Monday, June 13, 2016

Interesting Facts About Watermelon.

A square watermelon? Don't worry, I explain below.

I (not so) graciously consumed a slice of watermelon earlier. It was quite delicious and definitely satisfying. Accordingly, I figured hey... why not drop some watermelon facts on my audience? Nothing hot and heavy here for you to process this evening, just some cool facts about a cool fruit... and a vegetable?

  • Yes, watermelons are both a fruit and a vegetable. They grow from a seed, making them a fruit. And yet, they are within the same family of vegetables as pumpkins, squash and cucumbers. The watermelon is a trans-food substance! How progressive!
  • The wild watermelon, which looks much different than the watermelon we typical eat, originated in southern Africa.
  • A watermelon is 92% water, making it a natural thirst quencher and great for your kidneys.
  • Watermelons also contain high amounts of manganese, Vitamin C, Vitamins B1 and B6, Vitamin A and potassium.
  • Watermelons are also packed with electrolytes, making them a much better choice for consumption over sugar-filled energy and athletic drinks.
  • Most of the world's watermelons are grown in China.
  • In China, the rind of the watermelon is eaten like a stir-fried vegetable.
  • Japan has the strangest watermelons of all. You can purchase higher-end square watermelons, which are seen as fashionable. How do the farmers do it? They grow the watermelons in square glass containers, in which the melons gradually take on the shape. We really need these in the USA!
  • The heaviest watermelon ever recorded was nearly 270 pounds.
  • You can carve a watermelon just like a pumpkin at Halloween. When you light it with a candle, the red interior takes on the spooky appearance of blood! I did this as a child many times and can verify that it works.
And now, for you viewing pleasure (and just because it's my blog and I can do what I want), here is a video of an exploding watermelon!

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Draw Something: Chomper Ghost

I'll always give The Real Ghostbusters cartoon from the '80s credit for being inventive with their weekly creatures of fright and terror. Much of the time, the ghosts were meant to be silly or simply visually memorable. In the vein of those classic animated creatures, I decided to doodle a simple ghost design... something just as likely to be released in the accompanying action figure series as well. Just imagine this slimey fella with a button activated biting feature. CHOMP!


Saturday, June 11, 2016

In Plane Site.


I'm pregnant with your child.
Oozing bags of puss are weeping from my fingertips.
D.B. Cooper is my real name.
I own not one, not two, but three magic bullets.
The Bermuda Triangle is where I found Jimmy Hoffa.
My left foot has seven toes.
Oranges make me sneeze official Nickelodeon slime.
When I was seven, I conquered Mars with a pencil.
Green is really a futuristic camouflage to hide two dimensional butt pirates.
I can walk on water, but only when it's really cold.
There's a colony of stranded alien cow-probers in my tool shed.
Stonehenge is just a fancy toilet for druids.
Not only have I found Atlantis, but I sold it to mermaids.
Yes, I know mermaids.
Roswell was a cover up for an all-night rave hosted by DJ Boomin' Truman.
The Lost Roanoke Colony just got bored and went to play golf.
I like to play croquet at Redpath Mansion.
Drive-in theaters were invented by lazy, perverted slashers.
Your mom called; she wants you to meet your real father.
Numbers stations are where I find all of my best recipes.
Once in a lifetime you'll take a road to nowhere and find a psycho killer.
I always tell the truth when I'm lying.

Friday, June 10, 2016

Random Suds Review: Wells Banana Bread Beer.


Time to review an import. That's right... our random review this time around will be Wells Banana Bread Beer. Brewed by the UK based Charles Wells Brewing Company (aka Wells & Young's Brewing Company), it's a favorite of the British beer-drinking populace. It is 5.2% Alc. by volume and created with fair trade bananas as part of the brewing process. As such, it supposedly has a remarkable flavor not normally experienced in an adult beverage. Is it true or just a bunch of hocus pocus? I'm going to find out.

As with all of my reviews, I will taste test the beer at two different temperatures -- cold and at room temperature. Here we go!

Cold:
  • Very strong banana odor upon pouring it into the glass.
  • Light fizz.
  • No head to speak of.
  • Initial taste revealed a bold, but not overpowering banana flavor.
  • No bitterness at all to speak of.
  • The background of the flavor profile is both nutty and bread-like, as one would hope.
  • Much to my pleasure, the beer is not overly sweet or artificial tasting.
  • Quite enjoyable and easy to drink!
At Room Temperature:
  • Has developed a slight amount of bitterness, but nothing terrible.
  • The bread-like nature has become more emboldened.
  • The fizz has completely dissipated.
  • As to the flavor, the banana has mellowed and isn't as fruity.
  • Still perfectly acceptable to drink warm, just not as good as when cold.
And there you have it! A flavorful imported beer with an awesome taste. If you like banana bread, or just bananas, you will enjoy this beer from Charles Wells. Look for Wells Banana Bread Beer at your local specialty beer and wine retailer!


Thursday, June 9, 2016

Crystal's Tips For Improving Baseball.


Crystal and I went to a Greensboro Grasshoppers minor league baseball game this evening. If you weren't already aware, I'm a massive baseball fan. Baseball truly is America's past time. Forget basketball or football... baseball is where it's at.

On the other hand, Crystal finds baseball to be dreadfully boring and a waste of time.

While watching the game, I had Crystal compose a list of ways to improve the sport for bored viewers like herself. As such, she gets credit for tonight's article. I'm merely the messenger. And now...

Crystal's Tips For Improving Baseball!

  • Fights - Let the players beat each other senseless, as they do in hockey.
  • Throwing money - Shoot coins at the fans, or onto the field.
  • Put obstacles on the field - Barb wire, mud pits, swinging chainsaws, etc. The more dangerous the better!
  • Rubber bullets - Give the players pistols to fire the non-lethal projectiles at opposing players.
  • Spiked balls - They'll make someone fielding a ball think twice about catching it! If the fans are lucky, the players will often catch the spiked ball with their face.
  • Flaming mascots - light them on fire and have them run a race around the bases!
  • Free ice cream for the fans - Sprinkles are absolutely mandatory.
  • Just not be a sport - Seriously, stop playing baseball. It sucks.
And finally, the number one tip that made me burst with laughter as we watched behind home plate...
  • Refunds for boredom - A full refund... every game, every time.

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

When I Was Really Fat: Ramen Noodles.


Earlier today while grocery shopping, I took notice of the ramen noodles on a random aisle and thought to myself...

"Boy, I sure do miss eating those."

You see, I haven't eaten ramen noodles in a very long time. Since I got my crap together and started losing weight in 2013, I've cut out all of the terrible food in my life and dropped 82 pounds. Ramen noodles were a priority target on my hit list. This got me to thinking... what a great little nugget of awesomeness to use as inspiration for an article series! And here we have, bursting with all of its lofty lipid glory...

WHEN I WAS REALLY FAT.

When I was really fat, I would eat four packages of ramen noodles at a time. I would prepare the ramen as normal in a giant pot, taking care not to over-boil the noodles. Once the noodles were ready, I'd drain them from their soup liquid and put them in a large bowl. Now, here's where things got a little bit wacky. I'd put the noodles in the freezer to sit for five or ten minutes. This would not decrease the temperature of the still hot noodles too much. But, what it would do was make the noodles sticky and tacky. Thereby, they were perfect to eat with chopsticks. Oh boy, were they delicious. And yet, I failed to recognize the harm I was doing to myself. Four packages of ramen noodles equates to over 1,500 calories! That's more calories in one meal than what I eat in an entire day now! Even worse, all that ramen had over 7,000 mg of sodium and over 200 carbohydrates. What a terrible, terrible meal to put into your body. And yet, when I was at my fattest, I was doing that two or three times a week. It's a miracle I didn't die of a heart attack.

So, what do you think? Want to hear more stories about the most absurd food I would eat when I was really fat? Trust me... this ramen story is only the tip of the iceberg! I find these tales both comical and sad, but it's great to get it off of my chest. Drop a comment and let me know.

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

A Visit From Horace's Duskywing.


Whilst sitting on my back patio just a short moment ago, this affable little moth landed on my stomach. It didn't seem frightened of me, so I let it sit there. Much to my surprise, the moth continued to remain there for what seemed like an eternity. Somehow, I'd found a new buddy today. As the wind would randomly pick up and bluster against the tiny winged wonder, it would desperately grasp for my shirt and hang on tight. Using my hands, I cupped around the moth to provide shelter from the wind so it could rest. For a moment, it was safe and seemed thankful.


After doing some research, I discovered that is wasn't a moth at all! This was in fact a Horace's Duskywing (Erynnis horatius), a skipper-type butterfly from the family Hesperiidae. Its habitat ranges from the New England region south along the east coast. It also has spread as far west as Texas and New Mexico. By no means is the Horace's Duskywing endangered; their population is quite healthy and vivacious. Based upon the color pattern on its wings, I was able to determine that this specimen was a male. Most likely, this fellow was born in early spring. Yet, the sad part of this encounter soon set in... with tattered wings and it being the month of June, this Duskywing was probably tired and about to pass away. I was deeply saddened.


As I watched the insect rest there on my stomach and hold still, I wondered as to what the butterfly must think of me. Surely, it could see what I looked like. Was it not afraid of my immense size? Why would it think I was safe to land upon? Much less, to let me cup my large hands around its small stature? That's a measure of trust I wouldn't expect from nature.


I was sad to see it eventually go, but I hope it lives just a little while longer to enjoy the last few days of the passing Spring.