October 27, 2005
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Butternut

Butternut

Last night I worked late. On the way home, I grabbed a butternut squash; the squash bin looks great this time of year and though squash is a mystery to me, Cooks has a nice-looking recipe for butternut squash risotto as a main course.

Yum.

Some things to remember for next time:

Why am I telling you this? Partly, because Cook's is a fine thing to read, and a terrific insight into scientific thinking for everyone. Partly, because it's fun to talk about food, and there's a lot of food in the blogosphere right now.

And partly because I've been thinking about notes as a medium for conversation -- with yourself, with your future self, and with your colleagues. Maybe markets aren't conversations, but notes certainly are!

So I'm writing this for myself, later this winter when I'm looking for something hot and hearty to cook because the heating bills are so high that the thermostat is in the ice zone. And I'm writing this for the cooks and farmers and critics who always email me interesting ideas when I write about food, or (better yet) write those interesting ideas in their own weblogs. And maybe I'm writing this to get the whole question straight in my mind -- especially whether a meatless entrée excuses 1T of butter per serving.

Butternut
You've got to write stuff down -- and you've got to be able to find it again. In other words, you need two places to write: one that's always with you and one that's permanent, searchable, and smart. The one that's always with you can be as simple as a Hipster or a Moleskine: it just has to be there. The permanent journal can be a carefully indexed desk journal or it can be Tinderbox: Tinderbox gives you agents and instant search and spatial hypertext and all, but it's not quite as physical and concrete as a desk journal. (XML will last, but you can't feel its permanence the way you can feel good leather and Amalfi paper)