Friday, August 29, 2008

Back to Zero

So I bailed early. Twelve hours early, to be exact, but only because this weekend is Labor Day, which means I'll be called back to the grill to prepare an assortment of perfectly seasoned and seared animal flesh. I want to have enough time to prepare my intestines for the binge that will likely ensue. And what was it like to have something other than sweet lemon on my tastebuds? In a word: glorious. Variety is truly the spice of life. And eating. I also snuck a few bites of the vegetable soup I'll be eating today (and that of which I presently reek).

At the end of it all, I feel amazing, and the added bonus is that I lost 20lbs, so I can put the elastic pants back in the closet. If you can shut the world off AND you can make food your enemy for 10 days, I highly recommend taking the plunge. When you're done, pat yourself on your newly flat tummy and smile. Buen Provecho.

Vegetable Soup Recipe:
1 bunch kale, roughly chopped
2 potatoes, quartered
3 carrots, diced
3 ribs celery, diced
1 medium onion, diced
1 long hot pepper, or any hot pepper, sliced
Salt, pepper, and garlic powder to taste

Sweat the onions, carrots, and celery in olive oil until onions are translucent, about 3 mins. Add the rest of your vegetables and spices, bring to a boil, then cover and simmer the fuck out of it (an hour or so).

Thursday, August 28, 2008


Take note: traveling and cleansing do not play nice in the sandbox. Yet another test of wills yesterday as I got stuck in the conference room seat directly in front of the bagels, and subsequently, the sandwiches. But today is the last day of this torture. I'm a little disappointed at the amount of weight loss, but I think that's more a function of the fact that I became such a fat shit. Alas, the journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step, right?

Mental status: I'm no longer crazy, but I am a little angry
Tummy status: Ready to eat buffalo wings, tomato pie, cheesesteak, pizza, chicken parm, soup dumplings, and pork fried rice all in one sitting (and wash it down with an assortment of beers, including Miller Lite).
Energy level: Still way up, although it was tough getting out of bed this morning.

Tomorrow I drink orange juice and eat vegetable soup. I'm accelerating the reintroduction of food (which could be bad), but I'm flippin' starving. See you on the other side. Buen provecho.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008


Like the frostbitten mountaineers less than one hundred feet from the peak of Everest, I have become devoid of feeling. And poop. The morning hums along and I am literally empty. Last night I played squash for the first time in three months. I was surprised that I didn't pass out from lack of food. I was not surprised that I flailed about the court and generally sucked the big one. No ball control, poor T management, flat feet. It was all wrong. Luckily the new club has no court fees and is seemingly uncrowded (6 courts and 138 members), so I can catch up on much needed practice. Getting back to the cleanse, I'm starting to wonder what will happen in it's wake. Will I submerge myself in a grease-laden sea of fast food? Or will I follow Mr. Burroughs' hippie ass advice and only eat raw? I wish I could subscribe to the Marc McGehan diet: rice and beans and more rice. One thing is for sure. I'm definitely going to get shitfaced. Buen provecho.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Six Down, Four to Go

This weekend was a severe test of wills as I watched my brother-in-law Wii bowl a 300 and had to pass on the congratulatory round of shots. I also had to pass on a pile of grilled burgers, charred hot dogs, red potato salad, soft pretzels with cheese sauce, and about fifty Miller Lites. It was my own personal vision quest, and leaving the party left me with a new resolve to ride this thing out. It also left me really fucking bitter and hungry. But we're getting ever closer to that steamy bowl of vegetable soup, and I feel better than I've felt in a long time. It's good to clean yourself out every now and again, if for nothing else than to reunite with your beloved foodstuffs at the end of your journey.

(You may note that I'm going completely crazy. I could have sworn I was hallucinating the other day. I've had the mouth of a sailor. And I'm even enjoying the musical stylings of Li'l Wayne. God help me)

Friday, August 22, 2008

Road Show

I'm not hungry at all. That's a goddamned lie. There's a bowl of M&Ms sitting on the receptionist's desk less than 12 feet away from me. I'm ready to give it all up for a couple of chocolatey crunches. Seriously. I think this is my first test of willpower, and it's getting mucked up by the fact that I'm back in NYC and I've already thrown back the quart of juice I brought along and I'm 7 hours away from another sip of sweet, sweet lemonade. This must be how bees feel on their way to the flowers, feverishly flapping their ricepaper wings in order to keep their stripey fat asses aloft. That makes no sense at all. Oh well, forget it. I'm going to drink some water and hope that Jesus will give me strength enough to make it through the rest of the workday. Buen Provecho.

Thursday, August 21, 2008


The evening tea requirement is starting to interfere with my slumber. I was once again jarred from sleep to take care of business, which now resembles boogers. Clearly (no pun), there's little left on my insides. I'm starting to battle hunger, be it the commuter with a sack of McDonald's on the way home, or just the morning walk from the train through a food court, where the smell of bagels braids itself with my nose hairs. In a couple days time, they say the hunger's supposed to subside. I can see it getting worse, especially as we go into the weekend, when drinking all day is not only acceptable but also encouraged (I encourage myself to drink during the day and I find it acceptable). I've a few days to mentally prepare for the temptation, but until then, I raise my glass of lemonade to all you eaters and readers. Buen provecho.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Yellow is the New Brown

I honestly thought that I would be chugging this "lemonade," since it's the only thing I can consume other than water (and Philly water, if you've ever had it, has the faint flavor of cigarette butts), but after a hair past 24 hours, my teeth are starting to hurt. I think I'll have to up the brushing to more than a few times a week.

Moving along to other fun changes my body is going through, the other end is now dispensing liquids instead of solids, although a few did sneak out a 4am this morning as a result of the herbal tea I drank before bed. Surprisingly, there hasn't been much action aside from each morning's "internal bath." The upshot is that I get to catch up on some reading.

No major hunger to speak of, but we're early on. Plus, I'm pretty sure I ate enough to hibernate for most of the winter, so my reserves are pretty full.

Stay tuned for more updates, and enjoy your food, because I can't.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

What Goes Up Must Come Down

Today (actually last night) is the beginning of my first foray into the world of "cleansing." Yes, I talked heaps and piles of doggy doo when a friend of my wife went through with it. I couldn't possibly understand why someone other than those shitheads in Hollywood would put themselves through such torture. And then hearing that it was a way to purify the body, well then you might as well blast some Yanni and kick your own ass. Almost a year later, I'm eating my words instead of eating food, and every now and again taking an internal bath (use your imagination), so as to purify my own body. My gustatory excesses over the last few months have left me 20 pounds heavier and quite unhappy with my overall health. So for the next ten days, like it or not dear 2 readers, I'm going to wear out my backside and give you all the clinical details in the most creative way possible. That way we can all hopefully return to the happier days of enjoying the food instead of just cramming it in my piehole and then being pissed off that I ate so much. Wish me luck.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Sapporo Me Another One

The continuation of the caloric onslaught that marks my final days in NYC led me to Go last night, normally a late night beer fueled glutton fest, but this time for dinner a little earlier on. After multiple beers with an old boss and a gallery opening curated by a professional sailor, what better way to end the night than with a plate of octopus balls and dynamite yaki (okonomiyaki with kimchi), and of course some more goddamn beers? Here's what I've learned after multiple visits, including this, the final one:

1. The sushi here sucks, so don't get it. You're better off eating poison straight from the box. In fact, you should only order from the laminated menu with the grill specials. That means octopus balls, any of the pancake options, and fish sausage stuffed with cheese.

2. They're only open at night, but they're open late. I would say that the later you go, the better the food tastes.

3. Drowning whatever's in front of you in mayonnaise is always a good (delicious) idea.

4. The service is pretty crappy, but I probably wouldn't give a shit either if I was serving some drunk round-eye.

5. I'm hung over.

Buen Provecho.

Thursday, August 14, 2008


As my Brooklyn days dwindle, I am ever eager to cram as much food in my mouth from as many locations as possible. Hovering in between nostalgia and consistency, my lovely wife and I decided on a final meal at Joya, which was actually the first place I dined upon landing in Cobble Hill. Remember that you are Joya, and to Joya you shall return.

The place is an all-around slam dunk. You get cheap ass food, local artwork, the owner's in a band, minimalist decor, and an 8 out of 10 on the service scale. If it weren't for the crowds, we'd probably eat there more often. Unfortunately, last night's food missed the mark. Maybe that's too much of a blanket statement. It was the Pad Thai (white man's Thai) and the warm beer that put the rest of what was on the table in vertigo. There was way too much plum sauce, giving the dish an unbearable sweetness that lingered far too long in your mouth, and the noodles themselves had the rubbery consistency of poorly cooked calamari. Aside from this unfortunate mishap (really the centerpiece of our meal), the rest was delicious, although the whole fish I ordered was filleted such that I spent a lot of time deboning. Moving on to dessert (which put me over the edge and made me want to deliver a food baby), we opted for the fried banana. Take a note, readers, skip the appetizer to save room for this masterpiece. It's a banana spring roll surrounded by neapolitan ice cream. The fried wrapper adds a savory note to the pile of cream and sugar, and it's a perfect ending to what is usually a perfect meal.

Overall, one hell of a goodbye meal. And for $50 all in, including booze, it's still the best value in Cobble Hill when it comes to Thai food. As a pair of bookends, I bid you adieu, Joya. I hope our paths can cross again, and soon. Buen Provecho.

Monday, August 11, 2008

What Do You Want on Yer Tombstone?

Readers (all two of you):

As you may know, I will be relocating to Philadelphia shortly (less than a week to be exact). While I certainly look forward to everything that Stephen Starr has to offer, including his Atlantic City offering of French Onion Soup Dumplings, I leave New York City with a heavy heart. I have started what I hope to be a long string of suggestions for a final meal over on Serious Eats. Nothing's too outlandish, but try and stay within the constraints. Buen Provecho.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Nobody Reads This Anyway

But I'm sorry for the literary lag here. Special updates of note to whet your appetite (for desctruction):

Five Guys still has the best burger. Goodburger (home of the goodburger) has the right idea, but next time I'll refrain from getting "The Works." Ketchup, mustard, and mayo on the same sandwich is like the suicide fountain soda (all the sodas available). It only sounds like a good idea.

I took my wife to Saul for her birthday. Holy shit was it good. The tagliatelle first course had everything I would never think to ask for in a pasta dish: bacon, poached egg, and a silky broth that tasted like a meat smoothie (that's a good thing). Follow that up with sweetbreads atop an Indian-inspired pile of potatoes and pickled cauliflower, a pale ale pairing, and you've got the best meal on Smith Street (sorry, The Grocery).

I've spent the last two weeks eating more than 3,000 calories per day. It's very hard to sustain that much sustenance.

There was a pig roast at 3rd Ward on July 20th. I didn't go.

That's all for a week or so. Buen Provecho.