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Mulled Wines and Good Times: Paula and Trudi’s comprehensive recipe December 19, 2009

Posted by Paula in Misc.
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[Originally published in the Chrimbo edition of Flux, and co-written by the lovely Trudi McDonald]

A couple of weeks ago we made the brave decision to cook for ten of our friends. As it was (fairly) close to Christmas at the time, we decided to go all out. We downloaded at least a hundred festive tunes onto t’iPod, though we ended up listening to the same ten Love Actually ones on repeat anyway. We decided to serve up some mulled wine before dinner too, because that’s what adults do.

Not only is our kitchen no more than a thin strip of lino with an oven and sink, but cooking has never been a strong point for either of us. This was all a bit of a challenge. We can hardly make toast between us, and are both stoney broke meaning our home-brewing had to be done on a very tight budget.

Not to worry though, mulling your own wine is easy, cheap and fun. And it leaves your kitchen smelling of Christmas. If you’re thrifty like us, you can leave the half-empty saucepan sitting in your kitchen for a few days to allow the smell to really permeate the room. No more €3.99 Glade Festive Scents needed this holiday season.

Don’t fear if you don’t have many resources at your disposal. Mulling can be done anywhere there’s a large saucepan and a hob. And some festive cheer.

What you need is:
(serves 8-10)

2 bottles of fruity red wine (any red wine will do really, we used €5.85 bottles from Aldi)
One large orange
10 + cloves
Cinnamon sticks
Cupful of brown or plain sugar (we used half and half)
Nutmeg (optional)

Large Saucepan
Large spoon, or ladle if you’re that way inclined
i-Pod with festive tunes, or Ryan Tubridy’s dulcet tones on the Late Late Toy Show

1. Stud the orange with the cloves, and cut into thick slices.

2. Pour the wine into the saucepan and heat on a low to medium heat (around 2 or 3).

3. Add clove studded orange and all other ingredients to taste. Just throw (or place) them in the pot, you don’t need to do any extensive measuring or chopping. If you are making it for friends, best to but an extra bit of sugar in to counteract the bitterness of the wine, and don’t put too much cinnamon in because it can be an acquired taste.

4. Leave gently heating for 20 minutes. It will take a while to heat up, but this is all part of the plan. Whatever you do, DON’T LET IT BOIL. This is the cardinal sin of mulling, according to Trudi’s mammy. It removes the alcohol from the wine and makes it taste bad, so be careful.

5. The orange will become infused with wine and everything will smell delicious.

6. After 20 minutes of mulling, turn the heat up for two or three minutes just to heat it up a little before serving. But if you see bubbling, rewind immediately. Bubbling is a sure sign of boiling.

7. Serve, using ladle, into cups and get into the holiday mood.

Mulling wine is a skill that will impress mammies, daddies and friends alike. How many university students can use the phrase, “Yeah, mulled it freshly myself only moments ago”? It is so easy to do and an inexpensive way to get into the Christmas mood. GO FER IT.

Vogue TwItalia December 10, 2009

Posted by Patrick in Misc, Trashion.
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I can’t count myself as a person who regularly reads Vogue Italia, or Vogue anywhere for that matter, but my interest was piqued when I heard that they had put together a spread, and indeed a cover, inspired by TwitPic. Yes, you read that correctly, a fashion spread made to look like the models took a couple of dodgy camera phone pictures and uploaded them to their personal Twitter accounts.

The pictures, shot by Steven Meisel (with TwitPic renamed MeiselPic) feature models like Agyness Deyn, Gisele Bundchen, Christy Turlington and Naomi Campbell. The results are quite varied, with some being positively meh-worthy and others actually quite interesting.

I’m sure the whole thing is supposed to be some sort of commentary on our ‘fast-moving’ society and how we’re more likely to look at these actual TwitPics then a true fashion spread. Food for thought.

Click ‘more‘ for a selection of pictures from the editorial.


ZOMG December 3, 2009

Posted by Patrick in Cinematics, Misc.
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Wow. Hard to believe, but yes, that futuristic Barbie girl above is indie darling Zooey Deschanel, as photographed for the latest Absolut Vodka campaign.

Each photo, taken by fashion photographer Ellen Von Unwerth, is themed around a different vodka cocktail. Zooey’s, for example, is based on the Cosmopolitan cocktail:

In the ABSOLUT Cosmo ad, Deschanel adds a science-fiction flair to the traditional ABSOLUT® CITRON cocktail in a retro-hip yet modern lounge as she plays the role of a “cosmo”-naut.

Three other photos from the campaign feature Kate Beckinsale, focusing on cocktails Bloody Mary, Tonic Twist and Crush.

Personally I’d have liked to see Zooey in all four, but there ya go.

Click here to see the full version of Zooey’s ad as well as the other three.

[via The Huffington Post]


Magic Moments October 16, 2009

Posted by Patrick in Misc.
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My class were shown this video today. It’s an amazing montage of ordinary and extraordinary moments in life. Myself and Paula got into quite a battle to see who could publish it first. She won.

Momentous October 16, 2009

Posted by Paula in Misc.
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Saw this amazing video in class today. Almost worth the €60 fee I had to pay to switch into the module. Especially love the condom/drill analogy. But it is all just beautiful.

You were holding the blue book, I was holding the red book… September 30, 2009

Posted by Patrick in Misc, Webshite.
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Missed Connections

‘Missed Connections’ sections of newspapers and websites are often looked upon as pathetic and slightly creepy stories of strangers who perve on other strangers but forget to ask them their name, or, you know, any information that would identify them in any way.

The chances of actually finding your missed connection are slim-to-none. What are the odds that the publication you submit yours to will be read by the object of your unrequited affection? That is, unless, you’re lucky enough to have a missed connection with someone just as desperate and lonely as yourself.

The reason why I mention Missed Connections today is that someone, specifically Sophie Blackall, has given these lonely paragraphs of text (specifically those belonging to the Missed Connections section of craiglist in NY) an upgrade in the form of various paintings. And they’re also really good.


Monday, August 17, 2009
– m4w – (greenpoint)
asked myself why the letter ‘n’ all night long, then you were gone before i got a chance to ask. also, i saved you a piece of cake.
do you always sit in a circle of asian girls? and sit at the top of the stairs so everyone gets a crush on you when they get to the roof?

is transformed into this…

And this…

Tuesday, March 17, 2009
-w4m -22 (williamsburg)
i bought you that milkshake
you just didn’t realize it.

becomes this…

I think I might like these as much as Postsecret.

For more, check out Sophie Blackall’s Missed Connections blog.

[via Buzzfeed]

Missing a cat? Make art July 27, 2009

Posted by Patrick in Misc.
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Cardon Copy - 1

Have you ever seen a poorly made illegible poster advertising an apartment to rent or a missing cat and thought, “I could have made a much better one.” Cardon Webb, a New York designer and the man behind website Cardon Copy had obviously had this happen to him one time too many, so decided to actually do something about it.

From the website:








The experiment has produced interesting results, and most importantly of all, posters that are infinitely lovelier than their original counterparts.

Check out more of my favourites below.

Cardon Copy - 2Cardon Copy - 3

[more at Cardon Copy]

Looking into the past June 23, 2009

Posted by Patrick in Misc, Webshite.
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Picture 3

“Looking Into The Past” is a Flickr group that collects pictures where people basically lay an old image over where it was originally taken, to create a fascinating contrast.

Picture 4

Most of the posts involve comparisons of buildings as they were in the past with how they look now, but there are a couple that feature people. Three of my favourites are featured here, and there’s plenty more over at the group itself.

Picture 5

[via Looking Into The Past – Click on images for individual sources]

Why Bother? June 22, 2009

Posted by Patrick in Misc.
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Graffiti for graffiti’s sake

Not quite happily ever after… June 16, 2009

Posted by Patrick in Misc.

Dina Goldstein of JPG Magazine has put together a fascinating photo piece entitled “Fallen Princesses” looking at Disney princesses and how they might have turned out after a couple of years in the real world.

Belle from “Beauty and the Beast” resorts to plastic surgery to keep herself from becoming a beast, Rapunzel can’t quite let down her golden hair when it falls out from chemotherapy, and Little Red Riding Hood isn’t so little anymore.

It’s a great idea and the photos are amazing. These images, plus some more from the same collection will be exhibited in October. See more here.

[via JPG Magazine]