Posts Tagged ‘Food’
Leland Carlson is sitting in his Washington, D.C. apartment watching the rain outside his window and speculating what a dull man in Southern California would find amusing. “They might like to go to Venice Beach and watch the tide come in,” he says. “That sounds fun to do.”
Carlson, a 77-year-old retired tax attorney, is the founder of the Dull Men’s Club. The club is a loosely organized online community where men can share thoughts and experiences about ordinary things. There’s a website packed with articles on “dullites,” a shop featuring club swag and a calendar with various meet-ups in England and the U.S. along with celebrations of things like National Pencil Day.
Carlson says it’s remained a men’s group because he considers women “too exciting” (although those that appreciate dull men aren’t turned down). The club is a place to feel free from the pressures of being trendy, and it’s a place where no one cares about fancy cars, buying a bigger house or going on exotic trips…
Carlson wanted somewhere for “old farts” like him to discuss duck ponds and hubcap collections. He had no idea his Dull Men’s Club would launch a movement. From MEL Magazine (via Narratively) “The International Society For Men Who Love Being Boring.”
As we consider a nap, we might recall that it was on this date in 1930 that General Foods put the first nationally-branded individually-packaged frozen foods– “Birds Eye Frosted Foods”– on sale in 18 retail stores in Springfield, Mass. to test the market. General Foods (recently renamed from the Postum Corporation) had acquired the frozen food business from Clarence Birdseye; inspired by seeing Canadians thawing and eating naturally frozen fish, Birdseye had invented the category in the early 1920s. The initial Birds Eye line featured 26 items, including 18 cuts of frozen meat, spinach and peas, a variety of fruits and berries, blue point oysters, and fish fillets.
The president of Iceland has made a bold, shocking statement about a Canadian invention.
President Guoni Johannesson recently told a group of high school students during a Q&A that he was fundamentally opposed to pineapple on pizza — and that’s not all. He went on to say if he could, he would ban pineapple as a pizza topping…
we decided to call up the authority on all things pineapple and pizza. Canadian Sam Panopoulos, 82, of London, Ont., is credited with inventing the Hawaiian pizza.
Here’s a slice of his conversation with guest host Helen Mann…
The CBC interviews the man who topped pizza with pineapple: “Canadian inventor of Hawaiian pizza defends pineapple after Iceland’s president disses fruit topping.”
* Henry Rollins
As we reach for the red pepper flakes, we might recall that it was on this date in 1989 that Jack Dietz (son of “Watermelon King” Bob Dietz) set the still-standing world’s record for watermelon seed spitting– 66 feet 11 inches. Contests are held throughout the U.S. each year in an attempt to best Jack.
Over his forty-year career, he has become a shaman of coffee. He’s known among third-wave coffee producers as a prophet of the terroir-focused, light-roast way of life, a man who gives three-hour PowerPoint presentations detailing every facet of the production process, and the rare boomer in a scene made up mostly of people who were either in grade school or not even born when George opened his first shop. People who have worked with him, or seen him speak, or run into him in Ethiopia or Guatemala (“at origin,” in coffee-world lingo), talk about his enthusiasm, his taste, his curiosity, his strong opinions on coffee processing. But mostly they talk about his pragmatically mystical conviction that a higher truth of coffee exists, and that we can figure out how to get to it…
* David Lynch
As we take it black, we might recall that it was on this date in 1931 that the Dr. Miles Medicine Company of Elkhart, Indiana introduce Alka-Seltzer, an effervescent combination of aspirin for headache relief, fevers, and body pain and bi-carbonate of soda to neutralize acids and settle the stomach. (Twenty years later, Miles introduced their “Speedy” mascot.)
“The man who invented doritos has passed away at the age of 97. He asked to be buried with the creators of Fritos and Cheetos in a variety pack”*…
All told, there are 26 separate ingredients in Doritos Nacho Cheese Tortilla Chips…
While most of these individual ingredients aren’t all that bad for us, they’re a cheese-dust-covered grenade when consumed together. “The more you mess with food, the more you’re demanding your immune system to figure out what the heck all these new things are — and it can make mistakes,” Shanahan says. For instance, studies show that over-processed foods have contributed to the rise in food allergies in Western countries.
Weirdly, while the ingredients that sound like they’d be unhealthy (i.e., disodium inosinate) aren’t really all that bad, the ingredients we think we recognize (i.e., vegetable oils) are slowly waging the real war on our insides. “The main thing people need to pay attention to are the first few ingredients in these foods, like vegetable oil,” Shanahan urges. “Vegetable oils alone can cause diabetes, and they don’t even contain any sugar.”
All 26 ingredients in America’s favorite cheese-flavored chip, singly and as a whole, explained: “What’s in This?: Doritos Nacho Cheese Tortilla Chips.”
* Jimmy Fallon
As we wipe our fingers, we might send apocalyptic birthday greetings to The Reverend Thomas Robert Malthus; he was born on this date in 1766. An English cleric and scholar, he was influential both in political economy and demography. He is best remembered for his 1798 essay on population growth, in which he argued that population multiplies geometrically and food arithmetically; thus, whenever the food supply increases, population will rapidly grow to eliminate the abundance, leading inevitably to disastrous results – famine, disease and/or war… a conclusion that remains controversial to this day.
For years culinary detectives have been on the chili pepper’s trail, trying to figure out how a New World import became so firmly rooted in Sichuan, a landlocked province on the southwestern frontier of China. “It’s an extraordinary puzzle,” says Paul Rozin, a University of Pennsylvania psychologist, who has studied the cultural evolution and psychological impact of foods, including the chili pepper…
How the chili pepper got to China (and lots of other stops around the world): “Why Revolutionaries Love Spicy Food.
* “Philosophers have often looked for the defining feature of humans–language, rationality, culture and so on. I’d stick with this: Man is the only animal that likes Tabasco sauce” – Yale psychologist Paul Bloom, quoted in The New York Times
As we remind ourselves that water doesn’t help, we might recall that it was on this date in 1858 that John L. Mason of New York was issued U.S. patent No. 22,186 for a Glass Jar, “Improvement in Screw-Neck Bottles”– forever after known as “Mason jars.” That same year he also invented the first screw top salt shaker.
How the thing that makes everything delicious began: “The History of Butter.”
* Jacques Pepin
As we spread it thick, we might spare a thought for Carl Paul Gottfried Linde; he died on this date in 1934. An engineer, inventor, and businessman, he discovered an effective refrigeration cycle and invented the first industrial-scale air separation and gas liquefaction processes that he used to create the first effective refrigeration system. Linde also founded what is now known as The Linde Group, the world’s largest industrial gases company, and ushered the creation of the supply chain of industrial gases as a profitable line of businesses… so it is him we can thank for the wide-spread availability of butter (among so many other perishables).