Tag Archives: food

Jean’s Plan to NOT become an Unplanned Grandmother

South Street Cafe Bennington Vermont

Jean walks into the South Street Cafe. Her best friend, Shirley, sits on the couch with a look of frustration. Her calming tea can not calm this situation. Shirley recognizes the look she saw 20 years ago. She sits down and hugs her friend.

Jean: “How far along are you?”

Shirley: “It’s not me. Billy got his college girlfriend pregnant. I’m not going to raise the child. I don’t get it. I made sure condoms were available. On our walks, I point out the young unhappy 20 year old boys pushing baby strollers. I repeatedly told him how many Grateful Dead shows I gave up to raise him and how many Built to Spill shows he will miss if there’s an accident. What could I have done differently?”

Shirley might not be an unplanned grandma if she had bought Built to Spill condoms instead of U2 condoms.  Billy hates U2!!!

Shirley might not be an unplanned grandma if she had bought Built to Spill condoms instead of U2 condoms. Billy hates U2!!!

Jean: “You can put out as many condoms as you want but if you don’t know what type of flavor she likes or the right type of color he likes, the condoms will only collect dust. As far as pointing out pregnant 20 year olds, children can’t grasp the cause and effect. Walk onto a college campus and check out the freshmen in line for a credit card. Unless you are in the room when the kids are getting it on, you can’t guarantee they’ll practice safe sex. To ensure that I don’t become an unplanned grandma, I regulate my son’s testosterone levels. For instance, do you stock your refrigerator with lots of cabbage and broccoli?

Billy and his girlfriend eat a black bean burger, with sauerkraut, avocado, and tomato.  A disaster waiting to happen!

Billy and his girlfriend eat a black bean burger, with sauerkraut, avocado, and tomato. A disaster waiting to happen!

Shirley: “Yes, in fact Billy and his girl friend love black bean burgers with lots of sauerkraut and avocado with a side dish of goat yogurt, raisins and figs for dessert.”

Jean: “Oh my!!!” Don’t tell me he also likes free range eggs and mushrooms?”

Shirley: “He loves mushrooms!!!! Yesterday he begged me to make him an omelet with my neighbor’s chicken eggs and insisted that the mushrooms and spinach be sautéed in garlic and olive oil.”

Jean: “Jesus Christ, Shirley what are you thinking? I’m surprised half the women in Bennington, VT aren’t knocked up because of your careless cooking! Here are some basic guidelines to help keep this situation to only one unplanned baby. Foods with B-vitamins, vitamin-D, vitamin-E, zinc, monounsaturated fats increase testosterone. Cruciferous vegetables help decrease estrogen levels. Next time Billy says, “Hey mom can I make us a broccoli couscous casserole,” I would respond why don’t you microwave some tater tots and smother them in high fructose corn syrup ketchup. You see, processed food with lots of sugar is the best way to keep your son’s testosterone levels low. Also keep in mind exercise increases testosterone. Every time my son suggests going on a bicycle ride or walk to the grocery store I insist that he takes the car.”

Shirley: “Are you serious? You govern Jack’s sex drive by regulating his testosterone levels through food and exercise? Does this really work?”

Jean: “Yes, I’ll prove it. Remember how horny Jack was when I fed him healthy food and didn’t let him use my car?”

Shirley: “I do. You were on a first name basis with the folks at Planned Parenthood.”

Jean gets out her iPhone. She dials Jack’s number.

Jean: “Jack, did you see the McDonalds breakfast money I put out by the TV remote control. Oh good. You drove, right? Cool. Well, I’m here with Shirley. We’re sitting at the South Street Cafe.  The cafe is playing 80’s Madonna right now over the speakers. The song Erotic just ended. Oh you wouldn’t believe who sat down beside us. That cute barista with the long brown hair and the long long legs. She asked how you are doing. You should come down. The smiley barista doesn’t start her shift for another hour. I’ll buy you a cup of coffee. Really you would rather sit on the couch, finish your fries, and surf Facebook. Good boy!”

The End

Don’t become an unplanned grandmother.  Educate yourself on what foods not to feed your son:

http://www.menshealth.co.uk/food-nutrition/what-to-eat/eat-up-to-man-up

http://www.charlespoliquin.com/Blog/tabid/130/EntryId/1953/Tip-560-Natural-Tips-To-Increase-Testosterone-To-Get-Leaner-and-Stronger.aspx

http://www.charlespoliquin.com/ArticlesMultimedia/Articles/Article/801/10_Ways_To_Lower_Estrogen_Toxic_Load_.aspx

http://www.livestrong.com/article/461522-foods-that-increase-testosterone-levels-in-men/

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David Bowie, Funny Mirrors, and a Veggie Burrito at the Old Stone Station

old stone station Cambria California

The Old Stone Station became a place of refuge for John

At John’s funeral, friends and family dropped fresh cut flowers into the grave. Willy walked to the edge where the casket lay.  He tightly squeezed a David Bowie t-shirt before relaxing his hands.  Willy let the Ziggy Startdust t-shirt fall into the grave.

Clyde asked perplexed, “What are you doing?”

Old Stone Station David Bowie

Willie replied, “John loved David Bowie.  Remember how many times he went to the men’s restroom at the Old Stone Station Restaurant?”

A year ago, Willie, Clyde, and John met on a sunny day on the deck of the Old Stone Station. They each planned on enjoying the best Mexican food served on Friday. Ironically, they all ordered veggie burritos. The three of them quickly realized this serendipitous moment. Conversations began and three tables became one. A Friday veggie burrito tradition began.

Like a digital clock with a strong battery, Willie, Clyde, and John showed up at the same time every Friday and ordered the same veggie burrito.  The tradition changed when John’s wife left him for a young stud and the L.A. city life.  Depressed, John began to eat 1.5 burritos, than 2 burritos in one sitting.  Willie and Clyde were amazed by John’s overwhelming burrito consumption.

Old stone Station veggie burrito Cambria California

John developed deadly feelings for black beans

John replied in a condescending snarky voice, “How can a person not eat two of a these remarkable creations!  The flavors of the beans, sauces, fresh ingredients, veggie burger and cheese make me forget myself.  I am no longer John who gave 20 years of my life to a woman who didn’t appreciate it.  At the Old Stone Station I am simply a tongue who doesn’t need love – only a burrito.”

The guys noticed John use the bathroom more frequently and lose weight.

One day when John left to the restroom, Clyde asked Willie, “Do you think it’s weird John’s bladder has gotten smaller since his divorce?”

The last known photo of John

The last known photo of John

Willie, “I don’t think his bladder has gotten smaller.   He frequently uses the restroom because the carnival fees to enjoy a circus mirror in private is ridiculous.  At the Old Stone Station the price of the mirror is included in the price of the meal.  He can laugh and laugh as long as he purchases something.  John’s a huge David Bowie fan. He told the restaurant owner he wants first dibs on the David Bowie shirt in the bathroom.  Notice how he looks at the burritos and mutters the lyric, “Oh you pretty thing your driving your mamas and papas insane.”  I’m a huge Paul McCartney fan.  I would pretend to pee a lot more if a Paul McCartney t-shirt hung in the bathroom.”

John heard most of their conversation and paused before returning. He could not let his friends know of his burrito addiction. He decided to mask his bulimia by becoming a David Bowie fan.

The madness turned John into a David Bowie burrito eater.

The madness turned John into a David Bowie burrito eater.

A month of Fridays passed.  John looked more skinny and unhealthy.

Clyde finely addressed the elephant in the room, “John, what’s wrong with you.  You have grown into the body of 17 year old girl who wants to be a model.”

John snapped, “I look like David Bowie on heroine.”

John went to the bathroom muttering a David Bowie song.

Clyde said, “Willie I have a crazy thought.  Did you see how fast John ferociously devoured his burrito?  He reminds me of my cat, Henrietta. She can eat a can of canned cat food like John can scarf down a burrito. When she can’t eat anymore she sneaks off and pukes up her food.  Do you notice how John eats and eats then leaves to go to the bathroom?  Does John remind you of my cat?”

Willie, “I’ve never met Henrietta but I do know John reminds me of David Bowie on heroine.”

The End.

John's now in Happy Burrito heaven.

John’s now in Happy Burrito heaven.

Old Stone Station
713 Main St.
Cambria, CA 93428
1-805-927-4229

Special thanks to Gillian Rowley’s edits.  Check out her blog Allergy Bites

Mechanistic Lover part 3: The Rewards of Fast, Disposable, Convenient Culture

A Brandon Follett and Bob Neal collaberation

A Brandon Follett and Bob Neal collaberation

Mechanistic Lover Part 3
The Rewards of an of a Fast, Disposable, Convenient Culture
previously published in The Arbiter

The microwave has nuked
my sex life.

Always thought
I could keep my eating habits
separate from my love making.

Veronica started to throw out comments like
“Aaron you treat me like a piece of meat.”
I’m a herbivore.
It didn’t dawn on me
that I really treated her
like a veggie TV dinner
until it was too late.

Our bedroom troubles began
when I bought a microwave.
Out went the homemade pizza.
Out went the sex.

Only after, she left me
I realized
how much I begun to mimic
the rewards of a fast, disposable, convenient culture.

I noticed:
I didn’t kneed the dough.
I didn’t gently wash the tomatoes.
I didn’t spread the creamy garlic sauce
and mozzarella cheese
from side to side
top to bottom.
I didn’t wait for the oven to heat up.

Eating has become gorging.
Sex has become fucking.

After another Veronica comment
I heard myself saying,
“However, I’m sure you’ll agree
doesn’t my penis feel good
like the feel good taste
of an instant Tony’s Pizza?”

She did not agree!

So I traded in Veronica
and all the things my 5 senses
cherished most about our sex:
sweet moans, tasty kisses, gentle touch,
sex smell, and visual curves
for a world of me me me

fast food,
convenient rest homes
disposable plates
fast orgasm
convenient internet dating
disposable cameras
fast cooking
convenient child care
disposable friends
fast sex
convenient microwave
disposable Tony’s Pizza.

fast
convenient
disposable

I’m now married to instant gratification.

Vegetarian Pizza Recipe:

THE DOUGH
1 cup of warm water
1 tablespoon of active-dry yeast
1 teaspoon of salt
1 teaspoon of sugar
Let it sit approximately 5 minutes
Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil
Mix well
Add 2 cups of flour
Work the dough with your hands and add  half to 1 cup more flour.
The dough should be easy to handle and little bit sticky.
Spread the dough on lightly buttered cookie sheet.

The SAUCE:
Olive oil infused with garlic, red pepper flakes, and basil.

The TOPPINGS:
Tomato, basil, garlic, red onion, mushrooms, pine nuts, mozzarella cheese

Fast Food Cambria Style

Boni's Tacos always has bicycle parking

Despite what the Cambria visitor magazine says about fast food. Cambria does have fast food. It’s just fast food Cambria style.

Special thanks to Boni’s Tacos
http://www.bonistacos.com/

Special thanks to Amanda Darling for a little video work.

Music by Brandon Follett
http://www.weirdosmusic.com/

Here’s a link to The Bridge Street Inn website so you too can enjoy fast food Cambria style.
<a href=”http://bridgestreetinncambria.com”>http://bridgestreetinncambria.com</a>/

SE Asia Omelet Zine featuring eateries in Thailand, Cambodia, Laos now available

In 2010, Bangkok Books began distributing You Can’t Hide an Elephant in an Omelet as an e-book.  Tara Blackmore from Broken Pencil has this to say about the book:  “What a neat concept this book offers: essays and stories about omelettes and cuisine from around the world. This particular issue offers experiences from Thailand, Laos, and Cambodia.

Part restaurant review, part tour guide, this book offers pure entertainment in eloquent language that can be enjoyed by just about everyone.

Written like a memoir (the good kind), the book offers a glimpse into foreign food production, consumption and a healthy dose of social interaction and culture shock as well. It’s an objective look at travel and all it entails, offering tips and advice on how to get by. It also gives descriptions of local cuisine that can either repulse you or attract you, so reading it while hungry is a bad idea.

This book is well worth the money. Rich with well-worded descriptions and beautiful photos, this zine will satisfy the reader who has either travel-curiosity or no idea what to make for dinner (which, of course, would be omelettes).”

FOR THOSE WHO HAVE BEEN WANTING TO READ A CLEVERLY WRITTEN BOOK ABOUT EATING OMELETS IN SOUTH EAST ASIA HERE’S YOUR OPPORTUNITY.

Click on one of the below links to purchase a copy:

Ipad
Android
Kindle
Bangkok Books

Front Cover
front-cover.jpg

Sample Page
omelets-shouldnt-have-breasts.jpg

contents2.jpg

Back Cover
back-cover.jpg

La Paz, Mexico: La Fonda Restaurant (video)

la-fonda, la paz, baja california, mexico

Click here to watch

La Fonda restaurant in La Paz offers traditional Mexican food at reasonable prices, and the owner is happy to explain any of the dishes on the menu. Traveler Brandon tries shoemaker soup for breakfast.

Todos Santos, Mexico: El Zaguan (video)

Menu at El Zaguan Todos Santos

click to watch

Homesick for peanut butter, traveler Brandon finds the next best thing – fillet of fresh fish with peanut sauce- at El Zaguan in Todos Santos, Mexico.

Omelet Review located near Warinchamrap, Thailand

The Westerner Suffering from Mental and Sanitation Travel Sickness

Basically, if you’re a Westerner visiting Thailand and can’t laugh and smile while your vegetables are cut on a fly-infested cutting board, then you’re mentally going to have a hard time.

cutting-board.jpg

Sure, we would like to drive 30 minutes to the nearest city and dine at a clean outdoor patio with misters or large fans. We would like to be waited on by an attractive server who keeps the soda water, ice cubes, and Johnny Walker flowing, while we eat an omelet with proper utensils and have the option to wash our hands with running water and soap instead of wiping them on our trousers and pretending their clean. Right now, time and money are working against us. We rely on Aidan and Robert to play the role of the attractive server.

aidan.jpg

Despite our time and money limitations, we can afford some cheap beer, a cheap omelet and good conversation somewhere in the countryside near Warinchamrap. We get two out of three at this rural Thai restaurant, and to our surprise, we get more than good conversation and cheap beer.

robert.jpg

We got a four star omelet. I now know how dirty Cinderella felt when she put her warty, corned, fungus-filled peasant foot into the clean slipper. The omelet was my slipper. My dirty hands were like Cinderella’s feet. The moment when my fingers brought the omelet up to my lips and my tongue reached out and tasted the bursting flavor of peppers and egg, I felt like a princess.

The other day, I was reading Ancient Wisdom, Modern World by the Dalai Lama. Here I summarize the Dalai Lama’s words about health:

Sickness is a product of the environment. If you come from the West, the sickness tends to be mental and stress related. If you come from the East, the sickness tends to be water-borne and sanitation related.

I imagine a journal entry from a Westerner suffering from mental and sanitation sickness:

Dear Journal,
After eating the disease-riddled omelet, I got diarrhea. I attribute my discomfort to poor sanitation practices used at the restaurant. Squatting over a hole in the ground has made my thighs sore. I have come to agree that Western toilets are for out of shape, lazy people. Now I wish I was in better shape and hadn’t spent so much time at the beginning of the vacation sitting by the pool looking at the ocean.
Signed,
Suffering Sam

Dear Journal,
I’m still sick; I get depressed looking at my dirty self in the mirror. I came to Ubon to volunteer at a school. I teach kids about Christ through English Camps. When I look at myself, I no longer see Jesus in my face. I resemble the heathens he was trying to save. In all the pictures of Jesus I’ve never seen him dirty. (Maybe bloody, but that can’t be attributed to his personal hygiene). The only thing whiter than Jesus’s face is his robe. I’m no longer Christ-like. I’m dirty like the devil……..Save me, Jesus!!!!
Suffering Sam, the dirty sinner

The journal ends, but Sam’s story is only beginning. Like the diners who must drive to the café instead of taking a ten-minute Saturday morning walk, Sam is in too big of a hurry. Like the omelet eaters who cannot wait for their tomatoes to ripen in season, Sam can’t wait for Jesus to impress upon him that everything will be all right.

His fast-paced heart lets the anxiety of dirtiness grow big and tall in his life.  The grim reaper waltzes Sam’s depressed thoughts over to a gun. His dirty fingers smudge the white ivory grip. He can’t put the barrel in his mouth because he’s afraid of catching a cold from the last person who might have blown his or her head off. His Western mental sickness of being afraid of objects that don’t smell lemon fresh saved his life.

The gun fires but only takes off his ear.  Friends find him passed out from shock, lying on the ground, with one hole still suffering from sanitation sickness and a new hole suffering from mental sickness.

Simba’s located in Chiang Rai, Thailand

Omelets Shouldn’t have Breasts
simbas.jpg

From the street, Simba’s kitschy décor is what initially attracts me to try an omelet. Inside, I head straight for a comfy seat on the couch. A Thai woman hands me a menu while an American-looking man switches off the TV. I feel suspiciously like I’ve just walked into their living room, especially when I notice the furry cat running around.

The beautiful, Thai woman in her strappy sundress and heels is the server, and she’s also the cook. The older, American man laments that he can’t help out for fear of being deported. He grumbles that he has no work permit but seems perfectly content to leave his wife/girlfriend to tend to our omelet needs.

The surprise omelet bonus at Simba’s is the really friendly cat. Recently, I have been trying to pet more cats and dogs while eating omelets. This is in preparation for my upcoming trip to Laos. I figure if I can be comfortable with a pet beside my omelet, then the next step of a pet inside my omelet will be easy to swallow. Today my omelet experience is going smoothly, and I feel really comfortable about going to Laos to try my first dog or cat omelet.

amy-petting-cat.jpg

Everything is going well until I notice the art on the wall. In Thailand, where it is rare to see women bare their shoulders, posters of bare-breasted women seem out of place. Like a TV blaring a football game can distract a person from their buffalo wings, the art on the wall detracts from the omelet experience.

art-on-the-wall.jpg

The art is a strange mix of children and topless women, which starts me wondering about spatial relationships in the definition of child pornography. Some people might consider a photograph of a nude woman standing beside two children kissing to be pornographic. What about a photograph of a nude woman next to a photograph of two children kissing–is that pushing the envelope? What happens when you add an omelet to the picture?

innocent-omelet.jpg

Additional note: As a society, we despise child pornography. Why do we uphold a standard of beauty for women to appear pre-pubescent by shaving their legs and armpits?

 

Cambodia Club located in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

An Omelet in Phnom Penh
tuk-tuk

Loud banging in the hallway wakes me, as a man at our guesthouse tries to rouse his friend sleeping in the room next to ours. The gruff, German-accented voice shouts, “Hey! Shooting range in thirty minutes! Wake up!” The banging stops, and heavy footsteps move urgently down the hallway. From the sound of it, he’s amped for a morning of AK-47s and grenade launching. Now that I’m awake, I just want an omelet. It’s 6 A.M. and time to begin another day in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.

The refreshing morning rays of sunlight are forgotten as soon as I exit the guesthouse. Before even reaching the street, I am bombarded by yells, waves, and a crowd of guys jostling for the opportunity to sell me a ride on the back of a scooter or in a carriage pulled by a scooter (also called a tuk-tuk). In Cambodia, anyone with a scooter can be a moto-taxi driver.

With so many guys looking for the job, you might think finding a driver would be a simple task. It’s not. I tell the crowd of drivers my destination and they don’t understand. I pull out my map of the city and point to where I’d like to go. They discuss in Khmer, and then nod their heads and say, “Okay, I know. Three dolla.” Three dollars! None of the taxis use a meter, so now it’s time to negotiate a fare. When the driver agrees to 75 cents, I hop on back.

En route, the driver proceeds to ask, “I take you to the killing fields? You want to go to Tuol Sleng?” (genocide museum). This is the equivalent of going to San Francisco and every driver wanting to take you to Alcatraz. The driver never once asks if I want to eat an omelet that possesses the beauty of a Cambodian woman, an omelet so delicious that it sends you to a spiritual realm only surpassed by Angkor Wat, an omelet with such soul that it symbolizes the future direction of Cambodia. Instead of discussing genocide and omelets, I ask to be driven to the river where the tourists hang out.

There’s an old omelet proverb: “You have to break a few eggs to make an omelet.” Sacrifices must sometimes be made in order to arrive at a wonderful end product, but this is not the case for Cambodia. As an American whose country waged a secret war on Cambodia, I see a broken egg and no breakfast served. The great USA did not even bother to turn on the stove or even wash a tomato.

The driver drops me off at the Cambodia Club, a restaurant that boasts an omelet with veggies and mozzarella cheese. The restaurant sits along a paved street that overlooks the river. There is a fresh breeze coming off the water, and from this distance, the trash along the bank is hidden from view. The tranquility ends as fast as it begins.

cambodia-books.JPG

The constant interruptions to my pleasurable time are like a snooze alarm that invades a fantastic dream. Children approach the table between sips of coffee, conversation, and bites of omelet. The breakfast dream disappears and reappears between successions of snoozes. The kids are selling books about Cambodian history, the Pol Pot regime, and S-21.  Eventually, the pleasure found in the omelet is killed by death, amputees, whores, and the reality that lurks behind titles such as “Off the Rails in Phnom Penh: Into the Dark Heart of Guns, Girls, and Ganja.” The snooze alarm wins. I now see the omelet as nothing more than a way to survive. I just need some energy to get out of this city.

Cambodia Club
corner of Sisowath Quay and Street 178
Phnom Penh, Cambodia

for more information about this beautiful city, see Persevering in Phnom Penh, an article on GoNomad.com