Saturday, April 30, 2011

#8 He Recognizes the Irony of Americans Partaking in a British Celebration

I hardly watch television, especially the news. If by now you have not recognized that what you are being told on TV is only a very minuscule portion of the truth (and even then it is hard to distinguish the difference between what may actually be fact and what is simply opinion) then you clearly have too much faith in our broadcasting systems. Therefore, I knew of the upcoming wedding of Prince William, however, any additional details (the date included) were of no concern to me.

Ah, but then Easter came. I was at my grandmother-in-law's home and the TV was on the entire time. Within the five hours I was there, I must have seen build up for the soon approaching Friday wedding at least every other commercial break.

As the date approached, endless talk continued around me of those filled with excitement over the royal wedding. Varied plans were being made by those who were taking off of work to watch it, waking up early to watch it, or simply TiVoing it so they could watch it at their convenience.

So, instead of dedicating major news time to Americans devastated by tornado destruction in Alabama or to the horrors occurring in Libya, our news dedicated the entirety of Friday morning to the marriage of a prince of England. Then after this news coverage finally came to a close, Americans couldn't allow themselves to part with the event. A continued fuss carried on, mostly by women, swooning over the events of the day. Numerous comments gave excuse to the excitement by stating, "We don't have this in America!", as if it were something they longed for.

Umm...hello? Don't you know why we celebrate the Fourth of July? Don't you realize the history of our nation? We didn't want a king. We didn't want royalty to reign supreme. Our founding fathers recognized the ridiculousness of giving one person unnecessary, uncalled for power.

And this is the very country we separated ourselves from.

However a wedding gives us excuse to obsess, adore, and fuss over such eminence. Most Americans have allowed the media to dictate to us how important such an event should be in our lives. Thus, why so many felt the pressing need to tune in.

Recognizing the prince's wedding is clearly called for. However, building up and excusing the regular news coverage for a day (especially when it is for a celebration not for our country) is shameful.

I know there will be many who disagree with me. There are many who simply adore weddings and get thrills and chills from viewing a royal wedding. However, we just have to recognize the irony in all of this. That glorifying individuals is not at all American, at least not in the American standards of America, 1776.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

#7 He Does Not Dispute that Kate and Al's is the BEST Pizza. On earth. Period.

I am in love...with a pizza pie. It is a pizza pie so fantastic I can barely conjure up a description that I feel will do it fair justice. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised to find there is an illegal addictive substance in this pizza because as I try to distinguish what is so wonderful about it, instead of writing, I take another bite.

The location? Kate and Al's at Columbus Farmer's Market
The price? Slice, $2. Half pie, 5 pieces for $10.
Small Pie, 6 pieces for $12. Large Pie, 10 pieces for $17.
The quality? Beyond reproach.

Sweet sauce drenches the pillows of bread underneath with just a hint of a crunch on the bottom. Cheese is scattered about, maybe there is a glob in one spot and just a hint of it in another. I know what you're thinking, "I don't really like a saucy pizza. I want cheese covering my pizza." That right there is the wrong attitude to go with. Those random swirlings of cheese when mixed with the sauce are like a mozzarella and tomato love child of goodness. The overload of sauce enhances the pizza, rather than take away from it.
Still not convinced? I get it. When it comes to pizza, EVERYONE has an opinion. Especially in Jersey. We're so close to so many fantastic options, there is bound to be a pizza argument.

You can usually tell the quality of a product by how in demand it is. Anytime I have passed by Kate and Al's there is always a wait. Typically it's about 20 minutes, but if you go on a Sunday, forget about it. Sundays are insane. People are piled up all over the ins and outs of the market that day and pizza is being served nonstop.

The same employees are always there and they have their craft down to a science. They aren't going to greet you with bubbly smiles and 'How do ya do's' but they will always be focused on one thing: getting those awesome pizza pies done as fast as possible without compromising
their quality.
Tonight I ate only three pieces of a half pizza. The two remaining pieces are corners. Never get stuck with the corners. You want as much of the saucy cheesy goodness that you can get. Shamefully, I do state that once upon a time my brother and I made it almost a weekly ritual to buy a large pizza, split it in half and eat the entire thing. Or perhaps I shouldn't be ashamed of the capability to eat so much wonderfulness in one sitting. I'll ask my thighs later what they think.

I know there are many pizzas in this world, but I like to think that my little town of Columbus has something that the rest of you are missing out on. True, it may not be pizza in the traditional sense what with a circle shape that is coated in cheese, but who ever cared so much for geometric traditions? I have heard tell of another pizza place (coincidentally located also at the Farmer's Market) that serves pizza almost identical to Kate and Al's, yet I have not yet braved to try it. My loyalties remain with Kate and Al's.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

#6 He Introduced Me To "V for Vendetta"

"People should not be afraid of their governments.
Governments should be afraid of their people."
-V for Vendetta

I don't usually choose this kind of movie to watch. In all honesty, I am a girlie girl when it comes to movies. My number one pick is typically a love story. However, never again will I watch "P.S. I Love You" or "The Notebook". They are terribly depressing movies that should never be considered love stories.

My second choice would be a comedy. Then, a mobster movie. (Yes I know you're thinking, "Really, mobster? How does that relate to love stories and comedies?" It is a simple connection of childhood and ethnicity. Growing up I watched action movies with my older brother almost every night. As a teenager, I was obsessed with my Italian background--actually, who's kidding, I still am---so, although I have dismissed the action movies from my preferred movie choice, the mobster/gangster ones I still have a tender spot for).

Lastly, I will also choose to watch almost anything in black and white specifically, but not limited to, anything with Lucille Ball or the Marx Brothers. (Okay, I do realize they are comedians and that takes me back to my comedy category, but honestly, I will watch most black and white movies despite their content.)

"V for Vendetta" is not at all classified with any of these types of films. The closest it would come to is the mobster flicks. considers it "Action, Sci-Fi, and Thriller" (I'm assuming the Sci-Fi comes from the fact that the setting takes place in a future time from now. Otherwise that one doesn't make sense to me).

Without giving anything away, the movie is set in England during a time where it has succumb to fascist rule and a totalitarian government. A man considered to be a terrorist (but only because he does not submit to the totalitarian government, if you know what I mean) known only as "V" has made it his purpose in life to try to abolish this set government.

Further description of the film is not necessary. It is one of those films that after you watch it you feel this eerie reality that what you have just witnessed could actually occur presently in the place in which you live. It makes you begin questioning and thinking. (Something which I doubt even a "free" government truly wants you to do.) Following such feelings is the intense burning inside of you to do something. You are filled with an indescribable want to get up get out and make a difference because the message created a burning passion that you didn't even know you possessed.

Now that is a good movie.

Monday, April 25, 2011

#5 He Provides Me With Shoe Therapy

Women are born with a sharply tuned shopping intuition. This provides us with a sense that recognizes the brands and products specifically made for ourselves and our households. Leave such a task to a man and you will usually find your home over spent and under satisfied. (I do say usually because I know there are some gifted men out there.) Unfortunately, we women are also born with the same sharply tuned intuition to shop whenever we begin to feel any state of neediness well up inside. This includes, but is not limited to, days when we: feel sad, feel lonely, are feeling fat, are feeling ugly, had a bad day at work, are on our period, got in an argument with our husband/boyfriend/best friend/enemy...I'm fortunate though. For most women, the neediness shopping can put a real wedge between them and their spouse. My husband doesn't get mad, in fact when I tell him I've spent some money I don't have much of a reaction at all. Of course, that can all depend on how out of control you get with it. Though I am needy, I tend to sale shop my neediness.

In fact, many times my husband will give into my need before I even do. (Though I can be needy, I am practical too. As I feel the pang to neediness shop, I have the practical side of me whispering, "Now you know you need to be saving that money!")

Most recently my neediness shopping has gone to feed a nonsensical shoe fetish that I have had ever since I was in high school. I blame my grandmother. She would take me shopping and buy me four pairs of shoes at a time. Therefore, it wasn't hard for me to stack up quite a collection of shoes.Over the years, as my grandmother took me shopping less and less, my shoe fetish has transformed into what can only be known as shoe therapy. Some unknown something (as it always is) drives me to the need to go shoe shopping, to search through the wide assortment of bright colors and soft colors, high heels and low heels, with flowers, without many different options, and always something new and different available.Most recently, I needed a new pair of black flats. My old pair was in serious need of a garbage can as the heels were beginning to separate from the bottoms thus providing me with a constant self-conscious feeling whenever I wore them in public.

To DSW my husband and I went. (Side note here: I must say, I tend to spend my shoe therapy sessions specifically at DSW. In a way it's a good thing because: 1. DSW is "Designer Shoes, Warehouse Prices" and 2. At DSW you rack up points to earn rewards certificates. So, after I spend a certain amount I get some money spend DSW. Hmmm...)

When the store had almost proven useless for the perfect pair of black flats, I found them. Soft leather made to fit perfectly to my foot (which is no easy task), and an awesome buckle-like piece decorating the top of the toe. The problem, the price tag. Another problem, they were awesome in white too. So awesome that I instantly envisioned myself wearing them throughout summer days with jeans, with shorts, with skirts, with everything!Long story short, that day I went home with the black pair, shortly after my husband treated me to another session of shoe therapy and the white pair were mine as well.

While I am not proud of my uncontrollable shoe fetish (and its product: the obscene amount of shoes found in my closet) I am proud to have a husband who endures my neediness with a mellow, laid back attitude.

Now, is it absurd to hear that during this blog post I have been simultaneously surfing the internet for sales on shoes?

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

#4 He Doesn't Think Cooking a Live Lobster is Murder

After reading the book and watching "Julie and Julia" I became possessed with the burning inspiration to cook a live lobster at least one time in my life. I must confess that I also almost instantaneously bought Julia Child's, "Mastering the Art of French Cooking". However, I could not see the sense in cooking my way through such intricate and incredulous recipes--there are so many variations she has on just one type of dish! (Now, if a "Mastering the Art of Italian Cooking" existed, I just might be interested!) I did make a few of the recipes and while the product sufficed for the meal it was purposed for, I was more impressed with Child's detail and passion for her craft than the actual recipes themselves. The lobster recipe was one I turned to within moments of getting the book and was then intrigued with more desire to try it out simply because reading about it made it seem something that I had to do in order to have a purpose in my life as cook of our household.

My brother's girlfriend, was the one that pushed me to do it. She got this burning idea for the grandchildren of my family to host a lobster dinner as a way to celebrate my grandmother. But by lobster, she meant lobster tail. My mind instead automatically went to Julia Child and LIVE lobster.

I am pretty much the complete opposite of a vegetarian. I recently tried to endure a fast of just vegetables and fruit and could barely make it through a 24 hour period because of my sheer need to have chicken or beef (*Side note, I endured three days of it*) (Side side note, I do consider eating chicken or beef a need). Therefore, I don't have a problem with killing animals for eats. However, when you are the one who is doing the killing it changes things just a bit. It takes the whole concept of "out of sight, out of mind" and brings it into perspective.

With that said, I made sure to grow no attachments to the two victims that I bought at Shop Rite for $8.99 a pound. (By the way, my Wall-E fish cost $8.99, and he can't possibly even weight 3 ounces).

I knew that I could feel a little remorse for the task I was about to complete, so I did my best to treat it as simply what it was: cooking dinner. It was exceptionally simple, even up to the moment that I had to pick up the lobsters to put into my pot of boiling hot water. (Now you may have read that it is "nicer" on the lobster to have them in the water as it begins to boil, however, when I cook a meal, I carry out the recipe to its exact specifications.) And by the way, there is no "nice" way to kill a lobster. Julia says, " may be killed almost instantly just before cooking if you plunge the point of a knife into the head between the eyes, or severe the spinal cord by making a small incision in the back of the shell at the juncture of the chest and the tail." Why yes, that seems so much more nicer than throwing the lobster into a boiling death.

As I placed the first lobster in the pot, I felt my one and only pang of sadness for the lobster that would soon be cooked, then ate, then digested. Julia tells the cook to put the lobster into the water head first. After doing so, the first lobster flailed his tail rapidly, practically flying out of my hand into the water, then banging against the side of the pot on his way in. My stunned reaction was to scream, "He didn't like it!" and run away from the pot. This then sent a shaking sensation throughout my body of the realism of what I was doing. The second lobster went in much easier, he appeared in a more comatose state than the other one. He went it without any reaction, however, his tail stuck to the rim of the pot, causing my continued freak out.

Here is what amazes me about cooking live lobster. These creatures were composed of a bland and boring assortment of brown and bluish colors when alive. Within minutes after being placed in the pot of boiling water they were transformed to a lively red coloring. Of course I had read that this would happen, but to see it live and in living color was an experience. And that is what this whole venture was: an experience. I probably won't ever do it again, and not because of the burden of taking a lobster's life. Simply stated: crab is better.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

#3 He Takes Care of My Wall-E Fish

I'm not really a pet person. Now, don't confuse this statement with the thought that I'm anti-animal or a pet-a-phob. Since before I was born, my family always had cats. They were okay. But, cats are hard for me to accept because they deceive you. They start out super cute as kittens and then turn into these mature felines that have lost the entire doting quality that they once possessed.

Growing up, like most kids, I wanted a puppy. (Which I did realize would one day turn into a grown dog, however, depending on the dog it could have a different outcome than the cat situation). We never got a puppy until I was 14. By then the thrill just wasn't quite the same. Because of the threat of what would happen when the clock struck midnight on January 1, 2000, my parents bought not one, but two puppies to be our protectors: an Alaskan Husky and a German Shepard. So, they really weren't getting my brothers and me dogs, they were getting the house dogs.

Whatever the reason, the cats not being kittens or the dogs coming too late in my childhood, for some reason I don't have the wherewithal to care for anything animal or vegetable (short of silk flowers) to save my life. But, when my birthday came around last year, I mentioned to my husband that I'd like a fish tank. I've always found fish as a sort of relaxation therapy and had become obsessed with the "Wall-E" fish, as I call it. The classification of this fish is goldfish, specifically a Black Moor. They have incredibly gigantic eyes (quite similar to the Disney robot, "Wall-E").

When I said I wanted this fish I meant it in a way like, "I want it, but I know I won't take care of it, so I don't really want it, because I don't want it to die". Clearly, my husband did not read my mind, because here I am today with a 25-gallon fish tank with my very own Wall-E fish (and a "typical" goldfish in which I claim no ownership over). Or, did my husband actually read my mind? Did he know that I truly did deep down want a fish, but but even further in the depths of my secret desires wanted him to buy it for me and also care for it? And there comes the best part: I don't do a single thing but walk by every day and stare at my goofy fish. I don't even feed him. (Or her, how would you know?) Plenty enough reason to love my husband: he supplies me with a Wall-E fish that I don't have to care for. This must be love.