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I thought loganberrybunny might be interested to note the existence of the Academy of Chocolate, whose aims seem noble; to:

Encourage chocolate lovers to ‘look beyond the label’ to differentiate between chocolate confectionery and ‘real’ chocolate;
to improve the standard and knowledge of chocolate in the UK by promoting an understanding of the ingredients of chocolate, through the chain, from bean to bar;
to encourage the transparent sourcing of cocoa beans from the plantations, and their production in socially fair and environmentally undamaging conditions.

I did enjoy their Choco Police Blog entry: "A shopping mall in Olathe, Kansas, was evacuated after a woman robbed a bank with a box of chocolates. The woman walked up to a cashier at the Capitol Federal Bank and said the box contained an explosive and demanded money. She got away with an undisclosed sum, but after X-raying the package, the bomb squad discovered it contained chocolates and harmless wires."

(I was led there via Saturday's purchase of one of Rococo Chocolate's bars, their Arabic spices variety; "Organic dark chocolate with 65% cocoa solids. To begin, a cinnamon flavour, which evolves into a deeper scent of cloves and nutmeg. Long lasting." Review to follow, even if it'll likely be just a paws up or down - I'm generally quite awful at composing meaningful criticism, as food's so much about impressions and emotions for me, not to mention the settings. And after all, what may ring one person's bell might leave another entirely cold, though one would hope the glory of something like, say, Westvleteren Abt.12 would resonate with anyone with a pulse =:)

A couple pics of the kitchen, meanwhile. ^_^ I should note what's behind the doors, but I'll leave that for another day. =:) Suffice to say, I'd never have expected to find a furnished rental so well equipped - but then, the owners did seem to have a passion for good food. I just happened to luck out on finding this place, and so close to the office. The links go to (more or less) 1024x768, and the full res to about 3500x2500. The fullres ones aren't all that much more data, and convey that much more visual detail. ^_^ (Wow. I'd forgotten how hideous LJ's gallery upload UI is.. remind me to get a good package set up on my domain. Which might include Coppermine, if if can be configured for bulk downloads. I'm tired of web interfaces that make multiple image downloads far more tedious than an old ftp mget ever would be)

full res (window side)full res (beer!)full res (cooker side)
 
 
 
 
 
 
Next week, Orange will be hosting a week of gaming, over on Orange 4, with listed discussions including "Midgar & World of Hogwarts", "Roleplaying in SL", and "From Games to Contemporary Art", amidst game installations including En Garde, Phrase Invaders, Vector Zone, and Zombie Meltdown, and traditional games such as sudoku and chess.

Have you considered a springhaas as a household companion? (Caution: Comic Sans ahead)

The LiveJournal Advisory Board election is underway, closing on Thursday; here's a posting linking to all the candidates' positions - and there's this posting for a potted version of their fannishness. =:) Anyone whose account was created before March 11 2008 can vote - it's not only open to paid users - and the poll involves giving your first, second, and third choices. There are quite a few good candidates - including legomymalfoy, jj_maccrimmon, rm, fuzzface00, and squeaky19 (who also runs GreatestJournal), and several others - so the choice will be a little tricky, but if it can help avoid debacles such as Strikethrough and Nipplegate, and lead to the development of further useful LJ features, it'll be a worthwhile step.

For matters chocolatey, Chocolate Bar Review seems well worth keeping up with. Amongst other things, they note a chocolate Ferrari - full scale, made of 4,405 pounds of Belgian chocolate; and Cadbury are bringing Wispa back permanently. Though as far as Cadbury's wares go, I'll always belong to their Caramel. ^_^ Now, if they were to bring back the bunny..

The unique bradhicks brings us his analysis of Ayn Rand's political thoughts, in Atlas Shrugged 2: Shrug Harder.

Not a new pic, but one of my favorites from socks_on_sl - naked surfing. ^_^

The US pet food companies, hit by toxic gluten last year, leading to the deaths of many pets, have reached a $24m legal settlement. "Under the terms of the deal announced Thursday, pet owners could be reimbursed for all reasonable expenditures, including veterinarian bills and burial or cremation costs. Pet owners could also ask for the fair market value of their deceased pets, if that is higher than the costs incurred. Owners who do not have documentation of their expenses can get up to $900 each."

Not something you see around often: Vietnamese teas and coffees, including artichoke tea.

Damn, but the second half of this season of Doctor Who has some fun in store.. here's the trailer. (7MB, 60s)