Wednesday, June 18, 2008
Can Anything Top Last Year's Fried Rattlesnake?
As of this writing, I weigh in at a bloated 178.8 lbs.
A week's worth of restaurant eating and bar drinking with a vacationing "That Nick'a Guy" and his lovely Nick'a wife has me on my first concerted effort to eat better since the mid-90s. Back then, I successfully eschewed red meat, fried foods and sweets to the tune of a 32-inch waist, a 160-pound frame and a frighteningly transparent rib cage.
This helpful artist's rendition captures the essence of That Bootleg Guy – 1995.
By the end of the decade, I was up to 170 pounds, as appetizers and dessert went from a very rare restaurant option to a mandatory meal addition…oh, and Taco Bell invented the Chalupa. I stayed right around there for a few more years, until the unexpectedly early arrival of Baby Bootleg. The boy spent five weeks in the neo-natal intensive care unit, which turned "dinner" into "the shortest drive-thru line".
(Fun Fact: I went to see Jalen in the hospital every night, except for one – a Thursday in which I had to finish my 411 Friday Music News Bootleg column. Shockingly, Mrs. Bootleg gave me pass for the evening…not-so-shockingly, she's never let me forget this.)
And, so began the rapid ascent to 180 pounds. Right after Christmas 2006, I peaked at 190, but with a little help from this, I've been right around a buck-eighty ever since.
I'd like to accomplish one of two goals: (1) 170 lbs. or (2) 175 lbs. with semi-regular visits to the gym. Now, don't worry…this isn't turning into one of those blogs. In fact, the whole point of this post is that the San Diego Fair is back to sabotage my well-intended dietetic efforts.
Here's last year's super-sized food report to refresh your memories.
This year, an all-new slew of food options has me anticipating my appetite in advance of The Bootleg Family's return to the Fairgrounds on Thursday, June 26.
Category #1 – The Must Eats - Deep Fried White Castle Sliders, Deep Fried Macaroni n' Cheese on a Stick, 14-inch corn dog
Last year, I wasn't impressed with their foot-long hot dog. This year, I'm ditching the too-long bun, adding two more inches, drenching it in batter and frying it up. In my industry, we call this a "net gain". The sliders are generating a local buzz out here similar to last year's Krispy Kreme Chicken Sandwich. As you all know, in California, hype is never misplaced.
Category #2 – The Might Eats (if I have room after the above, the funnel cake and the fried Coca-Cola) - Street tacos, Koolickle, deep fried frog legs
I can't lie…the "Koolickle" (a dill pickle marinated in Kool-Aid) intrigues me and I don't even like pickles. Meanwhile, I've always wanted to try frog legs. Mind you, I won't go out of my way to make room in my stomach for them (I'll wait to poop at home), but if they come with the right dipping sauce, I'm all over 'em.
Category #3 – The Ain't Gonna Eats - Grilled Caesar salad, deep fried SPAM®, chipotle chicken sandwich
Can't say I'm feeling that salad description ("slightly grilled lettuce wrapped around salad veggies")…I mean, is there any way to deep fry the end result? No? Pass. SPAM® and I still aren't talking after our falling out in Hawaii. And, at last report, one could get a chipotle chicken sandwich at any restaurant in America, since "chipotle" became the food marketing equivalent of "extreme" back in 2003.
New Goal: stay under 200 lbs.