Saturday, July 3, 2010
The Fat From 50 States -- Part I
During my 3 1/2 years in the lightly-read blog business, I can't ever remember wrestling with such an extended bout of writer's block. Last night, Mrs. Bootleg and a girlfriend caught an early-evening screening of Eclipse -- a little old black woman in a theater full of squealing teenagers -- yet, somehow, I couldn't "find the funny". I still haven't started my Oakland A's "month in review" for June, as their precipitous 30-day fall from first place to third place bummed me out a lot more than it should've considering I picked the A's to win 73 games and finish last back in March.
And, the latest Jalen news? I'm told he was crying at school earlier in the week, because...a little girl refused to give him a hug. When my six-year-old is bringing the blog fodder on a silver platter, I shouldn't be staring blankly at my laptop. Thankfully, m'man Other Joe supplied a link to The 50 Fattiest Foods in the States in the comments of my last post. And, then, earlier this evening, TBG reader Ms. Elena got the ball rolling with a few state-by-state comments.
Just like that, my writer's block was broken! Thanks, Joe and Elena. As for the rest of my readers: what the hell were you waiting for? This week's back-to-back TBG reviews of 30-second commercials were SO obviously a cry for help. Come on, y'all.
Now, let's see how quickly we can blow through the representative pig-outs of all 50 states. Follow along with the above link, won't you?
Alabama -- Bacon-Wrapped Meatloaf: My mother occasionally made her meatloaf with a bacon blanket, but I prefer Mrs. Bootleg's "three-meat, triple-threat match meat loaf". Ground sirloin, ground turkey and ground pork with a tangy, homemade red sauce. Eat it, Alabama. Verdict: Don't Want
Alaska -- Eskimo Ice Cream: Variations of the recipe include Crisco, reindeer fat and/or seal oil. Look, I know I'm the guy who ate the fried butter, but still... Verdict: Don't Want
Arizona -- Quadruple-Bypass Burger: I think I saw this on Man vs. Food. Con: 8,000 calories. Pro: Red onions, which I love! Verdict: Want
Arkansas -- Catfish: Hey, thanks for participating, Arkansas! This isn't even the legendary "General Sherman" catfish from Catfish Lake. If "The Natural State" agrees to serve mine with cornmeal breading, a bottle of hot sauce AND remove that tail section, we're cool. Verdict: Want
California -- In-N-Out Double Double: This is as uninspired as Arkansas' selection. It's an absolutely acceptable burger, but unworthy of its universal praise and fanatical following. A better selection would've been "any hole-in-the-wall Mexican restaurant at 3:00 AM". Verdict: Had It Before
Colorado -- Jack & Grill's 7-Pound Breakfast Burrito: Ingredients: 7 potatoes, 12 eggs, one pound of ham, a whole onion, cheese, and chili. Verdict: WANT~!
Connecticut -- 2-Footlong Hot Dog: Back in the '80s, I thought I'd discovered the greatest hot dog ever invented. I'm willing to concede its 25-year reign may be coming to an end. Verdict: Want
Delaware -- Deep-Fried Pastry: Crabmeat, cheddar cheese and mayonnaise, you say? Unfortunately, "deep-fried" sounds a lot less delicious to me today than it did a week ago. Verdict: Don't Want
Florida -- Empanadas: BIG fan. Before she broke my heart -- twice! -- I dated a girl from South America whose mother made these every weekend. I love Mrs. Bootleg, but THIS is the one that got away. (Don't look at me like that. Those were some good-ass empanadas.) Verdict: Want
Georgia -- Luther Burger: I had the chicken version at the San Diego Fair a few years ago. Let's go out on a limb and predict that the addition of bacon, fried eggs and replacing the lean chicken with a greasy hamburger will incrementally improve this meal. Verdict: Want
Hawaii -- Loco Moco: This was also featured on Man vs. Food. I visited Hawaii in 2007 and had a great time. No disrespect to the locals, but white rice, a beef patty and brown gravy sounds like something my mom would scrape together on the 13th day between my dad's two-week paychecks. Verdict: Don't Want
Idaho -- Bacon-Bleu Cheese Dressing: One the one hand, some of America's most virulent racists reside there. On the other, the glorious union of bacon and blue cheese -- two foods of different backgrounds and colors. "If I can change, you can change." Verdict: Want
Illinois -- Deep-Dish Pizza: I'm amused by the "regional pizza wars". It's fine to prefer thin crust to deep dish and vice versa. But, if you're refusing to eat deep dish on the grounds of geographic loyalties...I'll ask The Pope to pray for you. Verdict: Want
Indiana -- Fried-Brain Sandwich: 15 years ago, I ordered the tacos de sesos from the Mexican restaurant just up the street from my apartment. I tossed it after one bite. It's 2010, America. Stop eating the whole goddam animal. Verdict: Don't Want
Iowa -- Hot Beef Sundae: Ingredients: Mashed potatoes, roast beef, beef gravy, cheddar cheese and a Roma tomato on top. And, it's served in the shape of an ice cream sundae? Steal this idea, San Diego Fair! Hurry! Verdict: Want
Kansas -- Charred Ends: These are the burnt, fatty ends of barbecued brisket. While it certainly sounds delicious, is THIS what you want representing your state, Kansas? Verdict: Don't Want
Kentucky -- KFC's Double-Down Sandwich: Kentucky is represented by...KFC? KFC doesn't even use the word "Kentucky" in its name, anymore. Did Kentucky fail to submit a legitimate entry prior to the deadline? Verdict: Already Ate It
Louisiana -- Beignet: I've got some bayou-born co-workers who swear this is the Lord's dessert. But, I'm kind of underwhelmed by fried dough and powdered sugar. This wouldn't be the first thing from New Orleans that failed to resonate with me. Verdict: Don't Want
Maine -- Lobster Roll: True story - I've never had lobster. Oh, I've had "lobster" tacos and burritos and the like, but those are made with squat lobster, which isn't actually a lobster, at all. Would covering real lobster in mayonnaise and shoving it inside a roll cheapen my "first time"? I'm OK with that. Verdict: Want
Maryland -- Smith Island Cake: The official state dessert of Maryland is just a 10-layer chocolate cake. Meh. I'd wreck a 10-layer crab cake right off the Richter scale, though. Verdict: Don't Want
Massachusetts -- Chocolate Chip Cookie: You want this one, Elena? "While I'm proud that Massachusetts gave the world the chocolate-chip cookie (it may even bump the Pixies back to our second-greatest achievement), I'm amazed that they couldn't come up with something worse. I mean, Dunkin' Donuts started here, for crying out loud." Verdict: You Heard Her
Michigan -- BLT: One pound of bacon on a single sandwich? At the risk of further angering the Earl of Sandwich, I'm just gonna say it...that's almost...gross. Verdict: Don't Want (Sorry, Thai...)
Minnesota -- Dairy Queen's Flame-Thrower GrillBurger: This commercial aaaand this commercial pretty much sealed the deal for me. Verdict: Want
Mississippi -- Mud Pie: Grazing through Jalen's Halloween candy and/or absconding with bite-sized Butterfingers and Baby Ruths from the office of our Director's executive secretary is enough of a chocolate fix for me. Verdict: Don't Want
Missouri -- 2/3-Pound Hardee's Monster Thickburger: So, in the state that's home to iconic barbecue locations like Gates and Arthur Bryant's, this list opts for a giant chain burger that can be purchased in every Hardee's and Carl's Jr. in America? This rant seems like a good place to stop for the evening. Verdict: Don't Want
Next: The other states!