Thursday, February 16, 2012

.FOOrD BLOOrG. Drink it all in, baby. (Seriously though, babys shouldn't drink these.)

When I first heard the saying "The I's have it." I really thought it was "The eyes have it." This is true and it made far more sense to me. I mean, we use our eyes to see what is around us and that in turn can greatly effect our well being. Is that clear? Sometimes I am not so clear. Ok, think about a fox. Like a real one not Michael J Fox. Although he is real as well just not what I want you to be picturing for this example. So there is a fox and it is peaking its head out of it's fox hole. (That is what it's home is called not a put down. "Hey stuff it up your fox hole!") As it looks around it sees things "-Rock. Ok cool, I am cool with rocks. -Tree. No problem, trees are pretty chill by and large. -Tree. That is nice. I like my trees to be in couples or even groupings. -Stream. Man, I didn't realize what a dope piece of real estate  I picked to make my fox hole. A fine piece of woodland landscape. Streams are not only an abundant source of fresh water but the sound can be quite soothing to my fox ears on those sleepless nights in my fox home. -Eagle. WTF!!! DANGER!!!! IT IS ONE OF THOSE DEMENTORS FROM HARRY POTTER THAT SWOOP DOWN AND KILL YOUR FOX A$$ES!!! I HATE THOSE NO ARM HAVING MO-FOs!!!!

Now I know you might be questioning somethings about my personification of a fox. Like "How does this fox know what real estate is? Where would a fox acquire knowledge about Harry Potter or why would it refer to its fox paws as arms? Those concerns are valid. Believe it or not-I am not an expert on foxes. My point is though that the fox is surveying it's surrounding to see if it is in danger or if everything is cool. Part of that process includes not only seeing the thing (i.e. Tree) for what it is but also having a label for it.

People do this as well. Part of the reason people need to label others is because their brain is trying to figure out if they are ok. Seriously. Everybody labels people and everybody judges people to some extent. You can take the most "good" person you can find and watch them as a filthy person with a crowbar saunters by their window. I bet if you could see in their brain there would be labels like "murderer", "homeless vagabond", etc.... The fact is, maybe that dudes car broke down and that crowbar is the nicest thing he has so he couldn't possibly leave it in there. Doesn't matter. Accurate or not, the brain is going to assess the situation and depending on who you are as a person and your own life experiences, it is going to apply a label.

I try not to judge. I try. It just isn't easy when we as people are so vastly different. Plus, my whole life I have been made aware that I was being judged and applied labels. I have been called "Jap" before. Which is not only racist but it is not accurate. I have been called "fag" possibly more than people have pronounced my name correctly when I have met them. Not that I met people and they thought my name was "fag"....Nevermind. The list goes on and on. My point is that while it can be hurtful to judge, it is in nature and it is in us. We can fight it all we want. Our brain doesn't care. It would be nice if people could keep it to themselves. That would be the polite thing to do. Right?

Whew. Now at this point in my rant I hope you have concluded our theme for this post. Labels and what the appearance is communicating. Rightly or not. Oh, and this is a beverage post so we will be looking at 3 bevvys and a bonus bevvy at the end. The 1-5 scale for this post will be my own conclusions on what I see daily. Oh yes, there will be judgements.

Our first beverage was procured by my wife and I when we went to a new cheese shop that opened in PDX recently called "Cheese Bar". The food was pretty delicious but they had like ten people working there (one of whom I suspected was the lead singer from The Flaming Lips-JUDGED!) and everything seemed pretty shaky in the customer service department. Thats the case though when places first open and then they sort their sh*t out usually. As we were ordering, my lovely wife saw this drink on their beverage list. It is rose scented water from Portland. That was all I needed to know and I ordered it.

Now lets look at that label. Ugh. Who designed this, the actual nineties? Like that decade, while listening to La Bouche and Primus simultaneously, sat down and designed this label. It obviously wasn't looking at what it was doing. Most likely because In Living Color was on. (Kinda sounds like I am judging right? Thats because I am.)

The taste of this product is good if not pretty great. That is the maddening thing about the label. It doesn't do the product justice. If I had seen it's weird cartoony appearance I probably wouldn't have ordered it. The drink has a nice floral bouquet without tasting like grandma. To balance the subtle rose essence is a very slight sweetness. I can't stress this slightness enough because I would have hated it if was too sweet. The balance of everything was dead on. A solid and interesting drink with an unfortunate face.

I give this libation a 4-Whenever I see anyone in sweatpants I hear them say, in my head "Ah, I give up."-out of 5. (Not that they give up on their appearance but on life in general. Think about it. Don't get all "but its comfortable..." Are you going to workout somewhere and sweat in your sweatpants? No. And getting the cookie sweats because you are in cookie withdrawl or have consumed so many cookies that you are in fact sweating cookies DOESN'T COUNT. Use your dumb lazy thumbs and button some pants on. It is a zipper. It goes straight up. How difficult can you actually find that? Are you even aware of what people have to do around the world on a daily basis? And somehow they still muster up the strength to wear pants. Yet you can't be bothered with a non elastic waist band? -BIGGEST SIGH IN THE WORLD)

Moving on to beverage number 2. We have Kitty Piddle. Wait what? It has been a few years but I think that is french for cat pee. I am sorry. Le Chat Pisse. We found this selection at FIZZ which is a new soda counter and nostalgic candy haven in PDX. I don't remember if I said this in the last post but check out this place. The decor is not what I would have picked but the hand drawn sodas are delicious. 

Time to give that label a gander. Hmmm. This is difficult. On one hand I do love a pun "sodasgusting.." on the other hand I feel like the label is a tad crowded in the center. Personally I would like the joke to be up top then the cat and then the company but that is just me. I also wish the flavor was on the side or the back. You know, keep'em guessing. Trick the person to pick it up and check it out close up. Chance are if they did that than they get the joke and once it is in their hand they are 100% more likely to buy it. (*% based on no facts or proof) I do like the simplicity of the background thus allowing the pee colored liquid to really sell this beverage.

 Now on to taste. I couldn't tell you that it is Pineapple and orange. To me it tastes like my mouth tastes about 15 minutes after eating a chewable vitamin C. I am guessing that the pineapple is used as a sweetener. To some effect. At this point I have had three drinks and I am done with it. I have barely depleted the neck of the bottle. It isn't bad. Sweet soda just isn't my thing. Should I judge it and fault it for that? I am tempted, sure. But no. I won't say that it has a creepy vitamin/mineral situation or that it is pretty sickening. I won't. I will take the high road and just say "If this is what kitty piddle tastes like then I am right to not have drank any up to this point." Also would it have killed them to make it smell like a meth lab? Oh right, this is for kids. 

I give this drank a  1.5-If you are wearing pajama pants out then you should die. It is not a complicated scenario. You are obviously such a go getter that you bought pants to sleep in. In the event that your important lifestyle rears its ugly head, you can leap from your bed and rush to your local Walgreens in order to procure a gallon of Malted Milkballs or a 100 pack of hair ties. You bought pants. To sleep in BUT you can't be bothered to wear ACTUAL pants. That is so f*cking ridiculous. DON'T EVEN GET ME STARTED ON THE SLIPPERS!!!!PICK UP YOUR FEEEEEEET!!!!-out of 5. 

(*The corn syrup aspect of this soda clings to your mouth for 30+ minutes. Blech.)

Oh no. Oh why? Seriously? Buffalo Wing Soda. This was found at Fizz as well. I think it is safe to say that we are deep in the novelty sodas now. I have seen those turkey dinner soda packs from Jones soda. I haven't ever had them but apparently I am going to have this. A buffalo wing soda. Great. I frankly can't even imagine how this came into existence if not by tragic accident. This is how I imagine it went down "Hey Lester! This new soda tastes less like orange pop and more like buffalo wings. Like way more like buffalo wings. Ok it only tastes like buffalo wings. buffalo wings." (*Lester and his friend are both foxes. Just kidding. Look at Lester. Sheesh. He looks so old that he was around when the term "molester" was coined. Imagine how that made him feel. "Oh great, my name is the root of a terrible terrible word." "Maybe if I wear these smart looking glasses... Oh no! I made it worse!)

First lets approach the label. It is ugly. That chicken leg looks jacked up. I will give them points for making the buffalo wing actual size but then I flush those points down the toilet along with my purged mouthful of buffalo wing soda. I get what they are going for here, design wise. I just am  not a fan of that fake shadow behind letters. It isn't fooling anybody lester. Your letters aren't floating and your idea might be original but I have those all the time. That doesn't make them good. Trust me. Your label tells me: don't drink this. Yet for the sake of this post I have to.

First off let me say this: Screw you Lester. Shove this in your fox hole. Your label may say "Made in America" but this tastes like it was made in Mexico. It smells like sugar soda water and something else I can't quite place. Oh yes, moccasins. FINALLY! It tastes at first like an orange soda slightly. Just a slight touch of sweetness and then it turns on your mouth. A seriously weird, pungent, and vaguely meaty taste appears. Hence the kick-in of the ole gag reflex. Then the last wave of flavor-a horrid cayenne pepper taste mixed with burnt dirt or used clown make-up or something evil and it lingers in your mouth. My eyes watered like I was having a Bacon Tab. Lucky for me I had a bottle of Kitty Piddle sitting by the sink and I quickly rinsed my mouth out with it. (*I would seriously have used actual cat pee if it was the only option at that point.) If you have an enemy, buy this and steam the label off of it and put an orange soda label on it. I think it will kill them. I really do.

Why does this exist? Novelty? I am sorry but no. Novelty requires some sense of fun. You know, like fake wax lips or fake vomit. Not a drink that tastes like real vomit. (Although I bet you could marinate meat in this and bbq it. Maybe? Why bother.) I give this substance a 0- Take that stupid animal ear hat off your head. You are a 30 something lady not that mousey 20 something that used to date a guy on a scooter. AND no getting Betty Page bangs won't make you look any younger. Just age like a human. You had your shot. Now move on.-out of 5.

I'd like to thank you for your patronage and wish you well but I am still to enraged by Lester still. So here is a bonus beverage for your consumption.

I saw this on a recent trip to Foster Market which is my local beer and wine shop. Their shelves are stocked with cheap beer and things barely considered wine. Lets just say that if you are buying wine here than you are to drunk to drive to an actual store or you have never had decent wine. Regardless, on this trip with Mark we saw this drink. Since Dave and Mark were filming for Vanuary at our house I bought this for Dave to try. We kinda have a history of trying terrible malt beverages so this seemed par for the course. (See what I did there?)

In case you don't know what an Arnold Palmer is, it is a drink of 50% lemonade and 50% ice tea. (*No proof of % requirements) That being said it tasted like they put the first 50% in of malt beverage. Then put in the second 50% of malt beverage. Then realized their mistake and poured some out and added a touch of iced tea. It is metallic and malt beveragy. (not a word.) It tastes like somebody poured part of their forty into an Arizona Tea can. Mmmm. If the original Arnold Palmer is perfect for refreshment on the golf course then this drink id perfect for a drunk wanting to pass out on the golf course. (Well played. If I do say so myself.)

It is not good. It is not fun. It is hobo arnold palmer. I sent that as a tag line for the beverage. Still waiting to hear back. Till next time, fingers crossed!

They should have made this drink really difficult to open and said "You can't drink an Arnold Palmer unless you can get a hole in one!" Eh?????? Still got it.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

.FOOrD BLOOrG. Good intentions vs. Bad inventions

I can't help but think that the people who created the internet had great intentions.  Like they were dreaming up this information super highway that would make the world a richer-brighter place. I imagine this transpired the same way 100's(?) of years prior when somebody invented the library. They just thought of a mass of useful documentation and historical facts all in one place readily accessible to anyone who enters. Only there is a stark difference between the library and the internet. The internet lately seems to be an odd hodge podge of nosey neighbor and pervert. Recently I feel like it is trying to educate or inform me on anything useful or even interesting. The internet is like "Hey, Mark is listening to Public Enemy." My reply is "Shut up internet. I don't care what he is listening to." And yet the internet persists "Hey, hey, Mark-wait, here is his picture-him. He is still listening to Public Enemy." My reply again "Stuff it, internet. Quit wasting my time." ....."Has he always had a lazy eye?" Internet replys "Yes, hold on. There, I just tagged you as his lazy eye."

Me-"Damn you internet."

Internet-"Oh I am sorry. Why don't you do a google image search for a difficult to spell Indian dish? It is really good!"

Me-(Hesitant)"Ok, that seems like a good idea. I have been wanting a new Indian recipe."

Internet-(Safe search OFF) WALL OF BUTTS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!(

Me-"Damn you internet."

See, that scenario doesn't exist in the scholarly realm of libraries. You don't go to a library and open a book on George Washington and see a picture of his wood. Wooden teeth sure! (*I don't think he really had wooden teeth. Did he? Let me google image search.........Damn you internet.) There is very little trickery at the library. Well, there was. Now the library has the internet and I really would like to think that this happened so that people could find out more information. But simply go to the library and look at who is on those computers. Ok maybe two of those 20 kids are doing a book report while everybody else is being as shifty as possible. So we are all pretty much doomed to be stupid and only care about what somebody is listening to or who has the best wife/husband ever. Sigh. My point isn't that life has become meaningless and that we all are going to die. (Although that is true. At least the death part anyway. The meaning of life is a different story. No I am not going to google search that.) My point is that I believe that those two things came from a good place but good intentions sometimes lead to questionable results.

With that in mind I present :Exhibit A.

Don't get me wrong. I am not condemning or condoning candy cigarets. Everyone knows that smoking causes cancer and is delicious. However, I reviewed Kids Beer and that could be seen just as evil as this. No matter wether this candy exists or not, kids will pretend to smoke. Plus I don't think that this candy appeals to kids anymore. Actually I am not even sure that kids "pretend" anymore. I think that they just play Xbox. Who would want to pretend smoke and play Xbox?  Yeah, that is pretty silly.

Now this is a retro candy. Which means that it pretty much exists so that people old enough can experience nostalgia. Why? Well, lets open up a box and find out.

Oh that is right. They pretty much are one of the least enjoyable candies ever. Look, they don't even have the fake red end which was supposed to signify a lit cigereat. That is a bunch of BS. How does it taste? (If you had one back in the day just reflect on that for a moment.)

It smells faintly of wintergreen. It tastes like it is the faulty relative of the Lik-M-Aid stick. You know that white sugar stick that tasted like nothing but sugar and yet you could dip it into sour powder? Yeah, take that idea and worsen it. First-throw away that awesome powder. (For the young ones: It is now called Fun Dip.) Then take the candy stick and get it wet and then let is dry and repeat this process until it is a brittle unlikeable shell of itself. Now cut it into cigaret shape. YUM!

I give this snack a-1.5-If I don't want to be attacked by a bear then I better fill my britches with bees cuz bears are scared of bee stings. #deadandbee-reid-out of 5.

Exhibit B:

I bet that you are thinking "Hey, you just covered this." But look again, these are gum cigerets. Sure, you recall these. They have paper wrapped around the gum with a faint amount of powder that a kid can blow out of the gum cigaret and actually pretend that they are smoking. Such a good idea!!!

I'd be lying if I told you that I didn't think that was the coolest as a kid. Any kid would! That is until you chewed the gum. That is, if you could get the then wet paper off of the gum and also get past the flour like powder on the outside of gum.

Oh snap. These retro gum cigarets have the kid's lungs in mind-they added filters. Good save novelty candy company. Good save. In the olden times, they were all straights. No filter gum cigarets for my and all previous generations. Is the powder there? You bet your sweet bippy it is. (What does that even mean?) The only other difference here is that they also offer "different" flavors. I place that in quotes because technically speaking they are really offering different colors. The flavors range from vague fruit flavor to slightly vaguer fruit flavor but I am trying to not be too critical of this treat. That would be easy. (It is a f*cking gum cigaret.) I am merely suggesting that if you are going to make some changes than maybe improve upon the quality of the treat. That is all I am saying.

I give this snack a 1-I was scared the town might flood so I poured gas into the river and set it on fire so that the fire would evaporate the water. #notgoingtobere-elected-out of 5.

Exhibit: Wha?

Oh yea! Imagine the brainstorm that took place in an adults mind to create this!

Man#1- "We need a product that involves dipping a sucker into sour powder."

Man#2-"Isn't there like a ton of those already?"

Man#1- "You are fired."

Man#2- "Please, I have a wife and kids!"

Man#1-"You heard me! Scram"

Man #3-(Which closely resembles a super computer with an ill fitting wig.) What about a toilet?

Man#1- "Damn you internet!"

Now I get that kids love gross candy. Sure, it is fun and I am not trying to take that away. I have seen gross out labs where kids make brains and boogers sure. (Who hasn't wanted a fruit punch booger experience that wasn't the result of a Capri Sun shooting out your nose?) But I never saw a toilet and a plunger and thought "Man, if only I could eat that. That would be so dope." (I have mad street cred in my dreams.)

This was a gift from our pals A and D. It was a birthday gift. Yes, I have good pals and am blessed but that isn't what we are here to talk about. Lets lift the lid on this!

First-I want to mention that you get two candy plungers. Nice. I appreciate the second plunger even though it is kinda unrealistic. I mean if you need two different strength plungers, you have some serious gastrointestinal issues that should be diagnosed by a doctor.

Secondly- They deserve extra points for actually putting some apple flavor into the plunger. So many companies put all of the flavor in the dip and that just makes me toss the dip stick and eat the powder. (Weird sentence or Meaning of Life?)

Thirdly- This experience is kinda fun. The powder stays in the bowl and the plastic toilet is easy to hold onto. I could eat this on the go. (Pun intended, Thank You) The flavor isn't too sour or too sweet and the amount of everything seems pretty balanced considering at some point you are going to eat one of the plungers. You could easily enjoy this in two sittings. I did. Which is nice and you are in control of how much you add of the sour to the sweet. Customizable candy is dope. (Sorry, I was day dreaming for a second.)

I give this candy a 4- I am a god fearing man so I built a giant stove on my roof so when he reaches down to smite me, he will burn his hand.#lastinlineforheaven-out of 5.

Exhibit: No.

Our last snack is terrifying to me and I will tell you why. I bought it at Target. Now maybe I am different from you but I can't feel good about this existing much less buying it at Target. That store, in my mind, is where we buy dish soap or clothes hangers. We don't ever say "We need groceries. Better go to Target!" I don't even eat there. Nobody should. Alas, people do and for some reason, people sure like it. Lets look at the back of the box maybe that will make me feel better.

Oh good. It is egg free. Somehow that makes me feel like they tried to make one with eggs that sat in a box unrefridgerated. That makes my everything want to vomit. Holy sh*t-LOOK AT ALL THOSE GROSS THINGS THAT THEY MAKE!!! Ok, lets get real for a second. This snack isn't "target-ing" kids. You give a kid a choice between gummy worms, chocolate bars, and these creepy facsimiliess of a cinnamon bun and a kid would never choose the latter. These are marketed toward ladies with a lot of cats and not a lot of human contact time and dudes that smell like cheese but are not french. Or just a person that needs portable non-refrigerated cinnamon buns to tide them over between actual cinnamon buns. These are evil. A 2 dollar box of evil.

Now I always imagined that candy first was flavored after fruit in an effort to persuade kids to eat actual fruit. A flawed theory I know but in my mind somebody was thinking "Man, if only there was a product that could get my kid to eat ACTUAL cinnamon buns." Ugh, this whole section of the post is creeping me out. Lets open the box.

WTF!!! First of all there is no cinnamon swirl? Those heartless liars! (I then reread the back and noticed the giant red letters saying what this snack is. I am not so smart.) Secondly, it feels fleshy. Like cold fleshy though. Have you ever touched a corpse? No? Well touch one of these and you will know exactly what a corpse feels like. I am serious. Upon opening the box a stench is released. A rancid smell only ever encountered near a Cin-a-Bon. At this point I am really freaking out. This was quickly approaching the don't eat category in my mind. On a scale of 10 being I really want to eat this and 1 being Bacon Tabs-this is Bacon Tabs.

The first thing that happens as you bite into it is it smooshes more than it crumbles. It breaks down into a pasty substance that has the mouth feel of cheap white chocolate and then as my gag reflex is really waiting in the wings it begins to taste like the uncooked center of a Cin-a-bon. It really did. I hated every second of it but I also was so disgusted that I had to buy it. The company we have to thank for making this is called "Taste of Nature". Ah yes, who doesn't remember the natural taste of cinnamon bun bites from the great outdoors. Right now, my mouth feels like it is painted in pang and anguish. Not even bubble water is helping. Sadly, it does everything it says it does. Probably the best at being this. It is garbage but it is exactly the garbage that it professes to be. I guess I am finding it difficult to fault it for that. It is like creationalists hating dinosaurs for existing. It just is what it is and it probably bring joy to someone. Right? But I'd still rather eat an actual toilet plunger with no sour powder and if I had a kid I'd buy him a pack of candy cigarets a day if it kept him from developing a cinnamon bun addiction. I give this snack a 2.5-I like cinnamon rolls but I need them on the go for my not very active but just active enough to keep me out of the mall food court lifestyle.#stilllivesinmomsbasement-out of 5.

*The candy and gum cigarets were purchased at a great candy and soda shop in PDX called FIZZ.

Thanks to my friends for the gifts and my wicked wife.