Monday, February 4, 2013

GOOD CHEMISTRY


Thankfully I was an Art History and Interior Design major in college, so avoided many of the science classes that occupied my pre-med roommates every breathing minute.  I was, however, required to take (and pass) a chemistry class before graduating, so like any other procrastinator, I waited until my senior year to take "Mother Earth Chemistry."  Terrified I wouldn't pass my last core requirement before graduation, I walked into the classroom and surveyed the territory...football players, sorority girls, art majors and me...this was going to be a piece of cake!  Actually, it was going to be a slab of cheese, glass of wine and bottle of beer.  Yup, mother earth chemistry taught us, among other things, the fine art of making cheese, wine, beer and soap (two of my favorite books from the course are still on my bookshelf, "The Art of Soap making" by Merilyn Mohr and "Cheesemaking made easy" by Ricki & Robert Carroll).  The main focus of the course was to teach us how to use the scientific method when making observations and performing experiments, but it proved to be far more interesting than that and one of my favorite college courses.  This Christmas my lab-partner-in-life, Joe, gave me a pretty cool gift of glass beakers (flasks) he thought I could use as decanters in our bar or vases for a cool table scape.  While the rubber stoppers wreaked of, well, RUBBER when I unpacked them, after soaking in hot water and soap for a day the scent of tire escaped (didn't think that would mix well with Kettle One or Dewars).  To add an unexpected modern edge to a clients kitchen design, I purchased a set of beakers on www.amazon.com for $19.99 (5 piece set) and filled them with spices.  Thankfully the science of design is subjective, so you can do just about anything you heart desires!
GLASS HOUSES:
While glass beakers are available on scientific supply sites like www.karterscientific.com I just head to my end all, be all site of Amazon and type in "glass beakers" for this great set for $19.99.  Other great uses, I've found...at a dinner party, pre-mix cocktails for guests and serve in beakers (martini in one, Manhattan in another, etc.), dish soap next to your sink, powder in the restroom, salad dressing, perfumes or, as Joe suggested, a great arrangement of flowers on a table..with the varying heights of the beakers, makes an interesting focal point!