Archive for the Food Where’s My Car Category

PICK A NAME, ANY NAME

Posted in Food Where's My Car, It's Alive!, Mr. Bitch Goes to Bitchtown on December 6, 2009 by butthorn

Some snow finally fell out of the sky onto the ground and the cars and stairs and everything.  It was easy to deal with and nice to see.  It isn’t cold outside at all, and the town looks as Christmasy as a mill town possibly can.  I made tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwiches for lunch, with cheddar jack Cheezits on the side; the ultimate in cozy meals. 

I watched a “Mystery Science Theater 3000” episode (“Horrors of Spider Island”, which served to further the very correct theory that the awesomer the title, the poorer the film) and an almost-entertaining 1976 thriller about God possessing people’s brains and telling them to shoot people (entitled, appropriately enough, “God Told Me To”) while Annie promptly fell sound asleep for several hours after eating my dangerously relaxing repast.  Now we’re intermittently gaping dumbly at “60 Minutes” in HD.  Not a program that cries out for high definition, but boy, these people’s foreheads look fantastic. 

The tree is assembled and displayed, and in spite of its spindly fakeness it adeptly cheers up the room.  I’m drinking a lot of ginger ale.  My wife bought her first pair of maternity jeans yesterday.  They have a built-in, flesh-hued girdle sort of attachment that I confess I’m a bit jealous of.  It seems snugger and less cumbersome and pinchy than a belt.  Belts are stupid.  I want girdle jeans. 

Suitable names for the baby continue to be elusive.  I almost feel like we’ll have to look at the baby once it’s out and the right name will magically make itself apparent, like how our cat Archie just “looked like an Archie”.  I don’t know.  We certainly don’t want to add to the inundation of Logans and Madisons currently overtaking day cares across the nation, but then again I don’t necessarily want to shy away from a name we like simply because it happens to be popular at the moment.  At the same time, I can’t abide giving the child a name that, while probably a fine name in theory, happens to be shared by someone I hated growing up; this condition eliminates a depressing number of possibilities. 

Names can make or break a kid.  Looking at books or websites dedicated to lists of baby names just makes me want to name the baby something ridiculous/hateful like “Walmart Gonads” to get back at him/her for putting us through the irritating and seemingly impossible task of coming up with a word and accompanying sound that lets everyone know who they are for the rest of their life.  My brother-in-law claims to be in favor of letting the child name themselves once they’re old enough to comprehend the act of naming.  This isn’t an unintriguing idea, but I find the child’s lack of a name annoying now, and the kid isn’t even out here yet.  Not to mention we’d run the risk of ending up the proud parents of Spongebob Stover.  At least it’s not “Logan”. 

Here’s some other winners the geniuses out there are naming their poor sap babies according to BabyCenter: Cash (Not only a depressing name for a child, but it’s more popular than “Jeremy” this year; I can’t help but take offense [then again you can’t exchange Jeremy for goods and/or services, or at least probably not very quality ones]), Xander (No no no, America!  That is not your child!  That is the annoying guy from “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”!   The TV is not the place to get a name for your baby!  You didn’t see people back in 1992 naming their kid “Urkel”, did you?  And “Urkel” is both a less annoying name AND character than Xander!  I would be happier, America, if  “Urkel” were the 141st most popular name in this country right now, but no, that distinction belongs to “Xander”!  “Spongebob” probably really is on this list somewhere…I will not be surprised, I truly will not….Xander…grr…), Joaquin (No, you can’t have that name for your baby either, America.  That’s just for that one dude.), Londyn (I just purposefully shit my pants right this second to make a point about what a terrible name that is, that’s how much I hate that name.  You can’t just cram a letter “Y” in there and think you’re special.), Lyric (or Lyrrhyck, somewhere on the list I’m sure; anyway, P.U., am I right?), Talon (Naming your child after a bird’s hand qualifies you as a horse’s ass! [insert Phyllis Diller laugh here]), Maverick (Now you have to name your next child Goose; happy now?), Princess (I didn’t know people could give birth to kitties!  That’s adorable!), Peanut (Babycenter seems confident that this is actually the 652nd most popular name bestowed upon defenseless babies in American in 2009.  So either the website lacks credibility or the country does.  Or my whimsy tolerance is at an all-time low.  At any rate, fuck you all.), Remington (This list is full of pip-pip-cheerio names like this.  Why does everyone want their child to aspire to preppiness?  Did preppies stop being assholes at some point without my knowledge?  Do I know anything that is happening at all, anywhere?), Maxton (That’s not even anything.  That’s a random prefix paired with a random suffix.  Miketopher, anyone?  Frankvis?), Analise (I know this is a time-honored name that’s been around for generations now, but that word is basically “anal lice”…hey everyone, meet my lovely baby girl Buttbugs…), New (As a rule you don’t want a name that becomes closer to a cruelly ironic joke with each passing second; also, that’s not a name, that’s a fucking adjective)…the list, I’m sad to report, goes on.

Take a name like “Stanley”.  A fine name.  Not one we’re considering for our own child, but a perfectly acceptable, meat and potatoes kind of name.  Afternoon, Stanley.  How’s that new riding lawnmower treating you?  Glad to hear it.  Take care, Stanley.  That’s the kind of comforting, low-on-unnecessary- personal-details conversation you can have with a guy named Stanley.  It’s a name.  It works.  Guess where “Stanley” falls on Babycenter’s list.  Guess.  1031.  One thousand and thirty one.  Behind Maverick.  Behind Xzavier (not a typo).  Behind Peanut.  Behind Not, My, and The! 

Not!  My!!  THE!!!!

I don’t know, maybe this list is inaccurate, although I’m pretty sure BabyCenter is the online place to go for baby information, for whatever that’s worth.  In looking at these names, which obviously somehow aren’t considered silly and embarrassing to everyone given that kids are really getting named this stuff, it strikes me that it doesn’t take long to feel like an old person in this country.  Every few years everything seems to change just enough to make you uncomfortable, and you lash out and call everything stupid simply because it isn’t what you’re used to.  That’s a natural enough progression, and a less frightening explanation than what I really think/fear, which is we’re all turning into insane, thoughtless cartoons without even realizing it. 

On an unrelated note, we only get two channels on our TV at the moment, one of which is The CW, and I just got to watch “Cheaters” for the first time tonight.  Nice to meet you, new favorite show!

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I WASTE YOUR TIME THEN EAT AN UGLI FRUIT

Posted in Food Where's My Car, Inanimate Objects of Note, The Drink Dranther on April 16, 2009 by butthorn

Que pasa, turkeys?  I have not one item of interest to discuss with you, but I’m not sleepy, so you’re gonna listen to me and my puerile gobbledygook.

So the new giant Cheetos: your thoughts?  Somehow I haven’t eaten them yet.  But I HAVE eaten the new Burger King French Toast flavored Cheetos.  They’re not actually called that (they go by “French Toast flavored snacks”, I believe; catchy!) but it’s totally what they are.  Burger King has made French toast flavored Cheetos, and I have spent some of Daddy’s hard-earned to procure and consume a bag of them.  In fact, I have done this twice, as I thought they were actually pretty good.  In fact, I would go so far as to say I have enjoyed all of the Burger King brand crunchy bagged snacks.

bk-snacks

The Ketchup & Fries one tastes like the discolored crud that collects around the ketchup hole, and the Flame Broiled one tastes like walking into a Burger King and inhaling sharply and deeply through both your nose and mouth, but a lot crunchier.  Highly recommended!!!!!

I will try any new snack that comes out.  At the store the other day I saw honey barbecue flavored Cheetos, and rest assured that I will be putting those into my mouth soon.  Barring once-edible items that a human body has converted into something far less salubrious, if you want me to eat something, just let me know and I’ll give it a try!  How’s that for a deal and a half? 

Here’s some stuff I’ve been into lately.

mario-luigi-slippers

Back when I worked in a video store, while shelving flickaroonies one day I overheard some goofily dressed young gentlemen discussing what they should rent for a movie, and one of the young men, who apparently had seen more films than the other two, kept enthusiastically insisting “That’s a goodass movie, dude!” whenever either of the other  guys picked up a DVD to look at.  That really stuck with me for some reason.  Anyway, if I may paraphrase whoever the fuck that was, slippers are a goodass garment, dude.  They’re comfy, warm, and easy to don and doff.  I am heartbroken to report that I do not own these Mario and Luigi ones, but apparently they’re only $10.99 so I might soon. 

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Yeah, these really aren’t as cool as the Mario and Luigi ones, but frig it, they’re cozy and I like ’em so if you don’t like it you can take a hike.  Right now I have two nice homemade pairs of slippers, one from my mom and one from my mom in law, and I have been wearing them constantly while galumphing around the house, picking objects off of surfaces, dumbfoundedly gaping at them, and placing them uncertainly on different surfaces.  I’m also getting back into bathrobes, and I have a pair of unflattering, vibrantly blue sweatpant cutoff shorts that I’ve been steadily working back into my favored apparel rotation.  These are the salad days, friends.

tea-bag-lg

What else do I like?  Why, tea!  Yes, tea!  Hot water with a bag of fragrant sediment in it, that’s for 2009-era me!  I only want tea-likers in my posse henceforth.  When making someone’s acquaintance now, I’ve replaced the handshake with the tea opinion query.  Cut out the middleman, am I right?  We have several different kinds of tea to choose from at our house.  I am going to go take a picture of them.

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This is an attractively structured little wall of tea, I should think.  Tonight we drank quite a bit of that “Chief’s Delight” in the lower left-hand quadrant of the tea bulwark.  It contains strawberry leaf, myrtle leaf, blackberry leaf, rose hips, and juniper berry.  It is very nice!  By all rights it should probably be in the upper left-hand quadrant of the tea bulwark, but what’s done is done.  I entreat you to patronize the hippie aisle of your local market and seek out “Chief’s Delight”.  You will be soothed, you will be satisfied, and you will repeatedly strike your open mouth with the flat of your hand and make offensive “waw waw waw” noises.  That’s right, YOU will do this.  You.  Atop “Chief’s Delight” is a perfectly good minty type of tea that’ll give you a nice little refreshing kick if you’re of a mind to receive it, and continuing clockwise we find dependable standby “Lemon Zinger”, a beverage that is rarely not a good idea, unless, I don’t know, you have a citrus aversion or a big old mouthful of sores.  I don’t know the deal with your respective current mouth statuses, so I can’t reasonably be called upon to accurately speculate on your reaction to “Lemon Zinger”.  It’s a good tea, bottom line.  Below that is Sleepytime tea, which I actually received as a stocking present for Christmas this year, a fact I am equally pleased and ashamed to report.  Really, though, why make fun?  You’re really gonna tell me that you wouldn’t be happy to extract an attractively wrapped box of comforting tea from a festively decorated sock?  Stop trying to be cool and enjoy life, you elitist swine!  Last and quite possibly least is “Morning Thunder”.  I believe this has taken the place of gone but not forgotten “Fast Lane” tea, something we used to toss back a lot in college when we wanted to feel the extremes of relaxation and delirium simultaneously.  In my mind I’m picturing there being a drawing on the “Fast Lane” box of a guy running down the street while laughing and drilling a hole into his head; I’m almost positive that wasn’t the case, but it would have been appropriate enough.  A great and interesting source of caffeine, sorely missed.  “Morning Thunder” has not proven to be a viable substitute, but points for trying. 

zoidberg

“I broke your television!”

My wife and I have really been enjoying “Futurama” lately.  It goes well with slippers and Native American tea.  I had always been aware of this show but for one reason or another never gave it much of a chance, and I’m not going to go on too much about it as I believe most of you are probably quite familiar with it.  If not, turn on Comedy Central.  It’s probably on right now.  If you don’t like it, I’ll eat my hat!  In fact, I’ll go you one further: I’ll eat the old man who lives next door alive.  Please like it; that old man did nothing wrong, and I’ll probably go to prison if I eat him.  Pictured above is Dr. Zoidberg, a cross between a Borscht Belt comedian, an inept physician, and a lobster.  I laugh uproariously at virtually everything he says.  He lost his medical degree in a volcano.  Anyway, if you’re like me and you’re a nincompoop who hasn’t given this fantastic cartoon the time of day, do your funnybone a solid and check it out!

009

In other news, this past weekend I conquered the Ugli fruit.  I’d never had one.  I went the whole nine yards and got out the cutting board for the occasion.  I don’t just whip that out willy-nilly.  This was an undertaking and I was going to give the formidable fruit its due. 

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I wasn’t prepared for the sheer volume of inedible white crap, or “pith”, especially when one reflects on the >$2.00 asking price, but I remained abuzz with anticipation all the same. 

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Here’s what you’re getting into, should you attempt to chow down on one of these babies.  It isn’t as terrifying as it looks.  In fact, I came away quite pleased with the overall experience.  The hardest part of eating an Ugli fruit is taking pictures of yourself while consuming it so you can post said pictures on your blog for the benefit of none.  Without further ado, then, those pictures:

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Whoops.

015

There we go!  Say, that’s not half bad!

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Down the hatch!  GLORF MFLUGG GLUMMPP!

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Oh please more oh suckle suckle suckle!

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I realize it looks like I’m digging into a Gremlin pod there, but truth be told overall it’s an inoffensive and pleasurable fruit.  I’d compare it to eating a mild orange out of a grapefruit’s shell.  Plus there’s lot of juice left over when you’re done, for which the fruit’s natural container makes for an ideal receptacle, and you don’t get that lingering stickiness on your face and hands like I find you do with an orange.  Only problem is you have to cash out your 401k to buy one.  They’re good but I don’t know if they’re two-bucks-and-change-apiece good.  It’s exciting to get a wacky fruit every now and then, though, I find.  I’ve got my eye on some plantains for next time!  If you thought this blog was exciting, just wait till you get a load of me and these plantains!  Good night!

BOLOG? NA!: AN EXORCISM

Posted in Food Where's My Car on April 5, 2009 by butthorn

As of yesterday I am no longer going to be able to eat bologna.  Not because I’m concerned about my health, not because I’ve been looking over our budget and in these tight economic times bologna is simply not an expense we can afford, and not even because I don’t like it.  My chief reason is because last night I found myself with a hankering for a good old-fashioned bologna sandwich, made the effort to drive to my local supermarket and purchase the necessary ingredients, came home and ate part of it, began to feel slightly off, and proceeded to spend the remainder of the evening vomiting a total of nine times into the toilet.  I also crapped twice, which smelled not at all of earthy human fecal matter but like 100% pure bologna, which could only lead to more vomiting.  Eventually I became delirious and began crying.  It was a truly repugnant evening, one that I wouldn’t wish on anyone, except for perhaps the inventor of bologna. 

I’m a pretty reckless guy when it comes to food, and I readily accept most bodily consequences when it comes to my “diet”.  Recently I viewed a Louis C.K. stand-up routine that literally caused me to fall onto the floor with helpless, skull-clenching laughter, and I’d like to co-opt his description of his eating habits for my own: “I fill myself to capacity, and I blow it out my asshole”.  Spastic defecation doesn’t bother me all that much.  I can sit on the toilet and grunt my guts out all day.  No problemo.  Just give a magazine or the Nintendo DS, and I’m good for the duration.  All right, there was one instance where I ate chicken fettucini alfredo at the Macaroni Grill and ending up having diarrhea for three days straight before actually going to the ER and undergoing a haphazard butt irrigation courtesy of a commendably calm Chinese man.  That wasn’t cool.  Both chicken fettucini and Macaroni Grill in general are on my Do Not Eat list due to that.  But what I’m saying to you, foods, is that you have to do something really bad to me to get me to stop eating you, provided I think you taste good in the first place.  I’m a reasonable man.  I’m no stranger to the forgive and forget train of thought.  I think Gandhi was a heck of a nice guy.  All I ask, foods, is that you, I don’t know, not send me to the emergency room?  Not make me puke NINE TIMES?  Nine times, bologna!  I counted that shit! 

food-for-bad-people

I really, really do not enjoy throwing up. 

My hatred for throwing up far exceeds my fondness for bologna, though I must admit the lowly sandwich meat was good to me in youth.  My brother Justin and I delighted in lending our otherwise pedestrian sandwiches a classy air by fashioning ersatz crudites of them, cutting one whitebread bologna or PB&J sandwich into eight little triangles and daintily consuming them, no doubt with extended pinkies.  Justin dubbed them “fingers and thumbs”.  For several years, well into high school, this was the only way I would eat a sandwich, fingers and thumbs style, and bologna was a frequent component of this dependable snack. 

Manys the time I would open my parents’ fridge and, due to sloth or a lack of more pleasing alternatives, would simply extract a slice of bologna from its packaging and eat it sans bread or condiments, often folding the meat and biting holes in it to make a functional and genuinely frightening, if acne-providing, Friday the 13th Jason mask.  I ate cold pieces of bologna all the time, and never came away disappointed, let alone dazed and caterwauling bile into a toilet. 

If there happened to be shredded mozzarella cheese in the fridge, and quite often there was for some reason, I would get fancy and sprinkle some of that cheese in a line along the center of the bologna slice, apply a line of mustard atop the cheese, and roll it up into a nice little enchilada.  Muy caliente!  Makes me wanna dance the lambada, senoritas!  I ate that garbage all the time and I damn well liked it.  Never again. 

a-meal-fit-for-no-one

Bologna that actually came from the deli and not prepackaged by Oscar Meyer was always preferable, because you got the privilege of peeling that outer layer of casing from around the bologna with your teeth, and then you had a pink stringy pig cord suitable for forming a gross bracelet out of or whipping your dining companion with before popping it in your mouth and whisking it away to its intended destination. 

I’d remembered deli bologna as being the height of cold cut tastiness, and it was from the deli that I purchased my ill-fated compressed hog swimsuit areas last night.  It didn’t taste how I remembered it, yet not in any way I could be called upon to describe.  At once different and same, right and wrong.  The remainder of the evening, blissfully, remains a blur.  All that remains is a general sense of not enjoying my weekend, then shuddering in bed while my wife comforted me while simultaneously watching DVR’ed episodes of “The Bonnie Hunt Show”, which proved a relaxing background to lapse into a bologna-barf coma with.  I feel confident had she been privy to last night’s discomfort, Bonnie Hunt would have considerately applied a cold cloth to my forehead and the back of my neck while cooing motherly sounds of sympathy and encouragement. 

So it remains to be seen how this will affect my ability to eat hot dogs, let alone Vienna sausages (another occasional childhood snack I used to like sometimes), and pork products in general.  Bologna, when you get down to brass tacks, is just a big flat circle of hot dog, though unlike franks bologna is rarely eaten hot, and never as far as I know with ketchup, mustard, and relish.  But it shares with hot dogs that dank snap, that lazy zest, an irresistible stink of a taste that well complements the always pleasant act of  eating outdoors.  My feeling is that hot dogs and bologna are just different enough beasts that I think I’ll be able to suck down a dog or three before long, although I can tell you that I’m not going to want one anytime soon.  My relationship with bacon or sausage shouldn’t be affected; despite hailing from the same source, neither taste like bologna, and stake their roots in an entirely different (and, let’s face it, superior) meal.  Bologna is one of those foods that belongs squarely on your lunchtime plate.  It is a lunchmeat.  Perhaps the fact that I was attempting to eat it for supper was what caused all the problems.  No, I’ve had it for supper before.  This was a belated loss of innocence, or in any event a reminder that there are once-comforting experiences that can never, and should never, be reaccessed. 

If and when I father one or more children, will I permit them to eat bologna?  That’s a really good question, and one I’ve been wrestling with ever since I finished that last paragraph.  I can only imagine that I will, mainly because I foresee myself being walked all over by even the least demanding of offspring, but it won’t be easy to keep my mouth shut about the inevitable eventual aftereffects.  Is it better to devise a clear-cut bologna timeline for my child in the interest of sparing him or her from a similar ordeal, or to let the chips fall where they may and hope for my child either a lifetime of bologna-eating uninterupted by puking or an outright distaste for the cold cut?  Neither potential outcome seems likely, given my genetic makeup. 

I have a lot to learn, and the road to knowledge is long and strewn with unappealing obstacles.  But something I now know for a fact is that I am never going to eat bologna again. 

Adieu, old friend.  And fuck off.

revolting-villain

SOME THOUGHTS ON SOME THINGS

Posted in Food Where's My Car, Inanimate Objects of Note on June 18, 2008 by butthorn

I think ultimately one has to write through the problems. Some people say you shouldn’t force it, and after a look at the usual result, it’s hard not to agree. But that’s a good way for nothing to get done, and I do nothing all the time, and it gets old. The deal is I have nothing here I want to write about right now, as I’m tired, and uninspired, and wary of being crappy and uninteresting, especially to myself. Uninteresting crap is fine for you guys, but it simply won’t do for me! I want to be delighted by myself!

So this isn’t going to be about very much, this post, but I feel I must do it anyway, to get to the next step, hopefully a step of effortless entertainment. I have no silly photos to include, as the camera currently has no batteries and buying batteries is boring. Maybe I’ll just sit here for a moment and wait for a topic to come to me, and then expound upon that topic. Yes, I will do that. The topic that I think of will be in bold, and my thoughts regarding the topic will be in the colors of normal words.

Everlasting Gobstoppers

I like these. Every now and then I buy a box of them, and they tend to remain in the apartment for a very long time. Gobstoppers aren’t the kind of thing one tends to scarf. By which I mean eat rapidly, not outfit with wintertime neck apparel. You won’t be confused now that I’ve explained that. I always forget to take the Gobstopper out of my mouth to note that it has changed color. I guess it’s really not that important to me. In the Willy Wonka movie, they change flavor as well. But in real life, candies can only change color. Life will never be as good as movies. They should stop making movies, because it’s too sad in comparison to our everyday thing. Movies are basically drugs. When they’re on, it’s like “hey, this is great!” and then they’re over and it’s like “oh wait, no it isn’t”. Gobstoppers last a long time if you suck ’em, but I can’t handle the tension of hard candies. I just crunch ’em after like 10-15 seconds. Psychologically this probably means I want to bite off my dad’s penis or something weird like that. I like the red ones best!

Folders

At my new job I have to use folders a lot. It’s been awhile since folders have been an important part of my life, and I’m glad to see them return. I’m fond of folders. Ironically, however, I am not fold of fonders. I like to put papers in folders, and I like to discuss them. Folders have always been funny to me. Not as funny as wigs, but close. One thing I don’t like about folders is when you get a folder cut. Papers cuts have nothing on folder cuts. The other day I got a Tony’s frozen pizza box cut. That was the worst thing that has ever happened to anyone. It made me want to renounce pizza, God, and fingers. I renounce God almost daily, but pizza and fingers are usually pretty safe from my wrath. Not anymore. I got my eye on you, pizza and fingers. Anyway, folders. Let’s hear it for them. Let’s hear it for the folders. Maybe they’re no Romeo, but they’re my lovin’ one-folder show. That picture of folders above this idiotic paragraph is something I actually nicked from the State of Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services website, ridiculously enough. Wouldn’t it be great if I were incarcerated for stealing a picture of folders from the State of Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services website? I’ll be drinking fermented fruit cocktail brine out of a toilet and unsuccessfully muffling bloodcurdling shrieks of pain and humiliation with a filthy pillowcase in no time! And it’s all thanks to folders!

Lions

They’re okay.

That show “The Dog Whisperer”

As with most of my lifelong interests, I watched this show just to be stupid and to make fun of it, and ended up wanting to watch as many episodes as possible. That guy doesn’t take any mess from dogs. They bark at him, and he tells them to can it! And they do! Leadership like this is always very striking to me, as I exhibit not one, nay not one, quality that would impel someone to say “Hey, that Jeremy should be looking after children or perhaps running a small business with a modest staff of 8-12”. If I had a show like this, it’d be called “The Dog Mistruster” or “The Dog Fleer”. One thing I hate about dogs is that they always know exactly what they want, and it’s usually something that’s relatively easy to obtain. I hate people like that. It takes me approximately two months of constant contact for me to be able to feel comfortable around a person, but for most dogs I need at least a couple years. Being informed that dogs can “smell fear” certainly didn’t help my feelings toward them. I’ve no doubt that I positively reek of fear. Hopefully, humans will never develop the ability to smell fear, although that’s more for my sake than for the sake of humankind, as I’m told that fear smells like freshly mowed lawns.

Long story short, Cesar Milan has gained a new fan, although truth be told I’ve watched 6 or 7 episodes over a fairly short timespan and I’m already getting kinda sick of it. I’m waiting for him to get really mauled one of these times, but so far it’s just been a LOT of barking and little nips here and there. Another bad thing about the show is that it’s on the National Geographic channel, which wouldn’t be a problem if they weren’t insistent on you calling them “Nat Geo” of late. I am not going to call you “Nat Geo”, National Geographic. Perhaps that’s helpful for people who want to discuss you via text messaging (a multitudinous demographic, no doubt), but for people who just want to watch leisurely paced programs about weird stuff that happens outside, it’s embarrassing and crappy-sounding. You are not hip, National Geographic, and you should be proud of that fact.

Iced Tea Spoons

Annie’s relatives are really good about keeping us stocked with antiquated silverware hand-me-downs. A few months ago, the estimable Auntie Mary bequeathed to us a giant Ziplock bag full of fancy old silverware, and among this lot were a good number of spoons with wonderful long, thin handles. We adored them immediately. I think we like them better than our Wii. Ours are much cooler looking than the spoons pictured above, but even so, I would recommend picking up a set regardless of brand. Whatever meal you deign to take with them becomes daintier for their inclusion, be it a tiny bowl of Cocoa Krispies or a blissfully drawn-out serving of tomato soup. Above all, however, their purpose is stirring, and at this important act they are matchless. The reassuring ting of an iced tea spoon against glass is an invigorating promulgation of forthcoming refreshment.

Garlic

I cannot have garlic anymore. I have to stop.

It’s too bad, cause I love garlic, and I want to eat it all the time. But here’s the thing: last night we got Papa John’s pizza. With this pizza we also got an order of breadsticks. These breadsticks come with three dipping sauces, of which the only one worth bothering with is the garlic sauce. It’s delicious, and so good on the breadsticks. Not having enjoyed Papa John’s breadsticks and sauce for some time, and knowing full well the disastrous effects garlic has on my digestive system, I recklessly and liberally applied the garlic pastewaster to my breadsticks and happily chowed down. Within minutes, I felt an unusually warm fart happening in my pants, following by another. Unpleasant, to be sure, but as the consumption of virtually any food results in my body producing one form of instantaneous rankness or another, I paid it little heed and continued to enjoy my meal.

Ten to fifteen minutes later, I was full and decided to put the rest of the pizza in the refrigerator, where it could gradually become even more delicious in its firm coldness. As I trudged down the hallway, pizza box in hand, I detected a distinctly sludgy sensation in the inner thigh area. Worry surfaced. I deposited the leftovers in the fridge and gingerly tiptoed back to the bedroom to find that, yes, a dark brown stain, mysteriously shaped like my ass, had formed on the bed, on the very spot where I’d formerly been consuming pizza and contentedly sitting in my own waste. Within seconds of consuming a small (but concentrated) amount of garlic, this had happened. The power of garlic had caused me to unknowingly shit on my own bed. It was a very sad evening overall, with a lot of unexpected laundry and awkward moments.

I’ve long had problems of this type with garlic. Once upon a time, an occasionally vegan friend of mine was kind enough to treat me to a tasty meal she had cooked featuring garlic as a key component, and the ensuing farts were so frequent and terrible that after awhile she actually started crying. When it comes to me and garlic, upsetting moisture is seemingly an unavoidable result, and after last night, much as I love how it tastes, I think I’m going to have to abandon it for good. You know what, that’s not true. If I go to someone’s house and they make garlic bread, I’m gonna eat five pieces and shit all over their couch. It’s too good to pass up. Also, has anyone ever eaten so much garlic that you actually felt kind of oddly high afterwards? Annie and I made some kind of crock pot thing once that was loaded with the stuff, and after a couple bowls of that we felt legitimately altered. I don’t think I could ever consider garlic as a viable alternative to recreational drugs (nothing brings down a rave like spastic defecation), but the effects were surprising and slightly interesting in a bloated and smelly kind of way.

That’s it. I have no more thoughts about anything.

AN ADDITIONAL, FAR LESS COMPELLING YARD SALE EXCURSION

Posted in Food Where's My Car, Mundane Events on May 18, 2008 by butthorn

We pretty well failed at this weekend’s yard saling extravaganza.

It’s not like we didn’t prepare in advance (or Annie did, anyway, while I yakked on the phone with an old pal for upwards of three hours). She had a fancy route all Googlemapped up and ready to go, incorporating destinations both nearby and exotic. Then we slept in until 9:30, somehow forgot to drink any coffee, and found that we had only six dollars in cash and that it was looking like rain outside. Damp clothing, snippiness, headaches, and pre-ravaged arrays of bric-a-brac was the inevitable result. Too bad, so sad, hopefully the entire world catches on fire and everyone but us dies a horrible death.

But it wasn’t all frowning and tense muttering and squinting unhopefully at boxes of Nora Roberts novels. We still got to stop at a few places, and the morning ended on an unexpectedly high note thanks to a risky visit which we’ll go into in a minute. First, here are the few yard sales that we did stop at, and our scant, resultant booty.

We managed to stop at the first destination on our list (I’m not even gonna bother with designating any of them with letters this time around), and there were a few tables with this and that on them. Nothing really jumped out at us. It was one of those yard sales that had too much Christmas stuff for sale. I hate that. It’s summertime. Nobody wants your embroidered Santa napkin holders. You’re disappointing everyone, even the old ladies. Behind your back, elderly women are scornfully grasping their crotches and hawking mustard-hued loogies onto your pine-scented votives and ceramic snowmen. Put ’em in the basement or chuck ’em. We’re here for your outmoded appliances, retro-chic flatware, dog-eared paperbacks, ridiculous tee-shirts…that type of thing. The minute I see Santa Claus at a yard sale, I want to leave. But I can’t, because sooner or later he turns up at ALL of them. I long for the days when the idea of Santa inspired thrilling wonderment as opposed to fantasies of chaining him to his sleigh and forcing him to watch me soldering elves to reindeer, but what can you do, opinions are like assholes: everyone has one, and they allow nutrient-sapped food to pass through the body into a complex underground waste management system.

Again, they didn’t have much, but it was for some charity thing, so we tried hard to find something to buy, however insignificant, and eventually we came across a table covered in old Dell Yearling paperbacks for kids and preteens. Didn’t find any Beverly Cleary that we wanted, but I managed to come across a couple of classics of that era of kids literature that I felt I should own.

Not in pristine shape, but it feels more comfy to buy books that you know were well-loved. I distinctly remember reading “Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing” more than once, and I’m glad to know I wasn’t alone in my appreciation for this book, which genuinely helped me to put my own pain-in-the-ass Fudge of a brother in perspective, and you can never read those James Howe books enough times. There are a number of beloved examples of young adult literature that I would love to add to my current library, but I only want them if they’re the actual version that I grew up with. I don’t want the new jazzed-up covers. It’s Dell Yearling and Avon or nothing. By the way, I think that guy in the pickup there thought I was taking a picture of him. It got weird for a second.

PURCHASED: Two kids books: “The Celery Stalks at Midnight” and “Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing” (.50)

We needed more money, or so we thought, so it was necessary to hit an out-of-the-way ATM. In the future, we will have our cash situation well in hand before embarking. There should be neither dillying nor dallying when you arise to hit the yard sale circuit. Up at 7, shower, coffee, and go. We’ve learned our lesson. En route to the ATM, we happened upon an unscheduled sale, and those are usually the ones where we end up finding the best stuff, so we stopped and checked it out.

Pretty furniture intensive, which made sense as this turned out to be a moving sale. We’re not big on buying large things at yard sales, so this one wasn’t really for us. A lot of chairs, Danielle Steele novels, and religious-themed hangings, but we did find a silly mug that we liked, and we never pass up a silly mug.

Ha ha ha! The cook goes to stir his soup, and what should he find but an improperly euthanized duck! “The World’s Greatest Cook”, indeed! How embarrassing that must be for a chef of his stature! Ha ha ha! Classic! And very reasonably priced!

PURCHASED: “World’s Greatest Cook” mug (.05)

So we went and got twenty bucks out of the machine and then drove back to the Old Town YMCA, where we’d heard tell of a supposedly mammoth yard sale going on. I’m scared of the Y, so this was the first time I’d ever been. Outside on the sidewalk there were a lot of suspiciously new-looking (and, again, holiday-themed, grrrrrrrr…) items in boxes, but thankfully inside there was a roomful of the old musty weird crap we enjoy so much. Closer inspection revealed a greater abundance of golf-oriented merchandise than we ideally would have liked, and the room itself was a bit too cramped and populated to really examine the wares with any thoroughness, but perseverance won out in the end, and we found something to our liking.

A pastel turquoise electric hand mixer from the late 50’s/early 60’s. It has a crack in it, and we had no way of testing it to see if it works (still haven’t done that, actually), but whatever, we like it just the way it is.

PURCHASED: Possibly broken vintage hand mixer (1.00)

Before we take leave of the YMCA for even browner pastures, I have to share with you a picture of the car that we parked beside:

This wasn’t a situation where a demolished car was abandoned in the parking lot. Somebody actually drove this car to the YMCA yard sale, duct-taping the back window (or possibly the door itself) to the car to prevent it from falling off. Safety first! This is actually a fairly flattering shot of this car. There were less forgiving angles that common courtesy (in the form of my exasperated wife) prevented me from capturing on film. I have a feeling that car isn’t going to pass inspection this year, but if it does (or already has), I want the number of that mechanic, if only to get the sticker without hassle. I’m not altogether sure I’d want him working on my car in any capacity, although I can’t help but admire his low-tech spirit.

Next we traveled to the rarely-considered community of Bradley. By this time, a moderate rainfall had fully engaged, enough to ensure that tarpless sellers would be dragging their unsold items back into the house. The yard sale we’d marked on the Google map was still in effect, but there wasn’t a whole lot there, other than a friendly old basset hound (he wasn’t for sale) and a standee of Tom Brady that we didn’t feel inclined to bring into our life. And that was about it for that.

Across the street, what appeared to be a potential yard sale turned out to be just a bunch of shit on a lawn. It happens.

TOTAL EXPENDITURE: $1.55

It was raining and nearly noon, so any hope that we’d manage to squeeze in a few more sales was swiftly dashed. We kept on driving through Bradley, as lately we’ve taken to cruising through unfamiliar townships, and kept on through Eddington, Brewer, and then Bangor. Hungry and desperate for coffee, we almost chose to go to a perfectly good diner that we’ve been to many times in the past, but something compelled us to try Judy’s on State Street in Bangor.

We’ve long known of Judy’s, and we had it on good faith from some friends of ours that it’s a good place to get a bite to eat, but we’d never gone inside. Dingy-looking greasy spoons are one of the many shared interests that firmly seal our passionate bond of love and tenderness, but that being said, Judy’s is a hole, and it scared us. Well, no longer. Actually, that’s not true. We’re still totally scared of it. But that’s okay.

I’m afraid I don’t have any pictures of the interior or the food. There’s not a lot of mood-lighting in Judy’s, and the flash would have attracted attention. I didn’t want them to think I was documenting anything for the Department of Health or anything like that. I just wanted to enjoy my breakfast.

And enjoy it I did. The instant we entered the establishment, we were cheerfully greeted by an older lady who was the perfect embodiment of what a waitress at a rundown dive should be. Efficient, upbeat, able to dish out both blue plate specials and sass with equal aplomb. The booths were comfy and well-worn, the tables were formica, the decor wood-paneling and various signs featuring beer advertisements (it soon became clear that there’s generally more drinking than eating at Judy’s) and mildly-upsetting quips (“Shirts and shoes mandatory. Bras and panties optional.”) The menu had plenty of the usual offerings, along with some less typical fare, including a quarter-pounder fried bologna sandwich that I fully intend to tackle in the hopefully near future, but whenever I find myself fortunate enough to be eating in a “breakfast served all day” type of place, it’s well nigh impossible for me not to take advantage of that. You can’t beat breakfast. It’s as simple as that. Bacon, eggs, and toast are cherished pals of mine, and that’s just what I ordered for myself (the very house special advertised on their wonderful sign above). I normally don’t like home fries very much (I’m a hash browns kinda guy), but I guess I just haven’t been eating the right ones, because Judy’s were top notch. I also ordered a blueberry muffin for myself, a move I initially felt might have been overkill, but once I learned they were going to grill it, I became immensely proud of my gluttony.

Annie had a better view of the kitchen area than I did, but evidently our meals were prepared by the toughest-looking men in the greater Bangor area. I myself got to watch a rather desperate looking pair of characters tremblingly negotiate their way through two servings of wiggly yellow pie of some sort. The rest of the clientele were equally colorful. A pair of crusty fellas who went by Rickle and Dick sat at the far end of the bar, getting an early (11:45 AM, to be exact) start on their bender and complaining about this and that. Rickle was taking issue with an outlandishly outfitted clerk he’d encountered at a neighborhood video store, who apparently had holes in his ears “that a poodle coulda jumped through”. He spent a good amount of time on this subject, quite effectively hammering his point home thusly: “You think that’s cool now, but whaddaya do when you’re 65 and they look like your grandmother’s tits?”. Then another crusty guy walked in, looked at Rickle and Dick, and said “Hey look, it’s Mutt and Jeff” to which Rickle replied “Well, now it’s Huey, Dewey, and Louie”. This sort of gruff ribbing seems to be the norm at Judy’s. We were most pleased.

As for the food, it was very good. Diner food, no more no less. Filling, tasty, and cheap. Annie got a steak and cheese omelet that got better with every bite she forced me to eat (she liked it a lot, but was getting full, and didn’t want them to confront her about not cleaning her plate, which I understood). My breakfast was just about perfect, and the grilled muffin made me want to perform cartwheels while singing selections from “The Music Man”. I opted to resign myself to silent rapture. I could have eaten eight of them, no problem.

So if you’re ever in one of the seedier areas of Bangor and you’re wanting to dump some grease down your gullet, Judy’s is the place. It ain’t much to look at, and my Dad informs me that somebody got stabbed there once, but try not to think about that too much. Despite the fact that we obviously didn’t resemble their typical patron, not once were we made to feel uncomfortable or unwanted. The food was brought out in less than five minutes and was immensely satisfying, the service was the best we’ve had in months, and the grimy uncertainty of the atmosphere was precisely what made it so great. We brought our bill up to the front counter when we were done, catching our waitress, who was back to and in the middle of enjoying a platter of chicken fingers, completely off guard. “Oh shit!” she cried when she saw us standing there, and proceeded to complete the transaction.

Needless to say, from now on whenever anyone visits us, we’re going to force them to accompany us to Judy’s. Consider your hands officially tied. After the initial five minutes of panic subside, you’ll be glad you’re there. Trust us.

In closing, here’s a big disgusting pile of cigarette butts we found by our car outside of Judy’s. Enjoy your day!

Deli for Tardo

Posted in Food Where's My Car on December 12, 2007 by butthorn

We have decided to eat Hannaford salads for supper every night for an indeterminate period of time, just to, you know, see what that does. The logic is that it’s a form of diet, they’re not very expensive, we like them, it eliminates the never exciting “what do we feel like eating tonight?” conversation, and they’re unquestionably healthier than the double cheeseburgers and steak and cheese subs we normally opt for, even with dressing, meat hunks, cheese, and whatever other shit we elect to dollop on top. Nearly any change is an improvement, in this case. We eat fried lard, and are turning into fat hogs. With shockingly little facial manipulation on my part, I can boast four chins. Time to nip this in the bud, with a little help from Hannaford Hank. The Hannaford salad bar has recently added cold peas to their salad bar lineup. I’m going to tell everyone I know about this.

The idea of nightly salads pleases me. It’s easy, and even if it’s just an illusion, I feel as though I’m doing my body a service. My farts are every bit as frequent, however, and at least 1.75 times as bad-smelling. I break wind a lot and there is nothing that I or anyone else can do about it. Perhaps the vegetables are helping to cleanse my body of old food that has been fermenting in my colon since The Cosby Show was #1 in the Nielsens. That ghastly odor I just flatulated a moment ago was probably part of a McDLT.

I have been eating a lot of bologna sandwiches lately. I really like bologna a lot. It’s like hot dog meat but thin and round and big and flappy. I have always cared for bologna. In youth I fondly recall biting eye holes in it and making a fun bologna mask. Nothing aids the complexion more than pressing a cross-section of a pressed conglomerate of thousands of hog browneyes against your face. And delicious? Brother, you don’t know the half of it.

I’m finding that in dealing with bologna, it’s best to get it straight from the deli. Oscar Meyer can go fly a kite, far as I’m concerned. A kite made out of gross, crappy bologna, that birds can eat and destroy, which ruins Oscar Meyers fun outdoor outing, and he gets very sad, and then the birds die from the terrible bologna and fall on his head, and the beaks stick in his skull, and he has to run out into the street to try and flag down someone who can drive him to the hospital, not necessarily an easy task for an old man with dead birds stuck in his head, not to mention dragging a giant mangled diamond-shaped piece of bologna on a string behind him. Even the kindliest of good samaritans is going to want at least a perfunctory explanation. Meanwhile, I’m getting bologna that is freshly sliced according to my politely requested and gladly proffered thickness preference. Delectably spiced and reasonably priced. That’s Hannaford bologna.

My days of prepackaged bologna and roses are behind me, I’m here to report. I also like looking at the huge tubes of meat in the display case while I wait for whichever asshole’s taking eight years to figure out what they want for cold cuts. Taking advantage of the deli is a new thing for me. My few grocery shopping excursions in the past have generally gone: shaped spaghetti in cans, crunchy things in bags, frozen things that look interesting, Little Debbies, Slim Jims, beer, register. Now I can crowbar a deli stop somewhere in there, and my life is all the better for it.

So bologna afternoons and salad nights! Already I feel a revolution coming on, and I’ll tell you, I’m ready for it.