The Thoughts of a Frumpy Professor

............................................ ............................................ A blog devoted to the ramblings of a small town, middle aged college professor as he experiences life and all its strange variances.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Stuffed Peppers

My mind is apparently surrounded with thoughts of food lately. Today we are going to have vegetarian stuffed peppers that I have made. They contain kidney beans, lima beans, rice, peas, carrots, and all sorts of spices and flavors.  They are going to be very good. We are going to have yams with these peppers and curried potatoes and salad.


Monday, December 16, 2013

Submarine Sandwich

There is something especially satisfying and appealing about a sub sandwich. More than most other sandwiches, I find a sub sandwich to be especially tasty, hearty, and easier to make in a healthy fashion.

Tonight we purchased sub sandwiches for dinner. I ended up getting a chicken sub with virtually every vegetable available. The only thing I ordered on the light side, were jalapenos. I like jalapeno peppers, But was not in the mood for a huge amount of them tonight.  Some days I seem to want huge amounts of spicy jalapenos on virtually anything I am eating. But, today was not one of those days.

Besides the wonderful flavor of jalapeno peppers in Mexican food, I make a really delicious spicy macaroni and cheese that features jalapenos. I like baking with jalapenos as it will tend to release more flavor, and for those of my relatives disinclined to like heat, baking the jalapeno reduces some of its intensity.


Friday, December 13, 2013


Grades are computed. Now is the time to allow them to marinate. To facilitate the marination process I went to my elderly father-in-law's house this afternoon.  I  too  feel  as if I am marinating. Libations were pleasantly consumed,  pipes were enjoyably indulged in, and all is good. I told the kids that I would contemplate a curve for their grades during the weekend. I also told them that it would depend   upon my mood.  If I am in a good mood, I would add a little curve, but if the weekend was not pleasant, no curve.  Thus far, the weekend is turning out very nice. If it stays as the way it is now, I may give a curve.  


Tuesday, December 10, 2013


I just returned from my semi-annual teeth cleaning.  I am glad to report that my teeth and gums are healthy and happy and that there was very little in the way of cleaning of tartar that needed to occur.  My new dentist said that I have excellent teeth and gums.  This is such a nice contrast.  I originally had my prior dentist for over 40 years, but when he retired, his patient list was sent to a new dentist who I went to for about two years.  He was a nightmare... wanting to do all sorts of nonsense to me and wanting to replace intact fillings and adding crowns and all sorts of other b*llsh*t to pad his wallet.  I left him after he botched a (I suspect, unnecessary) filling replacement which gave me a great deal of hassle for which I have been aggravated about for quite some time.   I did not visit a dentist for two years, out of dislike for this fellow before I ended up taking the bull by the horns and calling around to find the fellow I now go to.  He has been wonderful, and compliments me on my teeth care habits and says my mouth, jaw, and gums are all robust, healthy and strong.

So, my teeth are especially white and shinny at the moment.  It almost makes me want to not drink any coffee for a while to keep them so nice and polished.  We shall see how I feel about that in the morning when I normally have my coffee.


Thursday, December 05, 2013


The above molecule is the structure and composition of nicotine.  It is supposedly the root cause of why I smoke a pipe.  The idea is that I ingest nicotine and it will act upon receptors on acetylcholine releasing neurons.  Nicotine is a parasympathomimetic alkaloid and can exert stimulating or sedative effects depending upon usage.   To the best of my understanding of myself, I primarily indulge in tobacco for its slight sedative effects.  Yet, the odd thing about my pipe smoking, is that I admit that I greatly enjoy the activity, and greatly enjoy the process, but I have experimented over the last few weeks with other nicotine containing products (cigars, chewing tobacco, cigarettes, and even an e-cigarette).  While I occasionally enjoy a cigar under normal circumstances, I was experimenting with the various other tobacco type items simply to see if they could be a substitute for me in a new effort to stop, or restrict my pipe tobacco consumption.  The odd thing is that NONE of the other tobacco type items were able to substitute for my pipes and pipe tobacco.  To me, that suggests that there is something beyond the simple biochemistry of nicotine at work in my long standing affair with pipes and pipe tobaccos.  If pipes and pipe tobaccos were not available to me, I do not think I would regularly and consistently indulge in any other form of tobacco.  None (not cigars, not chewing tobacco, not cigarettes, not e-cigarettes) were something that held the sort of appeal to me that my pipes and pipe tobacco have.

I think exploring this notion further may help me to eventually uncover a mechanism by which I will be successful in quitting smoking my pipes and pipe tobaccos, or in having a restricted structure of very occasional use of pipes and pipe tobaccos.  To me, I think it is important to note that it really is not all about nicotine.  That is somewhat flying in the face of common theory on the matter of using tobacco, but it truly feels as if it is explaining something of value to me that I may be able to use in my efforts.

You may find it interesting to note that I threw away the chewing tobacco, the cigarettes, and the e-cigarette, because none of them really had any appeal for me.  I kept the two cigars I had left, but put them away, and have no real interest in them at this time.


Wednesday, December 04, 2013

Busy Time

The winding down of the semester is a hectic time for professors. It is not horrendous, by any stretch of the imagination, but it is just very busy. With my new course also winding down for the first time, there is still a tremendous amount of preparation, especially in developing what would be considered a fair yet appropriate final examination. In many ways, it is fun and enjoyable work, but the sheer volume of it is a bit stressful. I am hopeful that I can maintain the calm, diligent effort I have been able to conduct bus far. I am especially pleased that I have not had any emotional upheavals nor huge, daunting surprises. So in a nutshell, life is call me but hectic.