Monday, February 28, 2005

California Expatriate Problem #1 - Culinary Isolation

I’ve grown accustomed to blowing off my tastebuds with spicy/tasty food, especially Mexican food. Because of this, moving from LA to Pittsburgh plunged me into major ethnic food withdrawal. Once the shaking and hallucinations stopped, I was awoke in a city where mentioning the word ‘spicy’ makes local tongues spontaneously combust. Branded as a 'spicy food lover', I’m forced to listen to stories that begin with, “I remember the last time I ate spicy food…” People, I'm not a tongue psychotherapist. I don't care if your tastebuds have 'baggage'. Vamanos.

With a lot of hunting, Mateo and I have found tasty Indian, Chinese and Thai places willing to make things hot enough to penetrate the calluses on our tongues, but no decent Mexican food. We’ve received countless recommendations for ‘really awesome’ Mexican restaurants, only to find a dude squeezing out $6 guacamole from a tube. Yuck.

This leaves three options:

1.) The Import/Export Game

Each time we visit LA, we fill a giant cooler with carne asada (yummy marinated steak) and salsa and take it back to Pittsburgh. This backfired once when, upon our return, the cooler came down the luggage ramp drenched in blood-red salsa. The contents of the cooler had exploded, tossing 3 gallons of salsa around the luggage hold of the plane. It was on other people's bags and was dripping down the luggage ramp. People were pissed ("you wrecked my Gucci!") and curious ("is there a hacked-up body in your blood-drenched cooler?") We were desperate enough to lick the sides of the cooler, but the mob was getting angry, so we just ran. We got home and Mateo very nearly burst into tears.

2.) Traveling Abroad

In our search for the very best Mexican food, we permit ourselves no compromise. No expense is spared. We go to Cleveland.

In Cleveland is Luchita’s, home to some of the finest Mexican food I’ve ever put in my mouth. The restaurant is staffed by a giant family headed up by an awesome abuelita (grandma) who runs the kitchen and her children with an iron fist. Grandma in kitchen = happy stomach.

We use the trip as an excuse to visit the supermercado (Mexican food supermarket) in Cleveland. The next closest supermercado is in Chicago. Here’s a shot of me among the chicharrones (that’s fried pork skins, people):

3.) Making It From Scratch

Though I can make a pretty mean tortilla from scratch, let’s be real. I am NOT the cook in this house. I’m genetically incapable of making good food. My mother knew how to prepare exactly 10 meals, and has cooked them same consecutive order since 1963. Mateo learned quickly that unless he wanted to eat cereal and quesadillas for the next 60 years, he had to pick up a skillet. And he's good! Yeah, I'm lucky.

Combined with good carne asada and salsa (#1) and some tasty beans and nopales (supermercado in #2) we can make a pretty nice approximation of a tasty Mexican meal.

Viva la Comida Mexicana!
Random Fruit Fact: Tunas

No, not the fish. Cactus fruit. It tastes so sweet and nice...and there's no mercury in these tunas.

“Cactus fruit appears to have a number of health benefits. Dr. Helmut Sinzinger of the Medical University in Vienna, Austria, and his team found that a study group made up of healthy volunteers, patients with metabolic syndrome (pre-diabetes) and those with familial hyper- cholesterolemia who ate cactus from a living plant for four weeks showed an increase in glucose tolerance and decrease in oxidation injury, as well as possible "anti-thrombotic action.''

See? They’re good for you! Learn more about sweet, sweet tunas, here.

God, there’s drool in my keyboard.

Posted by Spurious Nurse at 2/28/2005 07:25:00 PM 7 comments

Saturday, February 26, 2005

Honkey Fro

Does anyone still feel the fro? I had this major thing for dudes with freaky hair when I was in grade school.

My 1st love (who didn't know I was alive) was this kid from Trinidad, and his fro was hoooooot. Now, don't get me wrong, I've had crushes on a veritable cornucopia of fros, regardless of race, sexual orientation and age, but Mr. Trinidad was tied for the title of 'Object of Amanda's 2nd Grade Affections' with some kid who sat behind me and was the spitting 8 year-old image of that dude from Greatest American Hero:

His name was Kirk, and in my 2nd grade minds eye, he looked closer to this:

I had a super secret crush on Kirk until he went to another school in the 5th grade, which gave me more time to focus on my Trinidad Fox. In high-school I heard from a friend that Kirk's fro got all straight and brown when he hit puberty, flipping the off-switch of my latent crushiness.

Bear in mind, I don't think I actually spoke with Kirk or Mr. Trinidad at any time. I just wanted to gaze upon their fluffy lushness from afar, like watching birds at the aviary with fantastic plumage.

OK, I've posted a picture of an 80's action figure and a samurai movie. I've officially taken up residence in Geekville.

Believe it or not, IIIII'm walking on air....

Random Fruit Fact: The Winter Banana Apple

This is my favorite fruit ever. EVER.

"This fine dessert apple has a yellow skin with a natural waxy coating. The Winter Banana is modest, in light of all this praise, it blushes reddish-pink."

Every year my family goes to get winter banana apples, here.

Posted by Spurious Nurse at 2/26/2005 12:09:00 PM 4 comments

Friday, February 25, 2005

Damn Old Movie Night - Lady Snowblood

I initially didn't classify this movie as a 'Damn Old Movie' because it only came out in 1974. I then realized that it's only one year older than I am, and I'm pretty damn old myself. I'm taking Lady Snowblood down with me.

This movie rocks the house. (Thank you for lending it to us from your magical shelf of good shit, Abe!)

I've seen a a few 1970's Japanese history/action flicks in my day ( I am pretty damn old, after all). But this one's better, because the person doing all the cheezy-1970's-killing is a balls-deep girl in a pretty kimono. Bad folks killed her dad and brother, and raped her mom. She's pissed.

It's like Lone Wolf and Cub (a bad ass series where an ex-samurai and his infant son wreck the hell out of everyone), but with a kick ass feminist touch. Hooray!

I noticed that if you're out killing for money or revenge in 17th century Japan, you're not just bad news, you're 'from hell', or 'demons', or 'a princess of the underworld'. This isn't just how you're perceived, it's what you call yourself. How fucking rad would it be to wake up every morning, open your 17th century Blackberry and see:

10:00AM Fighting fuckers while I walk the crossroads of hell
12:00PM Lunch at the River Styx
3:00PM Meet up with the Masters of Death and slice their sorry asses for 500 ryu

Why don't crappy junior-high school guidance counselors give you aptitude tests for this, huh?I need to go to assassin school or something. I've already got the crossroads of hell in my head...(Headache is still here, boooo!)
Random Fruit Fact: The Nectarine

The Nectarines are a band too. But unlike the fruit, I can't vouch for their goodness.

"The word 'nectarine' means sweet as nectar, and this is very likely the obvious origin of the name. Today, California grows over 95% of the nectarines produced in the United States."

Learn more about how the nectarine is filled with freaky, nectary goodness, here.

Posted by Spurious Nurse at 2/25/2005 06:47:00 PM 2 comments

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Self Portrait Day-My Brain!

Courtesy of Mihow and Super Joe it's Self Portrait Day!

Today's photo subject: My zombie brain

I've had a headache for pretty much 3 days, and it's kind of awful. Notice how it glows and sucks up the light of day...I can kind of feel my heartbeat inside of my head. Thump-thump-ow.

Anyway, enough zombie head talk. Go Self Portrait Day!
Random Fruit Fact: The Banana

I subsisted solely on the following food items for a year and a half:

Cheddar goldfish
Rye bread
Diet Coke

Bananas are at the top. Cause they're good.

Learn more how much you can get for that VelvetUnderground/Nico Album if the cover banana's still zipped, here.

Posted by Spurious Nurse at 2/23/2005 07:56:00 PM 4 comments

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Not That There's Anything Wrong With That...

Check out this hard-hitting, gay penguin exposé by the homophobes at the Pittsburgh Tribune. It included this tasteful picture of a penguin w/ rainbow flag on the front cover.


(as you can see from the other articles, this is a quality journalistic vehicle)

The little headline at the bottom left adresses any suspicious flightless bird activity of a local nature, so if any of OUR penguins are gay, we'll be informed. Not that there's anything wrong with gay penguins. Just as long as there's no gay penguins in Pittsburgh.

The folks at the Pitt Tribune have lots of free time, but not as much as me. I took the time to scan, bitches.

P.S. If you hate gay people, quit it. Your children will be embarassed when you're old and you tell sad gay-people-hating stories.
Random Fruit Fact (no fruit jokes, mister!): The Horned Melon

These are the freaky things you see next to the grapefruit at Whole Foods. You do too shop at Whole Foods. Hippy.

"extremely bitter. These compounds are very toxic to mammals, however as they are the most bitter substances known they are also feeding deterrents and very rarely eaten by mammals"

Horny, toxic fruit? Bring it! Wait, is it gay? Horn it up, here.

Posted by Spurious Nurse at 2/22/2005 10:56:00 PM 5 comments

Monday, February 21, 2005

Damn Old Movie Night- Operation Petticoat

Damn, this is one lame-ass movie. Well, at least the first 20 minutes were, since that's all I got through.

How clever. The submarine is pink.

I suppose seeing Cary Grant's honkey chicken legs was educational in a historic sort of way, and it started out well, with a shot of some navy man's ass shooting a machine gun and jiggling around. But owner of the shaking tail wasn't cute (to be truthful, neither was his butt) and we only lasted about 20 minutes after that. Tony Curtis was absolutely insufferable.

What pushed us over the edge was a dude who had a hot, naked chick tattooed on his chest. Well, she was allegedly hot and naked, but 1959 audiences aren't generally allowed to see hotness like that. But it sounds sort of promising, no?


Tattoo dude says, "I couldn't go home to my fiancee with a tattoo of a some naked hoochie on my chest, so I re-enlisted for another tour of duty".

Whaaaa? I know it's 1959, and everyone's all about shiny cars, short hair and wearing gloves on airplanes....but ANOTHER TOUR OF FUCKING DUTY? For a tattoo? Jesus.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not looking for realism in Damn Old Movies. It's a mistake. I had a roommate once who though that if Roc Hudson could travel back in time (and not be gay) he'd pick her skinny ass.

She had chest hair. No lie.
Random Fruit Fact: The Tart Cherry

"While sweet cherries are grown in several parts of the country, tarts are grown primarily in northwestern Michigan. Michigan has 3.8 million tart cherry trees. All of the recent research into the health benefits of cherries is referring to tart cherries"

How the hell did virginity become equitable with a cherry? Let me know if you know. But learn about real cherries, the tart ones, here.

Posted by Spurious Nurse at 2/21/2005 08:22:00 PM 0 comments

Sunday, February 20, 2005

We're Gonna Party Like it's 1999 (feet long)

Last evening, we attended a soiree at the home of one Abraham Wheeler, an acquaintance of Mateo's from library school. Going to this function was a must, since in his e-vite, Abe had described himself as ALL of the following:

- Mr. Rutheford B. Deathrays
- The Prettiest Man in Pittsburgh
- The Duelling Prince of St. Martan

Abe and his lovely wife Rachel are being kept apart by cruel fate (she got a job in the Bay Area and Abe's still in school at Pitt), but Abe decided he wanted to have"one big party so that I can be antisocial for the rest of the year and not get hassled for never having anyone over."*

Somehow during the course of the evening, Mateo and Abe wound up in front of Abe's shelf full of weird ass/cool movies (go Lone Wolf and Cub!). Mateo mentioned that he had overheard some girls discussing another party hosted by Abe/Rachel. "They said you were showing this blaxploitation movie where some guy kills people with his junk." Abe freaked out. "Oh, you mean 'Soul Justice'? It's so awesome!"*

I was off in the kitchen getting wasted, eating lots of pretzels, and arguing over who was better, Pink Floyd or Hall & Oates (I think we all know the answer to that one), when everyone started drifting towards the living room and staring at the TV. I wanted to see what was causing all this commotion (it was taking me away from my pretzels, dammit), which is how I came to see a man being strangled by another man's 9 foot wang, while a giggly seventies girl with a big fro looked on.

9 foot wangs and pretzels. Good party, Abe Wheeler. We salute you!

*All quotes in this entry will be paraphrased because I was stinko.
Random Fruit Fact: The Tangerine

"The tangerine resembles the orange but is smaller and oblate in shape and has a more pungent odor, a thinner rind, and sections that may be readily separated. It has a food value comparable to that of the orange, but the fruit is more delicate and subject to damage in handling."

Ooh. Fragile little thing. Learn more about why Tang doesn't come from tangerines, here.

Posted by Spurious Nurse at 2/20/2005 11:28:00 AM 4 comments

Thursday, February 17, 2005

And Now, A Word From Mateo...

Mateo (avec 4 beers) - "I think I wanna write a book called The Perfect Shitstorm..."

Posted by Spurious Nurse at 2/17/2005 10:31:00 PM 2 comments

The Sort-Of-Fast & the Not-So-Furious

Talk of strange objects in my car reminded me of my very first car,

The Mighty Used 1987 Toyota Corolla FX-16 Hatchback

"You're a big, fine Toyota, why don't you back that thang up?"

This fine-ass piece of machinery was the best car I have EVER owned. After an initial period of intense hatred (I thought it looked like a Gremlin, like I'd be so lucky), I came to terms with the fact my FX-16 went realllly fast, and fell in love. In a fit of 18-year old pseudo-wit, I dubbed it the Gremlinmobile, got myself a badass stereo system, and I was rollin'.

When I put my foot on the gas, it was all Magic Mountain and shit. Everyone riding inside the car thought they were gonna die. It was awesome.

Sadly, while singing Echo and the Bunymen's 'People are Strange" on an awkward excursion to dinner with an ex-boyfriend, some bastard crashed into me. Boooo! We were fine, but the car was totaled, and the vibe between me and ex-boyfriend became, impossibly, more uncomfortable.

Now, I look at Spooky the Echo, and even though he's only new car I've ever owned, I keep hearing Bootsy Collins singing in my head for the FX-16:

'I'd rather be with you-hoo, yeahhhh.'
Random Furit Fact: The Honeydew Melon

"Honeydews are harvested by maturity and not by size. Maturity is difficult to judge..."

See? Mature melons are sexy! Learn more about honeydew melons (yeah!) here.

Posted by Spurious Nurse at 2/17/2005 05:23:00 AM 2 comments

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Self Portrait Day, y a Mystery

Our car, Spooky, is filled with crap. If you wanna roll with us, you wait until we rearrange the quietly multiplying bullshit in our back seat. I felt industrious this evening and was cleaning Spooky's insides, when on the floor I spied The Mysterious Fork.


This ain't our fork. This piece of flatware has never before been seen by either of us. Where did it come from? How did it surreptitiously enter our car? Is Spooky a thief? What the fuck?

Also, according to Mihow, Queen Dooce and other assorted blogging personages, today is Self Portrait Day . I decided to include the fork:

If this is your fork, let me know. We're kind of afraid of it. Like a sign from some mafioso. Fish on the doorstep. Horseheads in your bed. Forks in your car...

What does it MEAN?
Random Fruit Fact: The Key Lime

"Key limes which predominate in the rest of the world, are smaller, yellower in color, seedy, sourer, and grow on thorny trees which are sensitive to cold weather. As we have done with tomatoes, we have sacrificed flavor for convenience and appearance. "

Tomatoes and limes aren't the only things we've sacrificed for convenience and appearance...

Learn more about Mr. Key Lime here.

Posted by Spurious Nurse at 2/16/2005 07:41:00 PM 4 comments

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Damn Old Movie Night - Swing Time + Rant

OK. I'm gonna say right up front that I'm not exactly a fan of old movies where people burst into spontaneous song and dance. The modern day version of this, with Usher and 15 of his closest friends doing exactly the move, is amusing to me, but that's it. You may even consider yourself a fan of Musical Damn Old Movies, but the millisecond anyone puts on blackface, I'm justifiably uncomfortable. Hopefully everyone else is, too.

A Fred Astaire and Ginger Rodgers musical/dancing vehicle, Swing Time was the 1st and only time Fred Astaire ever used blackface in his film career. It's pointless and demeaning. Even more disturbing to me, is a phenomenally insulting portrayal of a black male valet, unfortunately played by Floyd Shackelford.

I tried desparately to find a normal picture of Mr. Shackelford, but of course, couldn't.

I'm not a fan of censoring, but I'll make a deal with our friendly, neighborhood Book-Burning Fucksquads. Instead of worrying about Catcher in the Rye, Huckleberry Finn, the Harry Potter Series and the Chocolate War (which tops the ALA's most requested book for removal), go focus on getting rid of anything with blackface. I know the Fucksquad majority mostly wants to get rid of books containing gay people, cussing and situations where children challenge authority (can't have that!), but just try it for a week.

After a week, all you Fucksquad members can return to expecting teachers and librarians to watch what little Jimmy Fucksquad reads, since Mr. and Mrs. Fucksquad are too busy calling for the rolling of literary heads to actually pay attention to what Jimmy's reading and discuss it intelligently.

Angry tonight. Let's address some fruit.
Random Fruit Fact: The Naval Orange

Cause Mateo chopped one up for me at lunch the other day. Mmm.

"In 1873, taking advantage of the North American diplomatic services established in Brazil, technicians specialized in citrus production in Riverside, California, received three seedlings of Bahia orange, from which came the seedlings that would later be spread all over the United States and other parts of the world with the name of Washington Navel. Therefore, the citrus exchange between the two countries is over a century old, and the Bahia orange was a fundamental base for that exchange."

Learn more about naval oranges here.

Posted by Spurious Nurse at 2/15/2005 09:30:00 PM 0 comments

Monday, February 14, 2005

Valentines Day Blah, Blah

Ah, Valentine's Day. Or if you're from Pittsburgh, Valentimes Day.

I'm sure you've already decided how you want to spend it. Showered in rose petals? Fine. Freaking out in a series of enraged, pissy diatribes on the day's exclusionary and stupid nature? Great. I don't care about it one way or the other. All I know is it looks like someone got fucking shot in the supermarket, it's so splashy pink and red.

Mateo doesn't 'do' Hallmark (good boy), and had to work today, so yesterday we went out for shits and giggles. Off to the Oaks Theater to see Sideways, a fine snobby film. Afterwards trying to find something to eat and crossed every blessed river in town, sometimes 2-3 times. We were massively hungover (surprise) and had a very nice time just hanging out in the car together, getting lost, and eating bad food at the Spaghetti Warehouse Grill (a rip off of 14 different restaurants).

It was great. If there's supposed to be a romantic feeling associated with today, I want it to be like that every year. Stuffed with murky driving, shiny lights, confusion and cheap, peppery dinner laughs. With that soft electrical tug flashing around in the air between me and him.

Posted by Spurious Nurse at 2/14/2005 11:07:00 PM 2 comments

Saturday, February 12, 2005

Mr. Hawk

Mateo and I live in a ramshackly, drafty, 80 year old house with nothing but a foresty hill behind it. In the winter, when the leaves clear, we have quite a view:

and so does Mr. Hawk. He's been hanging out at our house looking feathery and vaguely murderous for several days.

Bear in mind that our backyard is like fucking Wild Kingdom. Racoons, squirrels, graundhogs, even freaking deer skulk around back there. And Mr. Hawk looks like could cary off any one of them. Especially the deer. He's on mammal patrol, bitches. So get ready.
Random Fruit Fact: The Nectarine

"The nectarine is a close relative of the peach, without the fuzz. Many people prefer them for this reason. There are several varieties, both clingstone and freestone that vary in color from half red to full red to maroon. The color does not indicate the degree of ripeness, just the variety. Nectarines are not usually peeled, so the color adds to their appeal. "

Lean more about the nectarine's 67 magnificent calories, here.

Posted by Spurious Nurse at 2/12/2005 10:42:00 PM 0 comments

Toys R Us is Damn Cold

When going to buy someone you don't really know a baby shower present, it's important to take the following factors into consideration:

Is it cold or snowy?

Is it windy?

If so, don't go.
No fruit tonight, I'm wasted.

Posted by Spurious Nurse at 2/12/2005 12:08:00 AM 0 comments

Thursday, February 10, 2005

Keep Your Friends Close, And Your Bathroom Closer

Warning. If you don't like clean stuff, you may not understand this post. Don't worry, I won't hate on you just cause you're dirty.

It is my nemesis. My foe, if you will.

The Skeletor to my He-Man. The bad terminator from Terminator 2 to my good terminator who was bad in Terminator 1, but turned out to be all right.

Oh, bathroom. I hate you so.

At first glance, it sucks. And as you spend time with it, that feeling blossoms into a consuming hatred which blocks out the sun.

Our bathroom is in possession of an astonishing amount of awful things:

1.) Green walls (with mold inside for added flavor)
2.) Cracked, holey and permanently stained white tiles
3.) Barbie pink formica countertops
4.) Sorry-ass fake wood cabinetry
5.) Enamel free, everlastingly stained tub (w/peeling blue & green flowers!)
6.) Rusty and/or lime covered fixtures
7.) A HOLE where tub meets the wall (i.e. portal to hell)
7.) Brown and white scuffy tiles that will NEVER be clean.

And oh....those dratted tiles.

Anyone who's ever A.) had a crappy linoleum floor or B.) recognizes sheer cleaning hell when they see it, knows this tile (and I'm using the word 'tile' in the loosest sense of the word here), will never, ever be clean.

We rent, and thusly pay for the privilege of living with this miraculously bad bathroom. I have begged, pleaded and offered our first born child to Mr. Landlord, in the hopes he'd let me fix things up. With my own money, mind you. After dealing with Los Angeles landlords, I know better than to ask one for something aesthetically pleasing.

I've asked him several times and all he says is, ""

Random Fruit Fact: The Pink Grapefruit

It's bitter and pink like my bathroom countertop. I dislike it intensely. Like my countertop.

"Grapefruits are borne on small trees that rarely exceed 6 m (20 ft) in height. The dense foliage consists of shiny, dark-green leaves with winged petioles. The large white flowers produce yellow, globe-shaped fruit in grapelike clusters. "

Learn more about why pink grapefruits love animal testing and making children cry here....No, I'm sorry, little pink grapefruit. It's not your fault. Let's go have some ice cream.

Posted by Spurious Nurse at 2/10/2005 10:47:00 PM 0 comments

Light That Shit Up!

For some reason I'm super excited about the recent lighting of the Vincent Thomas Bridge in my hometown of San Pedro, CA.
Vincent Thomas Bridge
Isn't it pretty!

In the daytime the bridge is an awesome, weird-ass shade of green as seen here, hanging with his homie the Goodyear Blimp:
Vincent Thomas Bridge
Bridge: "¿Que Onda, Blimp?"
Blimp: "¿What’s Up, Ese?"

Since eveything else in my hometown is named after a saint (Pedro's small, but it's one of the largest Catholic parishes in the US), I always called it the 'St. Vincent Thomas Bridge' until my mother finally broke down and intervened a few months ago. "I'm sure Mr. Thomas was a very nice man," she said, "but I'm almost positive he wasn't a saint." Bull. She ain't Catholic, I'm holding out.

As is the case with most hometowns, when I lived in San Pedro I couldn't wait to get out. But now that I'm all old and crusty, I'm fascinated by the way it holds onto it's freaky little identity while flanked with the vastness of LA. Not that I'd ever move back there or anything. For God's sake, my parents live there. Given the slightest opportunity, my mom would break into my apartment on a daily basis to see if I was taking my birth control pills correctly (she's done this once already).

A word of advice, no matter what scary-ass, life-threatening situation your mom cooks up, NEVER give her a key. Ever.

Hey you. Yeah you, mama's boy. Don't think you're exempt from this. I'm talking about your mom too. EVER.
Random Fruit Fact: The Blueberry

Cause the little blue lights look like 'em. See? I'm obsessed!

"In 18th century Germany blueberries, either fresh or dried, were soaked in water to make infusions or syrups. The infusions were then used in the treatment of coughs, diarrhea, gout, and rheumatism, to relieve symptoms of typhoid fever, as a mouthwash to soothe mouth ulcers, as a diuretic, and to prevent against scurvy."

Learn more about blueberries giving the big 'Fuck you' to scurvy, here.

Posted by Spurious Nurse at 2/10/2005 02:26:00 PM 4 comments

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

Free Band Names - And Now, A Word From Mateo

Got this email from husband:
You should do a blog entry on potential band names. We can create a Free Band Name Collective (outsiders can contribute) and people looking to start bands can browse our free list.

It should be under the condition that when bands who used a name get huge, we get some minor perk or something. Like backstage passes or our very own crack whore.

Here's some potential names:

Hot Monkey Loving Spoonful
The Catholic Fuck Machines
Brown-Eye for the Keith Guy
The Dwindlers AKA To Become Gradually Less Until Little Remains
The Jalepeno & Cream Cheese Taquitos
Colostomy Bag (perfect for that Death Metal Band)
Peoria Whoria

Random band naming (we don't have a band) is something of a habit for us. We'll be reading or watching Damn Old Movies, and one of us will suddenly scream,"Wow! wouldn't 'Size Ten Poop Chute' be an awesome name for a band?" We usually then launch off into a story involving said band's life and stage presence, and then resume normal activities.

We know we've come up with better names in the past, but we'll use this as a jumping off place for future 'Free Band Names' posts. We also take suggestions.

Random Fruit Fact: Breadfruit

"All parts of the breadfruit tree yield latex, a milky juice. This latex is used for boat caulking."

Jesus, this is where condoms come from?!!?!?!?? Learn more about the breadfruit's bounty here.

Posted by Spurious Nurse at 2/08/2005 09:50:00 PM 2 comments

Monday, February 07, 2005

Taquito Addendum

During yesterdays trip to Wheeling (America’s party city), husband and I stopped at 7Eleven for crappy tea, and I bore witness to the taquito awfulness my husband dsicussed a few posts ago. In addition to the flavors he mentioned, this particular store had NEW flavors...including:

Taco & Cheese
Buffalo Chicken
Chili Diablo (that means hot)
Chicken Fiesta (that means hot)
French Toast (complete with dessicated sausage inside)

Who rolls into a 7Eleven, sees a decaying, spinning, fried food product and thinks, “Man, I gotta get me one of those”?

Posted by Spurious Nurse at 2/07/2005 01:56:00 PM 4 comments

Sunday, February 06, 2005

Road Trip, Hooray!

I've had a bit of cabin fever as of late. Moving to a snowy area from California will do that to a person I suppose. So when lovely husband announced our embarking on a trip/adventure to an undisclosed location, I was set all aflutter. He even got me to wear comfortable shoes, thinking I was going to be hiking traily places or walking around in some museum.

Which was why I was surprised to find myself in a bad 80's casino in Wheeling, West Virginia.

To his credit, we'd driven through Wheeling as we UHauled our asses to Pittsburgh, and in the dusky light of evening it looked OK. Pretty neat even. In the whopping 15 seconds it takes to drive through downtown, you see split-second flashes of restored Victorian houses, architecturally interesting downtown-esque buildings, and lots of lighted bridges. We may have been delusional having eaten nothing but crappy subway 6inchers for 5-days, but still.

In Pennsylvania, (home of supermarkets where you CAN'T BUY BEER) Wheeling barrages folks with advertising campaigns portraying itself as a sort of Christian Vegas. Lots of gambling, booze and half naked bitches with big hair, amply sprinkled with buttloads of family fun. So we were slightly disappointed to discover exactly 12 restored houses (lots of decrepit and condemned houses though), an empty peely downtown, and only one casino.

Behold a picture of Mateo boldly rocking the solo casino with what I'm sure are the original 'fake plastic trees':

Good times hanging out with husband though. It was nice to have someone there to witness the trauma of my first dogtrack race. Ew. Poor puppies. Check out Crafters for Critters to do something about that shit.

By the way, has anyone ever noticed that all casino slot machines ca-ching in same key? So all that dinging occurs on C# or some shit? If anyone knows what that note is, let me know, cause its apparently the sound of people's wallets flying open.
Random Fruit Fact: The Coconut

Today's post pertains to fake fruit, over my husbands head (picture above), and on the chests of Wheeling's 'gentleman's club' workers.

"On a beach holiday, you are more likely to die from a coconut falling on your head than a shark attack."

Unless it's a card shark attack. Oh wait, only slots in WV....Damn. Find out more about coconuts (but mostly sharks. Weak tie in, I know) here.

Posted by Spurious Nurse at 2/06/2005 09:36:00 PM 0 comments

Saturday, February 05, 2005

Damn Old Movie Night

Last evenings Damn Old Movie was Scaramouche (anybody who wants to make Queen jokes, get it out of your system, cause I'm not doing it for you).

As you can see, Scaramouche is primarily about bad pants, giant hooters and powdered-wig wearing mofos. French Royalty, the ever popular am-I-in-love-with-my-sister dilemma, and lots of nifty fencing (in the aforementioned bad pants) abound.

It's a fantastic film to watch when you've been hitting the bottle, the only problem being maintaining an optimum level of wastedness throughout. Your persistence is rewarded with sheer unadulterated cheese at the film's conclusion, with people shooting lines off like, " I should be burned at the stake for loving you...burnt to a cinder!" If you're drunk enough, this should have you laughing and spilling enough beer to ruin the slipcover on the couch. Extra points if you do a shot whenever someone kisses.

The swordfights rock. Ha! Swordfights.
Random Fruit Facts: The Passion Fruit

If there was a drunken passion fruit, I'd include it here, but for now you'll have to think of happy daiquiris or something.

"Passion Fruit is generally eaten fresh but may be cooked for use in sauces and fillings. Cut the fruit in half and scoop out the fleshy pulp (!!!) with a spoon."

Oh Mr Passion Fruit, you're so risqué....Learn more about the passion fruit's XXX love life here.

Posted by Spurious Nurse at 2/05/2005 09:35:00 PM 1 comments

Friday, February 04, 2005

Fuck Nike

Tired of buying shoes from The Man?

Pissed that Nike slurped up Converse, effectively rendering your punk-rock ass a party to the sweaty sweatshop system?

Do you have a guilty conscience?

Do you like to shop?

Well guess what? I'm your best friend today, Buddy. That's what.

Check out these tasty vegan shoes from Novacas,

They're available now at OTSU (a vegan's best friend) in a plethora of styles and colors (in case your delicate fashion sensibilities are offended by these).

I'm pretty sure Awful Cufflinks did a spread on OTSU's shoes a while back, but I couldn't find the direct link in their archive. Hopefully The Awfuls (Tara and Krissy) will forgive me.

For you die hard Converse maniacs (myself included), No Sweat Apparel has made a shoe that finally, actually looks like your Chuck-T's, instead of some fake-ass substitute.

Wonderful shit. They come in happy colors (like pink, Molly) and they're like balm on your guilt-ridden soul.

See? I'm a giver. I'm the Mother Theresa of shopping.
Random Fruit Fact: Rainbow Fruit Salad Recipe
(A tribute to those rainbow socks above)
1 large mango, peeled and diced
2 C fresh blueberries
2 bananas, sliced
2 C fresh strawberries, halved
2 C seedless grapes
2 nectarines, unpeeled and sliced
1 kiwi fruit, peeled and sliced

Honey orange sauce:
1/3 C unsweetened orange juice
2 Tbsp Lemon juice
1-1/2 Tbsp honey
1/4 tsp ground ginger
pinch nutmeg

Prepare the fruit. Combine all the ingredients for the sauce and mix. Just before serving, pour honey orange sauce over the fruit.

Yield: 12 servings--Serving Size: 4 oz cup. Each serving provides: Calories: 96 Total fat: 1 g Saturated fat: less than 1 g Cholesterol: 0 mg Sodium: 4 mg

Learn more about rainbow fruit salad by EATING IT!

Posted by Spurious Nurse at 2/04/2005 04:45:00 PM 2 comments

Les Cinémathèques du Paris

Check out this movie theater article in the LA Times. There's pics of an awesome theater in fake asiatic style called La Pagode. It's some OG gothic shizz.

I'd link but they won't let me. If you can find some decent pics of the place, email me here.
Random Fruit Facts: The French Black Currant

"Currants are unsurpassed for jelly, but are also good in pies and sauces, especially when mixed with fruits that have body but lack sprightliness. Currants have also been used for wine, said by some to be similar in flavor to Graves or Rhine wines. Black currants are the traditional source of the French liqueur, Cassis."

Oooh, gotta find me some cassis. Love me some currants. Learn more about black currants here.

Posted by Spurious Nurse at 2/04/2005 02:46:00 PM 0 comments

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Attention Drug Users,

Tired of worrying whether you’ll be busted by the cops for some drug that makes you feel like crap? Missing the constant floatiness and dry mouth that only bomb-ass drugs provide? (I've never taken any, so I'm just guessing here...) Brothers and Sisters, I'm here to tell you about your new personal Saviour, Tylenol Allergy and Sinus Daytime.

That chick in Accounting whose voice you can't stand? She could perch on your keyboard reading War and Peace, and you wouldn’t notice.

Demanding, anal-retentive boss yelling about your missed deadline? Stare blankly without a guilty conscience, cause you don’t know what the hell is going on.

If you dig on confusion, having your head feel like an inflatable raft and being thirsty, (soooo motherfucking thirsty), head on down to your local drug emporium and get some good shit for $7.

You’ll thank me, you ungrateful sons of bitches. Yes, you will.
Random Fruit Facts: The Lemon

Info provided by Mateo.

"Rare Variegated Pink lemons, which have green-striped skin when young, are less acidic than regular lemons when they reach maturity."

Check out an article in the NY Times on freaky lemons here.

Posted by Spurious Nurse at 2/03/2005 11:02:00 AM 1 comments

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Movie Time!

It's easy to marvel at the amount of scotch and cigarettes people consume in the course of any film made before 1973, but a movie with a detective drinking wine on the beat? Hell yes.

This evening our Wow-That's-A-Damn-Old-Movie selection was 1944 fake-film noir classic Laura. Though the film itself was pretty cool, I kept coming back to Dana Andrews (our hero/detective) drinking anything that wasn't tied down, on the job.

Sometimes with murder suspects.

So hot.

It wasn't a particularly noiry film, except for repeated mentions of somebody's head getting blown off with a shotgun. The best part was actually having our hero/detective raid the dead chick's liquor cabinet and fall asleep in her house. For the rest of the movie we kept wondering, is this real, or just the wishful thinking of some boozy-ass gumshoe?

Man, why can't I live back in the day, when it was cool to drink at work?
Random Fruit Fact: The Grape

All this talk about wine makes me thirsty for grape knowledge.

"The grape is one of the oldest fruits to be cultivated going back as far as biblical times. Spanish explorers introduced the fruit to America approximately 300 years ago."

Learn more about grapes here. And don't even think I forgot about Cesar Chavez and the boycotts. Check his awesome ass out here. Viva Cesar! Viva Grapes!

Posted by Spurious Nurse at 2/02/2005 09:23:00 PM 0 comments

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

And Now, a Word from Mateo...

Went to 7-11 today to get some tea, and noticed their taquito incubator. You know how they have those hot dog incubators, metal rollers with the plastic bubble on top? There's one for taquitos right next to it. Some of the disgusting flavors include steak and cheese, and my personal favorite....cream cheese and jalepeño. Muy Autentico. Who says there's no real Mexican food in Pittsburgh?

I think I'm going to set up a table at the Hollywood farmers market. I can picture it in my head, a table, the taquito incubator, and sign that says 'Organic Taquitos $2.50'. It'll conceptual art, baby. These taquitos are so organic, your colon will survive long after your demise. Maybe it'll get easier to turn plastic colons into compost, though.

Food for thought.
Random Fruit Fact: The Jalapeño

If a grape can be a fruit when it grows on a vine, maybe the jalapeño can too.

"El nombre de Chile Jalapeño es el más usado en todo el país, se le da este nombre porque se dice que antiguamente se cultivaba en Jalapa, Veracruz desde donde se comercializaba a otras partes, actualmente ya no se cultiva ahí, pero es un Chile muy famoso y utilizado en la Gastronomía Veracruzana."

Aprenda más acerca de jalapeños aquí.

Posted by Spurious Nurse at 2/01/2005 11:49:00 AM 0 comments