Friday, February 24, 2006

Friday's Featured Fast Food Favorite #5: Orange Chicken at Panda Express

I'm finally getting this up at 7 on a Friday night. (Don't worry, I have plans at 8, I'm not home blogging away my sadness).

This week's Fast Food Fav comes to you courtesy of Panda Express. A restaurant that I frequent from time to time. Its not very close to home but on occasion I'll stop on the way home from school. Anyway, as you may or may not know, they have a fairly wide selection of entrees. The problem is that so far I've yet to find anything that compares with the Orange Chicken or even comes close.

panda express orange chicken

So its kind of a double edged sword. I LOVE the orange chicken, but am not really excited about anything else on the menu. So I can't really go there frequently and just eat the same meal over and over again. You would think they could come up with something else as good as that. In fact they've had some entrees I like pretty well that have disappeared off the menu (sweet and sour chicken, beef and potato).

But the orange chicken can stand alone as their signature item, and maybe someone will get suckered into ordering the Beef and Mushrooms (which is really the Mushrooms and Vegetables and a tiny bit of Beef).

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

The terrifying lows, the dizzying highs, the creamy middles! aka Asking a Girl on a Date

Can I just say that even now at age 27, dating is not an easy thing. Calling a girl and asking her out on a date, even when she, to date, has not fled, screaming, away from my prescence. From the very first time I asked a girl out down to the very last, there always is a feeling of almost crippling terror that seizes me as I make the phone call to ask a girl out. Why? I don't know. But whenever I make that call its like what I imagine jumping out of an airplane must be like. Once you've dialed the number there's pretty much no turning back, and yet you really aren't sure whats going to happen when they pick up on the other end.

Given that, the relief/elation/amazement that I get when she says that yes, she'd be willing to go to a restaurant with me and eat some food, is pretty much uncomparable as well. There's just something about asking someone out on a date that makes me feel so completely vulnerable that it feels like walking a tight rope. Even after having successfully completed numerous such calls.

So girls, if there are any girls who haven't already gotten bored by my descriptions of fast food and obscure presidents, please be nice when a guy calls to ask you out. If you don't want to go out, try to make it clear so he doesn't have to get shot down repeatedly. If you do want to go out, but can't at that day/time, say you'd like to go out another time. If you want to and can go out, let him know you are excited. Just some tips for helping us date, since its clear that you think we should.

Monday, February 20, 2006

President Who?

I received an invitation this past weekend to a President's Day party where it was suggested that one dress as his/her favorite president/first lady. This got me thinking, obviously you might see a lot of Abe Lincolns and George Washingtons, along with some of the more recent presidents (Reagan, Bush, Clinton, Bush), but wouldn't it be much cooler to go as one of the more obscure presidents, like Rutherford B. Hayes or Chester A. Arthur. I didn't go to that party (had a better option come up), but I did wear a nametag at our mingle yesterday after church that said Rutherford B. Hayes.

Then just today, I was thinking, "I bet there are some other presidents that I haven't even thought of in years." I just looked and I was right. I haven't seen the names of some of these guys since 5th grade. Here's a list of the ones I had completely forgotten were at one point in charge of our great nation (and I'm only listing the ones that came as a complete surprise):

William Henry Harrison (only president during 1841)
Update: I'd heard this story before, but had forgotten which president it was about. William Henry Harrison (Tippecanoe of Tippecanoe and Tyler too fame) gave a long-winded inaugural address in the midst of inclement weather, caught pneumonia and died a month later, making his tenure the shortest in American history. Tyler happened to be his VP and became the president one month into his vice-presidency.
John Tyler (of Tippecanoe and Tyler too fame)
Franklin Pierce
Benjamin Harrison (seems like he is related to the other Harrison, but I am still not certain I ever knew of a president Benjamin Harrison)

So, I guess there were just 4 that I felt caught me complete off guard, but that's approximately 10% of our presidents that I didn't even know existed, much less what they contributed to our country. A few other less-obscure, yet still-obscure to me include Zachary Taylor, James Garfield, and Warren Harding. I'm sure at the time they felt like what they did would have a lasting impact on American history and maybe it did, but sadly their names have not received the fame that others have.

Disclaimer: History is by far my worst subject, not that I ever got less than an A, just never took any real history classes, but that's a topic for another day. So, if you are offended that I've labeled one of your favorites as obscure, feel free to enlighten me on his contributions.

Saturday, February 18, 2006

Friday's Featured Fast Food Favorite #4: Taco Bell's Zesty Chicken Border Bowl

I realize its Saturday afternoon as I post this, but please forgive me. I returned home around 5 yesterday and had so much catching up to do that I really felt more like being a content consumer than a content producer. I have posted some photos to Flickr (many more still to come), so feel free to peruse those.

Without further ado, I give you this week's Fast Food Favorite: The Zesty Chicken Border Bowl from Taco Bell.


I know this picture is small, but the bowl itself is quite filling. Its got a base layer of refried beans and rice, topped with lettuce, tomato, cheese, crunchy tortilla strips, sliced grilled chicken, and a zesty ranch/salsa dressing that really seals the deal for me.

This is a menu item that you can count on to fill you up. I used to think I needed some kind of side to go with it if I was hungry, but I would always find out that I was pretty stuffed after just the chicken bowl. But then you feel obligated to power through the rest, since you did just buy it after all, and heaven knows it ain't keepin in the fridge.

As a corollary to this item, I'd like to mention the 2 vital rules for Taco Bell dining.

#1: Never eat the ground beef.
#1a: Especially never eat the ground beef after midnight.

Trust me on those.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Quick Note: San Diego has awesome weather.

Is it really winter right now? Its an overcast day and it made me almost wish for a jacket. Almost. Anyway, I hope to have some nice pix to share with you all coming soon. I get back Friday afternoon, and may need some recovery time, but probably by Monday I'll have some stuff up to share. Tonight, we are going to see an ABBA cover band play on a retired aircraft carrier. Honest.

Oh, but I will try to still get a fast food fav up on Friday, since I know how you all love them so much.

Friday, February 10, 2006

Friday's Featured Fast Food Favorite #3: Wendy's Jr. Bacon Cheeseburger

This week's fast food favorite is no other than the king of late night fast food runs, thats right, Wendy's Jr. Bacon Cheeseburger.

Jr Bacon Cheese

Currently the star of an advertising campaign focusing on its price of $0.99. And I have never been so grateful for a national advertising campaign. Allow me to explain. For years, the 99 cent Jr. Bacon Cheese was a staple of young college aged men. Available until 2:00 am in most locations, for a mere 99 pennies, you got a bun with a decent-sized beef patty, lettuce, tomato, bacon, cheese, and mayo. Two of these and even my appetite can be sated.

Sadly, perhaps 6 months ago or so, all the Wendy's near me upped the price to a whopping $1.39. Not that this price is outrageous, but its nearly a 50% increase. This price change basically drove me away from Wendy's. Well that and the way they changed the chicken sandwiches a couple years ago.

Anyway, thanks to the national campaign with the Jr. Bacon Cheese at the center, all the stores near me have been forced to drop the price back to its original $0.99 (how come there isn't a cent sign on my keyboard?). Oh, happy day.

BTW, I'm leaving for San Diego tomorrow for a week (projected high of 75 tomorrow). Peace out suckas!

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

(Day After) Friday's Featured Fast Food Favorite #2: Einstein Bros.' Turkey Sausage and Chedder Egg Sandwich

I can't believe I let a Friday go by without providing another Fast Food Fav. I mean I've been doing this for a whole 1 Friday and already slacking. Maybe we'll just attribute that to the fact I had a date yesterday.

Anyway, without further ado, I give to you: The Breakfast of Champions (assuming that my two GMS Geography Bee titles are enough to qualify me as "champions"): The Einstein Bros Turkey Sausage and Chedder Frittata Egg Sandwich, on choice of bagels, my choice generally being Asiago.

Now, you would be surprised how hard it is to get pictures of fast food menu items on the web. I guess I'll have to take my camera with me next time to get an actual image of the sandwich, but in the meantime, you can gaze upon the Einstein Bros logo.


Anyway, up until this past October I had never been to Einsteins, and had only on occassion even eaten their bagels, usually in some kind of morning school meeting. But, on a fateful Saturday in October, my good friend Scott was coming with his wife to pick me up to go to the airport to fly to DC for a conference. They had stopped at Einstein's and asked me if I wanted something. I said sure and they listed for me a variety of breakfast sandwiches. I settled on the Thick Hickory Bacon and Cheddar (or something like that). Needless to say I was blown away with the quality and have since made Einsteins a frequent breakfast spot. I soon switched from the Bacon sandwich to the Sausage one. Mmm, turkey sausage.

Just the right amount of spicyness, and if I just drink water instead of lemonade its about as cheap as a McDonalds breakfast, but without the subsequent indigestion. Not sure if thats because they don't have greasy hashbrowns to go with, but whatever it is, it keeps me coming back. I'm almost done with my 2nd frequent diner card (8 punches per card) which I actually didn't even have until I'd been going for a while. And I can use the free one on a lunch sandwich which is actually worth about $2.00 more than a breakfast sandwich, so thats a little hidden bonus.

Einsteins, I thank you.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Random Thoughts on the English Language #7

Oftentimes you hear of there being a "whole slew" of something. Yet you never hear of "half a slew" or "two slews".