How I grocery shop. Part 2.

What a lot of people don’t realize is that the grocery shopping shouldn’t stop at the actual acquisition of groceries.

Sure, ya gotta get your goodies home and then put them away. Most probably stop there.

I don’t.

A slight digression.

Once upon a time, the family and I rented a house on the East Side of Cleveland. What we didn’t know at the time was the fact that the rental company that we rented from was run by a bunch of clowns who really didn’t give a fuck about the property as long as we were paying the rent on time.

As such, things like telling us that the basement was a wet basement wasn’t a priority. What was even less of a priority was the fact that when they replaced the roof (which they did without prompting) they didn’t think to check the integrity of the roof from the attic point of view. If they did that, they would have seen that the roofers that they had hired split one of the roof planks (thereby leaving a six inch gap the length of the entire roof that was only covered by the roofing paper and shingles that they used). In case you didn’t do the math, wetness from the basement + wetness from the attic = a mold sandwich that was waiting to happen.

What that sandwich had was a heaping side of really shitty windows. These were the turn of the century types that required you to put the storm windows on from the outside and had the accordion screens that stayed in place from the weight of the window.

As such, this house was the absolute fucking worst when it came to maintaining the integrity of our fruits and vegetables.

What also didn’t help was the fact that once the weather turned warm, it was game-fucking-on for the fruit flies. Seriously: check it out.

Greatest. Invention. Ever.

Greatest. Invention. Ever.

One day, my wife turned me on to vinegar. I don’t know if she knew this from previous experience or if it was something that she had found on Pinterest. Once I started soaking our produce, it has lasted twice as long.

As an added aside, you can do essentially anything with the stuff. Cleaning. Food. Cooking. Plus, it’s going to smell like Easter up in your house.

Giving your produce a vinegar bath certainly seems like one of those things thats easy to blow off. But you have to look at it this way: you know nothing about the life of the food that you want to eat. Wouldn’t it make sense to take the initiative to kill whatever bacteria is lurking (either through natural means or as the result of someone who is underpaid and under appreciated) on the food that you want to put in your belly?

So here’s what I have been doing to get our money’s worth out of our produce. 

 IMG_3325 IMG_3321In general, there seems to be a bit of a dispute as to how much vinegar that you are supposed to use and how long you should let your shit soak for.

Personally, I slosh enough across the top to make sure that more than half of the produce has gotten some vinegar.

Then, I fill the sink up with water and I go do something else. Typically, that something else is putting the rest of the fucking groceries away.

In general, I don’t let them soak for more than 15 minutes or so.

Make yourself useful and take care of those snacks you bought! Don’t look at me like that, I know you’re a mindless eater!

It’s the same routine as the produce: get all of the shit together. Then, put it in the tupperware that you and you’re wife bought. For me, it’s not so much about seeing exactly how much everyone is eating. It’s about keeping the tupperware cabinet empty because every time someone goes into that cabinet it looks like there was a fucking Earth quake.

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TA!

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FUCKING DA!

So, now that you have gotten the snacks and what not squared away (and probably had a little handful of everything because you feel entitled) turn back to the produce that you left swimming.

Time to rinse that shit!

There’s no real trick to it: drain the sink, transport the veg to the bin that you left open and pretend like you’re one of the jailor’s at the county lock up who likes delousing people.

Like, so.

Like, so.

You could go the extra mile and dry all of that shit by hand, but I like to work smart, not hard. I let everything air dry.

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This is usually where I fuck off and do something else for 30 minutes or so. After the appropriate amount of time has gone by, then I put all of that shit away.

The house is safe for another week.

The house is safe for another week.

Thus concludes “How I Grocery Shop”. Got a routine of your own? Share it in the comments section at the top of this post!

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How I grocery shop. Part 1.

I don’t remember the first time that I went grocery shopping as a stay at home parent. What I do remember is what led up to this being my responsibility: my wife and I would constantly quibble about who’s responsibility it was. She wanted it to still be her’s (even though she was working full time) and I wanted it to be mine (because I had the time to get it done).

Seems kind of stupid, but she had good reason not to trust me: I was raised on junk food.

My parents, although well meaning, didn’t know shit when it came to food and how it logically impacts your health. Things like “what to eat vs. what not to eat” and “how much is enough?” were ideals that were never really impressed upon me. I suppose that if I were to put myself in their shoes, they naively saw that I derived some sort of fucked up happiness through gorging myself. However, through this naivety I became the token fat kid in the neighborhood. I thinned out as I got older but my need to eat garbage has never really gone away. As a result, my weight has gone up and down like a bride’s nightie.

All of that aside, throughout the years, I have refined my grocery shopping approach. When I first started out, I was able to feed a family of 5 for $120 a week. I accomplished this by being the king of boxed food at the time. Pretty easy to be cost effective and time effective when that’s the case.

As I have progressed in my knowledge of food and have come to terms with the fact that fruits and vegetables have to be a priority, our grocery bill has inflated slightly to somewhere between $150 to $190 a week.

FYI: I don’t do coupons. Too much of a pain in the ass. Also, 65% of my cart is normally produce. Sadly, I have yet to shop somewhere that actually has coupons for their fruits and veggies.

That’s still pretty good if I do say so myself.

“But what about meals and planning meals and shouldn’t I make shit to eat that everyone will like?” I’m sure you’re thinking that if you haven’t all ready.

Yes, you have to plan meals (It’s a part of your job). No, they don’t have to be things everyone will like. And no, you don’t have to plan meals every night of the week (that shit gets exhausting real quick). In short:

FUCK THAT NOISE.

You are in charge of all aspects of the food that comes into your home. Not your wife. Not your kids. You. While you may want to please everyone, it’s fucking impossible. There’s always going to be someone around the table who doesn’t like the dish you put in front of them, or they don’t like something that is a part of the meal. They’ll get over it.

Personally, I aim for three planned meals a week. I could do more, but two out of my three kids have places to be in the evenings. As such, I have “throw away” meals built into dinner time for the week.

“Throw away meals”? These are things that I can make in under 40 minutes that generally don’t come out of a box and can be considered health conscious.

In sum, grocery shopping is a snap if you have a system in place.

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See how useful this motherfucker is? Holds recipes for the week like a fucking champ!

Envelopes are your friend.

Envelopes are your friend.

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Seriously, they are. Hell of a lot harder to lose a grocery list if it’s written all over an envelope.

 Behold the might of the Envelope in all of it’s splendor!

One glorious day, I turned around and saw them: the envelopes that I have had since I have moved in with my wife. They were just sitting there, taking up space and collecting dust on a shelf. Then I had a thought. I thought:

I’m gonna use the fuck out of them. 

For real: The best thing that I have ever done in terms of my system for grocery shopping was switching over to envelopes.

I have tried scraps of paper. Lost every single one of them.

I have tried a “food notebook”. Way too cumbersome.

I have tried creating lists in my “smart phone”. Also way too cumbersome because you have to turn the fucking thing on and off. While it seems like your trying to get your monies worth out of something that you have invested in, you’re really not: it’s just another reason to be tethered to something that has the potential to brainwash you.

Shopping has been a breeze since then. I don’t have to worry about remembering if I brought my list. I don’t have to fuck around with something that is unwieldy, and I certainly have gained some distance from my fucking phone.

Got a shopping system that works for you? Share in the comments section at the top of this post!

A quick-ish word about “depression” being a son of a bitch.

Before I say anything further, it should be noted that I have absolutely no medical credentials. I have no certifications. I have also not been treated for depression. I am a man who has experience with depression.

As such, the purpose of this post is to address the topic of depression in the event that there is someone out there, male or female, working parent or stay at home parent (like myself) who is “down in the dumps” as the vernacular goes.

A little about me.

In terms of my genetic make up and heritage, there’s absolutely nothing remarkable about me. I’m a white male, of Irish descent. While I don’t like to bandy about cliches or stereotypes, what they say about Irish men being emotionally retarded is fucking true.

We don’t like our feelings. We don’t like talking about our feelings. We certainly think that there should be a medical procedure to remove the little buggers so we can live the rest of our lives in drunken ignorance.

I am no exception to any of the above.

I don’t like talking about myself PERIOD. I never have. As I am usually loathe to deal with anything feeling related, it can be safely assumed that I have never given it much thought. In general, I have always preferred to listen to other people talk about themselves. What’s at work there, is the fact that most people, LOVE TALKING ABOUT THEMSELVES.

Perhaps I’m a coward. Perhaps it’s a level of self consciousness that I’m not willing to deal with. Maybe it has something to do with some childhood trauma that has been buried deep within my dome. I just don’t know.

From ages 12 to 35, there have been numerous points in my life where I have been depressed. This isn’t the “boo hoo I can’t get laid” type of depression (even though some of it was). This is the “being a lone peach in a can full of syrup, fully realized” type of depression. Everything is awful. Every movement feels like trying to walk through waist deep water.

For the record, this has lessened substantially within the past 12 years.

What I am getting at.

As a parent, depression is a relatively easy trap to set for yourself.

Kids are fucking expensive. They’re not “gifts”. They are people. People cost money. Kids need money in order to grow. That right there is fuel enough to make any parent, new or seasoned, feel like they are in a race that they can’t win.

As a parent who stays at home (especially if you are a dad), it’s even easier to feel the wastes of depression seep in. YOUR JOB DOESN’T END. You don’t get that moment to look forward to when you realize that your workday is almost over and you get to go home. You are all ready there. Nothing ever stays clean and simple things like your asshole kids turning off the fucking bathroom light upon exit amounts to you asking them to build a goddamn rocket.

What’s worse is the fact that all of the parents around you are either bad at parenting or they are just assholes. Effectively you are on your own.

“In the event of fire”.

It’s ok to fall down every once in a while. What you have to keep in mind is that you can’t be the person your kids need if you can’t pick yourself up off the ground. Being depressed is ok. Letting it control your life and inform your behavior in your immediate environment is not ok.

If you need help, ask your significant other. Don’t have one? Think of the one person that has been close to you all of your life and ask them. That’s what they are there for.

If you are like me (emotionally stunted) and you don’t want to due to whatever cockamamie excuse you’ve cooked up, you still need to do something about it.

 This is where the Tumblr comes in handy. Don’t fuck around with the internet. That’s just asking for trouble. On tumblr I see a lot of posts about depression and what to do when you’re in it. A lot of them seem like they are on the level. As far as I know, you don’t need a tumblr account to use tumblr. Why not give it a look? 

What I do.

 My general rule when it comes to dealing with anything negative is that I am allowed 20 minutes to feel sorry for myself. Sometimes I can manage and get my shit together in the time allowed. Sometimes, not so much. The important thing is to recognize the behavior (hopefully before it starts) and take action. Usually this amount to me:

  1. Letting my wife know what my fucking problem is.
  2. Writing a telephone-book-sized journal entry about what my fucking problem is.
  3. Resort to OTC’s like Sam-E or St. John’s Wort.
  4. Work out and managing my food intake with Swiss precision.

In Sum.

Whatever you’re feeling, whatever you’re going through, it is temporary. While it may seem like “it’s easier said, than done”, it is the truth. What you need to do, is to have the courage to admit that something is wrong. But what you need to realize and accept is that you need to take that step a bit further and correct ‘the wrong’ that is making you suffer.

In the event that you want someone to chat with (that is relatively objective) I can be contacted here

How to Make “The Fried Chicken”.

If you are relatively new to the kitchen, or you are a novice and the idea of Salmonella scares the shit out of you, cooking chicken in any way can be a terrifying experience.

Don’t feel bad, I was the same way. For the longest time I would overcook chicken to the point of practically jerky-ing it because:

  1. I was young and stupid and not very picky about what I ate.
  2. I figured that the longer I cooked it, there was less chance of it being undercooked.

For the record, chicken is not supposed to taste or look like shoe leather. In the grand scheme of things, chicken is a versatile and indispensable part of any kitchen because it goes with nearly anything. As such, anyone worth their salt ought to know how to prepare it in a couple of different ways.

Today, you’re going to learn how to make Fried Chicken.

Materials Needed

  • Chicken tenders You can try breasteses. Me? I prefer the chicken tenders because they are easier to work with and if you make enough of them, you have leftovers. Leftovers are good. 
  • Eggs. That’s right: eggs. The eggs act like the glue that hold the breaded deliciousness onto said chicken. The quantity depends on how much chicken you are frying. With a 5lb. bag of chicken, you can expect to use at least 3-4 eggs.
  • Breading material of your choice. People get a little freaky with this. You can use corn flakes, pork rinds, traditional breading, basically anything that can be refined to a powder can be used as breading. For this particular example (and my breading of choice) I use almond flour.

PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT!!! Do not fuck around with store bought almond flours. Yes, it may have certain benefits (health, taste or otherwise) but in my experience they are expensive as fuck! For this recipe I bought sliced almonds and then gave them a go-around in the food processor. Sure, it looks chunky but it’s still consider ‘almond flour’.

  • Seasoning. This is strictly all on you. You like it sweeter? Figure it the fuck out and get some sweet shit up in that. I tend to go the savory route as you will see in the following pictures.
  • Cooking implement of your choice. I have the blessing and curse of having a fryer. It certainly makes frying shit easier. You can fry on your stove top with the pot and/or pan of your choice.

ADDITIONAL PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT!!! When I was still trying to get my sea-legs as the stay at home parent, I ventured into making fried chicken on the stove. Basically the recipe called for a pot and a fuck ton of oil that had to be at an appropriate temperature. Me being a rookie, I got the food thermometer out and tried to take the temperature of the oil that I had been heating on the stove. What I didn’t know was that dropping something metal into a heated, semi-volatile substance, will indeed, scare the living shit out of you.

BEFORE YOU GET STARTED, HEAT UP YOUR OIL!

It doesn’t matter if you’re using the stove top or a fryer like I have in this recipe. Breading the chicken is a bit tedious. The last thing that you want is to go through all of this shit AND THEN have to wait for the damn oil to warm up.

STEP 1. THAW THE CHICKEN!

STEP 1. THAW THE CHICKEN!

Again, while chicken can be a tasty component of any meal, it’s really easy to get sick from mishandling raw chicken. I recommend having the water running to ensure ease of rinsing hands. Additionally, it is not advisable to have thawed chicken sitting in it’s own juices. Why? I have no fucking clue. I just remember that from my ‘retail days’ and the occasional reiteration when I settle on watching the Food Network.

STEP 2. MAKE THE FLOUR!

 Almonds seem to be the miracle nut. You can use them as a breading, a substitute for pizza dough, if you leave them in the food processor long enough, they’ll eventually reduce to almond butter.

If you don’t have a food processor or a half way decent blender, I recommend one of the less healthier options of breading.

This is what the final product should look like. Don’t worry about the clumps. As long as it has a powder-like consistency, you’re good to go.

STEP 2-A: SEASON THE FLOUR!

Almonds on their own taste like ass. They are the healthier of the nuts in the Nut Kingdom but in terms of flavor, they are pretty lacking.

Seasoning is a personal thing. Some people prefer smoke, others prefer fire. Myself, I like to fall somewhere in between.

IMG_3283DON’T FORGET TO MIX THAT SHIT UP!

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This is what the final product should look like. 

STEP 3: BEAT THE FUCK OUT OF THE EGGS!

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While it does seem a bit cruel and sadistic to use chicken embryos like glue on chicken corpses, there isn’t a better thing out there for what we are trying to accomplish. Make the above picture, look like the below picture. 

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My tool of choice is the fork. I just don’t have the coordination to whisk anything. Should you use the fork as well, make sure you get enough lift in your eggs. That means, hold the bowl at a slight angle over your sink so that everything pools to one side and then stir like a motherfucker. 

STEP 4: ASSEMBLE THE ASSEMBLY LINE!

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This is what I do. You may want to play with this to find out what work for you. Should you be using a fryer, put something underneath the son of a bitch as the breading will find a way to fall through the holes during the journey from the assembly line to the fryer. 

STEP 5: START BREADING!

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TAKE THE CHICKEN!

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DROWN THE MOTHERFUCKER! (BE SURE TO GET BOTH SIDES!)

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DROP IT IN THE SEASONED BREADING!

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HIDE IT IN THE BREADING WITHOUT LOSING IT!

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NOW, PUT IT IN THE BASKET! OR WHATEVER!

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LATHER, RINSE, AND REPEAT UNTIL YOU ARE OUT OF CHICKEN!

See? Simple yet tedious. 

STEP 6: START FRYIN’!

Did you read the thing about the oil at the top of the page? Sure fucking hope so. Doing all of that work and then having to wait is a buzzkill.

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When I cook, I generally don’t use a timer. I go by sight, smell, and texture. If you’re just starting out, don’t be a goddamn hero: use the timer until you get good enough to eyeball whatever the fuck it is that you are cooking.

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When it comes to the almond-flour-ed chicken, you want a light change in color. Yep, you want to see it go from brown, to light brown. Dark brown is ok too. Not everybody has the palette for that though. It’s not that it tastes horrible. People prefer to not have burnt nuts in their mouth.

STEP 7: FINISH HIM!

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TA DA! It’s a meal. Chicken, not just fried chicken is simple to make as long as you know what you are going to do with it.

Got a preferred method of chicken making? Let’s hear about it in the comments!

On Sleeplessness and Getting ‘Quality Sleep’.

I have had issues with sleep since the 4th grade. 

At that time, I was a child of two worlds. This is also known as living with mom during the week and living with dad during the weekend.

During the week, I was inundated with the strict Catholicism that my mother tried to use as a tool to enforce my obedience. On the weekend, my newly sober father was multi-tasking: he was learning how to be a father again (as he was drunk when he was supposed to be doing those duties when my siblings were my age) by basically letting me do whatever and spoiling the shit out of me (a common tactic divorced dads usually resort to in an effort to curry favor with their children). Occasionally, he’d alternate spoiling me with letting me know how he really felt about my mother.

One time he dropped me off from school and laid this one on me: “I would be getting out of prison right about now if I had killed your mother.” I was still in the 4th grade at the time.

Freshly divorced parents are too self absorbed to realize that if there is a kid in the picture, that the familial schism that their hubris has caused is going to fuck up the kid more than it ever will them. 

So, from the 4th to the 8th grade getting quality sleep was a pain in the ass for me. If I couldn’t shut my brain off at night, I was getting to bed on time only to wake up an hour later unable to get to sleep until the wee hours of the morning. By the weekend, I was completely fucked because my father wanted to be ‘the cool dad’ so it became normal for him to let me sleep until the afternoons.

Bear this in mind: I harbor no ill-intent towards either of my parents. I’m just illustrating how sleep was a hard won ally for me. 

From high school until the present day, I didn’t fare much better. Sure, I got better at understanding people and how they worked. And sure, gainful weekend employment coupled with social activities made going to sleep at the end of the night a breeze thanks to sheer exhaustion. But getting enough quality sleep has always been a pain.

In recent years, if it hasn’t been anxieties about employment, or the future, it’s been about someone else: a new baby, a sick child, or a light sleeper sleeping next to me.

Since I have become the resident Resident of my family and since I have accepted the fact that I can’t burn the candle at both ends (like I did in my youth now that I’m in my mid-30’s) sleep is my favorite hobby.

Unfortunately, there are still some incidences where I can’t turn my brain off.

What to do in the Event of a Sleep Malfunction.

Before I go further, I should re-iterate that I’m not a sleep expert, nor am I a medical professional. 

I’m just another asshole who has an opinion and can kind of write good.

If you’re having trouble sleeping for a prolonged period of time (longer than a week), quit dicking around and make a doctor’s appointment. I  personally hate hospitals and I have a general disdain for doctors. However if there’s something keeping me from sleeping that may be “internal” you better damn well believe I’m making the appointment.

If you can’t bring yourself to do that, here is a short list of things that have worked for me in the past. (Maybe something herein will work for you too).

  1. Ear plugs and an eye covering of some sort. Yes, it’s a very thin line that separates you from a bird in a bird cage when you use these tools but sensory deprivation fucking works. I don’t use ear plugs often because they get irritating after a while, but I do make it a habit to cover my head. No light = better sleep.
  2. Daily physical activity (a.k.a keep yourself so busy through the course of the day that you have no choice but to go to sleep as soon as your head hits the pillow). Think of it this way: you’re earning your right to sleep at the end of the night.
  3. Writing and meditation. Both are very effective means of helping you shut your brain off. I use the writing because I live with four different and dynamic people. Sometimes they do shit and behave in a way that makes me want to squeeze their heads so hard that their brains shoot out of their assholes. Instead of doing that, I write about the stupid shit they do that pisses me off. In doing so, I’m able to strike an understanding of said behavior and come to a middle ground without entertaining the idea of exactly how much Comet I would need in order to clean up feces and grey matter. The meditation has helped in the past because sometimes you just need to sit down and breathe. The only problem with that is that you need to make yourself do it consistently so it becomes a habit. Here are the apps that I use: Stop, Think, and Breathe, Meditation Studio by Gaiam.
  4. Alternate methods and drugs. As far as the ‘alternative methods’ are concerned, they’re pretty simple. The first one that I started using was to have a cup of ‘sleepy’ tea. Lame sounding, but it works. Lately I have been partial to Sleepytime Celestial Seasonings with Echinacea. It’s fucking delicious and is just as good as a traditional ‘night cap’. Sure, I have to get up in the middle of the night to take a piss, but it’s a small price to pay for quality sleep. My recent addition to my sleep regimen has been leaving one of my feet uncovered. I read an article on Mental Floss that explains the science behind it and guess what? It fucking works. I get to sleep faster. My last method I don’t do as often as I should: it’s taking a cold shower before bed. Doing this is the real life equivalent of getting hit over the head with a sledge hammer. I first came across this when Tim Ferriss included it in his book, The 4 Hour Body and came across it again when AOM did a post on it as well. It works. And yes, you get used to the blast of cold water on your bits rather quickly. With respect to taking pills to go to sleep, I haven’t taken any that require a prescription (yet). When it comes to over the counter drugs like Benadryl and Melatonin, I highly suggest that you tread lightly and do your own research. Speaking for myself, both drugs have consistently left me sleep drunk (I need to take a nap shortly after getting up in order for the fog of drugs to dissipate). This may not be the case with you. Again, tread lightly.

Have a sleep ritual or trick you’d like to share? Let’s hear about it in the comments!

 

Is cleanliness close to godliness?

Sometimes, it’s really hard to get kids to clean up their shit. Doubly so if they are hurtling towards pre-teen/teenager-dom. My kids, and wife, are no exception to this.

Initially, I had the idea of making a series of videos just for the kids to show them exactly what is expected of them when I tell them to clean something. I pictured it in the vein of the last half of Clockwork Orange, where Malcolm McDowell is getting rehabilitated. Only my interpretation would be without Malcolm and, you know, the boobs.

Then I had a thought: This would look pretty sweet on the blogMaybe there’s some ass of a father who doesn’t have a good concept of cleanliness… 

I would like to state for the record that the bathroom in question is by no means spotless by the end of the video. However it is certainly cleaner than it was at the start and is probably cleaner than your bathroom. 

Thanks for watching!

 

How to make a “Daniel J. Burger”.

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Ingredients

This is a general list. Don’t take it as gospel. At the core of any burger is the meat and the egg (because it acts like an adhesive that holds the meat and goodies together). To make a Daniel J. burger you need those two things and a good onion. That’s it. 

  • Meat
  • Egg (The actual number you use varies depending on how much goodness you’re trying to stuff in your burger. I generally stick with two eggs. If it’s too wet {don’t puss out, you’ll know how wet is too wet} cut that shit with some bread crumbs).
  • Onion (Whatever the fuck you got works. Me, I stick with the sweeter variety).
  • Sauces (hot sauce, teriaki, ketchup, mustard, whatever). *OPTIONAL
  • Seasonings (Whatever you’re trying to get rid of will work as long as it compliments everything else.).
  • Goodies (Beans, veg, fruit, get freaky with it. It’s your damn burger.). *OPTIONAL
  1. It starts with the meat.
Take the meat, break it up in a bowl with a spatula or whatever you have handy.

Take the meat, break it up in a bowl with a spatula or whatever you have handy.

2. Season that shit.

Start with the dry stuff first. Don't just dump it on there and leave it, dummy. Mix it in with whatever the fuck you used to break up the meat.

Start with the dry stuff first. Don’t just dump it on there and leave it, dummy. Mix it in with whatever the fuck you used to break up the meat.

Do the same thing with the sauces. Yes, you have to mix that in too.

Do the same thing with the sauces. Yes, you have to mix that in too.

3. Put the meat to the side and cut up the onion. It’ll give the beef a chance to suck up all of      that goodness you just assaulted it with.

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Behold! The Might of the Onion! As it makes most things tasty!

 

 

After the onion is chopped to your liking, add it to the meat.

After the onion is chopped to your liking, add it to the meat.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then, do the same thing with the sauces and spices. Mix that shit up real good homey!

Then, do the same thing you did with the sauces and spices. Mix that shit up real good homey!

4. Now for the eggs.

They don't have to be brown. I'm not an egg snob like that. They can be whatever you want. I just happened to have brown on hand because The Wife wanted them. I will say this though, in terms of fried eggs and omelets and such, the brown egg is unparalleled. Too bad it costs too damn much.

They don’t have to be brown. I’m not an egg snob like that. They can be whatever you want. I just happened to have brown on hand because The Wife wanted them. I will say this though, in terms of fried eggs and omelets and such, the brown egg is unparalleled. Too bad it costs too damn much.

Crack the eggs and start mixing that shit with your hands. This is what it looks like when you have done it right.

Crack the eggs and start mixing that shit with your hands. This is what it looks like when you have done it right.

5. Start making patties, beotch.

I don't know what the proper ounce rate is for a burger. I generally try and make them a bit on the smaller side so there's left overs and because my peeps don't eat with wooden legs in mind.

I don’t know what the proper ounce rate is for a burger. I generally try and make them a bit on the smaller side so there’s left overs and because my peeps don’t eat with wooden legs in mind.

Put that shit on a plate, you patty making fool!

Put that shit on a plate, you patty making fool!

When you've gone through all of the meat, wrap that shit with plastic wrap.

When you’ve gone through all of the meat, wrap that shit with plastic wrap.

Then put them in the fridge. Most people would dispute this, but I swear by it. By letting the meat chill, your letting it recoup thereby ensuring that the patty keeps it's shape. I've made burgers without this step and they've always fallen the fuck to pieces on me. Generally, I let them chill for an hour. You don't want to let them sit for too long. If you do that, you'll start losing juices. *Beavis laugh* Juices.

Then put them in the fridge. Most people would dispute this, but I swear by it. By letting the meat chill, you’re letting it recoup thereby ensuring that the patty keeps it’s shape. I’ve made burgers without this step and they’ve always fallen the fuck to pieces on me. Generally, I let them chill for an hour. You don’t want to let them sit for too long. If you do that, you’ll start losing juices. *Beavis laugh* Juices.

6. Get cookin’ sucka!

There's plenty of ways to cook a burger: grill, pan fry, baking, whatever. I used the panini because it cuts down on the cooking time. It's a bitch to clean but it's worth it. You just have to make sure the fucker is hot enough.

There’s plenty of ways to cook a burger: grill, pan fry, baking, whatever. I used the panini because it cuts down on the cooking time. It’s a bitch to clean but it’s worth it. You just have to make sure the fucker is hot enough.

Yes, the panini cooks on both sides. Mine is cheap so I still have to flip whatever I'm cooking on it to get the same look on both sides. This was after one flip.

Yes, the panini cooks on both sides. Mine is cheap so I still have to flip whatever I’m cooking on it to get the same look on both sides. This was after one flip.

7. Don’t forget to eat the son of a bitch.

See? Burgers are easy. Cooking is easy too (just so long as you don't freak out and act like a little bitch).

See? Burgers are easy. Cooking is easy too (just so long as you don’t freak out and act like a little bitch).

In the end, regardless of who you are and in spite of what you have going on in your life, cooking is an essential skill. 

Got a burger recipe? Wanna let me have it for the amount of “fucks” I put in my entries? Sally forth in the comments at the top of this post! 

A brief word on food.

One of the cornerstones of our society is the necessity of food. While our bodies can survive for nearly three weeks without it (Gandhi, yep the “Be the change you wish to see in the world guy”, also known as Sir Ben Kingsley to others…. survived 21 days of complete starvation. Obviously he had water or else he would have been dead inside of 5 days) one would think that it would be common sense for an individual to have a working knowledge of food preparation (e.g. you know the difference between your ass and a hole in the ground when you step foot in the kitchen).

Sadly, most people cannot make the aforementioned distinction. 

If you marked my progress in the kitchen from when I first started out as a stay at home parent, to now, it would be a thick, black line that traveled through smoke (the smoke being whatever the fuck it was that I was cremating in the oven), traversed canyons of boxed dinners (mac ‘n’ cheese was not only friend to my family but also really friggin’ versatile: seriously google it. People have taken that staple a real long way) and is currently supporting someone who cannot only improvise on the fly, but also follow some pretty complicated recipes.

Cooking is not scary. It is following directions. That’s all that it is. 

If you’re not completely sold on the idea that you should be working on being considered a wizard in the kitchen, cooking is also SCIENCE. And I would be remiss if I did not point out that (even if you aren’t a dad, husband, whatever) chicks dig a guy who knows his way around the kitchen.

Currently, I have a very modest collection of recipes here. Unless otherwise noted, most of them ARE NOT MINE. 

If they are not mine, I will obviously say so. I will link to the origin site, the original recipe or (if it’s something out of a book, for instance) I will link to the Amazon page featuring the book (if there isn’t any other stones for me to turn over).

While a lot of people would consider this a “hack” thing to do, I would also like to point out that they are missing the obvious: IF  A RECIPE IS ON HERE, IT’S BECAUSE THE ORIGINAL RECIPE DIDN’T HAVE ANY FUCKING PICTURES. 

My main goal in making recipes a part of this site is to educate people (men, specifically) that they should be cooking more instead of relying on simpleton shit like fast food or boxed dinners or any other garbage. The sad truth is that Men are less likely to get their asses in the kitchen if there aren’t any pictures. 

It is my hope that in posting the steps, with the pictures, and the general amount of time it took me to work through the recipe, that some of the sting will be taken out of learning how to cook.

Additionally, if people have a general problem with what I’m doing (be it the creator of the recipe or people in general), I warmly invite them to shut up: if you didn’t want people giving you free publicity about something you created, you shouldn’t have put it on the internet in the first place.

A brief word about your wang. (Slightly NSFW).

It’s been there your entire life. When you were properly potty trained, you realized what it was for (urinating). But there was more to it, wasn’t there?

Why did it get hard when you least expected it? Why did it feel good when you smooshed it up? Or flopped it around?

As you got older, things changed. Hair was grown. Consistencies had evolved. Connections were made between active and dormant states. Lessons were learned about these states and their relation to “other things”. Then one day, when you were a mere slip of a youth, you had an idea. Upon execution of said idea, your life would never be the same.

Masturbation is a perfectly normal function of the body. Unless you take it too far. Case in point, the article “masturbation mistakes” via Men’s Health (read at your own peril).

Why on earth some men would do this shit to their ding-dong is completely beyond me. I cringe when the subject of masturbation comes up and someone confesses to doing it “dry”. My consistent reply is “you and your leathery-cock need to get the fuck away from me”.

But how much do you really know about your wang?

Did you know that there is truth to that old chestnut “If you don’t use it, you lose it”?

Did you know that it takes over four ounces of blood in order to achieve an erection? (This fact alone is a rock-solid argument for daily cardio).

The people over at Thought Catalog published a list of 25 things you never knew about your wang. You need to read it. Seriously.

No matter how much you wash it, it will never be truly clean.

Got something to say about “willy” health or a masturbation story to share? Sally forth in the comments!

My father’s hairline. 

Having a beard (the thing that grows out of a grown man’s face, not a women covering for closeted homosexuals) seems to be the latest trend that men need to subscribe to in order to fit in. What’s more is that there are apparently some women out there that actually like beards.

My ‘beard-ing’ back story.

There used to be a time when I absolutely hated shaving. Yes, it was my teenage years. And yes, a good chunk of my hatred for facial grooming came from people (school administrators, bosses at work) telling me that I needed to do it. We men are a generic and sometimes unoriginal species. 

I blame my father for not teaching me properly. He was a cheap son of a bitch who’s weaponry of choice for shaving didn’t leave the realm of a can of Barbasol and the Bic razors with the orange cap. There was a brief and potentially ill-advised period where he used a Braun shaver. If I’m not mistaken that didn’t last long because of a technical malfunction that either took off a chunk of his face or ending up burning the shit out of him.

At any rate, when I needed to start shaving on a regular basis, I was started out on Barbasol and cheap-o Bic razors. Like the naive rube I was, I didn’t question my father’s choice despite the miles of razor rash and mounds of ingrown hairs.

About a year after I graduated high school (1999-sh), my employer at the time had reevaluated their dress code. The end result was that men were know allowed to wear beards. Suffice it to say, I bearded up hard and kept my beard in some form or fashion for the next couple of years. That’s right: I had a beard before beards were cool.


As you can see, it was not a coiffed fru fru beard that some of my constituents wear today. This was a full blown ‘there might be a small animal living in there’ face bracken. 

The only thing I did to groom it back in those days was the occasional freshening up with a pair of scissors and of course, trimming the hair around my face-hole when that interrupted my feedings.

For the record, there were no living animals cohabiting with my face. At best, there might’ve been the odd pen (for real, my shit was that thick and it held said pen better than behind my ears ever could).

Also, beards stop at the throat, NOT THE JAW LINE. If you are one of THOSE, you need to fix that ASAP. You look goddamn ridiculous with sculpted facial hair and a fucking gobbler because you stopped taking care of yourself in your mid-20’s.

The thing that struck me almost immediately when my beard reached full maturity was how apart of my personality it became. 

If someone who knew me was talking to someone I had met in passing, I was referred to as ‘the guy with the beard’. If I was lost in thought or if someone had asked me a question that required pondering, you’re damn right I’d contemplatively stroke my chin whiskers.

Why I have made a point of shaving daily.

Since my ‘full-of-shit’ 20’s, my facial hair has come and gone. I have had the Abraham Lincoln, mutton chops, the Chester A. Arthur, and for a brief period of time, just a moustache. 

And yes, my wife has had a signifcant impact on the type of facial hair I had, if any at all. To wit, the last beard I had, I had because my wife had implored me to use beard oil.

It was the best beard I ever had. It smelled great. It didn’t itch when it was coming in. Best of all, it didn’t have that pube-y consistent that beards occasionally fall prey to.

My outlook on facial hair took a turn in my mid-30’s when I realized I was gaining my father’s hairline.

Receding hairlines and baldness can be a bitch if really let it get under your skin. For the longest time, I fought against the inevitable because I was a vain prat who wanted to be himself and not an iteration of his predecessors.

It was pretty bad: Nioxin, the stuff your supposed to use in between Nioxin cycles (I can’t remember the name and given my shame, I don’t want to invest the mouse clicks to find out…) jojoba oil, natural treatments… You name it, I have done it. And it was all in an attempt to avoid/delay/prolong the inevitable:

I was going to get my father’s hairline whether I wanted to or not. 

It’s not that bad, my hairline. If I had to describe it, it is a more kempt version of Bill Murray’s a la Ghostbusters. There’s some obvious recession that can be seen in a high forehead to hair proportion but there’s still that one chunk, front and center that refuses to give up the ghost.

What does that have to do with beards?

Some guys can pull off the receding hairline + beard, and others can’t. Given my genetics, I think I am in the ‘can’t’ category. Even though my father and I share the same hairline, the difference between the two of us lies in the fact that his hair was practically straight and my was, and is, thick likes sheep’s wool.

(Receding afro + pube-like beard = bad news bears).

Once things reached a critical mass with my thinning hair, I decided to start cutting my hair close to the scalp and shaving my face everyday.

To me, there’s nothing worse than a man looking in the mirror and seeing how things used to be. I am not one of those men.

Besides, there’s a man factor of +1000 when you’re clean-shaven and good smellin’ on a daily basis.