Friday, February 19, 2010

PLOG was the spawn of a meth bender and a gallon of cheap vodka, followed by an ill-advised trip to the local food market.

Lunching on $2 cans of soup seemed like a stroke of genius at the time, as did resting my naked body on the soft, cool packs of beef in the meat section. Ultimately, both choices proved to be questionable. I have no regrets nonetheless.

I've had my fill of soup, and I've said all I care to say about it. Therefore, PLOG has been taken out to the barn and humanely shot in the face with a 12-gauge shotgun. Twice.

Soup. It. Up.

When I was a mere scamp back in the early-to-late 1900's, I remember dreaming of the day that I could drive a car. Legally.

My dream car was not just any car, but a souped-up chick magnet that would frighten children, old people, and especially the parents of teenage girls. This ride would be an American-made, TADE-approved, steel stallion with an ear-bleed stereo and that would play heavy metal 42% of the time, Skynyrd 64% of the time, and second-base-facilitating rock ballads the other 87% of the time. The ballads would only play when I was in the company of a lady friend, and we'd be totally making out. Obviously.

60% of the time, it would work every time.

My souped-up mullet machine would have an engine that averaged 6 mpg, and provide me the horses I would need to light up the rear tires in a white cloud of smoke rivaled only by the one coming out of the driver's side window.

This rolling piece of rebellion would also have a radar detector that would give me free automotive reign on the streets of your town. But more importantly, it would reinforce my anti-authority attitude. There would be no better way for me to give John Q. Law the middle finger – except perhaps my actual middle finger, which I would also utilize.

This mag-wheeled beast and the music blaring from it would speak for itself, but there may be a place for a bumper sticker – as long as it was classy and spoke to my disposition. Something like "I rule, you drool" or "How's my driving? Call 1-800-EAT-SHIT" or "I Heart Kitty Cats."

As you can see in the pic above, I was able to realize my dream.

Monday, February 15, 2010

My play date with Marko

Last Friday, Marko and I left the salt mines behind and went skiing. It was a pre-Valentine’s Day Bromance Extravaganza. The kind that dreams are made of.

Here is some footage I shot of Marko carving up the mountain. He has skill and grace that are unrivaled.

Additional documentation of our man date is shown above. That pic was taken of Marko and I on our last run before we headed into the lodge for some aprés-ski soup.

Our manes are untamed and we don't care who sees.

That's. Just. How. We. Roll.

Simply tragic.

Anyone who knows me knows that I like my chicken separated manually. In fact, It’s probably the one thing you’d walk away knowing about me if You and I were share an elevator. I doubt we’d even have to converse.

Now don’t get me wrong, I like robots and most things they contribute to society. I especially like how they scare old people. But I must draw the line when it comes to the mechanical separation of poultry.

Maybe I’m only saying this because my best friend died tragically in a chicken-separating machine at age 16. Or perhaps my opinion has been skewed somewhat because my college sweetheart left me for a guy who made millions by inventing a machine that separates chicken. Or maybe I’m biased because I am the child of a Guatemalan chicken separator and I saw first-hand how robots can take chicken-separating jobs away from hard-working, chicken-hating Americans. Especially the Guatemalan ones.

Tearing chickens apart by hand was probably the only thing my father really liked. Sure, he enjoyed going to bullfights on acid, and he was quite fond of black dress socks with compromised elasticity, but nothing brought him joy like his craft. Of course he "liked" his family, but he didn’t “like us like us.” At least not the way he liked his work.

The invasion of robots into the chicken separating industry tore my family apart like a chicken caught in some sort of device designed to mechanically separate it.

It’s tragic, I tell you.

Simply tragic.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

I've been told that I'm full of it.

The epic poet Homer (Simpson) once said:
“I’m a rage-aholic. I just can’t live without rage-ahol.”

As YOU, my only reader pointed out, my postings of late have taken an angry turn. That’s because soup has turned me angry. And by angry, I mean a tightly wound ball of white lightning and rage that destroys everything in its path. And by tightly wound ball of white lightning and rage that destroys everything in its path, I mean a 5000 lb. bowling ball made of barbed wire and razor blades that’s been lit on fire and thrown down an alley of quadriplegic orphans on its way to smashing a house full of puppies.

And by that I mean I’m tired of canned soup. There is no variety that will cast crepuscular rays of soupy sunshine back through my gullet and into my totally ripped stomach.

This should not be a surprise. When I started this Journey, there was no guarantee that it would take me to a shiny, happy, special place where Lynyrd Skynyrd plays live 24/7 and monkey servants feed me wine from a lambskin bota bag. In fact, I was prepared to go into some of the darker depths of my soul along the way. In doing so, I hoped to gain more of an understanding of myself and my place in the Universe and perhaps become a better human being.

Not really though.

But I am tired of canned soup.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

WEDNESDAY!! WEDNESDAY!!! WEDNESDAY!!!! A Caloric Cage Battle Royale!

The above pic was taken of me just before lunch today. It may be tough to tell by my facial expression, but I’m having a difficult time deciding between Price Chopper Fake Chunky Steak & Potato, and Price Chopper Fake Homestyle Chicken & Rice. It may also be difficult to tell that I’m wearing a sweet pair of leopard-skin grape smugglers with matching leg warmers. My apologies to YOU, my only reader, for not being able to share that visual. Your imagination will have to suffice.

Back to the Caloric Cage Battle Royale that happened in my mind and also for real...

It’s time to declare a victor. Only one can of sludge shall prevail! Due to federal statutes, a draw is not a possibility. Will Chicken & Rice put the Sleeper Hold on Steak & Potato? Or will Steak & Potato take Chicken & Rice down with its signature Souplex move? Which can of sodium-laced goop shall take the Glory and have the privilege of becoming solid waste in my lower intestines?!

Whichever can wins, one thing is certain: I lose.

Also, I stole the theme for this post from George.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

At least it’s not fucking cabbage water.

I uttered those seven words to myself with each bite as the self-fulfilling prophecy self-fulfilled itself today. I may have even spoken those words aloud to a slack-jawed, sweater-vested passerby named Marko that gazed upon me in pity as I slurped my slurry.

At least it’s not fucking cabbage water.

Or brussels sprouts with balsamic vinegar and feta for that matter. What the F did we do to deserve such an olfactory pistol whipping? Nothing is what.

If this makes no sense to YOU, my only reader, fear not. For it makes no sense to me either.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Finally, Part II of a Plog-sanctioned competition that still isn't dwarf tossing.

A 50 lb. bag of industrial-grade disodium guanylate goes to the person who can tell me what's wrong with this advertisement.

To see a larger version, click here.

To see my family on vacation, click here.

To see Meghan's Puerto Rican love interest, click here.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Finally, a Plog-sanctioned competition that isn't dwarf tossing.

A 50 lb. cube of industrial-grade beef bouillon goes to the person who can tell me what's wrong with this advertisement.

To see a larger version, click here.

To visit the live webcam in my living room, click here.

To see a chicken with a beer shoved up its ass, click here.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

You get nothing! You lose! Good day, sir!

CHARLIE: Is this your supper, Grandpa?
GRANDPA JOE: Well, it's yours too, Charlie.
CHARLIE: I'm fed up with cabbage water. It's not enough!

Oompa loompa doompa dee dawesome. That fucking line is totally awesome. If you don’t know what the h-e-double-hockey-sticks I’m talking about, watch this. (It happens at the 7:54 mark, so you may want to go grab a whiskey sour while it loads.)

According to my math, cabbage water is one step down from water with actual cabbage in it. This makes the dysenteric bowls of sludge that I’m forcing down on a daily basis seem quite extravagant.

Here's a conversation I can foresee having with myself:

SELF: Is this my lunch? Campbell's Old-Fashioned Vegetable Beef?
ME: Well, it’s yours too, Self.
SELF: I’m fed up with Campbell's Old-Fashioned Vegetable Beef. It’s not enough!
ME: At least it’s not fucking cabbage water!

Note to Self: I think I’m going to start a band just so I can call it Cabbage Water. It will be an a cappella metal band with Tejano influence. We will have unich go go dancers. We will have a sweet van. We will tour extensively throughout the western portions of the Dakotas. We will have an Icelandic contortionist as our opening act at select venues. On occasion, we will be far too inebriated to perform.

I said GOOD DAY!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Let's keep barley where it belongs.

In the hands of children. And the hell out of soup.

If you’re anything like me, you’re dangerously good-looking. And you like nachos. And macramé. And balloons. And dolphins. And balloons with dolphins on them. And stretchy pants. And the ease in which you can do karate kicks in stretchy pants. And you own a Bedazzler. And you have several pair of Bedazzled, stretchy, karate pants. And you like Mexican soap operas. And birds that play guitar. And you like sea shell sculptures. And Suzy, who sells sea shell sculptures by the sea shore in order to support her oxycontin habit. And you like mariachi bands. And vans with sweet airbrushed murals of howling wolves on the side. And you like Glenn Tipton more than K.K. Downing. And you like Black Pudding. And long lists. And starting sentences with “like” and “and.” And not making sentences complete and/or grammatically correct for that matter.

And you like standing up for causes you believe in. Like keeping barley the hell out of soup.

I feel we've done all we can do for this cause.

The best part about standing up for something is sitting back down.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Science you can actually use.

There’s some crazy shit that happens in the natural world. Like aurora borealis, red tide, and how a choice cut of free range clown meat can sometimes resemble the actual clown it was harvested from.

A more common occurrence is animal mimicry. There are three types of mimicry in the natural world, and I will make an argument for a fourth.

First type: Batesian mimicry. Named after some dude called Bates. This is basically when one punk ass species rides the coat tails of another species that is capable of totally f’ing up your program. For instance, the harmless king snake that looks like the venomous coral snake. You’re probably familiar with the old Scout saying: “Red and yellow: turn your vital organs to Jell-O. Red and black: total hack. With no game whatsoever.” King snake... pfft. King of what? King of Lame, that’s what.

Second type:
Muellerian mimicry. Named after some dude called Mueller. This is when a whole group of critters (in this case, colorful rainforest frogs) get together and say: “Most frogs are total pansies, we admit. But a few of you hold third degree black belts, have hot girlfriends and sweat frikkin’ poison. Sooooo, we pansy frogs got to thinking and decided to start dressing like you badass frogs in the hopes that predators will stay out of our grills. And also, we think it will help us get laid.”

Third type: Self mimicry. Named after self. This is when a creature, usually a creature with low self-esteem, gets a sweet tat to make it look like something else. An example is a butterfly that gets its wings inked to make them look like eyes of a larger creature. This is the butterfly's way of saying to a potential predator: “At first glance, you may think I’m something bigger, but if you look closely, you’ll see a butterfly that’s lonely and hurting inside. And probably quite delicious.”

Proposed fourth type: Price Chopper mimicry. Named after Brazilian paleontologist Llewellyn Ivor Price, who rode a sweet chopper. I'm guessing. This type of mimicry is when a food store chain makes their private label soup look very similar to a brand name soup, and then places their private label products on the shelf right next to the brand name products in an attempt to fool their loyal customers. For shame, Price Chopper, for shame. May you get bit by a coral snake while licking a poisonous frog as insecure butterflies peck your eyeballs out.

Full disclosure: While soup shopping, I was fooled at first glance. Was I wicked hammered on SoCo? Probably. I decided to try a few of the counterfeit offerings nonetheless. While they both were significantly cheaper, they both were significantly disgusting.

To the Scouts of America and certain parts of Canada, this may one day save your life:

It may say “Chunky,” but it’s probably made from monkey.
A label that’s blue can make a fool outta you.
And you may save a buck, but they’re nasty as can be.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Sing it with me.

Plants on the ground
Plants on the ground
Lookin' like a fool witcha plants on the ground.
Hey, get them plants off the ground.

And get that can of soup off the ground while you're at it. That's a less-than-optimal place to store food items.

Fuck, if I'm not running out of material.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Like a good bottle of carbonated wine.

There are lots of things that remind me of how old I am. My wisdom, sophistication and maturity. My sagging, superfluous third nipple. My 1972 Stutz Blackhawk VI that I bought brand new when I was 53. And, of course, the Oops I Crapped My Pants adult diapers that I’m wearing (and utilizing) as I type this.

Music can be a good reminder as well.

I like to listen to a music format called “MP3” on the “iTunes.” I have over 60,000 songs that have set to shuffle on my electric computing device. While most of them fall into the Barbershop Quartet genre, occasionally I’ll hear one that doesn’t.

Today, I was taken back to college with the help of a song. And a large dose of mushrooms that I ate on the way to work this morning.

The song was "Divine Thing" by the Soup Dragons. It, along with songs by Jesus Jones, Ned’s Atomic Dustbin, and EMF fall into a small sub-genre of splatter-paint-sporting, college crap rock bands that I still think are fucking great. But only because they remind me of college. The music itself is kind of silly. But awesome.

There were crud loads of great bands that I was into during the early-to-mid 1990s. But it’s the cheesy frat rock that sends my chiseled, white ass streaking through the quad at the University of Memory Lane. In my mind.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

The names have been blurred to protect the guilty.

When I started Plog, one of my expectations was to have the big shot marketing execs at Campbell’s and/or Progresso vie for my endorsement with all kinds of exotic payola. That hasn’t happened. Yet. But I’m sure those savvy, MBA-waving Soupnozzles* are too busy harnessing the awesome powers of Facebook and Twitter to pay attention to what's happening in the Plogosphere. Perhaps they’re developing an iPhone app that matches soup flavors to soup eaters based on their zodiac sign, favorite color and degree of narcissism. Typical marketing stuff.

While I impatiently await the call from one, if not both, of the Big Two, I’ve managed to score some free stuff through another source. That stuff being home-made potato leek soup, and that source being a co-worker. A gesture that’s both generous and daring.

Before I started in on this bowl of mystery, there’s a couple of questions I needed to have answered:

1. Of all the people who want to poison me, who would have the cobbles to go through with it?
2. Where’s Ulrich? (My food taster)
3. Where did I set my scotch?
4. What the Hell is a leek?
5. Has anyone seen my britches? (I’m pretty sure I had them on earlier.)

I was able to get the answer to exactly none of those questions. But I was hungry. So I grabbed a spoon and planted my tighty, used-to-be-whities down on a chair and fed.

The verdict: It was pretty damn good. And I’m not just saying that because I’m sensitive to other people’s feelings. In fact, I’m quite annoyed and threatened by feelings, so I look to destroy them any chance I get.

I sucked this offering down as it were cheap gin.

As far as appearance, this was definitely the most unattractive soup I’ve ever masticated to. But I’m not one to judge a book by its cover. Unless it’s a really shitty cover, then I know the book is absolute drivel. At least that’s what my literate friends say. I don’t read and I try to avoid the libary.

So here’s the part that totally prison raped my mind: I was informed, post-consumption, that this soup was 100% vegan. Strange, because it tasted American. Now, don’t think for a precious second that I wouldn’t have enjoyed this soupy bestowal even more if it had big chunks of hog snout in it - I certainly would have. In fact, I hope the chef will consider this the next time around. But who am I to look a gift soup in the mouth?

Emilio “The Dealio” Jimenez Chupacabra una Manada de Lobos de Hombre, that’s who.


*A small homage to George Parker, a guy you can take home to meet your Mum. He just might seduce her.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

The Mexican cure for hangovers.

The other morning, a co-worker of mine, let’s call her “Rebecca P.,” walked into my office and started talking about how much she loved Menudo. I was all like: “The Puerto Rican boy band whose members are forbidden to age? OMG! I totally love them too! OMG! I still have the poster on my bedroom wa...”

At that point, she interrupted to inform me that she was talking about the spicy Mexican soup made from cow stomachs. There was nothing not awkward about that moment. And that double negative was penned just to aggravate her. Sweet revenge is mine!

I'm pretty sure that's how the conversation went down. I was wicked hammered on SoCo and huffing the glue that came in my Dukes of Hazzard, General Lee model kit, but I'm pretty sure that's what happened.

If you’ve never heard Menudo the band, then you’re depriving your ear holes of an auditory orgasm. If you’ve never tried Menudo the soup, than you’re probably a white person who has never gone to lunch with a hungover Mexican. There's a good chance this person will be seeking a bowl of Menudo the soup. Is that a cruel stereotype, or the truth? Yes. I'm simply speaking from my own experience.

Though I find the flavor of Menudo the soup to be quite good, I’ve never been able to eat the succulent bits of bovine belly found floating within. I just can’t stomach the stomach. Just picturing a chunk of the slimy tripas gives me mucho dolor in my estomago.

Luckily, if the eatery serves Menudo, it probably offers a kickass, greasy enchilada plate that will line my stomach with shiny, reddish, rendered critter fat and help cure my hangover just fine.

Do you need Menudo in your life? Abso-fuckin-lutely. Which one is entirely up to you.

You also need this. Feel free to post your results in the comments section.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

A Southwestern Gastronomic Odyssey, Scene One: Satan’s Ketchup

To build most things, you need a foundation. And maybe a wheel barrow and some duct tape.

Today we’re going to build the foundation of your chili: chili paste. I’ve dubbed it Satan’s Ketchup (trademarked, patent pending). Chili paste is much like tomato paste, but completely different in every way. Here’s what you’ll need:

• A pot. (Not to be confused with some pot.)
• A stove top
• A blender
• A quart of beef stock
• A cold beer in your hand with several more on deck.
• Leg warmers
• A variety of dehydrated chilies. Use what you can find at the local grocer. The pic above shows a good variety that are pretty mild. (Obviously, Sen. Harry Reid was in the pepper naming business before politics.) The Chipotles are a must. And I threw in a few habaneros for extra fun.

Do not use fresh peppers for Satan’s Ketchup. Why, you ask? Because fresh peppers contain a lot of water, and we don’t want that. Also, do not question my methods ever again.

Step 1:
Put leg warmers on (should not go above knee) and a crack a cold beer.

Step 2:
Pour beef stock into a pot and turn stove on low.

Step 3:
This is muy importante:
Break each pepper up so you can separate and discard the stems and seeds. Chances are, you’ve had good practice at this. Use scissors or some nunchucks to rip the chilies open if you have to. Place pieces of pepper flesh into the broth. We now have what we’ll call Lucifer’s Potpourri (trademarked, patent pending).

This is even more muy importante:
After handling these chili peppers, do not handle genitals - especially your own. Trust me on that. Don’t rub your eyes or pick your nose either. That’s just bad kitchen etiquette.

Step 4:
Cover and simmer pepper bits in broth on low for at least an hour, stirring occasionally and drinking beer continually. If you leave this stuff uncovered, your broth will evaporate, the peppers will burn and you’ll be totally F’ed in the A.

Step 5:
Let Lucifer’s Potpourri cool. Pour in blender. Cover. Blend it like you mean it. You don’t want chunks of pepper skin all up in your foundation now, do you? Do you? No, you do not.

Safety First: If you do not let this stuff cool, and fill your blender with hot potpourri, there's a good chance it will expand and explode when blended. That would suck for you, but could be humorous to others.

The final product should have the consistency of ketchup and the angry disposition of Satan. It should look like a bowl of poo. Make your own joke here about how the start of this chili looks, ultimately, like the finish. That type of potty humor is beneath me.

Give it a small taste. It should be strong, kinda bitter, smokey, and not too terribly spicy. It will also be quite Earthy. That's ok, Grasshopper. the flavors will balance out later. Satan's Ketchup should produce a burn, but not a painful one. It should feel like a kiss from Beelzebub. Try a heaping spoonful if you want to totally make out with him.

Go ahead and freeze this stuff. I’m not sure when I’ll get around to The Chili Odyssey, Scene Two: Nice to Meat You.

What I got, you’ve got to get it put it in you.

If there’s one thing the Interwebs are good for, it’s viewing porn. I've heard. It's also a great place to share the knowledge.

What I’m about to do goes against many Texas state laws, and breaks an ancient pledge that I signed in armadillo blood with a roadrunner quill. I’m going to document the making of my chili, and share a recipe that I've kept guarded by ill-tempered chihuahuas for years. Chili is not a soup, I know. But beef stock will be used, so I’m staying true to the principles of Plog that are tattooed across my back in big, gothic letters.

At the end of this Chili Journey, not only will you have a cauldron of Texas Red and possibly explosive diarrhea, you will also be left with sacred knowledge that you can pass on to your children's children. But not your own children. Because what have they ever done for you?

Be forewarned! This is something that will take commitment, among other things. Here are some of those other things:

• Patience.
• Access to a supermarket.
• A large pot. Stainless steel.
• A Willie Nelson cd, preferably Red Headed Stranger, but Robert Earl Keen’s No.2 Live Dinner is an acceptable substitute.
• Lots of beer. Shiner Bock, Lone Star, or Pearl.
• Tequila. 100% agave.
• A blender.
• A sense of adventure.
• A mouth with taste buds.
• Willingness to damage those taste buds.
• Tarot cards.
• A sacrificial goat.
• Cowboy boots. Tony Lama brand. Brown.
• The head of a chicken. (For luck)
• Pepto Bismol.
• A Ninja suit. Black.
• An Evel Knievel lunch box. Metal.
• Ointment.
• 3 steel-belted radials. Goodyear.
• A spork.
• Peyote.
• Leg warmers. Pink, wool.
• A hockey stick.
• A DVD of Vision Quest.
• Nunchucks.
• Humility.
• A Snell-rated crash helmet.
• A rosary.
• A dradle.
• A Slap Chop.
• An Albino Bowler action figure.
• A dozen 9-volt batteries. Duracell.
• A Ouija board.
• Some gym mats. Blue.
• An adequate supply toilet tissue. Charmin.

For starters.

Tomorrow, we make paste!

Do you know what I blame it on the breakdown of?


But I did slow down to have a look at the carnage in this wreck.

This has little to do with soup, but it’s important to know that the subject matter in some upcoming posts has forced me to temporarily change my name to Emilio “The Dealio” Jimenez Chupacabra Una Manada de Lobos de Hombre.

I humbly thank Mr. The Situation of Jersey Shore for the idea.

Friday, January 15, 2010

I do not have a plethora.

When I started this journey, I had a plethora of soup. While I do not have superior intellect or education, I do know that I no longer have a plethora of soup.

Until I am able to make it back to the local grocer, I will have to suspend my journey. I simply cannot bring myself to open any of these remaining cylinders of doom.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

All of us have an El Guapo.

Progresso Light is my El Guapo. That, and bathtub gin.

What's yours?

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

I just needed to dry out.

For lunch today, I had leftovers from last night’s supper. I could have easily forgone a Plog entry and left YOU, my only reader, in a stunned state of sadness, emptiness and emotional disarray. Instead, I wrote you some poems.


Journey grows tiresome
Drowning in cold, soupy sea
Pork is my life raft

The Allegorical Limerick:

As a traveler beats the same weary path,
Day after day for some weeks.
It’s not buried treasure,
Nor pleasures of flesh
It’s change in the scenery he seeks.

And alas, the Plain Cussin' Limerick:

I once knew a dude from Nantucket
Who ate fucking soup by the bucket,
It’s guilty I plea
That person is me,
And today I told soup to go suck it.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

I caught crabs at Port Aransas, TX.

When I was in third grade, I got sent home from school for wearing a kick-ass souvenir t-shirt that had those words on it. While I played dumb with the school principal about the shirt’s meaning, I knew it was scandalous and had innuendo regarding parasitically induced discomfort in one’s private Idaho. I loved that shirt, and all the schoolyard, Sesame street cred that came with it.

The crabs that got me in trouble today came in the form of Campbell’s Select Harvest Maryland-Style Crab soup. Made with real crab juice. The verdict: I would have been happier with the itchy variety. This dreadful, decapodian gruel has left a foul taste in my mouth that neither Kentucky bourbon nor Tennessee whiskey has been able to mask.

Full Disclosure: When I was standing in the soup aisle with Meghan H. (the H. is for Hostile) at the beginning of this journey, I reached for this can as a joke. It then became a dare. Today it became a reality. A harsh, pungent reality.

Challenge to self: Finish the week without making juvenile reference to human anatomy. Unless completely necessary.

Monday, January 11, 2010

A top view from the bottom.

A recovering alcoholic might say that things must get worse before they can get better. I wouldn’t say that because I’m not recovering. But I think that I may have hit rock bottom with my soup consumption. These tiny tubs of fried and dried noodles are making their way into my digestive tract with frightening frequency. And it's not because they're a dime a dozen – I actually like them. There, I said it.

Fucking disgusting, I know.

I’m particularly fond of the little bits of brown, buoyant, beef-like styrofoam nuggets that each cup contains. I find myself wishing for a football sized piece of this magical material so I could reconstitute a steak dinner at a moment’s notice.

Dare to dream.

Dare. To. Dream.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Exactly whose boobies am I saving?

One of my favorite material possessions is my virtue, followed closely by my lawn mower. I also have a sign hanging in my living room that I think is pretty sweet. It’s a old, metal sign that’s been so engulfed by rust, you can barely make out the words “Rust-Oleum – Stops Rust!”

My point is this: I do enjoy irony. Real irony though, not that Alanis Morissette crap. Help yourself to a dictionary, lady.

Irony is what made my Progresso Chicken Gumbo (“cooked with white chicken meat”) so satisfying today. It wasn’t the pseudo-spicy, salt-lacking slurry itself, nor the flavorless, dehumidifying discs that I put on top. My enjoyment came from the fact that I was helping the breasts of one species by completely devouring another's.

Delicious, reduced-sodium irony.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Every Roast Has Its Corn

Or does it? The answer is no, it does not.

This song was written by a forlorn chunk of beef in a can of Progresso Light Beef Pot Roast soup. A beef chunk that yearns for something that it will never have: the loving companionship of corn.

Every Roast Has Its Corn

Lyrics by Sad Beef Chunk

We both lie sodium-filled in a can of Progresso Light
Although we share this broth together, we have carrots at our side
Was something not steamed or something not boiled
Did the kernels not come out right?
Though I tried not hurt you
Though I tried
But I guess that’s why they say

Every roast has its corn
Just like every trout has its spawn
Just like every hippie smokes a giant water bong
Every roast has its corn

Yeah it does

I listen to my favorite pod saying I’m no good for you
Hear the pea say soup’s a game of easy come and easy go
But I wonder does pea know
Has pea ever felt like this
And I know you’d be an ear right now
If I could have shucked your husk some how
I guess

Every roast has its corn
Just like every trout has its spawn
Just like every hippie smokes a giant hookah bong
Every roast has its corn

Though it's been a while now
I can still feel so much pain
Like the thing that cuts the can open and soup’s poured
But the scar, that scar remains

(Badass solo)

I know I could have saved a lunch that night
If I’d known what to say
Instead of makin’ soup
We both made our separate ways

But now I hear you found some can of stew
And that you’re being used in chowder too
To hear that freaks me out inside
And to see you cuts me up bite-sized

I guess every roast has its corn
Just like every trout has its spawn
Just like every hippie smokes a giant home-made bong
Every roast has its corn


Are you unenlightened?

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Meet TADE. Friend of Stew.

TADE was made in the US of A. TADE owns one shirt with a collar and that collar is blue with gravy stains on it. TADE drives a truck. Or a fuckin’ kick-ass Camaro with mag wheels. TADE likes to cuss and drink macro beer from a can. TADE listens to Molly Hatchet and Maiden cassettes. TADE doesn’t vote. (He’s registered, but in a different way.) TADE has been in one, if not multiple YouTube videos of backyard wrestling. TADE goes hunting for game both large and small. TADE does landscaping. TADE fixes your car. TADE doesn’t take shit from no one. TADE uses double negatives. TADE is fertile and has babies from multiple mommies. TADE thinks Jeff Foxworthy is a pussy.

TADE is a semi-acronym for The Average Dinty Moore Eater. TADE was the immaculate conception of a friend of mine in San Diego. His persona was then developed by the two of us over a period of years. TADE became our friend. Our brother.

I don’t have the original sketch of TADE, so the above is an artist’s rendering of an artist’s rendering. But it’s about 100% photographically accurate.

We all know a TADE. Next time you see the TADE in your life, give him a big bear hug and a kiss on the lips. I bet they’ll taste like beef stew.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Where's Waaldo?

Today, when I poured my can of Campbell’s Chunky Fully Loaded Rigatoni & Meatball into the bowl, I noticed something peculiar. Luckily, I was able to capture it on film with my digital camera.

If you look closely at the meatball, you can make out the likeness of Dutch thermodynamicist and 1910 Nobel laureate Johannes Diderik van der Waals. Although you may not recognize him in this apparition because he’s usually laughing hysterically.

Peculiar, indeed. A Dutchman making an appearance in an Italian dish.

Monday, January 4, 2010

The polls are closed. The Plogosphere has spoken.

And here’s a pic of me doing some finger painting. As you can see, it brings great joy to me and my mustache.

Now on to the breaking news about the recent the election...

Voters turned out en masse to decide the debate of The Decade:
If you were Tiger Woods, what soup would you totally have sex with? The results, with commentary, are as follows:

Chunky Sirloin Burger: One vote.
(Whatcha gonna do with all that junk?)

Hearty Chicken & Rice: No votes.
(You are all a bunch of racists)

Beef & Vegetable: One vote.
(Just as the pundits predicted)

: Three votes. Winner winner Chickarina dinner.
(How many of you are pantless with a bowl of it right now?)

Tomato Bisque: Two votes.
(Armageddon is near)


Look for another intellectually stimulating poll at the end of this decade.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

It's pronounced "tor-TEE-uh."

Campbells’ Select Harvest Chicken Tortilla soup is made for whitebread cracker folk who live North of Dallas, or East of the Mighty Miss.

While I may need to adjust my expectations regarding the ethnic authenticity of canned soup, the fact that two of my New England co-workers (we’ll call them “Meghan Haley” and “Rebecca Popp”) have raved about this very item has forced me to set the record straight. This soup should be greasy, spicy, and come in a giant bowl with some fresh avocado, cilantro, and perhaps a dollop of sour cream on top. Crispy corn tortilla strips are also a mandate. (Not those weird blue ones.) And here’s the true litmus test: if there’s not a beak, claw, feather, chunk of fatty face waddle, and/or some weird, yardbird innard within the bowl, it’s not legit. And therefore, may be forced to quit.

In all fairness, I would expect the same criticism of a clam chowder in Albuquerque, or a matza ball soup in Oklahoma. Some things are just better left to the regions in which they are mastered.

Because of their misguided soup preferences, both “Meghan” and “Rebecca” are still single. Once again, I implore YOU, my only reader, to make your case for their affection in the 'comments' section. I'm sure either of them is willing to patiently await your parole.

Monday, December 21, 2009

The most awesomest piece of awesomely awesome awesomeness.

This shit is funny. It’s also weird because it so accurately describes my weekend.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Cool beans.

Fucking Freezing with a 100% chance of Shrinking Beans.

This pic was taken of my dashboard on the way to work this morning. I know what you’re thinking: “7:54? What the F are you doing up so early, let alone operating heavy machinery whilst hopped up on goofballs?” Well that’s just how I roll. You may also notice the big goose egg on the left side denoting the temperature outside. The reading is accurate, but that doesn’t make it right.

Back in the Motherland, when the mercury dips below 50º F, state law requires you to make a vat of chili. That same law also prohibits the use of beans in said chili. In fact, if you are a Chilympic Athlete and your chili tests positive for beans – not only would you be immediately disqualified, you’d be stripped naked, rolled in hot tar, have longhorn excrement hurled at you, and forced to drink non-alcoholic beer as you’re exiled to Oklahoma.

I’ve sampled chili from just about every region in these great United States, and most people have got it all wrong. And what they do in Cincinnati is a crime against humanity.

I’m only going to say this once: Chili is chunks of red meat in a thick sauce made from chili peppers. Repeat: Chili is chunks of red meat in a thick sauce made from chili peppers.

The fact that I’m writing about chili in a soup log has put me in great danger. I must stop before retribution is sought.

Also... I remind YOU, my only reader, to Rock the Vote in the distasteful poll at right. It’s change we can believe in.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

The Universe made me an offer that I couldn’t refuse.

According to Wikipedia:

The term "wedding soup" is a mistranslation of the Italian language, minestra maritata ("married soup"), which is a reference to the fact that green vegetables and meats go well together.

Since the internets never lie, the above must be true. I know for a fact that the part about green vegetables and meat going well together is true, because I tried it once back in the summer of ‘87. I remember it as if it were decades ago...

There I was, staring at the daunting diversity of the buffet spread at Golden Corral. My acid wash jeans were not nearly as tight as they should have been, and my visit to this eatery was going to change that posthaste. My typical plate strategy in a self-serve food situation is this: All things brown, NO exceptions. With the exception of mac ‘n’ cheese.

Following this rule, I proceeded to stack my plate with various slabs of beef and a few deep fried bits of fowl and crustacean for good measure. Just when I thought my plate had reached it’s maximum capacity of beige foodstuffs, my attention was captured by a tub of green beans that was being replenished before me by a staffer. It was as if the Universe was trying to tell me something. And that something was: “Hey man, I bet those beans are cooked with bacon. Want some?”

My answer was "Yes. Yes, I do."

The beans were ok. They would have sucked without all that meat surrounding them. Which proves the fact that green vegetables and meats go well together.

For those of you keeping score, I had a can of Campbell’s Italian-Style Wedding for lunch.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

It was just too soon.

Soup consumption is akin to comedy – timing is everything.

I simply did not let enough time pass to let the healing take place. And only time can heal the deep, dietary wounds that are left by the tsumani of turkey consumption that we call Thanksgiving.

I made a gross error in judgment. I exhibited a complete absence of common sense. Pure stubbornness. The Japanese call it Ganko, and it’s no coincidence that the second Kanji symbol looks like some blockhead about to boot up a soupy mess.

My crime came in the form of Campbell’s Chunky Fully Loaded Turkey Pot Pie (with dumplings). Yes, I realize that I’ve been consuming dumplings at an alarming, if not dangerous rate. The fact that my friends and family have not facilitated a dumpling intervention leaves me wondering if anyone even cares about my well-being. Perhaps that’s the real problem behind my reckless, irresponsible mid-day decisions.

But I digress.

I think on any other day, in any other season, this product would have exceeded my expectations and left me blissfully bloated. In fact, I look forward to a time when I can enjoy a bowl of this glorious gut bomb with a clear mind and an objective palette. But today it made me question my basic sense of judgment. At least as it relates to poultry and the consumption thereof.

It was too soon.

It was just too soon.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Another soldier in the Crusade.

I’m pleased to announce that a co-worker has joined me in declaring jihad on over-priced lunches. Although, I’m not convinced that she is as dedicated as Yours Truly. In time we shall see.

For the sake of science, it’s crucial that this person remain anonymous. We’ll call her Meghan Haley. Meghan may or may not look like the person pictured above.

Meghan may or may not be a single, non-smoking, Aquarius in her early 30’s. She may or may not like the indoors, and/or the outdoors. Meghan certainly loves her mother, and isn’t cruel to animals, although she will occasionally show indifference towards them. Meghan is not one of those weirdo hippie vegans, and she has a decent job. (Even though the guy in the office next to her is a world-class a-hole.) If given the choice, Meghan usually grabs a can of reduced-sodium soup from the soup shelf. Campbell's Select Harvest is also a fav.

Although she’s never been to prison or passed out in a pool of her own vomit, Meghan is not a square. She’s always up for pint of local brew and a game of foosball.

If you would like go on a date with this “person” that we’re calling “Meghan,” post your reasons in the comment section.

Or, if you happen to think that chicken tastes good with apricots and olives, I think I know your soul mate. We'll call her "Rebecca P."

I’ll take “The Economy” for a thousand, Alex.

The Unemployment Rate. Gross Domestic Product. Retail Sales. Soup at a Thai Restaurant in North Carolina.

What are accurate economic indicators?

Correct. Let’s pause for a commercial break. When we come back we’ll meet our contestants.

I used to frequent this place in Charlotte called Thai Taste. It was damn good. No matter what you ordered, you would get a bowl of soup as an appetizer. You didn’t go there for the soup, but you didn’t turn it away either. It was like chips ‘n’ salsa at a Mexican joint.

In 2000/2001, that soup was a tepid bowl of diluted chicken stock. If you happened to get a small chunk of tofu in your soup, you’d go buy some lotto tickets because it was obviously your lucky day. As the economy started to gain strength, so did the soup. First it was cabbage that appeared. Woo boy! Then more exotic items started to surface, like mushrooms. And bamboo shoots. You know, the typical stuff that can really put a dent in a restaurant's overhead during tough times.

My co-worker and I always took notice of this edible, economic phenomenon that was playing out before us. It was usually the first topic of our lunch conversation – before we got too far into molecular quantum mechanics.

One day, our soups were placed before us and each bowl contained identifiable pieces of meat. Chicken, as I recall. White meat, at that.

We enjoyed our lunch, went back to work, asked for and got raises.

The soup never lies.

Monday, December 14, 2009

This does not make me un-American.

I’ve been eating a lot of soups with dumplings lately. Today it was some sort of beef concoction with hearty dumplings. While the meals have been adequate in providing mid-day sustenance, they’ve also affirmed something: The Chinese dumpling is superior to the American trailer park dumpling. On one hand, you have a fried pork pouch, accompanied by a salty, gingered juice for dipping. On the other hand, you have a mushy wad of biscuit dough floating in gravy. I’ll take the petite pouch of hog meat please and thank you.

I’m pretty sure this is the reason China has surpassed the USA as an economic super-power.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Written by Mad Men.

“Wouldn’t I be silly to make it myself?”

“Go to all that bother.. when Campbell’s is so homey and nourishing? Not me!”

“When I was a little girl I remember we always made our own vegetable soup. Mother used to devote just hours to to it. But one day when she was rushed, she tried Campbell’s Vegetable Soup. My dad’s not so easy to please, but he ate a bowlful, and then another. Since the Mother has served Campbell’s… and Dad’s been as pleased as a kid!

“I’m married now myself and — well, we young-marrieds all feel that same way. I mean why bother to make vegetable soup when Campbell’s Vegetable Soup is so wonderful — a grand-tasting beef stock and all those fifteen garden vegetables.  Why, every time I serve it my husband says: ‘Gosh, darling, this is really swell!’ And what better music can a wife hear than that? Now I ask you!”

The caption by the freaky little fat kid reads:

“I am sorry for my dolly, she’s hungry as can be. Inside of her is sawdust – but good soup’s inside of me!


Correction: Written by whiskey shit-faced Mad Men. Possibly tripping on acid.


I did shovel a can of soup down my gullet as per usual. Today, it was Progresso Chicken & Herb Dumpling. I just saw the "Herb" on the label and reached for it. It's just been one of those weeks. Well, fool me once, shame on — shame on you. Fool me — you can't get fooled again.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

I was tricked.

There was no pot in it, let alone any pie.

For shame, Progresso. For shame.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

The Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup of soup.

Remember those commercials for Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups where one person eating chocolate would collide with another person eating peanut butter, and the result was a magical combination of flavor?

“You got chocolate on my peanut butter! You got peanut butter on my chocolate! Damn you to Hell! Wait a minute, this is delicious...” And then they would go have Martinis and hook up in a cheap hotel. I’m guessing.

If you’re unfamiliar with the advertisements, you’ve probably seen it happen in real life because it’s a very common occurrence. Well, I had that exact scenario play out for lunch today – except there was no collision, there was no chocolate or peanut butter involved, I was by myself, and it was no accident. But I did stumble upon a magical combination of flavor: Campbell’s Fully Loaded Chunky Beef Stew with a giant school of Pepperidge Farm Goldfish crackers swimming on top. Campbell’s Soup Co. actually owns Pepperidge Farm, so why they don't market these two as compliments is beyond me. The public deserves to know.

Hey Campbell’s, call me. I have some ideas.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

The schoolyard of soup.

Campbell's Chunky Fully Loaded Beef Stew is the bloated jock that picks on Campbell's Chunky Sirloin Burger because of his weight problem. All of the Chunky Soups get snickered at by the Traditional Progressos, but only behind their backs because any Chunky can beat the crap out of any Progresso. But, Progresso can beat up regular Campbell's Condensed Chicken Noodle, who is quite popular, but doughy in nature. All soups pick on Cream of Mushroom for being more of an ingredient in white trash casseroles, and not so much a real soup. Campbell’s Bean and Bacon is the rural, redneck kid who only has two shirts and smells like mildew and feet. He’s laughed at by all, but usually left alone. Chunky Fajita Chicken is the token Hispanic kid who teaches all the other kids how to cuss in Spanish. ¡Hueles a mierda! Campbell's Tomato is the goth, artsy kid that no one pays much attention to. (Thanks a lot, Andy Warhol.) If there's ever any vandalism or defacing of school property, it's probably done by Campbell's Tomato. He’s full of angst. And sodium.

PS – I’m not implying that all soups are dudes. Take Italian Wedding, for instance. Total chick soup. But for the sake of my playground analogy, all soups are dudes.

Monday, December 7, 2009


Damn I love a good pun.

I’m feeling a bit under the weather today. By that, I mean that a cold has punched me in the spleen, stolen my lunch money, called me names, and given me an atomic wedgie that could end all wedgies.

One would think that chicken soup would be a gimme, but I only eat that when my soul is hungry. Today, no part of me is hungry and I can't taste anything. My strategy: grab the can that looks the least delicious and most nutritious. The winner: Progresso Split Pea and Ham.

The soup itself was a green gelatinous mush with swine bits suspended in its delicious viscosity. I say delicious because that's what I want it to be. I truly have no idea, so my review of its flavor must remain neutral. From a visual standpoint, it looked like an infant's hind side exploded in anger. And rage. But that's always the price of admission when choosing split pea.

To my chagrin, I found several whole peas in the soup. Not split in any way, shape or form. Should I consider that a sign? An indication of great things to come? Will I be showered with riches because of this extraordinary, possibly symbolic find? Or should I fear for my life? Take legal action? Illegal action? I suppose only time will tell if this is a blessing or a curse.

Stay tuned.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Tiny patties, made from tiny cows, cooked by tiny cooks, on tiny grills, flipped with tiny utensils, while listening to Elton John's "Tiny Dancer."

That's how I envision it, and I'm usually not wrong about these sorts of things.

Anyone who has ever enjoyed a bowl of Campbell's Chunky Sirloin Burger has probably wondered why, if not how, those little grill marks get put on those little patties. I'm pretty sure it's done by a small army of Puny Patty Grill Gurus, or PPGGs.

This is how I think the job application for that position at Campbell's Soup would read:

PPGG Wanted
We need a little help. We're a little short in our grilling department. This is a lower-level position within the company. Here's a little info about the job requirements:

Candidate must have a degree from a Junior College, at minimum.

Candidate must be able to make tiny sirloin patties and grill them with a little care and a lot of love.

Skills & Qualifications:
Candidate must be a team player, and be willing to take on any task, no matter how small. A little working knowledge of fire is also good.

Additional Considerations:
You must be willing to relocate. This job is located in a small town.

Also, feel free to include a wee list of activities and/or hobbies. For instance, do you coach a Little League team? Are you good at miniature golf? Do you drive a Mini Cooper? It's the little things that will get you considered for this position.

Campbell's is usually an Equal Opportunity Employer, but for this position, we totally need a midget.


If my PPGG Theory is not accurate, perhaps the patties are robotically stamped out at a rate of 1000 pps (patties per second) from a giant vat of meat dough, then have edible food paint applied to simulate grilling.

Either way... Yum!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

What in God's name is Chickarina?

Delicious, that's what.

Today, I feasted on a can of Progresso Chickarina soup that was plucked from my soup shelf.

I had never heard of this kind of soup before, so when I saw it on the supermarket shelf last week, my curiosity was piqued. It's obviously made from hens trained in the fine art of ballet, which makes them taste a bit better than standard, non-dancing chickens. And way better than chickens that are against dancing altogether, much the way the asshole father of the bony chick in Footloose was against Kevin Bacon.

The product did not disappoint. Each bite was a pirouette of flavor on my taste buds. With some Reduced Fat Keebler Town House crackers smashed up and sprinkled atop, I'm pretty sure I hit on most of the food groups: chicken, meatball, cracker, sodium stearoyl lactylate.

On a side note, I do think the Reduced Fat Townhouse crackers absorb broth and become mushy much too fast. I'll search for the "Increased Fat" crackers next time, assuming that a higher content of non-water-soluble, saturated fat will result in a slower absorption.

Tomorrow, I shall try an offering from Campbell's. Today, I felt I needed to give Progresso a chance at redemption after yesterday's disaster.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

It's my own damn fault.

Today, I had a can of Progresso brand Potato, Broccoli & Cheese Chowder for lunch. It was fucking disgusting. I don't know what about the name of this goop would have led me to believe otherwise.

I should point out that it was the "Traditional" Potato, Broccoli & Cheese Chowder. Not to be confused with the non-traditional, or deconstructed varieties.

Also, the can boasts that NO MSG ADDED*

*Except that which occurs naturally in yeast and hydrolyzed vegetable proteins.

Glad they cleared that up.