What happens to people’s tastes buds when they become wealthy? Why do they start liking things “poached” or “tartared” or “carpaccioed”? I love food. I eat constantly. I just sometimes wonder why people decided, at the dawn of man, to put certain things in their mouths?
The thought to discuss this on my blog came to me last week after chatting with my new pal, disguting things i have eaten. He had a conversation with someone about eating balut and century eggs. For those of you who do not know what these are, I will elaborate. Balut, a delicacy in Asia, is a fertilized duck egg with a nearly developed embryo, that is boiled then eaten. WTF? A century egg, also of Asian descent, is an egg that is preserved in clay and ash and lime and other stuff for several weeks/months. In the end, the yolk turns dark green, the white turns brown and it has a strong odor of sulfur and ammonia. This one actually looks really cool but more like a rare gemstone rather than something I want to ingest. No offense to my Asian readers, but some of the food you eat is whack. But whatever. Different Strokes, right?
So I got to thinking about some pricey food items. I thought, most of these are delicious, but then I thought about what they actually were and I was a tad confused.
Lobster Lobster is fucking awesome. I’ve always loved it. I think Lobster Cobb Salad would be the best meal ever. But look at the fucking animal. It’s scary. It’s the cockroach of the sea. It used to be the staple of the poor man’s diet. They had to specify in employment agreements that they only wanted to eat it twice a week. Then it became a luxury food. So I already know it’s tasty but what I am wondering is what the first human to eat this was thinking when he came across the creature. “Oooh! That freaky sea insect is gonna be GOOOD!”?!? Well, I’m glad he figured it out.
Caviar: It just looks strange to me…Again, more like jewels (or pretty beads) than food. I have never had it, other than on sushi ( which is really not even close to the elite fish eggs I speak of). But I always remember Tom Hanks’ character in Big, trying it and immediately spitting it out. It’s fish eggs…and they’re not scrambled, fried or poached. They are raw. Ew. I do, however, like the little tins they come in. Maybe I can find some on Ebay and be a poser caviar lover.
Escargot: Literally snails. Snails, people. Slugs that live in shells. Do you remember when you were a kid and you saw a slug and you would run inside to get the can of Morton Salt to pour on that mug? Then you would watch him/her shrivel up and die, what I can only imagine being a horrible death? That was cool. But what would possess someone to put that slimey, cute, little creature in their mouth without being dared or offered compensation?
Sweetbreads: When I first saw this on a menu, it sounded like something I would like. It was sweet, bread was involved, yum, right? Wrong. Now this photograph may look pretty tasty but let us discover what it actually is, shall we? It’s the thymus and pancreas of a calf or lamb. Gross. Beware of the deceptive name!
Aspic: Do people still eat this shit? For the unaware, aspic is… meat flavored jello, basically. People like to float things in it. Why the jello? Why not just eat the stuff that’s floating in it, sans jello?
…..and last but NOT least….
Foie Gras: This actually looks pretty appetizing; nice creamy texture shaped into a loaf. It’s like SPAM for the affluent. However, when I discovered that it was mainly goose liver, I suddenly lost my appetite. See, my mother made me eat liver (granted, it was a cows) when I was little in order for me to get my iron. It was the most horrid flavor I have ever tasted. It’s liver. You know, the organ that makes bile and separates all the bad shit out of the food you eat. Why would someone want to eat this??? Maybe duck liver is delicious. Foie Gras DOES have a bunch of other ingredients that sound good. I will probably try it one day and love it. Spreadable meat.
Maybe next time I will write about some disgusting foods poor people eat, like tripe and chitterlings…but they can’t help it. It’s what they can afford. And it’s probably better for you than Hot Pockets.
I don’t really even know where to begin on this man. He was on the cover of New York Magazine a couple weeks ago. Since I have a subscription AND I am from NC AND I LOVE trashy novels (JACQUELINE SUSANN is my literary hero), I decided to read his tale of debauchery and general assholiness.
For those of you who have been living in Bumfuck, Egypt and don’t know the story, here is a recap.
As we know, John Edwards wanted to be president. He was charming and smart and, by golly, just the perfect candidate. Then, the man became this egomaniac after the slightest public approval partnered with his Vice presidential nomination. Staffers state that he started worrying about superficial things (like wardrobe and what have you) and ordering them to do the most menial of tasks and claiming that public LOOOOVVVVEEED him…but seriously, who doesn’t do that when they get some attention? Anyway, while on the road campaigning he met this woman. Long story short, they start boning. She’s “making a video” about him so she must be with him at all times. Everyone starts warning him. He ignores them. He denies the affair. His mistress gets pregnant. Admits to affair but denies he’s the dad. He pays one of his staffers to pretend HE’S the dad! For real?!? Shame on you, John Edwards.
Cut to two years later (present day); he admits to being the dad! Big fucking surprise there.
I want to feel sorry for his wife Elizabeth but it seems she is no saint either. Apparently, she would berate his campaign workers and could be hostile. She would insult John in public. She exposed her breasts in an airport, for crying out loud. Talk about drama. Classic white trash behavior. I feel they are about a notch above Brittany Spears when it comes to white trash (Brittany, by the way, is near the bottom). I mean, I’m sorry she has cancer and her husband is a total scoundrel but come on. Control yourself. There is a place and a time for tantrums…it’s at home, in private.
It’s not like this is the first sexual scandal in politics, but it’s certainly an entertaining one( PS- what is the deal with democrats and infidelity????) I can’t wait for the next chapter! What else could possibly happen?
Making dinner last night was a nice distraction from the days’ news. I made vegetable soup because now Todd is sick. It was really comforting, hearty and delicious.
It had onions, leeks, celery, carrots, crushed tomatoes, zucchini, red beans and macaroni in it…plus my secret spices. It’s so funny how food can make you feel better.
For dessert, I resisted yet another piece of pie
(I had made Peanut Butter Banana Cream Pie-above- for my great friends, Tim and Jimmy, and have been eating the remainder of it the last few nights) and opted for something my dad ate all the time: an Entenmann’s rich frosted donut. Those things are so good.
So last week, I decided to write our asshole neighbor a note and try to reason with her. I tried to be nice in it but I may have insulted the bitch. I talked about how we tried to come talk to her face to face but we were always treated with hostility. I told her that the stomping that accompanied her bass was completely childish. I stressed the fact that some people work “normal hours”(this is apparently a foreign concept to her). Then I asked her if she could possibly move her speakers to a higher place, as this might make them less audible. I gave her another option. Maybe she could just turn it down after 11pm….I mean, after all, the lease states that one should be quiet after this time. It’s just plain courtesy. I don’t really care on the weekend, just during the week. I closed saying that if we could not come to some sort of compromise, I would be forced to involve the landlord(who didn’t help at all)/police. So did she confront me? NOOOOOOOO! Why would she do that? She proceeded to make copies and post them all around the building….thus proving her immaturity. WTF???
Last night, I remembered another one of my brilliant ideas. I was talking to someone I work with about Harpers II in Greensboro, NC. It’s a “gentlemen’s club” that is a car wash. Basically, men sit in a room with a large window and watch nudey women wash their car…so I am told. I have yet to go to this Harper’s II…let alone Harper’s I.
I love muscle cars (see my photography portfolio-classic vehicles) and have always thought that it would be cool to learn about fixing cars. Mechanics make bank. If I could open a shop, that just cute girls worked at (and could ACTUALLY fix cars, like not just oil changes….like rebuilding transmissions) dressed in shorts and tight t-shirts, I could make a killing. I need a name though…What do you think, fellas?
So as you all know, Todd and I moved into a great new place.. It is in a large building with 60 or so other apartments, so it is normal to hear some neighbor activity. Everyone has been really cool about turning their crappy techno music down EXCEPT for the douchebags who live directly above us.
The first time they were playing this horrible crap was about a week ago. Todd went upstairs to ask them to turn it down a little. First off, he had to knock several times. He heard someone inside say, “Oh, are the neighbors complaining?” in a sarcastic voice. They proceeded to ignore his knocking until they realized he wasn’t going away. By this time, he had become more enraged. A girl answered the door and was acting like she didn’t realize the shit was loud and asked if it was the downstairs neighbors complaining. Todd basically said, “Who gives a fuck if we are downstairs or next to you? turn it down.”
So for the last week, we have been hearing some banging on our ceiling, just random banging from time to time. Also more techno crap, but we haven’t said anything…until last night.
I was awoken at 4:45am. Then there was bass. I waited ten minutes to see if it was gonna stop. Nope. So I get dressed go upstairs and knock. Again, they turn down the music and I can hear them plotting their attack on me, all while i continue to knock…the girl is “sick of this shit”, there is a guy too…”what should i say?” and the girl tells him to say whatever he wants. These fucking idiots don’t realize that i can hear them. So, of course, I become more annoyed after hearing their little chat. He finally opens the door. I just come straight out with my bitchiness:
Me: It’s 4am on sunday. Could you turn it down?
Asshole neighbor: It’s not that loud. (Really? Then why would I get out of bed, get dressed and come up here, MORON???)
Me: Seriously? Yeah it is. (At this point I imitate the bass line I have been hearing for 5 minutes)
AN(us): We don’t care about your life. Goodbye (tries to shut the door in my face…I stop him)
Me: No, WE don’t care about YOUR life, that’s why I came up here. Goodbye.
So, I go down and get back in bed. Todd thanks me for saying something (he was also awoken). About 2 minutes later, loud banging on our ceiling. So loud, that Hank starts barking. Then stomping up and down the length of the apartment. Now they done pissed Todd off. He gets fully clothed and gets ready to go up there, but it has stopped. Gets undressed and back in bed and then BANG!!! more of the same shit. Now, he’s livid. He goes up there and beats on the door. Of course the pussies don’t answer. So he yells that if he hears anymore of their shitty music or banging he is gonna find out who the guy is and kick his ass in the middle of hall. He doesn’t care who sees it. That’s my Todd-o :) !
Why are these people such assholes? It’s fucking 5 am! Turn it down. Don’t fucking argue with me about it. Don’t be an infantile prick and start banging. What does one do in this situation?
Okay people, every morning, on the train, I listen to my ipod….yes, how NY of me. Honestly, it’s just cause I don’t wanna hear anyone’s conversation and it is the equivalent of riding in the car with your radio on, except you can’t sing out loud (which SUCKS). So this morning I came across one of my favorite songs that features cowbell. I’m talking TASTEFUL cowbell. Not (don’t fear) The Reaper, Hair of the Dog, Mississippi Queen, Rock of Ages or Little Willy cowbell (although, I DO like all those songs). Here are some examples of songs with TASTEFUL cowbell…in no particular order:
Speedy’s Coming by The Scorpion
this song is the one that prompted this list. It is fucking awesome. Scorpions pre-Rock you like a Hurricane (UGH) and that horrible song about Gorky Park.
Diamond Dogs by David Bowie
Bowie is my favorite singer. He did no wrong in the 70s. His voice is like spun, golden silk. I want to walk down the aisle to “Lady Grinning Soul”.
Love is Strange by Mickey and Sylvia
Most of you will recall this song from “Dirty Dancing”. It has a great call/response part.
Time Has Come Today by The Chambers Brother
If you don’t know this song, download it immediately. Terrific party jam. Also has some chanting(a list of songs is in the making) and it’s psychedelic.
Live Wire by Motley Crue
Again, The Crue makes the list. Tommy Lee is a goon, but a killer drummer. If you can keep a beat while spinning upside down 50 feet in the air, you are a badass.
The Wizard by Black Sabbath
If you are familiar with this song, you know what I’m talking about. There is one brief tap on a cowbell and it makes me smile EVERY TIME. Bill Ward is classy.
Rock Lobster by The B-52’s
This song is fucking great. It’s all over the place, makes no sense and puts you in a good mood.
Funk #49 by James Gang
Another party jam everyone must have.
Hot as a Docker’s Armpit by Budgie
If you don’t know about Budgie, you need to do some research. Metallica covered them, if that helps. They are part of the original stoner rock and this is one my favorite songs.
Everybody’s Got Something to Hide Except for Me and My Monkey by The Beatles
I don’t think Ringo gets enough credit as a drummer. He’s good, gd it.
Along Comes Mary by The Association
Brilliant song. Also has what I like to call, Soul Claps (keep your eyes peeled for that post too)
That’s all I came up with. Do you have any more (remember, TASTEFUL)?
(photo from bon appetit- all my pics turned out horrible so I had to borrow)
I didn’t realize that pimiento cheese was a southern thing until I had a craving for it and couldn’t find any at the Whole Foods or Food Dimensions. I used to hate it. We had a pimiento cheese sandwich at the Rockford and every time I would see the mixture in the kitchen, it would gross me out. However, when the actual sandwich came out, all grilled and melty, it looked delicious. Since I had already tasted everything else on the menu, I decided I would try it. That shit tasted good.
There are only a few food items I miss from the south: Bojangles, Sadlack’s Subs, Chargrill, NC State Fair food, shrimp and grits and pimiento cheese. You are probably saying, “What!? Not Barbecue?!”. Nope. Never a fan. Sorry.
Anyway, once I discovered that I could not find any here in NYC (the city that has it all), I called up my main man, Fletch, to get the recipe. It is really easy and you just eyeball everything until it tastes good.
These are the items you need to make pimiento cheese MY way (and Fletch’s way):
Shredded Cheese (I find a mixture of Cheddar and Monteray Jack to be best)
Pimientos (A few times people asked me if they could get the pimiento cheese without the peppers-that’s what makes it PIMIENTO CHEESE….dummies)
Mayo (just enough to make everything stick together…also, if you are in the south, use DUKE’S gd it! you don’t know how lucky you are)
Grated Onion (not too much. you want to put a little stank on it)
Horseradish (same as onion)
Worcestershire Sauce ( a few dashes)
Ranch Dressing mix ( I’d say around a teaspoon…maybe less)
S & P (to taste)
So mix everything together; it should be the consistency of lumpy, cheese spread. Put it on whole wheat bread and grill until it’s melty and gooey. Add some crispy bacon and tomato slices and EAT! It is SOOOOO much better than just plain grilled cheese.
What’s up with the Post Office? Why are there always 10-20 windows in the lobby but only 4 of them open at a time? Why does the automated machine only take credit/debit? Who is managing these offices?
The post office near my house is the worst. It’s on Debevoise near Flushing and there is always a line out the door. They have a seperate line for people who are just there to pick up packages but it is rarely open. There used to be a vending machine where you could buy stamps but they got rid of it for some reason. Now, above one of the teller windows, there’s a sign that says “for stamp and money order purchases only”. What this means is that if you just want stamps or a money order, you form a line in front of this window.
One day I walked in and there was a long line yet no one had formed a line in front of this specified window. Since I was just buying stamps, I started one. I waited for the teller and asked him for stamps. Everyone in line immediately started bitching at me. I told them to read the sign. It meant that this window was specifically for people like me that were making a specific transaction. If there was no one waiting to make a purchase of stamps or a money order then, AND ONLY THEN, the teller would wait on the people in the real line. It was funny how the TELLER didn’t tell me to get in the long line. He was very nice and let me buy my stamps. It’s not my fault those people can’t read.
Anyway, the tellers are always very nice at the post office (except for this one lady that always wears overalls. EVERY SINGLE TIME I am in there, she is not waiting on anyone. She is sitting at her window doing some other shit…even though there are 30 people waiting), there just aren’t enough of them. Since I need a day job, I went online to see if I could apply. My post office is not hiring. I wrote the USPS a letter. I told them about the retardedly long lines and the woman that does nothing. I said that there are countless people looking for work right now, and the PO on Debevoise OBVIOUSLY needs more tellers so why not hire some. I asked them who the manager was. It’s not the teller’s fault; they are doing the best they can. They need someone to manage. Am I the only person that recognizes this?
Todd and I have our monthly DJ gig coming up this weekend (stick around for our flyer). I am hoping….praying, really, that we have only smart, observant people in our audience. Don’t get me wrong, most of the people in the bar ARE smart and observant when we are djing but there is always one or two idiots that approach us with requests (I have already blogged about this phenomenon but I must vent again).
Last time, after playing several HOURS of 60s/70s rock, garage and metal, some moron came up and asked us to play Lady Gaga. FOR REAL?!?! We ripped him a new asshole. After I asked him if he had been LISTENING to what we had been playing, Todd told him to go home and turn on the TV and he would be guaranteed to hear some Lady Gaga within ten minutes. Then he looked at me and said that he thought FOR SURE that I would have some. I told him I found that extremely insulting. Why would he assume such a preposterous thing?
PS- I am so fucking sick of dudes coming up when I am playing some metal and assuming it is Todd playing it. Fuck you guys. Todd barely likes the metal I play. Why would you assume that the little, cute chick ISN’T the one playing metal? I know about being hesh…sexist jerks.
Fuck. Someone hit me. I have gotten a hell of a response on my pickslide post and I can’t believe I forgot Van Halen (thank you iwannafuckkelly for the reminder…and to everyone else that answered).
Panama - Van Halen
Not only do I share David Lee’s last name but I sing it quite often at karaoke. Clearly not thinking. Not to mention other VH songs like And the Cradle will Rock and Runnin with the Devil which also have some pickslidage.
Also, from one of my favorite metal albums:
Hit the Lights - Metallica
All I gotta say is, what a great way to start a brilliant album…one of their best, in my opinion, if not, their best, period. I have Kirk Hammett’s autograph thanks to my friend Lauren.
Pickslides rule. Guitar players- please do them once in a while. Its hot…cause its funny. Here are the best ones I know:
1. Shout at the Devil - Motley Crue
There’s about 50 of them throughout the song. Yeah, Mick Mars! I actually met Mick Mars when I was 19. It was awesome.
2. Stranglehold - The Nuge
Right in the middle of the song, there is a horrendous pickslide. Todd and I used to play the song on the bowling alley jukebox in Raleigh and when the pickslide came up we would try to time it perfectly with a strike…I think it worked once.
3. Twilight Zone - Golden Earring
Also, right in the middle of the song. Good solid sound, well timed.
Do you know anymore songs with earmelting pickslides?
Since my best friend Laura is preggers, there has been
a lot of talk between us about naming children….some of her choices are questionable. I mean, she told me there is a woman named Marijuana Pepsi who has led a great life. I told her regardless of what she ends up naming her child, I am gonna call her Ramona…and Todd is gonna call her Toddrica. Here are some people who’s parents are either morons or just plain mean(no offense). click the picture.
There is also a man in the Raleigh Phone book named Hev. E Metal. Look him up. He has been in there for years.
If you have been keeping up with my blog, you have read that Todd and I moved into a new, killer place. Even though I have multiple pieces of vintage, hernia inducing furniture, I somehow always seem to find a reason to take a trip to Ikea. Since my dear friend came down from Buffalo in her CAR, I made her take me. I really just needed to buy some drapes and kitchen shit, but they built the Ikea in Brooklyn in the middle of bumfuck Red Hook where no trains go. The only reason Todd wanted to come was so he could get some meatballs (10 meatballs and mashers with gravy and ligonberry jelly for $5!).
We decided to eat first so the men would complain less. Of course only one side of the cafeteria is open so there is a horrendous line (noon on a saturday). Eventually they open the other side so our line got significantly shorter pretty quickly. We were just getting up to the sneezeguard when the chef comes out and says that there are no more meatballs…15 minutes until more meatballs…whoever wants something other than meatballs can step forward. No one stepped forward. Todd waited and was rewarded with the dank meatballs. I just wanna know who’s fuckin up in the back? There should always be a pan of meatballs ready to go. Always.
The first guest we had over for dinner was our old roommate, Jason. He is awesome (if you know anyone who needs a room, contact me, cause Jason needs a couple roommates)!
I decided to make it a Burrito Night. Burritos, are what I like to call, the mexican hoagie. Anyway, I make the BEST black beans of all times (saute onion or shallot, garlic, red bell pepper, add the beans along with s&p, coriander, cumin and a bay leaf) and the rest is so easy to prepare as it’s just cutting vegetables, so I figured
it’d be a simple delicious meal. I let everyone assemble their own burrito. Then for dessert I made Vanilla Lime Pineapple Skewers except I don’t have a grill (nevermind that it’s 30 degrees out) so I roasted them in the oven. They were served with vanillla ice cream…I just love roasted fruit and vanilla ice cream during the winter (…did you notice the omnipresent Hank?).
If you ever have a whole day off and it is nice out and you like Italian culture AND you happen to be in NYC, I would recommend a trip to Arthur Ave. We went this past summer (I know it’s January but I take FILM pictures, so it takes me a while to get them developed) and it was much fun. We had to walk through an incredibly scary neighborhood to get there (Todd thought we were gonna get killed; i, of course, saw no danger, but in retrospect, that shit was scary) so this is the safer route I would suggest: Take the 4 train to Fordham, transfer to the Bx12 bus towards Pelham Bay. Get off at/near Arthur Ave and walk south…just ask the bus driver when you get on. You can also take 2 or 5 to the Pelham Parkway station and then Bx12 towards University Heights (again, ask the driver to let you know when Arthur Ave is coming up). Walk south until you see Italians.
Okay, so once you get there, there are countless delicious and authentic Italian restaurants and food specialty stores. Todd’s favorite part was that there was this stand on the sidewalk where men were schucking fresh oysters for you…and they were CHEAP! You just stand there on the street and eat exquisite, fresh oysters. Here are some photos from our day.
That’s me on Arthur Ave. I am pretending I just parked my sweet ride….in the building.
That’s Todd in a meat store…I know it is hard to see him. The hanging meats were blocking the light. Cured meats….hey, it’s what Italians like.
I’m kissing a life size statue of Capone, a classic Italian hero!
Last Night, we were on Ludlow when a man approached us selling art. The only reason we stopped was because we thought he said one of the pictures was named, “Ball Sac Face”. It was, in fact, called “Ball Sac Face”. He had several others. They were called “Ass Face Talking Shit” and “Cum Shot, Cum Shot…”. We are just really upset that we didn’t buy one of his awesome drawings.