Friday, May 30, 2008

my bus smelled like a sewer this morning...

That's what I get for trying to be a "greener" individual - a 20 minute ride in a stink capsule. I tried to open a window, but someone promptly shut it. "It's cold!" they exclaimed. Oh yeah, I also prefer that stank to a few goosebumps. NOT. Guess that's why my husband calls it the "loser cruiser".

Happy Friday

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

today is National Hamburger Day

What I want to know is who decides this ? In searching, I found a whole list of bizarre food holidays - but that's fodder for more inane blog posts. In honor of the day, here's a little history about the burger: (from A Hamburger Today)

The history of the hamburger is truly a story that has been run through the meat grinder. Some sources say it began with the Mongols, who stashed raw beef under their saddles as they waged their campaign to conquer the known world. After time spent sandwiched between the asses of man and beast, the beef became tender enough to eat raw—certainly a boon to swift-moving riders not keen to dismount.

It is said, then, that the Mongols, under Kublai Khan later brought it to Russia, which turned it into the dish we know as steak tartare.

Several years later, as global trade picked up, seafarers brought this idea back to the port city of Hamburg, Germany, where the Deutschvolk decided to mold it into a steak shape and add heat to the equation, making something that, outside of Hamburg, was referred to as "Hamburg steak."

Somehow ground beef gets to America. Somehow it's put on a bun. But by whom? Surely the historical record becomes more clear once we cross to these shores. It doesn't. There are currently three major claims staked on the confusing and contradictory map of American hamburger history. Each has its adherents and detractors. They are:

Louis' Lunch: This New Haven, Connecticut, burger joint claims to have invented our favorite lunchtime (and dinnertime) meal in 1900. From its website: "One day in the year 1900 a man dashed into a small New Haven luncheonette and asked for a quick meal that he could eat on the run. Louis Lassen, the establishment's owner, hurriedly sandwiched a broiled beef patty between two slices of bread and sen the customer on his way, so the story goes, with America's first hamburger."

"Hamburger Charlie" Nagreen: It's said that he started selling meatballs at the age of 15 at the summer fair in Seymour, Wisconsin. But, says, "Charlie was a resourceful young man with an outgoing personality. After not experiencing much success selling the meatballs, he had an idea and located some bread. He realized people could take this meal with them if he simply smashed the meat together between two pieces of bread. He called it a "hamburger" and yes, in 1885 the burger was born at the fair in Seymour, Wisconsin."

Menches Brothers: The brothers' descendents, who now operate a small chain in Ohio called, not surprisingly, Menches Bros. claim that their great-grandfather and his brother (Charles and Frank, respectively) invented the dish at an 1885 fair in Hamburg, New York. The brothers originally sold sausages but ran out and were forced to use ground beef, which at the time was considered declassé. John Menches, in a Businessweek story, says, "Faced with nothing to sell at all, they fried [the ground beef] up, but it was too bland. My grandfather decided to put coffee, brown sugar, and some other household ingredients in it and cooked up the sandwich. My great-uncle Frank served the first sandwich, a gentleman tasted it and said, 'What do you call it?' Uncle Frank didn't really know what to call it, so he looked up and saw the banner for the Hamburg fair and said, 'This is the hamburger.' "

Friday, May 23, 2008

care to help a girl out ???

For the 5th year in a row, I am participating in the annual walk/run for Crohn's and Colitis. This year's event will be held at Magnuson Park on June 7th. My fundraising goal is small - only $250. But every little bit helps. Here's my fundraising page - or the Team Page. Thanks everyone !

Team photo from last year

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

it's not easy being green...

© AP Photo/Elaine Thompson

In a report titled 'America's Greenest Colleges,' listed the UW among six schools graded best in 2008 by the Sustainable Endowments Institute.

The University of Washington is one of the 12 founders of the Seattle Climate Partnership, a group of employers dedicated to beating the goal of the Kyoto international climate agreement to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions 7% from their 1990 levels by 2012. The school has also committed to carbon neutrality and 100% of its electricity purchases come from renewable sources. In addition, it requires that all new state-funded university buildings are environmentally certified.

Way to go UW !

Sunday, May 18, 2008

weekend in OR...

We went to Portland this weekend to see some good friends who were visiting from Cleveland. The weather was fantastic - even hot for some. Records were broken throughout the Northwest. We spent a good part of Saturday at the coast. It was a great weekend.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Mike and us...

The photos finally came in from the Flight to Mars show a couple weeks ago:

I hesitate to put mine up because I look so terrible - but I always look terrible in photos, so what the least I look happy !

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Help Stamp Out Hunger !

Today is the National Association of Letter Carriers annual food drive. The drive, in its 16th year, is the largest one-day food collection in the nation and the biggest community service effort by any union affiliated with the AFL-CIO. So help them out ! Place a bag filled with non-perishable food items next to your mailbox. Your letter carrier will pick it up and deliver to your local food bank.

Friday, May 9, 2008

you'd think we would learn...

After several summers ending with "what the hell are we going to do with all these tomatoes ?", you'd think we'd plant less the following year. But the tomato frenzy sets in and now we have nine plants in pots - 4 Sungolds, 2 Patios, 1 Lemon Boy and 2 Sweet 100s. Let's just hope for a bit of consistent sunshine now. Bring 'em on !

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

R.I.P. Mr. Ice Cream Man !

Irvine Robbins, co-founder of Baskin-Robbins, has died at age 90. Robbins had been ill for some time and died yesterday at Eisenhower Medical Center in Rancho Mirage, California. While the company advertises that it offeres 31 flavors, it in fact has created more than 1,000 flavors. Here's a list of the 31 original flavors:

Banana Nut Fudge
Black Walnut
Burgundy Cherry
Butterscotch Ribbon
Cherry Macaroon
Chocolate Almond
Chocolate Chip
Chocolate Fudge
Chocolate Mint
Chocolate Ribbon
Coffee Candy
Date Nut
Egg Nog
French Vanilla
Green Mint Stick
Lemon Crisp
Lemon Custard
Lemon Sherbet
Maple Nut
Orange Sherbet
Peppermint Fudge Ribbon
Peppermint Stick
Pineapple Sherbet
Raspberry Sherbet
Rocky Road
Vanilla Burnt Almond

Although not one of the original flavors, Daiquiri Ice was one of my favorites ! What's your favorite ?

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Mike McCready ROCKS !

Flight to Mars ,featuring Mike McCready, performed a benefit concert for the Northwest Chapter of the Crohn's & Colitis Foundation of America (CCFA) at the Showbox last nite. Dan and I had VIP passes that got us (along with other fans) into a pre-show party and gave us a chance to briefly meet Mike and others in the band. Kristen Ward opened - she was awesome. McCready then performed a tribute to Jimi Hendrix with brothers Rick and Chris Friel -- co-founders of McCready's original band Shadow. Duff McKagan of former Guns N' Roses fame came on stage to join for a couple more songs. Feral Children next. Then Flight to Mars rounded out the great evening. We weren't in bed until 3:00 am - a true rarity in this household.

Thanks to Lizardking for the use of the photos - mine sucked