Coup De Grâce

I said yesterday that the three-day orgy of food (a.k.a. family Christmas feasts) was over, that I’d eaten enough for twelve Ethiopians and drunk enough for four Irish navvies, etc. etc. etc.

I lied.

Or rather, I forgot that we’d promised to take Brother-In-Law for some Mexican food for lunch yesterday.

And that we’d planned on dinner with Doc Russia and his exquisite wife later last night.

So of course we did both:  quesadillas, fajitas, chimichangas and so on, accompanied by the usual margaritas (at Gloria’s);  and beef short ribs, pineapple sponge cake with ice cream, and whiskey plus red wine (at Doc’s).

I now look and feel like Monty Python’s Mr. Creosote, understand how an actual python feels when it’s swallowed, say, a large pig, and I have lost the will to live.

Here’s a picture of a gun to keep you all happy:

And please excuse me while I go off and groan for a few hours.

Blown Out

Aaaaargh.  Thanksgiving, schmanksgiving;  when it comes to extended gluttony (at least in our family), nothing begins to compare with the Three Days Of Christmas.

Christmas Eve “snacks” (if you can call a long dining room table FULL of finger foods and a huge charcuterie board “snacks”, plus of course booze);  Christmas morning brunch (full English plus cinnamon rolls, and mimosas);  and then the pièce de résistance, the Boxing Day Roast Beast, with enough wine to drown a walrus.

I don’t want to see any food until at least tomorrow, and not even a sniff of booze until New Year’s Eve.

Favored Nation

As I’ve written before, I used to work from home before all the cool kids started doing it, for a tech company based in Pompano Beach, FL.  I used to fly down once a month to attend meetings, hang around and basically remind management that I was alive and doing good things for our clients, and in that time I ate out a lot at the local restaurants both in Pompano and the surrounding towns.

Some time later, I was chatting to one of the tech guys, a Cuban named Danny, and he asked me out for dinner, just the two of us because I was busy on some private skunkwork project and he wanted to get the details.  The conversation went as follows:

“Kim, do you like Cuban food?”
“Danny, I don’t like Cuban food — I fucking love it.”
“Really?”  (sounding surprised)
“Not just the food, either.  I love everything Cuban:  your food, your music — I don’t smoke, but if I did, I’d probably love your cigars as well.  I love your booze, your way of life, the way you guys dance, and your women — oh my Gawd, your women! — and if I could be reborn to any nationality and culture in the world, it would be as a Cuban, here in South Florida.”
Pause.
“Of course, your system of government absolutely sucks.”

So he took me to a little Cuban restaurant I’d never even heard of, let alone seen.  That night I fell in love with all things Cuban all over again, and Danny and I remained friends for years thereafter.

And my little skunkworks project turned into a system which later become an industry standard.

Anyway, here’s a little background Cuban music for you, and of course some local flavor:

¡Compasión!

We Knew That

And now we know:

Too bad that all this has come at a time when I can’t afford to buy the lovely stuff… but I guess I can always cut something from the budget (like a Netflix subscription) to get more meat.

And yes, I know I can’t afford the gas to get to the supermarket, either.  Which is why my apartment is walking distance from not one but two of them.

And now, if you’ll excuse me…

Cultural Tastes

This is an interesting topic only insofar as it reinforces something I’ve believed for a long time:

‘Eating with your hands is scientifically proven to improve texture and the flavour of food, as well as a whole host of health benefits. It’s something more people should know about and get to grips with.

‘Many of the world’s most popular foods are eaten with the hands – think burgers, tacos, tortilla, wraps, and wings, so why can’t other foods be as well?

‘Eating with our hands helps to make us more mindful about what we are eating and heighten our dining experience, rather than just thoughtlessly using cutlery like we always do.

‘The fork gets in the way and separates you from your senses.’

Like many South African kids of my vintage, I had a Black “mommy” — technically a live-in housemaid, but in reality much, much more than that.  When I was little more than a baby, while doing the housework Mary would carry me around on her back, held there by a blanket wrapped around herself, thus:

Put a White face on that kid, and you’d have me.  (My feet still point outwards when I walk, a common trait among people carried in this fashion.)

Anyway, I remember asking Mary why Blacks didn’t use knives and forks when they ate.  Her response was interesting:  “How do White people taste their food?”

And she was right.  It really does make a difference.

Now, I’m not going to follow the thing to its illogical conclusion like the guy does in the linked article;  some foods should only be eaten with a utensil — I draw the line when it comes to eating slushy foods like pasta and soup, for instance.  (And forget eating with mouth open, as he proposes — that’s just disgusting.)

But as he points out, we do eat many solid foods with our hands:  pizza, hamburgers and assorted sandwiches are all eaten by hand — and this extends to foods best eaten by hand, such as ribs, sausages and similar delicacies.

As much as I enjoy eating with my hands, I do draw the line at doing so in a restaurant setting (unless at a BBQ or picnic, where anything goes, as it should).  But at home?

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to make my normal breakfast of boerewors, a boiled egg and cheese chunks.

All to be eaten by hand.


And by the way, Charles Spence is a psychologist, not a scientist.

Fiddling With Beloved Institutions

Aaaargh here we go again:  yet another of the world’s greatest institutions is under attack:

British meme account No Context Brits set off a rather fiery debate on Twitter where they proposed a rather controversial question.  Along with a snap of a plated full English, they asked: “You have to lose one item. What is it?”

All the trimmings were up for the cut, including mushrooms and black pudding.  Although what first seemed like a impossible decision, many opted to rid of the tomato sauce-covered beans.

This is what happens when people have too much spare time:  they change things that need no changing.

That said, I could lose the black pudding (top right) because I seldom eat it unless I’m starving and all the other items on the plate have been devoured.  (Frankly, though, if all the items as pictured have been eaten, there’s no need to go any further, Kim you gluttonous fat pig.)

Next thing they’ll be wanting to put an automatic gearbox in an AC Cobra.  (You saw it here first.)