Rankings of Real Ales

As shown by extensive personal research at the Pen and Parchment, the following ranking is true:

  1. Spitfire
  2. Old Speckled Hen
  3. 6X

They tried to kill us; we won; let's eat!

Happy Purim!

I’m glad to have something to say good about today. Except for the Wizard of Oz Purim Shpiel and Megillah Reading at Shir Hadash, today has been an archtypical Monday — not a day to enjoy.

Besides being very busy at work, and having to rush to get to shul on time, after we got back from services, our son mentioned that he had to finish his Mission report for tomorrow (a standard 4th-grade assignment here in California). There was much more work left to do than he had told us — even with our help, he didn’t finish until nearly 11pm, well past his bedtime (and awfully close to ours!). And there are still some final touches he has to add tomorrow before school — but there was no way he would have been able to do them tonight.

And apparently he has a science project due soon, too. Oh, well; I remember burning sugar as my science project in high school when I’d left it to the last possible night — it didn’t go over very well with the teacher, either. And I also remember putting off an 11th-grade term paper until the day before it was due,then cutting classes to do the research and staying up until the wee small hours typing the paper up — that was probably the first time I ever drank coffee. Perhaps procrastination is inherited!

Life without phones?

Yesterday morning, GTE rang the bell very early to tell us that they were ready to install a new data line. Since the installation was entirely outside, we didn’t have to stay around and we didn’t — we took off for Torah Study and Minyan, and then lunch and Love in the Title, an Abbey Theatre of Dublin production at San Jose Rep.

The play was, ummm, different — it takes place in a meadow in Ireland, where three generations of the same family meet: Cat, from 1930 (age 20 or so), Triona, from 1960 (age 30 or so), and Kate, from 2000 (age 37). Cat, the grandmother, hasn’t gotten married yet; Triona has just had Kate. It was a very talky play (difficult to follow because of the authentic Irish accents).

Eventually, we came home, and I discovered that neither of our phone lines worked, though our data line was just fine. So I went next door and borrowed a phone to call GTE, who warned me that there would be huge costs if the problem was inside. I didn’t think this was likely (two lines? Right after a service call?), and I didn’t have much of a choice anyway.

So this morning, after a trip to the Y to exercise, I came home and found GTE here — working inside. There was dialtone at the junction box (there’s no delimiter, so I couldn’t plug a phone in to check myself), but none as soon as he wired up the inside lines. So we dug out the access to the crawl space (it’s in our son’s closet) in case the guy needs it, and he’s busy working under the desk in the other room. And now he’s fixed the lines. I still believe that it was yesterday’s work which caused the problem, but I don’t have any way to avoid paying for the call. *sigh*

Once the service guy leaves, I’m going to go to shul and catch up with the book group, which is discussing I Married a Communist by Philip Roth and picking out books for next year. Then we have the Purim Carnival, and then our havurah is going to see Mission to Mars; we saw part of the filming in Petra, Jordan last year on our trip to Israel.

Mission to Mars would have been a better movie if it were 20 minutes shorter — but I’m not sure which 20 minutes I would have cut. Suffice it to say that I kept checking my watch during the film. And I kept waiting to hear the Blue Danube or Also Sprach Tharathustra! But we did get to see the Mars rovers that we’d seen in Petra, and also some shots shot in the siq (the channel leading to Petra), which is where we were delayed on our trip.

The Purim Carnival was fun, especially for the kids — our son went through $5 worth of tickets and came back with 2 cents worth of plastic toys, and a goldfish. We’ll see how long the fish survives.


This is a vanity and experimental site, pure and simple. It’s unlikely that there will be many frequently asked questions, but if there are, I’ll answer them here.

Why Defenestration Corner?

A long time ago (well before Microsoft Windows!), I published a fanzine named Defenestration. I still have the material I collected for the 9th issue, but it’s unlikely that I’ll ever publish on paper again. But when it came time to name this site, I decided to reuse the name.