How Did We Ever Live Without This?

Ignoring the unarguable fact that this stuff is ugly, why would you want to eat your plate after a meal? And notice what it is made of — hardtack. I remember reading stories of sailing ships and the awful food they had after the fresh food was eaten. Hardtack played an important role in the hatred of shipboard life.

Starbucks, You Have Got To Be Kidding!

Maybe I’m stupid, but I don’t understand the point of retraining all of your employees in the niceties of customer service and focusing anew on the quality of the product…by locking out all of your customers during a normal business day. I worked for a big corporation for a long time, and our many, many training sessions, seminars, conferences and God knows how many other stupidly named classes never interfered with the job at hand: you know — taking care of the customers!

I avoid Starbucks coffee because I don’t like it. It is over-roasted and very plain. But in a pinch it is a convenient place for some pretty good baked goods and hot cocoa for the little brats. But it has to be open for me to spend my money!

Alien V

This has very little to do with anything. But I love the Alien movies (not number 3), and I got a chuckle out of this.

“Cooking With Aphrodisiacs” A Review (But Not Mine!)

James Lileks is one of my favorite bloggers, in part because he has, on occasion, made me laugh out loud. He writes his own stuff on his blog, but also has a real job working for others. One of those is a blog on a site called Smartflix, which seems to be a large collection of instructional videos; stuff that probably can’t be found at the corner video store. Anyway, he wrote a review of a video called “Cooking With Aphrodisiacs,” and it is definitely worth a few seconds.

A Reader Writes (about the glass situation)

I have one of these. I received it as a Hanukkah gift. I progressed through the following stages:
1) not understanding how to hold it,
2)understanding how to hold it but feeling too awkward to use it in front of guests,
3) using it while mocking it in front of guests,
4) realizing just how damn effective it is, and the final stage:
5) feeling smug and superior to all the losers holding stemmed glasses.
The only downside is that, as the ad claims, it does accentuate the flaws that might go unnoticed if one were to consume the wine from a jelly jar or straight out of the bottle. Still…makes a great holiday gift.

Creeping Foodie Pomposity

First it was salt. Then it was a snooty, wine-snob tasting glass that, unfortunately, works really well. It was a gift from my sister and her life partner, so I would never criticize its function if it were crappy. I just wouldn’t say anything. But this thing really works! It is awkward to hold, and difficult to pick up without defeating the purpose of the design (it keeps the warming effect of your hand to a minimum), but the shape concentrates the aroma of the wine as you drink, so you get a blast from both taste and smell. But I earned my wine stripes while drinking from $1 glasses, or more frequently, glasses that were given to me by wineries, back in the old days when wine tasting wasn’t like going to Disneyland. So I feel like I am betraying my roots.

When I appear in my kitchen wearing a monogrammed, double-breasted chef’s jacket, and a toque — somebody shoot me…please!