Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Why Elvis Got Fat

I've met quite a few interesting foods living in the South, but fried pickles are surely my favorite. I discovered them when I first moved here and thought they were just so-so, but I wasn't sold until just recently when I tried them at Gus's. Of course, anything they fry at Gus's is sure to make you fall in love with it, so I just had to recreate these tasty little spears at home - just to make sure they really had any place in my heart. You'll find that in the South they are made differently depending on where you go. Breadcrumb coated or beer battered. I'm partial to the breadcrumb coating because the beer batter becomes slightly soggy and I like my fried food crispy. The only thing I really like beer battered is the Fish part of Fish n' Chips. You also have the option of pickle chips or pickle spears. I like the spears because the warm pickle is what makes this treat so tasty, and you just don't get enough pickle with the spears. But if the chips are the only thing available, they hold their own.

It's quite frying anything. Take a saute pan, add about a 1/2 inch of oil to it and turn it on medium-high heat. Whisk an egg in one bowl, add some flour with salt and pepper in another and finally add some Italian seasoned breadcrumbs in a third. Once the oil is hot enough (you can tell by adding a pinch of the breadcrumb mixture, if it bubbles up, it's ready) dip your spear first into the flour, then into the egg wash and then coat in the breadcrumb mixture (the more coating you can get to stick, the better in my opinion). Place the pickles in the hot oil and fry for about 1 minute. Flip the pickle carefully, trying not to lose any of that crispy coating (not an easy task) and cook for another minute. Then place the pickles on paper towels to sop up any excess oil and you're ready to munch!

There is one odd thing I find about this dish - I hate ranch dressing. Can't stand it. But it's the only way to eat fried pickles. Something about the tartness of the pickle and the seasoning of the ranch really brings this all together. If you're skeptical, just try it. Hell you can fry up a single spear and if you don't like it, you're out 1 pickle. Big freakin' deal! TRY IT! I'm telling you, they're wonderful!

Friday, August 22, 2008

Wonder Drug World

I wrote this a while ago, but it's still one of my favorites:

You know, my sister is right. Her 5-year-old daughter shouldn't know what erectile dysfunction is at her age. But she does. Welcome to the Drug Age, where whatever your ailment, weve got something for you to swallow.

And if we don't, we'll make it, because whatever it will be, it will sell, and even if it kills thousands before we rip it off the market, we'll still make millions off it.

Can't wake up in the morning? Drive to your nearest convenience store and look no further than the drink section, where you'll find an array of liquid crack, which of course, is packaged and targeted at young children. For you more sophisticated legal crack users, there's always a double-shot of espresso in a can. Caution: Overuse of stimulants can cause sexual dysfunction, but never fear....

Just haven't been in the mood lately, too much Red Bull? Or is your hubby having problems getting a chubby? Another visit to your friendly doctor will get you and your spouse a one-way ticket to the bedroom for a few hours with your pretty, little, blue Viagra prescription. Caution: an erection lasting more than a few HOURS is not normal. Really?? DUH!

Children aren't paying attention at school? Why a simple visit to your pediatrician is sure to gain you a quickie prescription for Ritalin. Note: Do not call your doctor with concerns that your child is acting like a zombie. Isn't that why we REALLY wrote you that prescription in the first place? So that YOU the parent could deal with your children? And dont worry, children not wanting to eat anymore is a common side-effect of Ritalin, it should save you on future grocery expenses!

Arent meeting quotas at work? Adderall is your answer. Crack in a pill. The boss won't suspect a thing. AND, its basically doing cocaine without the worry of failing a drug test. HOORAY! Caution: Actually doing work at work may cause promotions, pay raises, more work to be distributed, or may make your lazy ass actually accomplish something. Take wisely.

Trying to lose a few inches? A trip to your neighborhood Walgreens will uncover some good old trusty Dexatrim or the oh-so-popular-with-bimbos Trim Spa Baaaby! Note to women: Men like women with curves. If it's girls youre trying to impress, join a sorority or become a lesbian and continue taking this drug. It's women who apparently aren't happy with the bodies they were born with. Not enough research (Cosmo) has been done (Glamour) to determine (Mademoiselle) why this is (Hollywood).

Nervous about that big presentation you got suckered into giving? Pop a tasty Xanax. Caution: tissues to clean up involuntary drooling associated with Xanax are not included with your prescription.

Depressed over that break-up with that guy who was oh-so-right? Remember, the one that you met in a bar while completely intoxicated, but were determined to save? Dont worry, take your pick: Paxil, Prozac or Zoloft. Hell, get all three and take the one that matches your outfit that day. Remember: Crying it off only makes your face swell and eating ice cream will probably add 2 pounds per week. You'll have to have a back up of Trim Spa during this spell.

We live in a society that is no longer patient enough to deal with simple problems. A good cry isnt good enough anymore. Time heals all. What? In OUR society? Time is of the essence. Were running out of time. What time IS it? There isn't enough time in the day. THESE are the only cliches about time that we know anymore. We want solutions and we want them fast. We're no longer willing to sit down and speak with a specialist, unless that person is going to prescribe a remedy. We dont want to weigh the options anymore; we're content to get our answers in small orange-colored bottles.

My niece and nephew are growing up in Generation Medicine Cabinet. Generation: Here Take This. They are the ones that will have to wake up and decide whether or not they can handle a situation or whether or not the pressure is something they can deal with on their own. Much like my sister and I did. The only difference is that their lives are littered with non-stop advertisements for drugs and quick fixes that consume what they read, their airwaves, their roadways and their lives. They will have to choose to take life with a grain of salt or take it with a little white pill. And THAT is the pill that Im currently having trouble swallowing.