an email asking me what my email address is.

Oh dear.

Monday, 5th November, 2012

It’s been about 20 hours since I sent my initial email when I get a response. I suppose that’s pretty quick in support terms, but when you’re wondering what the hell is going on, it feels like an eternity.

We’ve terminated your Tumblr account at <blog address>. As per the policies you agreed to when creating a Tumblr account, we do not allow spam and/or affiliate marketing on Tumblr.

That’s the whole email. There’s no mention of where this spam and/or affiliate marketing was found, which means I am, quite frankly, stumped. I post cat pictures and funny videos, and I do so mostly to keep a repository for myself. I know the blog has some followers, but I couldn’t tell you how many if you held a gun to my head. I don’t even use a custom theme for this blog, but something pretty out of Tumblr’s own theme catalogue!

I email them back stating that I have never intentionally posted any kind of advertising, requesting some specifics on what I’m supposed to have done wrong, and asking if I can have a copy of the contents if they’re not willing to re-open my account.

Wednesday, 14th November, 2012

Still no response from Tumblr, so I drop them another email repeating my request.

One hour later

We’ve restored your content.

Thank you for bringing this problem to our attention. We’re sorry that it occurred, and we’ll do our best to make sure that it doesn’t happen again.

No mention of what bad about my account, but I have it back. I guess this means it helps to send some reminders if your account has been terminated in error…

Now, how do I back up my Tumblr blog? You know, just in case.