Archive for February, 2011

Nutritionary Rx, in the parking lot

February 2011

I know we live in an up-is-down world, with a slothful glutton sermonizing on (fiscal) discipline in Jersey, but it was still astonishing to hear of the obese Capon attacking Mrs. O as overweight. I guess a voice of the people who lives on caviar and porterhouse would not know the difference between a short rib and “ribs.” But my favorite reaction from one of his useful idiots was: “Stay out of our cubbards!” Obviously, if they need no help with readin’ and writin’, they can eat smarter on their own

Black and bitter? Goth snow peas

February 2011

Apparently the new consumer protection agency already has banks trying to be more transparent: Chase, looking to sign up new customers, was out on Columbus handing out suckers. . .

No hairs in the McCann’s

February 2011

I spend more time on pol porn than following the vacuity in the food world these days, obviously, so I shouldn’t be surprised there’s smarter commentary on the McD oatmeal outrage over there than you’ll get from the Egopedist. It’s as if he never read all those Wells we slaved to make publishable. And as much as I enjoy the old “always exaggerate — it makes life more interesting” cartoon caption, a sausage biscuit is just hyperbole when it contains nearly as many calories from fat alone as the oatmeal does altogether. Still, I’m assuming the designated thinker is paying for all the Twitthelp and research. Unlike a nobler character who’s compiling his next best-seller Arianna-style. (I’m all in favor of crowd-sourcing, but at some point there’s gotta be profit-sharing. Or look out, Egypt, here we come. . . )

I before E. Or, pluralizm

February 2011

Quick thoughts: The Forelock’s review of the memoir of the decade really should have had spoiler alerts — some of us might have wanted to lean back and enjoy the read. If doughnuts were the biggest deal in the section, reefered on the front page and showcased online, maybe they should have been a real story? And any time homage to a rich fucks’ destination gets huge play, maybe a little attention could be paid to how real Americans are getting by, and not even the 43 million whose idea of food fun is of the EBT variety? But the biggest embarrassment was the piece I slogged through on New Mexico’s move to require labeling for chilies — it couldn’t seem to differentiate between the pepper and the sauce and went back and forth between Webster’s spelling for the former and the Spanish word, muddying the issue even more. Sometimes a dictionary is not a copy editor’s best friend. It could lead right to addled in Middle English.

CT scan ‘em

February 2011

And someone should show those evil Big Pharma researchers it’s all happening at the zoo: Gorillas in Cleveland were put on the “eat better” regimen and something amazing happened. They lost weight. But this was about preventing heart disease. Not selling drugs. Where’s the megabucks in that? As my sentimental side always realizes: Without wars, the world would need no MREs.

Mother’s milk? Socialist.

February 2011

A Wisconsin pizzeria is making news by racking up sales delivering donated food to anti-governor protesters, with orders called in from as far away as Egypt and South Korea. Which illustrates yet another difference between liberals and Kochsucker proxies: When the enlightened take to the streets, it’s good for business.

No cold water

February 2011

The NYPost ran a way-too-short story on “posh” food stores in Manhattan flunking health inspections, by a reporter who didn’t seem too clear on what the adjective meant. But the funniest line was that Holy Foods in the dread TWC had to throw out ground beef because it was “contaminated with turkey meat.” I’d say the reverse would be a far riskier offense.

Look: growlers!

February 2011

Also, too, I keep reading fawning “stop-the-internets” features on how drugstores are becoming supermarkets, but not one points out they’re really more 7-Elevens. I priced Illy espresso at the 5,000th new Duane Reade near us, and it was a full 50 percent more than the closest food store, directly across the street. When “Whole Paycheck” is cheaper, by $6, gullible reporters might want to pitch the press release, pick up a notebook and hit the miles of aisles.

“I am desperate yellow”

February 2011

The silliest new gimmick of the year so far is the grow-your-own edamame kit. Given the fact that you can go through a big bag of frozen in one sitting, why would you want to engage in “urban farming for dummies,” as TONY ludicrously dubbed it, with one legume bonsai? You’d be better off with a chia pet to snip for salads. A shiitake log I could almost see (although portobellos would be a bigger payoff). But this only makes sense if it comes with a fat federal subsidy for raising soybeans.

Mayonnaise sandwiches, hold the onion

February 2011

Apparently I don’t get out much, because I’m way too obsessed with print fud. So I noticed the erstwhile Mr. Cutlets’ ode to margarine in Time magazine omitted a key detail. Sure, the other yellow stuff is still hugely popular even after the trans fat hysteria. And you know why? The shit is a lot cheaper than real butter. Five bucks for Land O’Lakes or $2-something for suspending disbelief? Your food stamps decide. . . But at least no Spam was harmed in the nostalgia fest.

The measure of a pomelo

February 2011

For once I’m on the side of the animal rights (a k a “no meat for you!”) loons: Porking up monkeys to study obesity seems beyond cruel when it’s so obvious what makes humans fat. The researchers could just spend a New York minute in Real America. I’m sure there are millions of people who would happily stand in for the suffering simians with such a life: eat all day, never move? Knowing every 5 extra pounds puts 25 pounds of stress on your hips and knees, I just felt huge empathy for those poor cousins moping in cages when they were born to run, and climb. Talk about suffering for our super-sized sins. What’s truly sickening is that the misery is inflicted for ill-gotten gains: Big Pharma is torturing in search of the holy grail to market for megabucks. Not for the first time do I want to connect the dots with diabetes — what would be more lucrative than a whole country with an induced disease to treat for life? Maybe ducks and geese are blessed — only their livers get engorged by overfeeding. Plus some pleasure results from it; you certainly can’t sauté a pill. And man can’t get morbidly obese on foie gras alone.

Trenta Coke

February 2011

I see McD’s is literally giving away its new “maple” oatmeal. Other “free” coupons in the Sunday paper make it clear, though, once you’re lured in they know you’ll get the Eggamuffin, too (only 900 calories in two, the huge sign over on Broadway promises). Call this a big bowl of fakery with a side of fries.

Throw pillows around a feather bed

February 2011

I took the last of Dexter as a warning of what will happen if unions really are gutted:  Already-overworked parents will never have time to cook. As someone Tweeted, thank Wisconsin it’s Friday — unions there “invented” the weekend with the 40-hour workweek. Americans are already giving up their lives for shrinking paychecks, but they could be working for the Pharaoh. Which would make it even less likely they will be able to indulge in what even the middle class can now do in India: hire help (my consort’s fixer in Bangalore had a cook before she even had kids). Mostly, though, the column made me very glad to be back among the gainfully unemployed rather than still spinning in the hamster wheel, which has to be speeding not just faster but nonstop. I’m so old I remember when a critic or wine writer could shriek when asked to produce one small extra feature in a week. Now they have to be reporting and blogging and writing and responding to comments and answering emails (slaving, in other words, like the freelancer who could never get hired on staff there). Now we know it’s not just the quality that suffers. It’s the home cookin’. If I were mean, I’d ask how this charade went on for two whole years as readers assumed all was magical. As always, the truth would have made a realer, richer story; it’s not as if this brought in the ads the magazine exists for. But I’ve been there. I’ve seen how the bratwurst gets made. . .

Show me the “interesting eyewear”

February 2011

Speaking of which, the big exposé of stars and their show food also revealed more than it intended: “Journalists” just write from the scripts they’re handed. And it’s a slippery slope from interview clichés to front-page WMD. Did you hear the one about oysters going extinct?

Seizure salad

February 2011

And apparently “hand-prepared” will not be the last word in food language abuse. Or even “kettle-cooked,” to appeal to the real lizard brains. What I just saw was “hand-craved.” Hungry fingers need turkey.