There's so much going on in Talk week to week that we almost can't keep up. If you're in the same boat, here's a small selection of topics and responses that have piqued our interest this week.

Will Gordon's Bottom Shelf Caloric Journey

Look Who's Talkin'"Year of the Dragon? Crap, I've still been writing Year of the Dog on my checks." thingstea

Drinking the Bottom Shelf: Cachaca da Roca


[Photograph: Will Gordon]

"Will - I hate to have to ask the obvious....but is that really YOU dancing on the label? I mean, like, pre-mustache?" mao1213

"The infamous caiprinha story:

I was at a friend's new years party, and the host and her boyfriend just got back from backpacking around South America. After my friend's Irish boyfriend (this is an integral detail that must be noted, I'll call him Fionn) announced they just discovered a great drink in Brazil, we all agreed to have some. Unfortunately they didn't have limes, so Fionn had to make caiprinhas with lemons instead of limes.

Long story short, I woke up naked in a field of lemon trees." ag3208

What kitchen tools have you barely used?

"We've never used our fondue pot, one of the obligatory wedding gifts I received for my first marriage. It's still in its packaging gathering dust on the top shelf.

I'm sort of afraid of it, yet keep the damn thing around around as if we'll throw a 70's party one day. Even then, it'll probably just be used to throw the keys into ;)" conky

Smell of Lard

" "Smell of Lard," aren't they a thrashcore metal band from the Bronx?" meatntaters

The Unofficial Mad Men Cookbook's Chicken Kiev

"My college cafeteria (Burge Hall, U of Iowa, '98-02) served Chicken Kiev and a similar Broccoli Chicken that used the same sculpted chicken-shell. The latter released its bounty gradually, while the former blorted it out all at once like a giant buttery cyst. Both were delicious." Lancaster

Pizza Cones: Way or No Way?


[Photograph: Adam Kuban]

"This looks like something I would try to construct myself at home while inebriated or otherwise mentally compromised. It would probably end up making a huge mess that I would leave until the next morning. I would then likely curse myself as I cleaned it up, having forgotten how delicious I may have thought the end product had turned out hours before. "Never again," I would lie.

Seriously, though, I would buy one. But only from a cart. This is definitely not brick-and-mortar fare." Robulia

Cookie Monster: Chocolate Crinkle Cookies

"There is only the edge of the knowable universe, which is about 13.7 billion light years distant - as far light is able to travel back from the distant stars to Earth since the big bang. The universe is actually estimated to be much larger, but it's pointless to talk about the parts we will never be able to see because light (and all radiation) is the fastest thing in the universe. I imagine the unknowable universe is very much like our knowable one, just separated by the the arbitrary speed of light.

You're probably picturing the edge of the universe like a shell that's expanding, like balloon within a vast "something". That's not entirely correct. Instead, it's that "something" that's actually expanding. Space itself is expanding, and contains all the matter and energy of the universe within it.

Large scale structures like galaxies and clusters spread farther and farther apart. Smaller scale things like stuff within galaxies tend to be held together by gravity and don't expand as much compared to the universe itself - at least while our gravitational "glue" like massive stars and black holes still churn away. When they die out, even little atoms will start to drift apart.

We do know that the universe is expanding, and increasing the rate of expansion as time goes by, probably driven by dark energy. But no one really knows if the universe, as a whole, even has a shape, let alone an edge." ajmill1978

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