Monthly Archives: July 2009

Food Rule #276 – Sandwiches made by other people

sammiesI have many food rules. Many people know this already. I don’t deny it and I don’t deny that sometimes I break my own food rules. I admit that over the years, I have bent and often broken some of my own food rules only to be opened up to new tasty delights however, there is a reason these rules are in place and I recently discovered why.

One of my food rules is that I generally don’t eat sandwiches made by people other than myself or my Mom. Perhaps it is because over the years, I’ve gotten used to my Mom’s sandwiches and when I make them, I know exactly what goes into them. I have very vivid memories of having sandwiches made on bread I wasn’t used to with bright orangey-yellow margerine heaped onto it and condiments all mixed together.

Someone recently asked me if this food rule included subs from Subway. No, it does not. Funnily enough, if it is a sub or some sort of gourmet sandwich, it passes.

This does include however, sandwiches and wraps put together by catering companies and other people. These sandwiches often show up in a complimentary lunch for work and at things like showers and funerals. Those ones are definitely out. If I am faced with a situation in which I feel I must consume one (usually when I’m absolutely famished and realize it will be a long time until I eat again), I usually go for the egg salad. I know it sounds gross but the thought of those luncheon meats with their preservatives and not knowing whether you are eating ham or olive loaf just creeps me out. Don’t get me started on tuna or salmon. Cold fish out of a can?! No thanks.

I was playing a concert recently and in between the dress rehearsal and the concert, we were served some sandwiches. I hadn’t eaten enough during the day and was starving when the sandwiches arrived. They were as I expected, beautifully laid out and arranged to impress but I wasn’t impressed. I struggled with the decision. Do I cave into my hunger and choke down one of these things or do I ignore the hunger knowing it would be at least another 3 hours until I could eat again? I looked at the platter and decided that an egg salad wrap might be the least offensive to me.

I ate it quickly, not even trying to enjoy any flavour it may have had. It satisfied the hunger pangs enough and I got through the concert.

Not even 24 hours later, I was doubled over in pain and have had the stomach flu for two days now. Coincidence? I don’t know but for now, this food rule still stands.




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What I’ve Got Against Coconut

I don’t like coconut. Not coconut juice, not coconut milk, just coconut. I even have a little rhymey phrase for it:

Coconut makes me choke-o-nut.

Last night, I was tricked into eating coconut! Tricked! It was somehow hidden into a yummy Dufflet sugar-free brownie. Here is what happened:

I took a bite of that yummy brownie (which I wouldn’t have, had I known there was coconut in it) and started to chew, letting the deliciousness of the sweet, sweet malitol soak into my taste buds. As the brownie dissolved, I noticed a foreign texture. Something hard but not crunchie, something very fine but very much in the way. I couldn’t quite figure out what it was but was spoiling the whole tasting experience. Was it some sort of nut? Like a pecan? No. Pecans dissolve. These pieces were just lingering there, tangling themselves up in my teeth. It had to be coconut. No matter how hard my tongue worked to get those little buggers out of the crevices they had dug themselves into, they still managed to linger. Even once I had gathered a tiny pile of coconut, I couldn’t even chew it down. If I tried doing that, they all just took off in my teeth again! Ugh, this was exhausting and by this point, the brownie was completely gone so I wasn’t even getting any flavour or taste from this. I then went for the water, accepting the fact that the only thing to do was to wash it all down in one go. HA! It took almost and entire glass of water and continuous picking. I even resorted to (and don’t judge me here, I was desperate!!) trying to pick it out of my teeth with my finger. Yes…I know. Well, desperate times call for desperate measures my friends.

I don’t like coconut because it spoils all of the fun. It insists on working it’s way into the tasting experience and never leaves! Worst of all, there is nothing to be gained from having it there. No taste, no enjoyable texture… Shaved coconut is not my friend. It tries to choke me, it exhausts me and it makes me look like some hick fool while I sit there and suck out and pick at my teeth. This folks, is what I’ve got against coconut.


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Faking it Just a Little

Have you ever been in a conversation with someone and you’ve either pretended you didn’t know something that you had or pretended you hadn’t thought of something when you had five minutes beforehand? Well I have, and I did it just the other night.

I was volunteering and this person came up to me and started describing a movie they had just seen. They couldn’t recall the name of the movie but I knew it and had seen it myself. They began by telling me what the movie was about and then proceeded to share the entire plot with me.

I paid close attention and inserted the odd “uh huh” and “oh really?” and even began to ask detailed questions about the movie.

Why did I do this? I certainly didn’t do it to be obnoxious but had to ask myself why I was doing this. Was it out of laziness? Perhaps. Sometimes it’s easier to let a person who is clearly excited about a certain topic talk away. I suppose I started asking questions for my own entertainment. I liked how he was describing the movie and wanted to hear more. Apparently, from his engaging descriptions, our opinions of the actual movie differed greatly.

I also do this sometimes so I don’t come across as being obnoxious. Had I been up front with him, it would have put an end to the conversation immediately or worse, I would have had to have faked enjoying the movie.

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t do this often, nor do I enjoy doing it. It is just sometimes easier. Nobody wants to engage in conversations with a know-it-all.

I just find that there is the odd time when I think faster than the person I’m conversing with and rather than burst their bubble, it is easier to keep the conversation flowing smoothly.

In writing this, I wonder how many other people do this too or if people have done it with me…


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The Neti Pot


So I was watching Jeopardy the other day and in my usual fashion, was shouting out answers in the form of questions of course for any categories I knew. There was an entire category dedicated to Dr. Oz. As the clue popped up, it was a video of Dr. Oz. The clue went something like this: “This is used to clear the sinus cavaties and can relieve sinus congestion”

“WHAT IS A NETI POT?!!!!” I yelled at the screen. Of course I was right and why was I right?

Well, like many others, I had seen it demonstrated on Oprah but at that point, it never registered what the actual name of this device was. It wasn’t until a friend of mine on facebook, sent me a message asking me if I had experienced the wonders of the neti pot. We had an ongoing conversation where I insisted the act was gross and I wouldn’t be using it anytime soon. He insisted it was some kind of miracle device.

I suppose if I were someone who suffered from sinus colds or infections, I would be on board with the neti too but I’m not. I see the neti as a snot flusher outer. It simply flushes the liquid snot in your head, out of your nose. I mean, look at the picture above. Does that look like a natural act?! I think not!

I mistakenly put my comment about knowing the Jeopardy answer on my status update on facebook and lo and behold, a slew of responses ensued. It seemed everyone wanted to chime in on what a freakin’ miracle this neti pot was! You’d think by their responses that these people had incurable diseases cured by this thing! It became clear very quickly that I wasn’t going to win this one but for the record, I don’t like the neti.


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Discovering my Inner Eliptical Goddess

FET8162P_ElipticalTrainerOne of the promises I made to myself this summer was to spend some time getting back to doing weights at the gym.  I don’t enjoy doing weights…at all…but I do like feeling strong.  My weight plan is simple and involves only basic resistance training.  This was to be combined with some running and biking on the side.  This morning however, as I was lifting those dumbells above my head, the eliptical machine caught my eye.  Don’t get me wrong, I had seen the eliptical machine there before and had even seen it in action but something was different this morning.  It was somehow inviting me, calling me over to step on those steps and take it for a test drive.

I got on and decided to play it safe with the manual setting.  This meant that I could simply go on for as little or as long as I liked.  I started things up and as it took me a few moments to find my rhythm, I noticed the machine was pre-programmed to go for 30 minutes.  Could I even handle 30 minutes??  As I picked up speed, I then noticed something flashing.  The machine was reading my heartrate.  I took note of the number and glanced at this little chart beside it to see if I was at the ideal heartrate.  I couldn’t tell!  I mean, all of the lights in this little graph were lit up.  I even tried to purposely slow down the machine to see if the chart changed.  Nope.  Nothing.  Once I got over that, I realized I had been on the machine for only 3 minutes.  While I wasn’t huffing and puffing, I wasn’t sure I could stand being on this thing for 30 whole minutes.  My legs were already feeling a little wobbly and if I got going too fast, I felt the machine just might throw me right off!

I promised myself I would only commit to 15 minutes.  This seemed like a manageable time.  I settled into an even steadier rhythm and tried to concentrate only on the entertainment news on the television.  The funny thing is, as I got going, the time flew by…9 minutes, 11 minutes, 15 minutes.  After that 15 minute mark, I was feeling great!  I was sweating and was enjoying bouncing around on this thing!  As you can imagine, the rest of the time flew by and I left feeling excited about the eliptical!  I was going to be an eliptical goddess!  Ok, maybe not a goddess but someone who is actually looking forward to trying it again tomorrow!



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Crazy Lady or Prophet?

I was on the subway today and a woman shuffled on and sat in the seat facing me. As I listened to my ipod, I only noticed her because she was carrying two large bags; one duffle bag and one shopping bag on wheels (you know, the kind you’d find in Kensington Market and would only use in Kensington Market). As she walked on, she was half tripping over these bags and was at the same time, swinging them into people’s legs. All this while speaking very loudly to herself.

Having my prime spot right next to her, I took the opportunity to listen very carefully to what she said. Here it is:

“(Full voice) He tried to kill me! Don’t trust black men in Toronto. If you see a black bus driver, get off the bus. I’m talkin’ TTC here. Sure, he looks friendly but he is not. It was because of my faith. My faith in Jesus Christ. (whispered) Jesus Christ is coming. Judgement day is upon us. (full voice) I would never date a black man from Toronto! All black men from Toronto are bad. There are plenty of good black men in the United States. He tried to kill me because I have the faith. Jesus is the saviour. (whispered)Jesus Christ is coming. Judgement day is upon us.”

This reel of a speech kept repeating through the short ride. I kept waiting for something new. Some new piece of the puzzle or new information. Perhaps a secret message that would reveal a deep truth. Nope. Just crazy.


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