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Archive for December, 2008

Scary Foods… Ewwww….

 

Good morning!! (Unless, of course, you’re reading this in the afternoon, but since I’m writing it early on a Sunday morning, I get the “Greeting” option…)I trust that all of you, like myself, had a hearty, but nutritionally balanced breakfast containing all of the essential vitamins and minerals essential for good health maintenance and strong bones… Oh… a donut and coffee?

Yeah… me too…

But we have the chance to make all that up with lunch or dinner… right? Good intentions are always best after a good dose of junk food…

Oh, and snacks… snacks can be nutritious and healthy too, right? (Being that I work in Medical Education, I’m supposed to say stuff like that… “Nutritious Snacks”… sounds like an oxymoron to me… but it’s sort of like saying that you watch nothing but PBS and Discover channel when you watch TV… what you say, and what you do can be two different things… but I’m digressing again… I think…)

But this GFTW is not about nutrition or healthy foods or any of that stuff… nope… it’s about…

Scary Foods!

“What are scary foods?” you ask… Well, let me enlighten you…

First off, there are the obviously scary foods… like cauliflower… Did you ever take a good look at cauliflower? It looks way too much like bleached brains… I’m not eating that!

Or broccoli… Did your ever really look at broccoli?

Try it… take a good look at it sometime… They look like little baby mutant cabbages… it smells funny, it looks funny and how can something that ugly be good for you? Ugly foods NEVER taste good… Look at turnips!

But there are other foods that are really scary too… Things that people make on purpose!

I mean, there are certain things that go together… stuff that you can mix up and serve and it’s OK… you know… things like mashed potatoes and gravy… peanut butter and jelly… chips and dip…. That kind of stuff… those are good combinations…

But then, there are those things that you have to be really careful about… Combinations that are not so good… and downright scary….

Like what?

Well… anything that has the word “Medley” in the name… Now, a medley is OK if you’re talking about the Righteous Brothers… (Get it? Unchained Medley? Melody? “Oh my love, my darling… I’ve hungered for your touch…” See? Hungered? Food connection? Ok… that was a reach… never mind… ) or a classic rock station (It’s time for a medley of Bob Seger hits… ) But medley never works for food…

When you see the word “medley” in connection with food, it really means that someone has mixed foods together that should never be mixed together… Otherwise, they’d be more honest with the name… you wouldn’t have to put that “medley” thing in there…

“Chicken Noodle Soup” for instance… You know exactly what’s in there… Chicken, noodles and soup! They don’t call it “Poultry Pasta Medley”…

But when you see something listed as “Ocean Garden Farm Medley”, be afraid… be very afraid… Because this is probably an eel zucchini seaweed cottage cheese casserole… is this something you want to try? I think not…

Or a “Spring Vegetable Medley”… this is usually a bunch of leftover vegetables that, by themselves, weren’t very good to begin with, (if they were any good, there wouldn’t be any leftovers!) but someone thinks that by mixing up cauliflower, zucchini, green beans and cooked carrots (carrots are one of those veggies that are pretty good in their natural uncooked state but cooking them seems to add a grossness and makes them inedible… same with celery… ) and calling it a “vegetable medley” will make it OK… NOT!! They even add the word “Spring” in there to give it a positive connotation but they’re not fooling me!

Another scary food is anything with the world “Surprise” in the title…

“Eggplant Surprise” indicates that someone, somewhere decided that eggplant by itself wasn’t gross enough, I mean, think about it… Egg? And Plant? That can’t be good… and it’s purple and ugly… the same thing applies to “Squash”… anything with the name “Squash” can’t be good and it’s UGLY too!! But I’m digressing again… where were we?

Oh yeah, “Eggplant Surprise”! Someone had to decide that eggplant by itself wasn’t gross enough and so they decided to add some sort of sauce and other vegetables to it and here’s what happens…

You put it in your mouth, chew a couple of times and then look frantically around for a napkin that you can spit it into…(Don’t try giving it to the dog… the dog won’t eat it either… trust me on this one…. And if it does, you’ll regret it later on… again, trust me on this one…)

The “surprise” part is that A) someone actually thought of making this dish, and B) you actually put it into your mouth thinking that it MIGHT be good… Nope, it’s no surprise that any “surprise” dish is anything but scary… and nasty…

I think that maybe the “surprise” part may also be what happens if you actually manage to eat this dish… your digestive system, wondering what this stuff is, begins to rebel and small children and dogs are scared at the bodily noise produced… that’s a surprise!!

But, by far, the scariest food that there is, is anything… and I do mean ANYTHING… with the word “Creamed” in the title.

Now, you have to wonder why anyone would want to cream anything in the first place.

Creamed corn… corn is pretty good all by itself… it’s tasty, it’s pleasing in appearance and it’s easy to prepare… So, why on earth would you want to cream it? Take a good look at creamed corn sometime… would anyone in their right mind, eat that? Ewwwwwwwwwwww!!!

And creamed spinach? What is up with that? Its horrible looking, its horrible smelling and it looks gross! It looks like… well… if you’ve ever had kids, and remember back to the first few months of their baby days when bodily functions were horribly awry, you know what I’m talking about…

And who invented creamed spinach? And why? Is this something that someone did on purpose? Did they take some spinach, then cream it, then put it on a plate and say, “Oh my… that’s attractive… I think I’ll taste it!”

If I had done something like that during culinary experimentation, my first reaction would have been to cover it up quickly, wonder what on earth I had done and then throw it out before anyone else saw it…

But eat it? I don’t think so… serve it to someone else? I don’t think so… share the recipe? Absolutely not!!

And what’s really scary? There are foods out there right now that people are experimenting with… somebody; somewhere is working on “rutabaga surprise” and “creamed salmon with cabbage medley… and when they get done with it, they will foist it off on some unsuspecting family member or friend who will have to be polite and pretend to like it, which will only encourage this person to make that again… That’s how these things get started….

So, make a stand… the next time someone attempts to serve you a “medley” or a “surprise” or anything “creamed”, look at it, make a face and in your loudest, whiniest voice, say…. “EWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW”

We thank you….

SAELIG!!

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Radon?? ‘Scuse me?

 

 

 

For those of you that were regular readers of my stuff, you know that we here work very hard to keep America informed, enlightened, and on the cutting edge… We believe in truth, justice, and the American Way… And with that in mind, we ask you a question…

What is up with all this stuff about Radon Gas??

Radon gas is an odorless, tasteless, invisible gas (and if that’s true, how did they become aware of it in the first place???) that oozes out of your basement, and rises up through the floors to your home where you are innocently raising children, watching Star Trek reruns, and playing Nintendo…

Now, I was raised in an era where we didn’t know about Radon gas… after all, it’s invisible, odorless, and tasteless, so who knew? For countless generations, we raised our children, played Nintendo (of course, in the olden days, they had to play Nintendo by candlelight since the light bulb hadn’t been invented yet…) blissfully unaware of this stuff coming up through the floorboards… So what is this stuff and where did it come from?

Well, the crack investigative team here at Grins and Grunts have done some research and we believe we have found the answer…

Way back, a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away, we bought a home… it had a basement… and in the basement, there was this sheet of plywood covering that area under the basement steps. Not unusual… for a while we ignored that sheet of plywood and we didn’t bother to check it out (mainly because it was scary under there… I was afraid that “REDRUM” would be written on the wall in there or something…) but as time went on, and we accumulated “stuff”, we got the idea that this area under the steps would make a nifty “storage area” for “stuff”. So, we removed the plywood… BAD MOVE!

Over the years, the spiders had decided that since we weren’t using the space, that we wouldn’t mind if they did… And having occupied that space for all of that time, with no natural enemies in there, the spiders had evolved into unnatural sizes!! And there was a BUNCH of them…

Now, you have understand that I am one of those people that would rather not deal with spiders… ok… I’m terrified of them!! I’ll wrestle a bear, face down an IRS agent, and read the ingredients label on a Twinkies package and show no fear, but let a spider be in the same room, and I lose it big time…

And when we pulled this sheet of plywood down, we had SPIDERS!! Some of them were the size of small children and they had an attitude… See, they’d been living there in harmony and in the dark for generations and suddenly, there we were. They had squatter’s rights, and there was no way they were going to leave this area without a fight…

Now, my preference was to apologize, put the plywood back up and let bygones be bygones but my wife took this as a challenge and proceeded to initiate the

“Great Spider War”…

It took several weeks, a couple of cases of “Raid” but she succeeded in cleaning the enemy out of their stronghold..

The problem with “Raid” is that it doesn’t really kill the spiders… It just gets them really upset, and forces them to move to other areas of the house where the “Raid” isn’t… Like the computer room, the living room, the kitchen, the bedroom… and any other place where they can pop out unexpectedly and scare the bejeezus out of me… Imagine, if you will, being in the bathroom minding your own business, reading “Reader’s Digest, when you suddenly see a movement out of the corner of your eye… AUGGGHHHHHHH!! I said, which caused my wife to giggle, and start singing “Macho Macho Man” as she flattened the spider with her slipper… Jeez…

We have talked with other people who have basements and it appears that spiders are also a part of their décor as well, and for the most part, these spiders stay hidden.. However…

If you watch the Animal Channel, or saw “Starship Troopers”, then you know that bugs are a lot more intelligent that we once thought, in fact, I believe that they are VERY intelligent and only act stupid so that we won’t suspect them… “Suspect them of what?” you ask, “And what does this have to do with Radon gas?” Good question…

It is my theory that little spider scientists (they’re the spiders with the lab coats and pocket protectors!) have been working on an insidious plan to get the humans out of their basements, once and for all… in fact, they aren’t settling for just the basement… they want the WHOLE HOUSE!!

They have been working in their little spider labs, deep in the basements of America (come on, admit it… there are some dark, scary parts of your basement that you have NEVER looked in, and are kind of afraid to go in, yes?) perfecting a colorless, odorless, invisible gas and they have finally perfected the formula… and over the last few years, they have been releasing this gas into our homes on unsuspecting humans…

But we here at Grins and Grunts have uncovered this devious plot and even if you don’t believe that the spiders are responsible, the radon threat is real and we are taking action, thus foiling their devilish scheme…

However, information leaked to us by a spider informant (Let’s just call him “Deep Thorax”) has indicated that the spiders are not finished with us… they are working another odorless, tasteless, invisible gas that subliminally drives humans to seek out and consume mass quantities of Ben and Jerry’s “Chunky Munky” ice cream, washing it down with copious amounts of regular Dr Pepper, causing us to gain weight, big time… Realizing that we are gaining weight, we start exercising, usually in our basements, on treadmills, exercycles, NordicTrac’s and other implements of torture to lose the weight… this causes us to breathe hard and give off large amounts of CO2, which over a period of time will begin to destroy the ozone layer… Trust me on this… You wait and see if you don’t start seeing articles talking about the “unexplained rise in CO2 levels around the world” and how the scientist are baffled… But we know, don’t we… we can hear the spiders giggling in their little underground fortresses…

So, do your part… breathe normally, don’t exercise and keep a can of Raid handy…

It’s your duty…

Keep a grin on, and lighten up a little each day… it’s a good thing!!

SAELIG!!

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Ya Say Ya Wanna Evolution

 

So… the other night we were watching Discovery Channel because we were trying to educate and enlighten ourselves while expanding our horizons and learning to see the world in a different light…

OK… fine… “Dr. Who” was a repeat, we’d already seen the “Myth Busters” episode and there were no good movies on…

We ended up watching this program about evolution and on several levels, it was pretty fascinating… they talked about how nature looks at the environment, and how the environment affects the living organisms around it and all sorts of genetic things happen and they evolve…

Like, when fish first started coming out of the water, two things happened…

One, the fish looked around and said, “HEY!! <gasp, gasp> I CAN’T BREATHE!!” and evolution took over and the fish developed lungs and got rid of the gills… took about 100,000 years for that to happen so there must have been a lot of fish gasping like… well… like a fish out of water!

Well, that was all well and good, they had lungs now and could breathe air, but then the fish flopped up on the shore and then… well… nothing!!

Seems that they couldn’t go anywhere because… They had no feet!! They had fins!!

So, for the next 100,000 years, they sat there on the shore waiting to evolve feet so they could go somewhere…

How boring would that be?

Fish 1: “Hey… you got feet yet?”

Fish 2: “Not yet… how about you?”

Fish 1: “Nope… but my fins are getting kinda stubby… could be rudimentary legs… or not…”

Fish 2: “Hmmm, my fins look the same, but I think I see a toe forming… or it might just be a cyst… but my lungs are working good… smell that air… ”

Fish 1: “Yeah… it is nice… hey, what’s that over there?”

Fish 2: “Dunno… looks really big… Dinosaur maybe?”

Fish 1: “Could be… Maybe we should run away… oh… wait… we can’t! No feet… I hope he doesn’t walk over here and step on ….”

Fish 2: “Fish 1? Fish 1? You still there? Hey!!”

Bummer…

And that got me to thinking… how come other stuff hasn’t evolved for us humans? We’ve been pretty much the same for thousands of years and you would think that the environment and environmental conditions would bring some changes around based on the things that could be better…

“Like what?” you ask…

Well… how come we haven’t developed bigger bladders?? I mean, when you think about how much time we waste (no pun intended) in a given day, going to the bathroom, wouldn’t a much bigger bladder make more sense? Instead of 15 – 5 minute trips every day, why not one 15 minute trip at the end of the day?? Doesn’t that make sense?

Or how come we don’t have fur? We have two cats that develop this really thick “winter” coat when it starts to get cold… how come we humans don’t do that? Wouldn’t that make sense? Around September or so, our fur would start coming out, thick and lustrous and when winter finally arrived, all we’d need is maybe a jacket… Think of all the money we’d save on clothes, winter coats, heating oil and gloves…

Of course, that might be offset by the increased cost of shampoo and conditioner… hmm…

And to be honest, how cool would that be? Humans with fur? Speaking as a follicularly challenged person (bald) the idea of fur appeals to me… Although, shedding could be an issue in the spring…

And what is the purpose of “itching”? I’m not talking about the poison ivy/sunburn peel/mosquito bite types of itches… there’s a bona fide reason for those kinds of itches…

I’m talking about the “sitting there talking to someone you are really REALLY trying to impress when you suddenly get an itch in a place where you can’t scratch without getting arrested” kind of itch… The itch that happens for absolutely no reason! There are no bugs crawling on you, there are no rashes suddenly appearing… no apparent reason for that itch… What is the purpose of that? I mean, other than feeling really good when you can scratch it, what useful function does it have? You’d think that we would have evolved out of that by now…

And how come we never evolved into a 3 armed human? At least 3?? Two arms are pretty good, but think about how productive and happy we would be if we had 3 arms! We could steer, shift gears and change the radio station… we could eat Cheetos without getting the remote all orange… we could take phone messages without having to that “phone on your shoulder, head bent over holding it” thing… how cool would that be? Of course, clapping your hands would be confusing; shirts would look funny and imagine a keyboard for three hands…

And finally…

Why haven’t we developed wheels instead of feet? Think about that… if we are constantly evolving to make us stronger, faster and better, why do we still have feet?

Feet are very inefficient… they get blisters; they swell up, they smell funny, they look funny (take a look at your feet… NOT NOW!! When you get home!! You have to admit they’re funny looking…) and they hurt most of the time…

And walking is not real efficient either… basically, walking is the act of standing still, and then all of a sudden shifting your balance so that you’re falling forward, but then at the last second, you put your foot out and catch yourself and stop falling and just about the time you’re regaining your balance, you move the other foot and start falling all over again… so, it’s fall, catch yourself, fall, catch yourself…

Don’t believe me? The next time you’re walking, don’t put that other foot in front of the other… see what happens…

So, why haven’t we developed wheeled appendages instead of feet? How cool would THAT be…

Instead of shoe shopping, you’d be out shopping for some nice chrome caps for the side of your wheels… Plastic surgeons would specialize 20″ chrome spinners… Cars would be like Fred Flintstone cars… holes in the floor that you could put your wheeled legs through to propel the car… got passengers? No problem, they can help propel!!

Imagine a world with everyone wheeling around all over the place… there would be no gas crisis, no parking lots, and no stairs!

Karate lessons would be difficult though and it would be really hard to put your pants on…

Hmm…

Oh well, I’m going to go off and evolve now…

SAELIG!!

 

 

 

 

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