Football and bread

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Today is Super Bowl Sunday and while I am not a big football fan, it's the one game I am sure to watch. Our friend Robert has invited us to view it on his home theater in high def. Go Broncos! Yesterday was my day to bake bread for the week. Not just any bread. But handcrafted artisan bread. I've been working on perfecting this one loaf of bread for nearly a decade. I still haven't succeeded but I inch closer each week. It's as much a joy and a challenge as perfecting the art of designing a stereo system. The two disciplines have many parallels. If you're a real bread snob like me, you're impressed by a number of benchmarks: the holes in the crumb, the crust, the color, the burst of the seam, the flavor, the aroma and so forth. In the same way, if you're obsessed with the art of sound reproduction you have a number of benchmarks to hope for: imaging, tonality, dynamic linearity, full frequency response, toe tapping qualities, how close it comes to the real thing. The number of people that can take three ingredients: water, flour, salt and turn it into a work of art that touches one's inner being are not many. And the number of people able to take a handful of wires, transistors, tubes and bits of "stuff" to make a piece of audio equipment that can reach in and touch your soul are equally few. I believe each of us has something deep within us that finds satisfaction and fulfillment from pushing the boundaries of perfection. It could be baking bread, building stereo systems, raising a child, reading books. I hope you find what really turns you on. Here's what Saturday's efforts yielded.


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Paul McGowan

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