Sunday, May 24, 2009

Why does Tyler Perry still have a job?


A scene from "Meet the Browns" - (Nice, Tyler Perry. Much more clever and subtle than "Meet the Blacks.")

[Scene - Wife is cooking breakfast. Tells husband she is preparing turkey bacon.]

Husband [in great surprise]: "Turkey bacon?! Cora, I didn't know pigs and turkeys be matin'!!!"


What. In. The. Hell.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

foodurday - homemade bagels!

Today I made deeeeelicious bagels. FOR. FREE. Or sort of free because I already had all the ingredients, so it felt free. I used the recipe found here. (BTW, give that URL a peek and notice that it says "nadrolled_water_bagels" - I don't have nads to roll with, so I just used my hands. Seemed to work okay.)

What I liked about this recipe is that it begins with just dumping all the ingredients in the bowl at the same time, but it's not easy to stir. I had to add about an extra 1/4 cup of water to the dough, but don't add any extra water til you can tell you definitely need it.

The dough looked all crumbly and awful, but once I kneaded it a little, it came together. Then I kneaded it for TEN FUCKING MINUTES because I do not have a KitchenAid stand mixer (HINT HINT HINT), and I got such a workout that I don't think I need to go to the gym today. Woot woot! Kneading is some hard fucking work.

Then divide it into eighths, which I did with a pizza cutter. Super easy.

Then I rolled them into balls. Heh. Balls.

NOW comes the hard part. After they've rested, if you want to do it the Right and Traditional and Respectable Way, you roll each ball out until it's a rope long enough to wrap around your hand with enough overlap to securely squish it closed into a loop, like so:

(This is a little different because the baker is working with one long roll of dough instead of little dough balls, but you get the idea.)

This is hard. I did it for the two of them on the far left of the picture below, but then I got irritated because I think my dough was a little too stiff or something because it didn't want to roll out worth a shit. SOOOO, I did it the Easy Way, which I found here. The Easy Way basically consists of squishing your thumb through the middle of the dough ball until you get a hole. Easy. Then because I am a culinary genius I figured out how to even it out and widen the hole without ripping the dough, of which method I have kindly provided an instructional video:


Then they need to rest a little while longer. Preheat the oven and get your big pot of water boiling. One of the recipes I read said the water needed to be barely simmering; the other didn't mention what manner of boil was appropriate. I tried both, and it seemed not to matter. Oh, ALSO, according to the recipes and photos, the bagels were supposed to sink and then float right back up when dropped into the water. This did not happen for me. They sank like rocks and stuck to the bottom, but I only had to loosen them off the bottom once right after they dropped, and then they were fine. They never actually floated UP, which made the flipping part rather moot. I was extremely concerned about this, and thought maybe my yeast didn't activate or something, but they turned out fine.

Okay, so after they boil for 2 minutes each, you can top them if you want. If not, you'll just have plain water bagels. I let mine drip on a cooling rack lined with paper towels for a minute til I could handle them, and then I squished them into a plate of coarse kosher salt, caraway seeds, and flax seeds.

Then I transferred them, topping side up, to a cookie sheet that I had sprayed and then dusted with cornmeal (this is not required, but suggested by the second recipe I linked above). I think just spraying the pan would have been fine.

Flip 'em after 10 minutes. This will not disturb the toppings (much).

And then eat them!! But let them cool first. I didn't, and I burned my mouth.

They actually taste more like a giant soft pretzel to me than an actual bagel, but giant soft pretzels are delicious, so whatever. Enjoy!

Note: If you're like my mom and track every calorie that passes your lips, these have a little over 200-250ish apiece. That includes the flax seed topping, which has more calories than I had thought it would, but they are quite good for you, I hear, so whatever.


This is a much better video for how to roll & twist them -

AND his dough looks totally different from mine. It was not nearly as pliable or stretchy, so I guess mine was too dry. I'll add more water next time, but as I said before, still yummers.



I think I forgot to put in the sugar. I bet that's why they are like giant pretzels. Whoops.

Friday, May 22, 2009

weirdest email ever

Remember my fabulous family trip to Gatorland, in which my family and I got to feed ravenous, bloodthirsty alligators, and in which Ryan threw a slab of rotten steak onto one unlucky alligator's back and ruined its life? OF COURSE YOU DO.

And in that post, I included this video, which is really pretty anti-climactic because it is all blurry and shiz, and you cannot really see the bloodthirstiness of the gators or even the flying steaks, but can only hear some crummy plopping noises, so you totally do not get a good view of the imminent danger we were in, and thus might actually think it was a video from the inside of a rather large public toilet.

Anyhooters, regarding that video, I received this email, which even I think is totally weird.


Saturday, May 16, 2009

wedding chronicles: anti-climactic update

After not answering all TWO of her calls since December, I finally got a communication from Bridezilla......


From this e-mail we can infer that Groom & 'Zilla are STILL living in different states (FIVE MONTHS after their wedding!), and that 'Zilla has still either not noticed that I'm not talking to her OR she's too self-centered to realize that it might have something to do with her behavior.

Suffice it to say, I'm not going. There were several invitees, so I just can't afford it.

Happy Caturday!!

I got jealous of all Reagan's kitty posts, so here it is.....Caturday!

Steve tries out the new couch:

Pickles sticks with the old one:

And Bitty Kitty claims the Ikea chair:

Happy Caturday, everyone! Off to the beach. Be jealous.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

res ipsa loquitur

Facebook pretty much did all the heavy lifting for me on this one.

i'm faaaaaamous, i'm faaaaaaamous!!!!!!!!!

Ryan and I are now accepting applications for a publicist because we are DOUBLE FAMOUS!

Go and see how awesome we are here at Photobomb.

And then go READ our awesome story over HERE at The Devil's Daughter in Law. (If you are not yet familiar with DDIL, you should be. It's therapeutic. )


Saturday, May 2, 2009

Why I (Really Really) Hate Football

I hate Sports. I hate Sports a lot. I've even given Sports multiple chances to prove themselves, but so far I've been pretty disappointed, with the sole exception of Baseball. Extending an olive branch, Baseball offered me $2 beers and gratuitous fireworks on warm summer evenings during my Season of Voluntary Unemployment, and for that I remain grateful. Thanks for the memories, Baseball, or rather, the lack thereof (see: $2 beers).

I suppose it wasn't entirely fair of me to hold a grudge against Baseball, but the alternative was holding a grudge against my grandparents, so Baseball just had to take one for the team, so to speak. You see, when I was a leetle Jeannie, my parents and I lived with my grandparents, in the mostly finished basement of their ranch-style house.

(What? If your dad was a musician, and not the orchestra kind, the tortured lead guitarist kind, you probably lived in your grandparents' basement too.)

My bedroom was located directly and unfortunately beneath my grandparents' living room. The living room was their sanctuary, the television the heart of their home. It was a fairly large set for the time (mid- to late 80's, I think), and it routinely beamed the Braves game into their living room in pixels large enough for their aging eyes. I don't remember Nannaw and Pappaw having too many social friends, but I do remember another couple who never missed a game at our house, Buddy and Charlotte.

On game nights, my grandparents and their friends were transformed. Gone was the sluggishness caused by diabetes, digestive ailments, arthritis, and glaucoma, and in its place was the screaming, stomping, rabid, unadulterated rage that only a bad play taken personally can provoke.

Those same nights, I lay awake in my bed, listening as eight orthopedically shod feet stomped the floor in fury. DAMMIT, BLAUSER!!!!! they'd scream. GOD DAMMIT!!!!!!!!!!! COME ON!!!!!

Loathing rankled in my underslept heart, because didn't they realize I had to be up at seven the next morning? Seven! Had they no idea how hard my life was? How could I be expected to stay on the honor roll under these sorts of living conditions? Why, it was child abuse, that's what it was!!

But I couldn't hate my grandparents, could I? Of course not. Not Nannaw who always gave me an oatmeal cream pie or a Starcrunch, whether I'd finished my dinner or not (although it was many years before I'd completely forgive her for repeatedly forcing my hair into sponge rollers in a relentless effort to make me resemble something she described as "ladylike"). Not Pappaw, who always patted me on the head, called me "Little Sweetie," and seemed to have an endless supply of Tootsie Rolls. And neither could I hold a grudge against Charlotte, whose curly hair looked not unlike that of my beloved Hugga Bunch doll, nor against Buddy who was the spitting image of Count von Count.

So Baseball had to take one for the team. Oh, Baseball, how I hate hate hated your guts, as well as those of your stooge Blauser, an incompetent muttonhead whose inadequacies so often prompted the outraged screaming that blasted through the floorboards and into my brain.

I suppose that in the many years that I did not live and attempt to sleep beneath my grandparent's living room, my hatred for Baseball dulled. The sleepless nights became nothing more than a memory, as we moved to our own house shortly before I turned eleven. As an adult, my attitude toward Baseball was fairly indifferent, albeit tinged with remnants of childhood loathing. In the past few years, however, Baseball has wooed me, and successfully so. It tantalized me with the promise of Other Things To Do when I tired of drinking at the pool, sweetening the deal with $5 tickets.

Okay, Baseball, I thought skeptically. I'll give you a chance. One chance.

Baseball met and even exceeded my expectations that by offering me a free shuttle that enabled me to drink as many of Baseball's $2 (TWO DOLLARS!) beers as I could afford. And because of the enormous quantity of affordable beers I had consumed, I slept beautifully that night. Baseball made its amends, and all is forgiven.

However, Baseball's thoughtful research into my personal interests (see: $2 beers & free ride) couldn't cure my hatred for Sports as a whole because of that sluggish bastard, Football.

Fuck you, Football. Get a fucking watch. I loathe tardiness in general, but Football just takes it to a whole 'nother level.

Why is it exactly that Football is allowed to turn ONE hour into THREE hours? What's so damn special about Football that it gets to, oh, I don't know, STOP TIME? I still don't know. All I know is that when I was a kid, Football routinely took advantage of my youthful naivete and at every opportunity, ruined my life.

Homework completed just in time, I'd often rush excitedly to the TV, eager to see what new feats of derring-do those Rescue Rangers might accomplish, or what zany predicament Huey, Duey, and Luey would get themselves into now. I'd inevitably switch on the set during a commercial break, and I'd wait patiently for the half-hour to arrive, and with it, animated bliss.

But no, what was this? It's four-thirty. Where are the Rescue Rangers? Where is Darkwing Duck? Duck Tales? No? What is this?!

Football, that's what. Fucking football.

Wincing in dispair, I'd glance at the little time clock in the corner of the screen. Oh, I'd think to myself. Well, there's only 38 minutes left, so it's just one show, maybe a little extra. I can wait! I wasn't selfish. I was willing to compromise. Football could have the TV for a little while.

Because there was an odd amount of time left on the clock, I expected that my show would start a little late, displaced by the end of the game. This too was okay, but of course I had to sit there holding vigil over the TV, lest I forget that my displaced show would begin at an odd time, causing me to miss a second show altogether.

And I'd wait. And wait. And wait. Thirty-eight actual minutes would come and go, and somehow there would still be time left on the clock, but it didn't seem like much time really........So I'd wait some more.

And finally, at long last, after what seemed like an eternity, Football would relinquish the TV, just in time for.......THE EVENING NEWS.

Time and time again this happened, for surely, I believed, at some point Football would catch on and get its clock fixed. Any day now, Football would think to itself, Say, aren't I about, oh, five years late for.......everything? And realizing that its chronic tardiness was due to a long busted time clock, Football would either have its clock repaired, or perhaps even get a new clock, who knew, maybe even one that was fast rather than agonizingly slow. Time and time again, I had faith that Football would finally get it right, finally get its clock fixed, finally stop lying to me.

But no. Football never got its clock fixed, and to this day it doesn't even have the courage to be honest about just how long it plans to swallow up my regularly scheduled programming. So fuck you, Football. No amount of cheap beer or seasonal entertainment can make up for this because YOU'RE STILL DOING IT! Baseball got its shit together and quit waking me up at night, and it even made amends, but you??? You think you're too good. You don't just think you're too cool for school, you think you're too cool for time!!! TIME IS IN THE FUCKING BIBLE, FOOTBALL! IT'S SCIENCE! YOU CANNOT DISREGARD IT! But Football is the original hipster, scorning tradition and not caring when innocent children get hurt in the process.

So fuck you, Football. No more chances for you. Your time is finally up.