My poor buddy, Maximus, somewhat revitalized since his return home to Vancouver, has taken a downturn these past few days.  His appetite is there but the melanoma in his mouth makes chewing very difficult. Lately, he’s taken to following me around and just parking himself beside me when I’m on my laptop.  I’m bringing him in for a vet visit tomorrow to discuss the merits of a procedure to remove part of the visible tumor and, hopefully, improve his quality of life.

Hey, look who’s blogging now!  It’s none other than my old Transporter nemesis, Tara Yelland –

Look at her. All cool and such because she's suddenly blogging.

You can follow her mundane existence here:

Speaking of Transporter connections, I received word the other day that my old Production office mates, Alexander and Sarah, will be Vancouver-bound in a week or two.  I’ve got to start coming up with a gameplan!  How would you entertain a cantankerous, tattooed, country music-lovin’ German?

Okay, you eagle-eyed Stargate fans.  It’s time to play: Guess the Stargate Wardrobe!

The following item, modeled by handsome Lawren Bancroft-Wilson, appeared in which episode of the Stargate franchise and was worn by which character?  First person to guess correctly receives the admiration of thousands of his/her fellow blog readers and the nickname “Eagle Eye” bestowed upon them for the remainder of the calendar year.

Congratulations to the Finn family on the birth of their first daughter! Blog regulars will know that we held a contest to name the child of my former assistant, Trevor Finn.  Unfortunately, neither Oprah nor Spearmint made the final cut.  In the end, Euphemia won – although now Trevor is trying to go back on the agreement that saw him keep his job in exchange for my blog readers naming his kid.  Fortunately, suspecting a double-cross, I took the precaution of filling out the birth certificate in advance.  So Euphemia Finn it is!  Congratulations to mother, Holly, who suffered through labor and gave birth.  And the father, the lazy bastard who no doubt simply stood by and watched.


Patricia Stewart-Bertrand writes: “Why does Ivon have an open laptop in just about every picture you take of him? Is he up to something nefarious, I hope?”

Answer: Nope.  Just obsessively checking his fantasy football scores.

Lou Zucaro writes: “I’m curious how you served the braised meat trio.”

Answer: With their braising mirepoix (celery, onions, and carrots) over a parsnip mash.

Lou Zucaro also writes: “Is all your cooking experience from watching Food Network and just trying stuff?”

Answer: I used to cook quite a bit in Montreal, but the Food Network definitely inspired me to get back in the kitchen.

Lou Zucaro also writes: “Also…you’ve been quiet about the premiere of Top Chef. Did you and Akemi watch it, and if so, what’d you think?”

Answer: Unfortunately, I have to wait for Food Network Canada to air it – usually severals weeks, even months, after the original American broadcast.

Ben writes: “I was wondering if you – or your readers – could point me in the direction of the books I should be reading – I’m highly ignorant of the genre in fiction. So where should I begin?”

Answer: Well, you’ve already picked up some John Scalzi, so that’s a great start.  For terrific space opera, check out the works of Iain M. Banks (Consider Phlebas, Player of Games, Use of Weapons, etc.) and Alastair Reynolds (Revelation Space, House of Suns, etc.).  Some titles I’ve really enjoyed = Glasshouse by Charles Stross, The Ophiuchi Hotline by John Varley, The Dark Beyond the Stars by Frank M. Robinson, Camp Concentration by Thomas Disch, The Speed of Dark by Elizabeth Moon.  Start with those and get back to me.

maggiemayday writes: “Do you like goat?”

Answer: Love it.  Roasted!

Lloyd67 writes: “Where did you find your “Original animation cell” of the simpsons? I want one!”

Answer: It was a gift from actor Dan Castellaneta (the voice of Homer Simpson) after he guest-starred on Stargate: SG-1.  He was well aware of the fact that all of the producers (including Richard Dean Anderson) were HUGE fans of his show.

Ben writes: “Not to ruin your enjoyment of them, but I find the Kobe Beef to be a bit short on, well, meat. The muscle to fat ratio is way too low for my liking.”

Answer: It was perfect, nicely marbled and mouth-meltingly tender.  Your remark reminds of my last trip to Tokyo with Stargate Special Features Producer Ivon Bartok.  We went out for yakiniku and ordered the top of the line meat for grilling.  Top of the line, it turns out, meant HEAVILY marbled.  So marbled, in fact, that Ivon and I felt queasy for the rest of the day.

Debra writes: “How is the process going with Akemi?”

Answer: Well.  We’ve forwarded our lawyer all the required paperwork.  Now, she’s going over the documents to make sure everything is in order after which she’ll file our request.  Fingers crossed.

jojo writes: “The first night the menu was displayed on the table. I made the mistake to read it. I was horrified at what I read and couldn’t touch anything.”

Answer: Now I’m intrigued.  What the heck were they serving?

Paloosa writes: “Is the flavor in the meat or the fat?”

Answer: Both.  The melted veins of fat yield a more fork-friendly texture.

45 thoughts on “November 7, 2011: Maximus update! Another blog for you to follow! Alexander and Sarah are my place-bound! Name that wardrobe item! Welcome Euphemia Finn! Mailbag!

  1. Okay, my guess for the coat is Michael Shanks in Season 6 of SG-1, but that’s as good as I’ve got. This cold is really reducing my powers of observation. 🙁 Anyone have any hints on cold remedies??

    Hope you have a good night!!!

  2. Is that that jacket worn by the the Captain of the Guard (whom Matthew Scott switches bodies with using the communication stones) on Langara in the SGU episode “Seizure” (2×15)?

  3. Or is it from the soldier that doesn’t buy Scott’s performance and calls in the ambassador in the same episode?

  4. Awww poor doggy
    This sucks. Do your best with him Joe. And don’t feel any guilt over him.
    You certainly did more than what most pets owners usually do.
    You know what? I would ask Maximus what he wants to do, what he wants to eat, when he wants to go out and … Everything. I don’t think dogs can understand the human language per se, but I believe they do perceive emotions and simple concepts, and maybe somewhere their master’s brainwaves, and somehow it’s a form of communication. And it’s also important for you that, God forbid, Maximus was to leave us in a couple of months, you could look back with no regrets nor guilt.
    I also believe the same thing is true for persons that survive a family member (cancer, illness). Ask them what they want you to do, and do it. It’s for them and also for you.
    There are things that are bigger than us. Cancer, illness, tsunamis, tornadoes… and we can’t do anything about it.

    Also don’t forget that moral is a major factor in mending. So I count on you to keep your dogs spirit high 🙂
    Take care

  5. Sorry to hear about Maximus’ downswing. Tomorrow is the anniversary of when I had to have Dion put to sleep, so I’ve been feeling pretty down. Best wishes to Maximus – hope he has a bit longer yet, and that it’s comfortable for him.

  6. I’m sorry to hear that Maximus is not doing so well. I hope the vet can buy him some time and make him more comfortable. I’m going to go give my dog a hug. You give an extra one to Max for me.

    I’m hopeless with the whole costume and character and episode thing, so I’ll just sit back and watch while the rest of the group makes their guesses.

    @das: You’re a troublemaker (MM)

  7. I’m sorry to hear Max has slowed down. Saying a little prayer.

    Too bad Alexander isn’t coming here. It’s Wurstfest week in New Braunfels, TX, just a half-hour north of San Antonio.

    That jacket looks like Jack O’Neill in Season 6; the ep where the colorful interdimensional insects become visible.

  8. Hope the trip to the vet will yield results for Max.
    My guess was Ethon worn by Jarik.

  9. That’s it? That’s your hint? “This jacket appeared in an episode of the Stargate franchise and worn by a character?” Are we talking of about 340 episode to choose from? It sure does look familiar but only because Ronon was always in brown and leather.

    Congratulations Trevor and Holly! Take Alex to get another tattoo.

    I hope the vet has some help for little Maximus.

  10. Maybe it was “Jared Kane” from the episode 9×15 “Ethon”. I think his jacket looks a bit similar….
    But i dont know…. i think Mitchell (Ben Browder) weared such a jacket in “Continuum”, but i’m not sure….

  11. Hi Joe! In an earlier post I posted the question to you about your involvement with SGULIVESON and the SGU season 3 that has now been given airing dates on Justin.Tv. The claims have been made that yourself, MGM, and the SyFy channel are involved in this endeavor. Can you please tell me if you are involved in this and if there is any truth to this individual’s fantastical claims? Consider this a mailbag question with some urgency attached to it.

    On a side note, I hope Maximus is doing well and the vet is able to provide the big guy some relief.

  12. Thanks for the recommendations Joe – when you go into the bookstore and look at the wall of sci-fi/fantasy it’s hard to know what to buy. I’ll check out those titles and authors over the next few months.

  13. Awwwww Maximus…hang in little buddy…so sorry to hear Joe…hope the vet can help.

    Awesome news on the fortune of my Fantasy Football team, Brody’s Bar. The projected outcome before the weekend didn’t look great but after a 60 yard touchdown by my new pickup Willis McGahee, I stormed home, while my opponent (Vick’s Dogs…bad name) was left in my dust and didn’t score at all on the last day. I now have a 3-6 record, sitting 4th in my division and 10th overall. This week my opponent has a 2-7 record. I’m glad I had Tony Romo starting too…think I might reconsider Nate Washington.

    Good luck to the Snow Monkeys!!

    Cheers, Chev

  14. Now to entertain Alexander and Sarah….well you’ll have to take them on one of your food truck jaunts…I ended up doing a Google Search to see where the food trucks are and found an awesome website called Roaming Hunger. Is this how you find the places?

    I took the liberty of looking up Vancouver events and found Vancouver TheatreSports League presents Improv Test Kitchen – – of course I’d be pissed if they didn’t cook something. Every Sunday there’s a Hip Hop Workshop – can’t miss that…all of this you can find at Tourism Vancouver. I’ll be sure to check it out when I’m there. I’ll let you know when I’m in town Joe if you’re interested in a coffee.

    Cheers, Chev

  15. Hugs to Maximus. Looks as if scifi451 may have gotten the jacket right. Keeping my fingers crossed along with you for Akemi.

  16. Sorry to hear about Maximus, and to think we may be close to doing something about it. There’s been some studies showing cancer tumor reduction to elimination in mice using cannabinoids. There’s also an underground community using Rick Simpson’s method claiming cures of their own cancers. Too bad you have to spend some time in Amsterdam to use this alternative treatment method legally.

  17. I think the coat thing is a trick question, and it’s been worn by a few different characters. 🙂

    Mr. M, sorry to hear Maximus is feeling poorly. Maybe Maximus would be able to manage some nice beef or chicken broth…Hope the vet can help.

    @Lisa R
    Honey & lemon juice, mixed to taste in hot water is good for a sore throat.
    For congestion, add a few drops of eucalyptus oil to a bowl of hot water, put a towel over your head and inhale the steam. Or put a few drops of eucalyptus oil on a handkerchief, and inhale.
    Cut back on dairy, as lactose encourages mucus production. Peppermint tea helps the sinuses to clear.
    Whinge alot and look pathetic. May not remedy symptoms, but will help morale. 😉
    Hope you feel better soon!

  18. So sorry to hear about Maxiumus. Here’s hoping you get good news at the vet.

  19. *hugs for Joe and Maximus* So sorry to hear that Maximus isn’t feeling well. 🙁 I hope things get better for him. I will be praying for dear Maximus.

    Congrats to the Finn family on their new baby! I think Euphemia is a beautiful name. 🙂

  20. I really hate skunks. Dog woke me up at 5:45 (still on daylight savings time) claiming that she was starving to death. So I fed her and let her out. I always sniff before I let her go, and all appeared to be well. Then she vanished around the side of the house and it happened. That overpowering and unmistakable stench. After a couple of outdoor peroxide and baking soda baths in the 45 degree pre-dawn dim, I let her back into the house. Cold, wet, miserable. And the dog is not too happy either.

  21. Please let us know what the vet says today, Joe. Meanwhile, lots of kisses to Max on his cute little nose. 🙂

    The jacket. At first, I thought RDA in Avalon, but that wasn’t leather. Now I’ve read which one it was, so no Eagle Eye for me! 🙂

  22. It really looks like a Shank jacket, but notice how big the arms are; I think the jacket is made for The Big Guy aka Teal’c; mabye for an Earth visit? I’m way off sadly.

    Awesome news about Alexander and Sarah visiting, Akemi must be over the moon! Those food trucks sound like the best, plus Night Market with the weird food on sticks.

    @ Ben I second the Alastair Reynold’s recommendation, the books are dense and engrossing. Masked is excellent too, great stories in there.

  23. Whoops, I forgot to add hugs to Maximus, I hope that surgery will help, poor lil guy!

  24. @ Stinky Sparrowhawk – I LOVE skunks! They’re adorable – I would love to have one as a pet. Also, I think they smell good – like really strong coffee with a touch of garlic. One year when I was a kid we had a colony of skunks living under our house. I got used to the smell. (My sister used to put her clothes on the roof outside her window at night so she wouldn’t stink going to school…I just learned to live with it.) So, not sure how we’re gonna get along now, you stinkin’ skunk-hater, you. 😉


  25. Poor Maximus! He’s still awesome though. Get well, little fella.

    I don’t know how you managed, but props to you for indulging in the heavily marbled beef. I would have been running towards the nearest plate of vegetables.

    I also visited Tara Yelland’s blog (I admit, I think she’s very attractive), and while she seems a bit eccentric, I honestly don’t know what she is going on about (dolls?? crackheads??).

  26. Someone is cheating, lol YOU DO NOT GET 2 GUESSES! Choose one @StygianInq

    🙁 Maximus– sorry he isn’t doing well. But you bought him time, and you got him home to be happy in his own place. I hope you get more quality time, but I am glad he got to be back where you are both comfortable.

    YEAH on Akemi. 🙂

    Went to bed early, work up every freaking out, due to very early doctor apt. (just check up) Ugh, I hate time change.

  27. Oh dear lord, I saw this and thought of you:
    the recipe for the jalapeño cheesecake I had last night is in @StoneGreg’s book, along with recipes for a lot of @StoneBrewingCo beers.

  28. Hugs for Maxi-kins. Sweet baby boy. Also for Lulu. Sending prayers and peace…

  29. Aww….poor Max. Good luck at the vet. Hope he can make it all feel better.

  30. @ Ben
    I read and enjoyed ‘The Chronicles of Prydain’ too when I was a kid! I still read children’s fantasy, sometimes for nostalgia and comfort-reading, sometimes because it’s simply good writing. Authors like Diana Wynne Jones, Catherine Fisher, William Nicholson, Philip Pullman and Philip Reeve write wonderfully inventive and engaging stories without all the padding you seem to get these days in adult fantasy.

    Anyway, here, if you’re interested, are some recommendations:

    High Fantasy:-

    Guy Gavriel Kay’s ‘The Fionavar Tapestry’:
    ‘The Summer Tree’, ‘The Wandering Fire’ & ‘The Darkest Road.’

    Susan Dexter’s ‘The Winter King’s War’:
    ‘The Ring of Allaire’, ‘The Sword of Calandra’ & ‘The Mountains of Channadran.’

    Lois McMaster Bujold, ‘The Curse of Chalion’ & ‘Paladin of Souls.’

    Urban Fantasy:-

    Diana Wynne Jones, ‘Deep Secret.’

    Simon R. Green’s ‘Nightside’ series, beginning with, ‘Something From the Nightside.’

    Science Fiction (Space Opera):-

    Lois McMaster Bujold’s Vorkosigan series, beginning with ‘Shards of Honour’ & ‘Barrayar’ (published together in one volume as ‘Cordelia’s Honour’).

    Joan D. Vinge, ‘The Snow Queen’ & ‘The Summer Queen,’ and her ‘Cat’ trilogy, ‘Psion,’ ‘Catspaw’ & ‘Dreamfall.’

    Science Fiction (Hard):-

    Aldous Huxley, ‘Brave New World.’

    Ursula Le Guin, ‘The Lathe of Heaven.’

    Stephen Baxter, ‘Moonseed.’

    Dan Simmons, ‘Ilium.’

    Richard Morgan, ‘Broken Angels.’

    And, of course, you could always try SF anthologies to get a feel for which authors you like. Enjoy!

  31. Joe, Minus the injury and hope for a speedy recovery, are you happier you are out of the mess in YYZ?

  32. @Debra The only difference between the jackets for those two characters is the colours of the epaulettes and it depends from which angle you see them. So the picture that scifi451 put up looks like it but in the same episode at different times the epaulettes are red but the guard who figures out the scheme has epaulettes that don’t seem to change colour like that. I think I have just cemented myself in the annals of nerd-dom.
    As for the other people who guessed, at first, I completely thought it was Jared Kane too from Ethon but I seemed to remember it was used more recently but again I don’t know absolutely for sure.

  33. Ok, you can’t post a direct link to the screen-grabs. Check out image nr. 53 of 90..

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