Monday, May 18, 2009

Pool-side chicken nuggets in Vegas and more

I went to Vegas for work last week -- A little competition called Camp Organic, which is loosely based on the seven sins. My team's sin, of course, was gluttony. I have been type-cast.

On the way there, I enjoyed a drink on a plane for the first time, thanks to a drink voucher from my friend Euphenia.

When we got to the hotel, I got a $16 margarita in a bikini-clad-woman-shaped glass by the pool.

Drinking in the hot sun made me really hungry, so I got some chicken nuggets. They were really expensive and cold by the time they arrived at my lounge chair. I didn't have enough cash on me after my pricey drink, so my friend Dave let me use his credit card. The scantily clad bartender asked for my ID and I told her I didn't have it because it wasn't my card ... it belonged to the big guy by the pool. I went to go get the ID from Dave and he didn't have it. Some guy that appeared behind the bar said this was "shady as fuck" but let me proceed any way. I told the bartender where I was sitting and she brought my nuggets about 45 minutes later after admitting they had been sitting around for about 10 minutes. The buffalo sauce covered the salmonella nicely.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Eating alone

Tonight, as a 25-year-old, I ate alone in a restaurant for the first time in my entire life.

Sure, I've gone to coffee shops by myself, but that seems normal because you're supposed to look thoughtful with your weathered Sartre paperback or your MacBook.

But tonight, I ate a turkey burger and drank a Bell's Two-Hearted all by myself at the Emory in Ferndale. And it wasn't that bad.

I imagined it would be that bad, and more. As an only child I have had more than my share of "me time" so I don't really feel a need to seek opportunities in daily life to kick it by myself. When I have plans to meet friends somewhere and I show up first (which is every time) I feel really weird and like an asshole for sitting at a giant table all by myself.

Tonight, though, I NEEDED that turkey burger and no one was around. So after I took my Vespa on some errands, I climbed into that u-shaped booth to see what would happen.

First of all, like always, the server came by with two table settings. I placed my drink order and she brought it, then disappeared for some time. Apparently she just assumed I was waiting for someone. After all, I go to the Emory quite often and have never eaten alone in my life.

Eventually she came back to ask "are you okay?" (verbatim) and I said yes, I was flying solo and I would need a turkey burger to continue being okay.

Eating alone turned out not to be that bad.

I'm on my iPhone all the time any way, and tonight I learned that it wants to replace the word "doodles" with "doodies" (here's why I found out). Plus, there was no one around to swipe any of my aioli sauce.

And yes, the turkey burger was damn good. That's why I considered eating alone in the first place.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Sea Dog

The brilliant combination of a fish stick and a hot dog bun. Thanks to Eric for the tip.

[Click the photo to see it in its not-cut-off glory ... stupid template]

Friday, May 1, 2009

Mountain Dew Throwback

Note: This was written last Friday for the most part, so forgive the out-of-sync time element. - Nate

Sometimes everything in your life comes together "just right." Case-in-point: Last night, during NBC's Thursday prime time line-up, I saw a pretty-looking (and "groovy") ad for Pepsi Throwback. It played at least once per commercial break, or so it seemed.

I kept telling my girlfriend that I would have to try the stuff soon, but last night wasn't the night because we were headed to the midnight screening of Wolverine.

Fast forward to today: I found myself extremely exhausted and hardly able to digest the heavy tech specs I need to translate into a truck website, so I walked down to the kitchen to see what the vending machines had to offer. I almost went for plain old Mountain Dew, but then a familar-looking label caught my eye. It was the Mountain Dew logo of my youth, adorning a 20-ounce bottle of Mountain Dew Throwback. Sure, it's not Pepsi throwback, but I try to avoid Pepsi at all costs under normal circumstances.

The logo also reminds me of the era during which my youngest uncle was known to subsist on a diet of only Mountain Dew and Captain Crunch.

A quick side note: There are about three consecutive days every year during which time I crave Mountain Dew, and then I quickly get over it. Last week was that time for me in 2009. I sure hoped the natural sugar in Mountain Dew Throwback would be enough to win me over and convince me to finish the bottle.

Shortly after I opened the bottle that had been residing in slot C6 in the office vending machine, one of my oh-so-fun meeting marathons kicked off. Luckily for the first one, my role was minor so I had time to reflect on Mountain Dew Throwback (MDT from now on) and make some notes.

MDT definitely tastes different, and I would expect this to be even more pronounced if you are a person who Does the Dew on a daily basis. It's not as overwhelmingly sweet, thanks to the natural cane sugar used in place of high fructose corn syrup ("and/or sugar"). There is also not much of an aftertaste.

I, personally, am a fan of the cane sugar craze and I am known to use Sugar in the Raw in my coffee at Panera and I usually steal a few packets for use in my weekend coffee from the New York Bagel by my house. I'll also take this opportunity to tell you that I hate Splenda and if I see you using it, I will become slightly skeptical of you but we can still be friends.

Due to the turned-down sweetness, I could probably drink MDT more often, but the next question was, does MDT pack the same punch?

Well, it certainly got my anxious leg a-kickin' for my first meeting, but shortly into my second meeting I was nodding off as badly the time I fell asleep at a red light on my way to work this one time.

Anyway, Mountain Dew Throwback is (to me at least) more drinkable because it is less sweet, but it surely can't contend with midnight movie exhaustion, so it misses its target audience right there.

And I didn't finish the bottle.