Thursday, August 22, 2013

Sweet tart Thai cucumber salad

My dear friend Elyse reminded me to share this recipe... Based on a common Thai relish served with satay, this salad is also great with grilled salmon or grilled chicken breasts.

Serves 4 as a side dish

1/2 cup rice vinegar
2 1/2 tablespoons granulated sugar
3 medium cucumbers , sliced, salted, and drained (see directions)
1/2 medium red onion , sliced very thin
2 small jalapeƱo chiles , seeded and minced (or more, to taste)

To prepare the cucumbers: Peel, halve lengthwise, and scoop seeds from cucumbers. Stack halves flat side down; slice diagonally 1/4-inch thick. Toss with 1 tablespoon salt in strainer or colander set over bowl; weight with water-filled, one-gallon-sized zipper-lock freezer bag, sealed tight. Drain for at least 1 hour, and up to 3 hours. Transfer to medium bowl and refrigerate while finishing the recipe.

1. Bring 2/3 cup water and vinegar to boil in small nonreactive saucepan over medium heat. Stir in sugar to dissolve; reduce heat and simmer 15 minutes. Cool to room temperature.

2. Meanwhile, mix cucumbers, onions, and jalapeƱos in medium bowl. Pour dressing over cucumber mixture; toss to coat. Serve chilled.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Hall of Shame-- DojoDirect in the UK

DojoDirect, a martial arts gear company based in the UK, stirred up a storm when its spokesperson Adam James Collier insulted a female customer, well-known British competitor Pippa Granger.

Granger, a Checkmat purple belt and gi/nogi referee, had written to DojoDirect to mention a spelling error repeated numerous times on its website.  Instead of "jiu jitsu" it referred to "jui jitsu" (and called gis "suits," though she did not comment on that oddity.)

Collier responded with little command of the written word yet much sarcasm, and essentially accused her of PMSing, though he was fairly ignorant of the concept and contended that her 'cycles' were "premature." (?!?!)  Classy.  Here's the screen shot:

Later on, another customer, Vikki, chimed in, prompting more hamhanded PR fails and ageist comments from Collier:

Lessons for Adam Collier and other business owners:

1. In my opinion, if a customer bothers to inform you that you have unprofessional errors on your website, you graciously and gratefully accept their input and refrain from insulting them!  I don't care if you think they're wrong.  The customer may not always be right, but you don't argue with them.  

2. You want their business, no?  you want to be seen as reputable, knowledgeable, and reliable, no?  So do your research and spell the name of the art for which you purport to provide gear correctly!  Proofread your website and make sure you present your company in the best possible light.  And make sure you try to use proper spelling and grammar in your public comments on social media, as well.  (We all make typos, of course, but if you can't tell the difference between 'your' and 'you're' then you should not be the public voice of your company.  It's just not professional.  Hire an English major to edit your copy first and handle social media.)

3.  No sarcasm with the customer.  None.  Sarcasm is not acceptable.  With friends, sure... on social media, meant to insult and put down your potential buyers?  DUMB.

4.  Misogyny is stupid in an era where a substantial chunk of the market is... WOMEN.  Women who train and compete and buy gear for themselves... plus women buying gear for their men who train and compete...  so asinine comments claiming that constructive criticism about your website stems from hormones?  DUMB.

I wrote to Adam and DojoDirect suggesting they make a public apology.  DojoDirect (assuming that's Adam) wrote back right away, told me he was sorry, and said he'd publicly apologize later.  

Here's the "public" apology, on twitter, to his few followers-- nothing on Facebook or anywhere else.  (I am happy to repost any future apologies here, in fairness...)  EDITED TO ADD: on Thursday August 15, Collier did post a public apology on a Facebook group which I was unable to screen shot last night.  He included a percentage-off coupon, as well.

I have to say-- baloney.  "Sensitive issues" doesn't begin to cover it-- and "I didn't intend to offend you"-- ???? WTF!  And what, is she to be bought off??  lol...

Friday, August 09, 2013

Your one wild and precious life...

From a wonderful poem by Mary Oliver, called The Summer Day:

I do know how to pay attention, how to fall down
into the grass, how to kneel down in the grass,
how to be idle and blessed, how to stroll through the fields,
which is what I have been doing all day.
Tell me, what else should I have done?
Doesn't everything die at last, and too soon?
Tell me, what is it you plan to do
with your one wild and precious life?

My parents died when I was young.  Mom when I was 17, dad when I was 24.  Both of lung cancer.

Right now I'm watching several people who are very dear to me battle cancer... you'd think having your parents die would be all it took to permanently, indelibly make you aware of the fleeting preciousness of life. But no, I am prone to forget the big picture, the forest, as I run past trees and climb trees and cut down trees and build things and get lost in my day to day...

What is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?

Friday, August 02, 2013

Free women's seminar August 24, Dallas, with Hannette Staack!!!

Wow, what a great opportunity-- train with three-time ADCC champion, eight-time world champion blackbelt under Andre Negao, Hannette Staack-- for FREE!