Just… Wrong

While wandering down an Intarwebz alley, I saw this and nearly choked on my gin:

I’m sorry, and you can call me a reactionary old fart (it has been said before), but red wine with fish and chips?  Out of a bottle with an actual label?

What the hell:  why not try that same booze with corndogs or BBQ?  Next thing, it’ll be Diet Coke with caviar, or Scotch with tacos.  Yerrrrgh.


‘Nuff said.

Not Really

In this Amazon advertisement cunningly disguised as a newspaper “article” ., the Nespresso Vertuo Next is described as the “best capsule coffee on the market”, a statement with which I take issue.

I’m not interested in starting a Keurig vs. Nespresso war (I use a Keurig), but the plain fact of the matter is that I find all the Nespresso offers so strong as to be undrinkable.  Indeed, when I was confined to quarters in Free Market Towers lo those many years ago, I was forced to use one of those Nespresso things, and discovered that the only way I could stomach the stuff was to make it “Americano-style”:  half coffee, half hot water.

As a company, Nespresso irritates me because like Starbucks, they’ve built a marketing ethos around the alleged high quality of their product which appeals very much to the wannabe social climbers of this world.  I was even more irritated when I wanted to buy Mrs. FM a Christmas present of a large selection of Nespresso pods, only to discover that I couldn’t because I wasn’t a “registered user” (i.e. an owner of the machine).  So I got her something else.

I also prefer Keurig because rather than using expensive pods, I can use one of the little “buckets” as a substitute, and fill said bucket with my own choice of coffee (Dunkin’ Donuts, or a 50-50 mix of Peet’s Light Roast and Tim Horton’s when I need to wake up quickly).

So no;  Nespresso isn’t the “best capsule coffee on the market”, either by quality or by offering.

Your mileage may differ.

I Hate This

From City Journal:

Restaurants supply physical nourishment, but their ultimate contribution to life is spiritual. From the bonds forged with dining partners to the camaraderie shared with fellow patrons to the banter exchanged with staff, dining out is a social, aesthetic experience. But QR codes are ruining it. More than a superficial nuisance, they are a sign of cultural decline.

Whenever I go to a restaurant and am confronted with this nonsense, I ignore it and demand to get a paper menu.  Usually, I get strange looks from the staff and eventually get a plain photocopied list, with no pictures of the dishes.

Suits me fine;  I know what a burger looks like, ditto schnitzel, ditto spaghetti bolognaise, ditto pretty much everything I care to eat.

Although it hasn’t happened yet, if I’m ever told that I can only order a meal through my phone, I’ll get up and walk out.  I hate using my fucking phone at the best of times, and to sit there squinting at a list of dishes in tiny type with microscopic pictures is guaranteed to put me  in a terrible mood — not the ideal customer a restaurant wants, because then I’m going to find fault with almost everything that happens thereafter.

I’ve already griped about concrete walls/floors and loud music, so I’m not going to repeat it all here.

I know all about the cost of labor and the difficulty in finding decent waiters and waitresses nowadays, and I don’t care.  I want the personal touch when I go out to eat, and you can forget that drive-through shit, too — hell, if I ever go to a fast-food restaurant (a highly infrequent event), I park the car and walk inside to place my order.

I was never a fan of “casual dining” to begin with, other than as a family/friends event, or being out of town where I have no option.  But as this move towards impersonal- and remote service seems to be growing, the less likely I’m going to be found eating out.

A pox on all of them, and on this so-called modern life.

Strange Choices

In a recent survey, Britishlanders were asked to state their favorite sandwiches, and the results were as follows:

For those Murkins unfamiliar with the term, a “ploughman’s” sandwich (cheese, ham, pickled onions or pickles, chutney, and sourdough bread) has nothing to do with ploughmen nor even farming — it was a marketing term developed in the late 1950s, and the promotion of the Ploughman’s lunch was part of a campaign to promote the sale of cheese in pubs.

As for the other choices:  Murkins will also be surprised by prawn sandwiches, but the Brits use the tiny “cocktail” or “baby” prawns, not the normal large things we eat with hot sauce Over Here.

And there has to be a special place in hell for whoever came up with putting tuna and sweetcorn on a sandwich.

Strange Foods

We’ve all had some fun in the past as we marveled at the various eclectic (ahem) dishes enjoyed by Brits (faggots, toad-in-the-hole, black pudding etc.).

Among these was the “chip butty”:

…which of course is just potato in a sandwich — carbohydrates squared, so to speak.

So if we carry the concept one step further, we get the “crisp sandwich”:

(made all the more confusing because of the chips/fries/crisps nomenclatures that divide us).

Actually, the latter sandwich is not too bad, simply because unlike here in Murka, Brit “crisps” are sold in a dizzying array of flavors — prawn, chicken, lamb, beef and so on — along with the various sub-groups (chicken tikka, steak, hamburger, sausage, lamb & mint sauce, etc.) as well as the staples such as cheese & onion and salt & vinegar.

Sometimes the crisp sandwich is not a stand-alone — you can add your usual sandwich fillings like cheese, salami and so on — with the crisps added for both flavor and crunch*.

Needless to say, this being Britishland, a whole bunch of !SCIENTISTS! decided to explore the latter to see which made the best option.  And here are the results:

Now you know.

*By the way:  the combination of bread, butter, BBQ brisket and jalapeno-flavored “chips” is a pretty tasty dish.

Celebrations And Such

I will be spending most of today at the range with Doc Russia and some Guests To Be Named Later, so tomorrow’s postings may be few — but will probably contain an extensive range report covering a multitude of guns.

I know you guys hate that kind of stuff, but there ya go.

The background to all this is that Doc is getting married on Saturday and during the week, various family and friends will be converging on this area of North Texas from all over the place, and it is therefore incumbent on Doc and me to entertain them with activities of interest:  shopping for the lady folk, and gun time for the men.  (Unlike most people in government, we have absolutely no problem in identifying women and what pleases them.)  That doesn’t mean that the men will not be shopping (e.g. for shooting gear / guns), and various of the ladies may well want to join us at one of the several shooting events planned for the upcoming week.  We don’t care, as long as everyone has a good time.

And on that topic, Doc’s bachelor party is to take place on Thursday night, so the following day may also reveal a paucity of bloggy material, depending on the number of post-debauchery hobgoblins who will take up residence in my skull in the hours that follow.

It’s going to be a tough week.  Bear with me, please.