delirium happy

Just keep on trying till you run out of cake

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The human condition
delirium happy
rho
I love my new appartment. Even though it isn't actually all that new anymore, I still love it. I love finally having privacy and independance back. I love the location, within easy walking distance of bus station, train station, city centre and supermarket. I love having broadband. I love the view up the river from out of my window. I love lots of things about it.

But most of all, I love my hob. It's a nice electric hob, that turns on at the touch of the button, is intuitive and easy to use, has variable heats for each ring, wipes clean easily, and so on and so forth. It's nice to cook on.

But this isn't why I love it so much. I love my hob because it perfectly sums up the human condition. What I would like to do, is go back in time a few thousand years, and show people this hob. They would no doubt wonder at this technological marvel, and how I cn make heat without laying a fire, and how I can control it quickly and easily at the touch of a button. I would explain all of this to them, and they would sit in awe.

Then I would go on to explain to them one extra little feature that it has. I would explain that when you turn it off, a little letter H remains on the little seven segment display, to warn people that it may still be hot. And I would explain to them that this is because if it didn't do this, even when the person has just turned it off, even if thering was still glowing red, and you could feel the radiant heat a metre away, even then, if it didn't have the little letter H then people would ocmplain about it.

Despite all the technical marvel, people would complain about something that was mind-numbingly obvious.

And whne I told them this, they would think that the world had gone crazy. And they'd be right, of course. But the thing is, this sums up humanity perfectly. People are never satisfied. No matter how good things are, they always want better.

This is a double edged sword, obviously. Because if you can never be satisfied with anything then it's never possible to be happy. The promised land always lies forever just slightly out of reach. But on the other hand, if you're never satisfied with what you have, then you're always striving towards better things. You're always pushing the boundaries of the possible, and exploring new ideas. You're always trying to improve yourself. And what better way is there to live than to always strive for betterment?

And that is why I love my hob. Every time I see it, I don't see a cooking device. I see humanity, trapped in electrical form, with all its glory and all its flaws.

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Having almost burned myself on old electric hobs, I am grateful for any visual indication...

Don't like electric hobs though, I'm a gas person... :)

I have to agree with being a gas hob person, they are so much better for cooking something where you need a lot of heat quickly, stirfry, steak, etc.
I'm stuck with an electric hob, so I tend to use a camping gas hob-thing if I'm cooking any of the above.

Most modern electrics transfer heat to an appropriate pan just as fast as gas units (some heat up and transfer the heat *faster* than a standard gas one). The advantage to gas is a wider variety of pans that will work well (Wok's anyone?) and the ability to *reduce* the heat in a timely manner. The days of the electric hob taking forver to come up to temperature are largely in the past (except for those like me who couldn't afford a new one anyhow) but there are still some really good reasons to go with gas. I wish I had gas so I could turn down the temperature on a batch of beer brewing faster if it was threatening to boil over for instance.

As far as the warning goes, as someone who has burned themselves I could sure use it. Sure its obvious right away, but in a few minutes it no longer is radiating *that* much heat, and I've gotten myself when I didn't know it had even been on in the first place. I don't think that would happen living by myself, but when someone else has used it recently, a visual clue can be handy.

The halogen hob I have does indeed heat up very fast, however the control for it is very digital. It has no concept of half-on, it just switches between full on and off at about 50% duty cycle. This is fine for some things but not for others. For Thai or Chinese cooking I prefer the good old analogue control you have over a gas flame.

"nice" or "electric hob" ... pick one.

(try getting a wok on one)

At home, we have electric hobs. They do stir-fry just fine. (We leave them to heat up first. Then do the stir-fry when they're hot.) They're basically just electrically heated elements sticking out rather than some of these weird entirely flat and seamless things, though. I imagine it'd be a pain to stir-fry on some of those I've seen.

Ah, mine are flat iron plates. They're hideous and they rust if you so much as breathe on them...

Even having figured it out from context clues, I still have to fight this urge to look up the word "hob" in my English slang dictionary...

Round things, on top of the cooker. Not slang. English.

agreed--it actually took me reading until the comments to go "ohh, a burner!" :)

My parents have a nice, electric, ceramic halogen hob.
It's *nice*. Also, it has a timer for two of the cooking rings. Yayity.

As to the 'H':
1. There's the matter of the red glow fading and the hob still being hot. The nicely-wipeable hob can burn as it is wiped. I am stupid enough to have done this, only snatching my hand away as soon as I felt the heat.

2. The electric heating hobs stay hot much longer than gas-hobs, so it's useful for keeping stuff hot. But it's easy to forget that it is still hot if one is used to cooking on gas. (IMLE, YMMV, etc.)

1) For legal reasons - like those McD's coffee's that has "Caution! Coffee may be hot!" printed on it

2) Sometimes it's not obvious that the cooker is still hot - especially with ceramic hobs are very hard to see if its hot or not - in my 2nd nottingham house, with ceramic hobs, there was many times I've turned on a hob and put a pan on the wrong hob and stand there for 20 mins wondering why the pan wasn't boiling - it wasn't until I put my hand near the pan when I felt the heat from the wrong side. Plus even as soon as when turned off, the cold hobs looks exactly the same as the hot hobs, so it's easy to burn yourself.

Also I note some electric hobs, the red glow vanishes almost instantly and again, not obvious if it's on or not. Even ring hobs (those ancient hobs - that was my old cooker I had to use for 6 months until recently ;)) cools down quite quickly.

I'm a gas hob man myself - being that it's instant heat, variable (i.e. all leccy hobs I've used is either "On" or "Off" which pisses me off big time, while with gas, I can choose how much flame to have), and being able to use a wok on - not too good with leccy. Also electricity prices here in Bristol is far far more than gas prices - inital rates are 2p per kWh for gas, and 11.5p per kWh for leccy. Go figure. But then again, I'm a leccy oven man myself - gas ovens just pisses me off :)

I burn everything to crisp on electric hobs, zero control, turn it down and it stays just as hot for several minutes, meaning it might as well just be on or off. Electric hobs exist for people in the countryside who can't get gas.

Belated *shock*

You? Cook?!?

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