Tuesday, August 11, 2009

A Tale of Two Chickens, 1

Dear reader, I am a newlywed.

The main thing I've learned about marriage so far is that I don't know anything about marriage. I think it falls into the category of something you only learn by doing. And there are lots of surprises...

Recently, my lovely husband Adam came home at lunchtime. "Baby, I got you a present! It's in the car." he said. "We can build it together!"
Aww man, I thought. That doesn't sound like earrings. "Can I eat lunch before we build anything?" I asked.
"Well come to the car and see it!" He was lit up with little boy excitement so I walked to the car and he opened the passenger side. On the floor were two very tall paper bags, closed at the top, with little slits on the side.
"What is it?" I asked. "Listen," he replied. I leaned in and as I got closer one of the bags began to shake, which got the other one shaking and then I heard it: bwak bwak bwak. Bwak bwaaaak, bwak bwak.
Oh God, I thought. Not chickens. "Are they chickens?" I asked.
"Yes!" So jubilant. "My mom had chickens when I was growing up, they're great! I like the sounds they make, and baby I wanted you to have fresh eggs. The coop is in the back, we can build it together!"
I was very suspicious about this turn of events, but tried to focus on the greater good. And I did like the idea of fresh eggs. My fantastic Great-Grandma Pat had neighbors who gave her eggs from their chickens, and I remembered the bright orange yolks and better taste. Ok, I'm in.
Plus, I got to name them. Dear reader, meet Betty Lou and Tiina Fey.
Betty Lou is the lighter one. They're Rhode Island Reds and were raised together. According to Adam they're pretty friendly chickens. We decided they'd be free range. Though their coop is nice, all living creatures prefer to run around, stretch their wings. We'll probably have to get their wings clipped so they don't fly over the fence. I hope it doesn't hurt them.
We were worried about Sam the Dog, but it looks like he's too old to catch them. He growled as they first walked by and tried to lunge at them, but by the time he stood up they were three feet away. Then Tiina Fey jumped on his head and pecked at him and he barked and ran off. I think they'll be fine.
So please join us on our fowl adventure! Oh lord, here we go...

Monday, August 03, 2009

Pringles Restaurant Cravers: Terrible, Terrible Food

Dear reader, a confession: I love trashy junk food. Sure, I'm happy to discuss the ephemeral notes of clover in stinky Époisses cheese or each ingredient in your favorite sauce, but I also lust for Bugles. And the awesome Snyder's chips of my youth, which came in flavors like Steak & Onion or Kosher Dill. Delish. No raised nose here, bring it.
But I abhor bad trash.
I was in the grocery store a few weeks ago, starving for a snack to get me through rush hour on the 10 freeway and I happened upon Pringles' "Restaurant Cravers" Mozzarella Sticks & Marinara chips. I thought to myself, what genius marketing! We're in a recession, people are eating out less; they can munch on these and pretend they're at Applebee's or Friday's (which I despise. Again, bad trash is no good.).
I make it to my car before I tear the can open, and what awaits? They taste like Pringles sprinkled with powdered Campbell's tomato soup. There's an empty tomato note and that's it. No cheesy goodness, no hit of oregano or spike of garlic.
After a handful, all I desperately wanted was to take the nearest exit and go to a restaurant to eat real food. Their marketing completely backfired, and instead became a cruel taunt: No restaurant for you, commuter! Only metallic tomato powder chips! Suffer.
What a waste of $1.73. Bad trash!