2021 Week 4 – Sushi in Fortville?

I can’t remember how I found out about this place but I finally got over to Fortville to check out Bonsai Fortville. I was there right after they opened at 11 and sadly was the only one there, but more people arrived when I was leaving. Talked to the owner a bit and found out they opened last November. They have a nice variety of rolls and I tried the Mexican roll (special that day) and the KFC roll with fried chicken. Both were very good and I’d order either one again.

Mexican roll (left) and KFC roll (right)

Besides Sushi Fortville has quite a few quality restaurants worth checking out:

  • Cortona’s Italian Cuisine & Wine Bar
  • Los Maguelles Mexican
  • Taxman Fortville
  • FoxGardin Kitchen & Ale

You really can’t go wrong with any of these and if you’re looking for something a little different it’s worth a little drive east on Pendleton Pike (US 36).

The New York Times had a great write up on Geocaching a few weeks ago. My son and I ended up visiting every county in Indiana to complete a Geocaching mission a few years ago. It was a lot of fun to do and quite a rewarding task once we completed it. The scenery and terrain around Indiana is a lot more varied than people give it credit for.

Watched the first season of “Upload” on Amazon Prime. It’s a very interesting (SyFy) look at a future where your spirit gets uploaded to the cloud and you can still communicate with people back on earth. Writing and acting were very well done and I’m already looking forward to Season 2!

POTUS 45 is out and POTUS 46 has been sworn in. There was a lot of talk about more protests at various capital buildings around the country but it doesn’t look like anything actually materialized. The Indiana State Capital building actually closed down for a few days up to and including the inauguration. As of today (Thursday) Downton has returned to the Pandemic “normal” we’ve all gotten used to.

Hot Dish Casserole Recipe – This is a good one. We all probably have our own version of a tater-tot Casserole but I think this one is my favorite one. Don’t skimp on the pepper jack cheese which adds some nice spice. This reheats well and I even vacuum sealed several pieces and put them in the deep freeze for a quick weeknight meal.

Finally, I rediscovered this amazing Bluegrass cover band

2021 Week 3 – Snow!

We’re 3-weeks in & it’s been an interesting start to the year. The political mess and COVID-19 continues to top the news. It’s been cold and cloudy in Indianapolis this past 2 weeks and we finally got some measurable snow! It’s either going to be another “mild” winter or we’re in for something big. Only time will tell. I just put some 3-Peak rated tires on the Subaru so I could go for a big snowstorm right about now.

Some really great football games on last weekend and the CFB national championship goes to Alabama! It was looking like it was going to be a good game at first but Ohio State just couldn’t keep up. Just a few more weekends and the NFL will be over too… BUT NASCAR starts on February 14th! (and we always have soccer).

Do you eat in your car often? I saw this device being used by a mobile food reviewer and had to have it (especially since it’s only $12!). – Laptop Steering Wheel Desk It works surprisingly well and helps the crumbs & sauces off your lap.

You need one of these!

Total Wine & More opened a new store in Nora mid-November (first one in the Indianapolis region) and if you haven’t checked it out you should! It’s one of the largest liquor stores I’ve ever been in and it’s designed very well. Crowds have been heavy but there’s plenty of room to move about and keep your distance from others. If you’re a wine or Bourbon fan you’re sure to find something you like there.

Total Wine & More in Nora

Tried a new recipe this week (Mushroom Bourguignon) and it was a huge hit. There is a lot of prep but the cooking goes pretty fast. Probably something to fix on a weekend and enjoy throughout the week. Looks like the recipe I used from NYT Cooking is behind a paywall but this one is pretty similar.

Remix of a 2020 YouTube hit. That cat cracks me up!

2021 Week 2 – One Down, 51 to go!

After almost 2 weeks off work in December I’m ready to get back to work and make it a productive year! This week was going to be heavy on Sports until the attack on the Nation’s Capital. I thought I had seen it all in 2020 and this just topped it. I can’t believe the protesters made it all the way into the gallery. There was talk about an elected official who was part of the crowd so it’s going to be interesting to see if he was the one who opened the doors to get people into the secured areas…

The college football championship was set last week. Notre Dame was blown out by Georgia and Ohio State showed Clemson who’s boss. The Championship game is Monday evening & it’s going to be a good one. My $ is on Ohio State to take home the trophy.

Colts make the playoffs! It was a game that was a LOT closer than it should have been but the Indianapolis Colts are heading to the playoffs!

Update: Their game against the Bills yesterday was a disaster. Some really questionable plays that will most likely be a topic of discussion for fans in the weeks to come…

Finally the NCAA Tournament is going to be played in its entirety in Indiana. That’s a huge win for the city and state. It’ll be nice to see Indy in the National spotlight again.

21st century predictions. They were close to what we have today!

I didn’t take a lot of pictures this week & what I took isn’t anything that any of you would find interesting. I’ll try & do better next week.

Finally, I’ve been playing with a new (to me) distribution of Linux called “Elementary.io“. I installed it on my old 2012 Mac & it’s brought new life to the old hardware. If you’re used to the Mac OS and have an older MacBook not being used this is worth checking out. Installation is very easy and you can be up and running in 20 minutes.

2021 Week 1 – Happy New year?

So how was your 2020? It was an interesting one to say the least. Something we’ll all remember the rest of our lives. My New Years resolution is to try & revive the blog with a weekly posting format that will allow me to build each post as the week progresses and publish the summary once a week.

The following is a 2020 recap by month via pictures I took along the way. Warning, there will be a LOT of food pictures. If you follow me on Social Media a lot of these are re-posts but I’m adding more context. You can click on each one for a larger image.


January 2020

  • Finally made it to Working Man’s Friend for a legendary burger. Why did it take me so long to visit?
  • Celebrated a successful 2019 with the team from work (Cowboy Ribeyes at Sullivan’s)
  • Started playing with Sports Betting (have turned $50 into $400 this year).
  • Had the best Calamari EVER at King Dough.

February 2020

  • Interviewed the founder of Clustertruck and got a behind the scenes look at the downtown operation.
  • Made a killer Deep Dish Pizza to celebrate Super Bowl LIV.
  • And some homemade Coconut Marshmallows for for people at work.
  • Correctly guessed the winner of the Daytona 500 and turned $5 into $53.75.


March 2020

  • Covid is starting to get a lot of coverage in the news and we start testing a new video collaboration tool called “Zoom”.
  • The Covid Memes also start to become a daily sight.
  • Last burger and Fry combo at Kreuger’s in Indianapolis (they closed after this).
  • I put the 3D printer to use and start printing sanitation hooks for friends and family.
  • The Work From Home revolution begins as office parking lots start looking like a late Friday afternoon every day of the week.

April 2020

  • Found a new casserole that is the definition of Comfort Food.
  • Got a free speed bump on the home Internet so working from home was lightning fast!
  • Baked bread and ate a LOT of BLT’s throughout the year.
  • Had to upgrade the home networking setup to make the speed boost more usable.
  • Took advantage of a new Kincaid’s butcher shop opening up right down the street (Spud Buddies and Flank Steak).

May 2020

  • Early in May I had a Covid-19 scare and proceeded to the Lilly testing sight in Downtown Indianapolis. Test was negative.
  • Added some flair to the Zoom background in my makeshift dining room studio.
  • Continued to help keep Kincaid’s in business.
  • And the BLT’s were the go-to meal when working from home.
  • Operation American Resolve was a tribute to the front line healthcare workers.
  • Followed by a Blue Angel’s tour of the USA. They flew right over my office when they visited Indianapolis.
  • Civil Unrest brought out the ISP Chopper to keep an eye on things downtown (Flight track from Flightaware).
  • The Rose Bush in the front of the house decided to flex and brightened up the landscape.

June 2020

  • In June I set off to Indian-Celina Lake in southern Indiana for some camping. It was nice to have the campground pretty much all to myself!
  • The guys at work decided it was time for some Socially Distant Golf so we hit up a small little public course on the east side of Indy.
  • My Son wanted Pizza one night so we made pizza!
  • Bought a new Police Scanner to keep up with all the things going on downtown.
  • The YoHo General Store in Solsberry, Indiana was a place to stop for lunch…
  • …While I visited the Tulip Trestle in Bloomfield.
  • George Floyd mural on Mass Ave in Indianapolis (not my photo).

July 2020

  • Right before the July 4th Holiday we received bad news about Kincaid’s. They would end up being closed much longer than they anticipated (until October).
  • We celebrated Independence day with a BBQ chicken on the Big Green Egg.
  • Once of many beautiful sunsets from the backyard in 2020.
  • Introduced my son to the Soft Shell Crab roll at Ocean World in Indianapolis.
  • Lucked out on an NBA wager to end the month.

August 2020

  • I found and tried the “Danzig” of wines (80’s music reference if you didn’t know).
  • Discovered COCONUT ALMONDS! These are addictive & don’t last long after bring purchased.
  • Re-visited an old friend at Shapiro’s Deli. They took a big hit in 2020 but were still producing a quality product when I visited.
  • It was time to update my Avatar.
  • Speaking of visiting, we took a road trip to Gas City and tried Payne’s Fish and Chips. The Fattoush salad was delicious and they cook up a mean plate of food. Well worth the visit if you’re in the area!


September 2020

  • Took another trip to Indian-Celina Lake early in the month.
  • Tried to predict the future and placed a $5 bet on Notre Dame to win it all (they play in the semi-finals on the day I’m writing this post).
  • Took another camping trip a few weeks later. This time a multi-day, multi-state adventure. Starting in Madison Indiana at Clifty Falls. Just in time for the first Presidential debate. Bingo cards from the No Agenda podcast.
  • The next day I headed farther south to Mammoth Cave. I hadn’t been there since I was a kid. I picked a great time to visit. The crowds were non-existent and the camping area was wide open.
  • You aren’t allowed to burn regular firewood at this park so you have to use Bio-Blocks. I was skeptical but they actually worked great!

October 2020

  • Continuing the multi-day, multi-state adventure I started the morning with a drive to Nashville, which is in the news the week I write this because of a huge explosion.
  • While looking for a BBQ place for lunch I drove by Hugh Baby’s and the smell drew me in.
  • I ended up ordering the Mushroom Swiss Smash Burger (with SMOKED MUSHROOMS) and it was one of the best sandwiches I’ve ever had. I still have dreams about it 3-months later.
  • Traveling northwest to Land Between the Lakes I drove around a corner to find a giant Minecraft looking structure. Turns out it’s a Charcoal Blast Furnace. I ended up seeing several of these on my travels and each one was just as interesting as the last.
  • Woke up to a COLD morning at Land Between the Lakes, probably because I was camping lakeside.
  • That afternoon I drove up to Garden of the Gods for some breathtaking views.
  • After arriving home I turned on the first episode of Ted Lasso (best show of 2020 in my opinion) and proceeded finish the season by the next day.
  • The following weekend I met some family in Auburn to tour the Cord Duesenberg Museum. It was HUGE and totally worth the 2-hour drive from Indianapolis.
  • Work had me downtown a few days later and I just had to stop in and get some Bison Meatloaf at St. Joseph’s Brewery.
  • Oct 31 was a sad day. The BEST James Bond (Daniel Craig is a close second) passed away at 90 years of age.

November 2020

  • Indianapolis continued to be boarded up because of the threat of election day violence.
  • Left the office & had a Weinermobile spotting!
  • Discovered a clever artist in Indy (@itghostwithoutsaying on Instagram).
  • The Cobb Salad at Bru Burger, it’s a work of art.
  • Red Bird in the front tree, trying out the new iPhone 12 Pro.
  • Hoagies & Hops was selling Taylor Ham (pork roll) and I could not pass up making a classic sandwich (pork roll, egg, & cheese on a Kaiser roll).

December 2020

  • I think I found the Cookie of the year
  • 2020 even caused Trader Joe’s to shut down
  • I decided it was time to make some chicken stock for some upcoming soups and stews.
  • Even though most agree Die Hard isn’t a Christmas Movie I thought this was funny.
  • And last but not least, The Oatmeal figured out how to properly end the year.

Well if you made it this far THANK YOU for sticking with me. After realizing I was neglecting the blog I felt it was time for a super post to get caught up. As I said above my goal is to post a weekly summary with all of the things I found relevant throughout the week. We’ll see if I can actually pull it off.

It will be interesting to see what reverts back and what stays the same. I think working from home, for some, is going to be the new norm. I can’t help to think masks will be part of our way of life for years to come, especially during flu season. I’m glad we all made it through 2020 and I’m looking forward to, hopefully, getting back to the way things used to be.

See you next week!

Is This REALLY The “New Normal”?

When I wrote my last post at the end of March I had no idea we would still be dealing with Covid-19 4-months later, let alone witness the the civil unrest that’s occurred in the same timespan. The divisiveness of the country is something I’ve never seen before.

I’ll admit I didn’t take the Pandemic seriously at first and thought we would all be back to work in a few weeks. It took me some time to recognize the severity of the situation and, as stated in the last post, there have been some big changes in how we live

A lot of new business projects that were in the planning stages have been put on hold and some recently completed ones are struggling to make it. We have a large complex down the street called Fishers District that was at about 75% occupancy when all of this started. All the new restaurants had to close at a time they could least afford it. Most have opened back up but the mandated reduced capacity in place can’t be helping them much.

The rioting in Downtown Indianapolis is made the situation even worse. The office workers are not returning. Some major employers aren’t bringing people back until January at the earliest. The businesses who relied the downtown workers are suffering. The businesses looted and damaged in the rioting are suffering. In a lot of cases the same business affected by both.

Fast forward 3-months from March and the infection levels appeared to be trending the right direction. Right about the time people just couldn’t take it anymore and started throwing caution to the wind. Guess what? According to the health authorities the infection rate started climbing again.

Now, one thing I wish the health authorities would do it discuss the percentage of infected tests vs the count. If you test more people you’re going to identify more positive cases. So I’m still a little suspicious of the numbers when they keep giving total infection numbers that are higher and higher. Is it the same percentage of infections based on the number of tests?

It’s currently back to school time and the plans of each district are radically different. The feedback from the parents is all over the place too. Some want to get their kids out of the house at all costs (no fear of the virus), some are concerned about their safety. Both have compelling arguments for why they feel the way they do. I’m just not sure how the schools are going to be able to manage it. Our local High School has almost 4000 students!

Now, almost 4-months later, we’ve settled into the new way of life. I don’t see it “returning to normal” any time soon. I fact the predictions are now saying it’s going to get worse before it gets better. What a weird time to be alive…

Stay safe & do what you can to stay healthy.