Vegemite Taste Test

Australia is known for kangaroos, Crocodile Dundee, and Koalas but more importantly, they are known for one other thing, Vegemite. Vegemite is to Australia what peanut butter is to the United States.

Vegemite in its' jar

Vegemite, the Australian standard for yeast extract.

Wikipedia describes Vegemite as:

“Vegemite is a dark brown Australian food paste made from leftover brewers’ yeast extract with various vegetable and spice additives developed by Cyril P. Callister in Melbourne, Victoria in 1922.

A popular spread for sandwiches, toast, crumpets and cracker biscuits as well as a filling for pastries, Vegemite is similar to British, New Zealand and South African Marmite, Australian Promite, Swiss Cenovis and German Hefeextrakt. With the brand now owned by American company Mondelez International, other Australian-owned spreads have entered the market to provide an alternative, such as the yeast-based AussieMite and Ozemite products.

Vegemite is salty, slightly bitter and malty, and rich in umami – similar to beef bouillon. The texture is smooth and the product is a paste. It is not as intensely flavoured as British Marmite and it is less sweet than the New Zealand version of Marmite.”

I managed to get a few brave souls at work to taste test some Vegemite on buttered bagels. The result was half hated it, half didn’t hate it. It should be noted that only two brave souls tasted the Vegemite…

I found the taste interesting. I can’t wait to try it as a thickener in gravy. I think it may be the perfect ingredient for that occasional chili that is too darned sweet.

Quick consumer tip. Vegemite does not need to be refrigerated.

Video of Germany at the Beginning of WWI

The watermarked source for this footage is the ZDF, a German public-service television broadcaster. The productions are very clean.

Video footage of Germany, much of it in color, just before the first world war and some footage from the trenches. You know all of these people are dead whether through war or old age. As you watch, you wonder what horrors they are about to see, what hell they are about to live through. You see a country with hope not realizing the nightmare that is so damned close on the horizon.

You see the “old world”, just before WWI changed all of the rules. You see a world that still respects the old institutions, those same institutions that will shortly bring them to a very bad place.

Within a few years, many of the people in the videos would be learning about the nightmare that is trench warfare. One generation later, they and their children will make a much bigger nightmare.

Some of the color film is magnificent. There were also some beautiful horses. The scenes from the battlefields are quite depressing. There are a few scenes with the gas being deployed during the attacks… The last couple videos are trench warfare in all of its deadly gray misery.

Grand Star a/k/a Ice Corp

I am not doing so well in finding a copy of the series Grand Star a/k/a Ice Corp. I decided to see if there was a book available to tide me over while I continue my search.

I found the book in Kindle format. The Ice Company by G. J. Arnaud. I published the following review on Amazon:

French sci-fi that reminds one of Orwell’s 1984. The characters are developed enough to tell the story. The plot is based on a future wherein extremely low temperatures and ice cover much of the globe. Major factions fight political and military battles to gain controlling interest over the railways. The railways are the lifeblood of the corporate types and the only way to move supplies between areas. Adding to the complexity of the story line is the race of modified humans that have adapted to survive the extreme low temperatures.

This book sets up the scenario and walks us through one man’s struggle to grasp what is going on and understand the battles for the weaponized rail-space and the true status of the modified humans.

Very 1980s French in its’ world view. Those who enjoy European writing will find this book interesting. Those who haven’t tried European sci-fi will find this a refreshing change.

Sci-fi shows I am looking for

One of the greatest sources for science fiction television shows is The Definitive Science Fiction Television Encyclopedia. Since the 2nd edition, I’ve gone through each entry to see what shows and series I’ve missed. The encyclopedia lists foreign language shows as well, a big bonus!

I have a list of current targets.

Name Year Language Source / Notes
2030 – Aufstand der Alten 2007 German
Adam Adamant Lives! 1966-1967 English Amazon has it
Archer’s Goon 1992 English Based on novel writen by Diana Wynne Jones, Youtube has it
Atlantis High 2001 Englsih youtube
Aventuras Da Tiazinha, As 1999 Portuguese? Youtube
Aventuras en el tiempo – Adventures in Time 2001 Spanish (Mexico)
Chamäleon 1983 German
Commander’s Log 2004 English (Canada)
Cybergirl 2001 English Youtube
Dans une galaxie près de chez vous 1999 French Youtube
Deepwater Black a/k/a Mission Genesis 1997 English Youtube
Evolver 1995 English Amazon prime free
-Final Days of Planet Earth 2006 English Amazon
Fourth Dimension, The – Chetvartoto izmerenie 1977 Bulgarian
Freedom 2000-2001 English
Garth Marenghi’s Darkplace 2004 English Sci-fi parody from UK
Grand Star a/k/a Ice Corp 2007 English
Ijon Tichy: Raumpilot 2007 German Youtube
Mann and Machine 1992 English I have a VHS dubbed version, but I’m hoping for a DVD release.
Mecanocript del Segon Origen (Manuscript of the Second Origin) 1985 Catalan Youtube
Mega Mindy 2006 Dutch
Mission Terra 1985 German
Monster Warriors 2006 English (Canada)
Nefilim, Ha 2007 Hebrew
Otherworld 1985 English I have a VHS dubbed version, but I’m hoping for a DVD release.
Pirx kalandjai 1973 Hungarian
Sazer-X (3rd in the Super Star God series) Youtube
Sazer X The Movie Fight Soldiers 2005
Secret World of Alex Mack 1994-1998 English
Something Is Out There (original mini-series) 1988 English
Space Cases 1996-1997 English
Space City Sigma 1986 Hindi (India)
Space Command 1953 English There is only one existing episode. It is the first time William Shatner and James Doohan worked together.
Spellbinder (series) 1995 English Youtube
Stella Stellaris 1994 German
Telerop 2009 – Studio Telerop 2009 1974 German Youtube
Three Moons Over Milford 2005 English
Two Twisted 2005 English Australia

A late addition:
The Girl From Tomorrow
An Aussie series from 1991
There are a few episodes on youtube.