Category Archives: #ThereIsNoSpoon

How to remove the metadata title from MKV files

mkvYou may have come across the need to remove the metadata, or extended title information from an mkv file downloaded from the internet.

Not all files are equal – in the case of regular files, for example .jpg and .mp4 files, you can simply right click in Windows, select Properties, and happily click away at the Details Tab, then “Remove Properties and Personal Information” – provided you have the right permissions, it’ll all work fine. MKV files will give you a permissions error, which is a lie, a dirty stinking filthy lie – don’t believe the lie.

Windows just doesn’t know how to deal with an MKV file title.

You need a 3rd party tool, and a small amount of knowledge.

The tool you need is MKVToolNix (Backup link to 64 bit installer, since their site seems to be down a lot). Go download and install. It’s free, and doesn’t nag.

Then you need to understand how to use the command line.

The basic command you need is: “C:\Program Files\MKVToolNix\mkvpropedit.exe” *mkv file name* -d title

When run, it will simply empty the metadata title from the file, no fuss, and it’ll only take a second.

Update: A number of people have asked me how to automate this to make it recursive, i.e. start at the top of a specified directory (Folder), and go through all sub-directories, processing all files.

This is how:

​@echo off
c:
cd \users\USERNAME\downloads\*.mkv
for /r %%i in (*.mkv) do (
echo processing "%%i"
"C:\Program Files\MKVToolNix\mkvpropedit.exe" "%%i" -d title
)

The For loop goes through every file in the folder structure (Given the *.mkv spec), and executes the mkvpropedit command on every file found in the list. Simples.

Feel free to nick the code above, and use it for your own purposes, but remember to change the relevant path names to those on your own system.

If you would like to know more about batch files, and how they (Plus the command line) work in Windows, please visit the excellent Wikibook: Windows Batch Scripting which should get you started, or go Google it 🙂

Batch scripting (Or otherwise known as Batch Files) enable simple yet powerful processing of almost anything in the DOS or Windows environments, however the batch-language is largely superseded by the more powerful Windows Powershell; but in my opinion it is still very much a valid and ultimately useful tool, for it’s ease of use and simplicity.

This article (Click here) shows you how to add this to the right click context menu in Windows – even easier!”

Spabbit’s UK Indian-takeaway Mint Sauce.

img_4662For years now, I’ve been after a recipe to exactly replicate the sweet tasty sauce you typically get when ordering from an Indian Takeaway in the UK – the stuff is delicious, and I often found myself ordering more than I needed, just to feast with afterwards.

The sauce is great – you can have it with Indian food, such as bhajis or Samosas, or just as a dip for some tortilla chips (I’ve done that one more than once!)

The best thing about this – it’s cheap & easy to make. This recipe will make 1.2 litres of sauce, or 12 of those little containers you get from the takeaway 🙂

img_4656Ingredients

  • 1 KG natural yoghurt (NOT Greek-style!)
  • A small jar (230g) of Mango Chutney
  • 2 heaped tbsp Concentrated Garden Mint (NOT mint sauce!)
  • Around 30ml of Lemon Juice
  • 8 tsp Granulated sugar or sweetener (Vary to taste)
  • Food colouring to preference

Method
Blend / liquidise the Mango Chutney until there are no lumps. Measure out all of the ingredients into a mixing bowl, then mix well using a hand whisk – pour into containers, seal and refrigerate until needed. I always go by the use-by date of the yoghurt as a guide as to how long this will last in the fridge.

If you find that the sauce is too thick – you can add some milk to thin it out a little.

Enjoy!

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img_4660  img_4662

How to reset Service Warning for the Nissan Almera Tino.

TinoThis is a bit of a left-field oddball post when compared to the rest of this blog, but one which needs to be out there…

I found the instructions listed somewhere on the interwebs a while ago, but only just got around to trying ’em… and they actually worked 🙂 So, if you have a Nissan Almera Tino, and are annoyed by the full screen and persistent service warning, then enjoy! (Of course, you should always service your car, but not because a screen bullies you into it!)

  • Switch ignition ON, don’t start the engine.
  • Switch radio ON.
  • Start engine.
  • Switch radio OFF.
  • Press and hold INFO button.
  • Whilst pressing and holding the INFO button, turn volume control knob at least 30 clicks to the right, until self dianostic menu is displayed.
  • Release the info button.
  • Using the Joystick, select Confirmation/Adjustment.
  • Select Service, press ENTER.
  • Select Reset, press ENTER.
  • Press BACK button repeatedly until the main menu is displayed.
  • Switch ignition OFF.
  • Never be bothered by this annoyance again!

Spabbit’s Lamb Samosas

imageThese Samosas are my first attempt, and I have to say I pretty much nailed it 🙂 Whoever says you need filo pastry is just wrong – they work fine with a basic pastry, the same as you’d use for a stuffed paratha.

This recipe will make around 8 to 10 large samosas, depending on the size you want of course.

Ingredients (For the filling)

  • About 50ml Ground Nut Oil(For frying)
  • 2 Large Red Onions (Finely Chopped)
  • 1 Large handful of frozen peas
  • 500g Minced Lamb (I used frozen)
  • 2 tsb Crushed Garlic
  • 1/2 tsp Turmeric Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Hot Chilli Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Cayenne Pepper Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Mustard Powder
  • 2 tsp Cumin Powder
  • 2 tsp Garam Masala
  • 1 tsp Onion Powder/Granules
  • 1 tsp MSG
  • 1 tblsp Tomato Purée
  • 40ml Lime Juice

Method (For the filling)

Fry the chopped onions and pepper in the oil, with the Turmeric and garlic until cooked. Chuck in the peas around half way thought the onions. Add in the Lamb and continue cooking until browned. Throw in everything else, starting with the dry spices, and mix well, continuing to fry until you’re happy with the consistency – with the minced lamb, the more you fry it, the finer it will become.

You could also throw in some veg such as mashed potato to bind the mixture together a little more – as I was aiming for a mainly meat product, I skipped the additional veg.

In the second batch I made, I had a flash of pure genius, and added a small quantity of grated cheddar, and a little cream cheese (For this quantity, it would be about 50g or 1/6 a 250g tub). The cheese worked amazingly well, binding the filling together without really impacting on the flavour – who says you need spuds? 🙂

Ingredients (For the pastry)

  • 250g plain flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp Ghee (Or soft butter)
  • Around 50ml Water

Method (For the pastry)

Place flour and salt in a bowl, mixing well. Make a well in the middle, add the ghee, fold over, make another well and add around half the water. Fold over and mix / kneed the mixture, adding the water a little at a time, until it forms a smooth elastic dough. Tip out the dough onto a lightly floured surface and kneed some more until very smooth.

Cover the dough with an upturned small bowl for around half hour.

Divide the dough into balls roughly golf-ball sized, leave stand for around 10 minutes or so.

One at a time, press the balls out into a circle shape, and roll out until thin enough that you can almost see through them. When rolled out, the circle should be around 20-25cm across. If you feel the need, you can put a plate over the top and cut a circle, but with practise you’ll be able to do it easily enough.

You can make the circles as large or as small as you want, depending on the size of samosas you’re aiming for.

Method (For combining / cooking)

Cut the circle in half, and on the lower quarters of each half, lightly wet the outside edges (A finger dipped in water does the trick). Place a large spoon full of the mixture onto the pastry, then fold over, pressing the wet edges together to seal them. With practise you’ll know more exactly how much filling you can get away with shoving in there. Press down on the edges to seal the samosa.

You can also seal one outside edge and form a cone in your hand to fill these, personally I’ve found the spoon on and fold over approach easier.

Using a pan with around 2 inches of oil in, or a deep fryer, fry the samosas until golden brown; as they float, you’ll need to carefully turn them over a couple of times during cooking to ensure that both sides cook. If you get a large hole in one, quickly remove and discard, as it will be essentially ruined, and make the oil spit!…

Drain the cooked samosas on some kitchen paper to absorb any additional oil.

Serve on their own, or as part of a meal with some mint yoghurt dip!

The Piano Guys

I discovered these guys on one of many late night random YouTube explorations, and I gotta say they’re cocky motherfuckers with more talent than you can shake a stick at 🙂

Check out these couple of pieces…

PMJ Does it again!

Toxic – Vintage 1930s Torch Song Britney Spears Cover ft. Melinda Doolittle

Seriously, this is the kind of music which can make an evening come to life, a few drinks and this… wow, make me happy, Post Modern Jukebox 🙂

Granddaughter #1 & #cat

IMG_4251
Just realised, if these two gang up on me, I’m fucked… 😉

Orrible ‘lil Baby #3 Family+1

IMG_4264I’ve been meaning to write this post for a couple of weeks, but stuff got in the way… Rum, being drink, curry, work, more rum, the FSM, and possibly #BRExit…

This is Theo John – aka Orrible ‘lil Baby #3 (Grandson), born on the 16th June, slightly premature.

Wonder what he’ll think of today, in 20 years time?

Anyhow, following on – this means a few things…

  1. Added onto the sentence of the first two, this means a double dose of baby-crap lying around – we already have two high-chairs!
  2. Triple grandma mode for my wife!
  3. Yet more wallet pain, I swear the next time I use a ATM, the thing is going to shout “Clear!”, and shock my card back to life.
  4. I’m old, OK, not that old, as the original childs were gained via marriage; still #antique!
  5. My sister going to be standing in loco parentis… I gather she screamed a little [sic] when being told of the news.
  6. Another child who I’m going to be teaching to cook properly, without the aid of pre-cooked crud in tins! (Points at his mother… “But I added something else!” – yers)…
  7. Me wondering if this is going to be the last one, and if I’m going to see any great-grandchildren in around 25 years from now, if my dicky-ticker is still ticking…

I Find That Offensive!

iftoI was listening to the Jeremy Vine show on BBC Radio 2, the subject matter, centred around “the right to take offense” struck a chord with me. In the programme, the author Claire Fox described her experiences with young adults which inspired her to write the book, “I Find That Offensive“.

I agree 100% with everything she says in the book, and I fear for the future of the society which allows, and to a lesser extent encourages this behaviour among the young.

It’s a very interesting read, which I would strongly recommend to any thinking and reasoning adult – and if you have the opportunity to change the mind of a young person to be more open and less offended, then please enable that most vital skill set whenever, and wherever you can; survival of the race by decreasing future offended-wars is a noble quest. (I’m also of the opinion this ties in with a secular or atheist point of view, I strongly suspect the religious mind isn’t capable of this, not truly…)

There are a few memes drifting around the interwebs concerning the same subject – all along the same lines – and they’re true… “So fucking what?” as Stephen Fry says…
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This is where Blasphemy started, and we all know how fucking evil that shit it – people have been killing and torturing other people throughout the ages in the name of that fucker, and the worst thing, it still goes on today – however it now seems that the youth of today is intent on broadening this to other subjects as well… Claire Fox describes a talk regarding a footballer, convicted of rape, discussing whether or not he should resume his career, where any other points of view than further, and more extreme methods of punishment were shouted down, and effectively banned by the court of “I’m offended” – it’s a sad state of affairs when our young adults are so mentally closeted they can’t even hear the opinion of others.

IMG_1452It’s my personal opinion that they’ve simply had it too easy, they don’t know what real life is actually like, they’ve never struggled for crusts of bread, they’ve never been broken, never hit rock bottom and then fallen some more – IF you’ve been unfortunate (Or should I say fortunate?) enough to have been that broken, you know, you just fucking know that life isn’t that simple. The act of being broken – it makes you – when coming out the other side, you have a fresh appreciation of what actually matters, and you know, just being fucking offended simply doesn’t live in the same universe as real life.

Here are a couple of quotes of mine, and I sincerely hope they offend someone somewhere…

“Offended? – Good. Makes you feel alive. Everyone has the right to be offended, cause offence and be told to fuck off, quite equally. Anyone who thinks anything else is clearly fucking insane.”

“Anyone who is offended merely by words not the context / intent of the words is truly stupid.
Stupidity is the only universal crime.
Darwin for the win.”

More Cat Language!

If only cats could talk!

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Domestic abuse comes in many forms!

imageI found the following text online, one year ago to be exact – it came up on my timehop this morning. Apparently this was originally posted on Reddit, however I’m uncertain of the original source, or author. I’m one of the lucky ones out there who hasn’t experienced this, and I hope, haven’t been guilty of it myself…

But this needs to be highlighted, as I do know people trapped in this situation, and without realisation, and pausing to think, they’ll be trapped there forever!

So read on, and perhaps be reminded! This is a very wordy post, but well worth reading to the end…

My “Aha Moment” happened because of a package of hamburger meat. I asked my husband to stop by the store to pick up a few things for dinner, and when he got home, he plopped the bag on the counter. I started pulling things out of the bag, and realized he’d gotten the 70/30 hamburger meat – which means it’s 70% lean and 30% fat.

I asked, “What’s this?”

“Hamburger meat,” he replied, slightly confused.

“You didn’t get the right kind,” I said.

“I didn’t?” He replied with his brow furrowed. ” Was there some other brand you wanted or something?”

“No. You’re missing the point, ” I said. “You got the 70/30. I always get at least the 80/20.”

He laughed. “Oh. That’s all? I thought I’d really messed up or something.”

That’s how it started. I launched into him. I berated him for not being smarter. Why would he not get the more healthy option? Did he even read the labels? Why can’t I trust him? Do I need to spell out every little thing for him in minute detail so he gets it right? Also, and the thing I was probably most offended by, why wasn’t he more observant? How could he not have noticed over the years what I always get? Does he not pay attention to anything I do?

As he sat there, bearing the brunt of my righteous indignation and muttering responses like, “I never noticed,” “I really don’t think it’s that big of a deal,” and “I’ll get it right next time,” I saw his face gradually take on an expression that I’d seen on him a lot in recent years. It was a combination of resignation and demoralization. He looked eerily like our son does when he gets chastised. That’s when it hit me. “Why am I doing this? I’m not his mom.”

I suddenly felt terrible. And embarrassed for myself. He was right. It really wasn’t anything to get bent out of shape over. And there I was doing just that. Over a silly package of hamburger meat that he dutifully picked up from the grocery store just like I asked. If I had specific requirements, I should have been clearer. I didn’t know how to gracefully extract myself from the conversation without coming across like I have some kind of split personality, so I just mumbled something like, “Yeah. I guess we’ll make do with this. I’m going to start dinner.”

He seemed relieved it was over and he left the kitchen.

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