Friday, August 31, 2007

ISO: Halloween recipes that don't induce vomiting

I love Halloween. I hate Googling for Halloween recipes.

To everyone out there who posts Halloween recipes: Please put your vomit-inducing recipes on a separate page AWAY from the recipes for roasted pumpkin seed and caramel apples. I am getting so tired of searching for innocent recipes and instead stumbling upon these appetizing selections:

*** Please do not read if you've recently had a meal or plan to within the next hour. ***

"Bloody Popcorn"
"Kitty Litter Cake"
"Brains and Eyeballs"
And perhaps the all-time worst: "Hair Salad with Saliva Dressing"

I am not 11. I do not think that gross is cool. I do not want to consume food that may taste fabulous but looks like roadkill, bodily waste or a serious industrial accident. I do not want scary bits floating in my beverage. I do not want to consume things that remind me of sinusitis.

I was at a Halloween party years ago at the home of this artsy-tartsy couple of university professors. The house was way out in the hinterland, which just gave you this heightened sense of foreboding. (Oh, so this is where they hide the bodies?) The decorations were fabulous in a house that already had this quirky Dali-esque spookiness about it. (The kitchen was decorated RED and BLACK.) The appetizers were delicious and the beverages were flowing.

I was having a grand old time swanning about in my Bollywood princess outfit when some knucklehead guest brings out the kitty litter cake. In a real kitty litter box with a scoop.

Although my rational forebrain knew I was looking at rolled oats dotted with some kind of fig paste, my reptilian brain was screaming, "DO NOT EAT POOP! DANGER! DANGER! DO NOT EAT POOP! POOP BAD! POOP BAD!"

I could feel the bile rising in the back of my throat. I wanted to punch the guy.

So, all you recipe posters: No gross stuff where I can easily find it. Thank you.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Alton Brown on the real reason we cook

Our Patron Saint of Perpetual Good Eats

The GGB recently gave up her 40-hour-a-week Corporate America job for a kinder gig as Household COO (and occasional dance teacher and freelancer). When my former coworkers asked me if I was looking forward to a change of pace, I often told them I was excited about cooking dinner and having it ready when my husband gets home.

A few people looked at me as if I'd said I was going to be manacled to a stove and given daily beatings for my trouble.

It is not fashionable these days to be enthusiastic about the home arts. And if you do cook, you're supposed to do it as quickly as possible a la Rachael Ray. (That's another post entirely. The woman is a blight on humanity.)

However, I picked up on a bit of cosmic brilliance by the anti-Rachael, the sensei of culinary kung fu, the high priest of all that is sacred and holy about the range top and the saute pan. I give you words of wisdom from Alton Brown:

... feeding someone is an act of caring. We will always be fed best by those that care, be it ourselves or the aforementioned friends and family.We are fat and sick and dying because we have handed a basic, fundamental and intimate function of life over to corporations. We choose to value our nourishment so little that we entrust it to strangers. We hand our lives over to big companies and then drag them to court when the deal goes bad. This is insanity.

Amen, brother.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

How come no one ever "finds" Buddha?

Puppy murderer Michael Vick says he has "found Jesus" and now claims that dogfighting is a "terrible thing."

Ever notice how no one ever "finds Buddha" or "achieves nirvana" in the pokey? (And Vick isn't even in jail yet. This must be a record.) I'm just saying that since Eastern-style religion is all the rage these days, I'm curious as to why it's the Jesus card that gets played.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Ministers behaving badly. Congregants behaving stupidly.

"The saying is trustworthy: If anyone aspires to the office of overseer [bishop], he desires a noble task. Therefore an overseer must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, sober-minded, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, not a drunkard, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money."

-- St. Paul, I Timothy 3:1-3

Evangelist Juanita Bynum recently got the stuffing knocked out of her in a hotel parking lot by her husband, "Bishop" Thomas Weeks III. A hotel bellman witnessed the attack, as relayed here in an article by Fox News:

"They were talking about a reconciliation. They got into an argument. In the process of the argument, her husband walked out to the parking lot area, turned back around and started to choke Miss Bynum," [Atlanta police officer Ronald ] Campbell said.

"As he choked her, he pushed her down to the ground and started to kick her and also stomp on her," he said. "There was a bellman at the location who witnessed the whole assault, intervened, and pulled Mr. Weeks off of Miss Bynum."

"Bishop" Weeks has yet to repent and instead took a few brief moments in the pulpit this past Sunday (before a guest preacher delivered the sermon) to blame the devil for his troubles, according to the Atlanta Journal Constitution. His congregants are being all mashy-mouthed about "not judging." One particularly pathetic comment to the AJC site [emphases mine]:

I am a member of Global Destiny. I was there yesterday and I support Bishop 100%. He is a true man of God who made a mistake. I get paid on this week and will sow my entire pay check to the ministry. I know these are trying times for him financially. My 8 year daughter does not mind forfeiting "back to school shopping" b/c Bishop weeks is in need. Praying is not enough. We need ot take action. I signed the thing on yesterday to have the Judge decrease the felony to a misdemeanor. I am praying that his case is dismissed due ot self defense or he gets Community Service. Everyone does stuff they regret. I know he is pure, he did not mean to hurt her-he got caught up in the heat of the moment. I pray that he will Preach on this coming Sunday.

Good Lord Almighty, this is so cosmically insane, I don't even know where to begin. Weeks is in flagrant violation of at least four Biblical requirements to be a bishop, and not only is he not being held accountable, people are flinging MONEY at him!!! ENTIRE PAYCHECKS!!!

"Judge not," my arse. I cannot judge Weeks' heart or motivations, but I sure as heck can judge that smacking your wife around is a big fat honkin' no-no for any man who claims to be a Christian, much less a "Bishop." And when church members do not stand up and demand decent behavior from their leaders, it makes us all look like cretins and gives cover to ignorant people who think that the Bible actually endorses that kind of behavior.

Aggghhhh. I want to throw something.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

And now I'm appalled by Fox News' commercials, too

I am, admittedly, tuning in to Fox News via XM Radio to catch up on the horrible bridge collapse in Minnesota. Call me a rubbernecker.

I'm glad that my handy-dandy pink Pioneer Inno displays the name of the programming, including when the program switches to commercials. I can mute it when they're yammering about ordering Viagra and Cialis online.

Sheesh. It's like listening to spam.