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Torta: The Making Of

In honor of a new year, I’m going to try and commit to producing more for this site. The bar has been set pretty low with monthly updates for the past year or so. Hopefully I can find the time to do what I’m hoping to do. Ok, here goes:

This is a video of me making a torta. There are plenty of ways to make tortas and this is one option if you’re hungry. All the ingredients were purchased at a Mexican market called Pancho Villa Farmer’s Market here in San Diego.

Ingredients (estimated cost $2.54 for two tortas):

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Kill Cockroaches With Boric Acid

This is a response to this post about pesky cucarachas:

American Cockroach

Living in a small rustic house with three (sometimes five) college guys in Abilene, Texas, I wasn’t sure who was to blame for the cockroaches. Things weren’t exactly kept clean. But one summer, I stayed to work while others left town. The roaches didn’t leave with them.

I happened to run into the landlord and I mentioned the bugs. His response was unexpected. “Yeah, but don’t worry. They’re tree roaches. They just come inside to look for water.” He went on to explain that the typical cockroaches people worry about are a different, smaller kind. They get into your food, but these don’t.

To get rid of them, he suggested a unique attack. Let’s call it the banana borax blitz:

  • Step 1: Chop up a banana and leave it outside near where you think they might be coming inside.
  • Step 2: After midnight, go outside to check the banana. You should find more cockroaches than you ever wanted to see in one place.
  • Step 3: Lightly dust them with borax, or powdered boric acid. You can buy it at most grocery stores.
  • Step 4: Panic as they scatter. Beware, these things can and fly when disturbed!

When cockroaches clean themselves, they eat the powder. Death is swift. I actually watched a few slowly crawl away and flip over with a kind of cockroach kabuki gesture.

It turns out boric acid is well documented for killing roaches (although others suggest a more subtle approach). Four of the top 10 results on Google are from .edu’s.