Posts Tagged ‘Beefaroni’

Penguin’s balls

January 31, 2011

Andrew Hicks

EDITOR’S NOTE: For the sixth or seventh time (we’re not sure, and we hate doing math, and none of you are gonna take the time to go check, either) since taking the 2011 Post a Day challenge, Andrew missed the midnight blog-post deadline today. Andrew doesn’t like missing deadlines, but he would like to add that he has posted 31 times for the month of January and tripled the traffic to his site. So there.

Andrew’s kinda defensive sometimes. He has a lot of flaws, really. He procrastinates, he’s lazy, and we’ll be honest–we don’t get the whole Beefaroni thing either. It’s over-processed, cheap, and at room temperature smells like dog food.

You should see Andrew’s wardrobe, too. Probably half a dozen articles of cltohing purchased during his Great Old Navy Binge of ’02 are still in circulation. Don’t invite him to a formal occasion, or he’ll show up late wearing a wrinkled dress shirt purchased a half-hour before.

Oh, and Andrew has this pair of jeans he calls his Everyday Jeans. Why does he call them that? Because he wears them EVERY DAY. When it’s time for the E-Jeans to get washed, out come the Understudy Jeans, and sometimes he’ll wear those for four days in a row. Dude’s a slob. It takes more than one greasy permanent stain on an old gray T-shirt to make Andrew bounce it to the trashcan, too.

The guy’s so immature, too. Sarah and Silas have a 3-foot-tall wobbly penguin toy that stands up and has a see-through belly with four colorful plastic balls that rattle when the kid shakes the penguin. Earlier today, when Sarah asked her daddy to get the balls out so she could play with them, Andrew got a cheap laugh out of saying, “No, those balls can’t come out. You’ll never get the penguin’s balls away from him. He’s got two pair. He’s keeping ’em. That penguin’s got some serious balls.”

Cheap laugh, right? Well, we’ll make sure Andrew posts on time tomorrow, in the first person and everything.

A muse named Art

January 11, 2011

Andrew Hicks

The blank page is the writer’s worst enemy, they say. I don’t know who “they” happen to be, because I’ve never actually heard anyone say that. I think the writer’s worst enemy is probably fire. Fire destroys paper, it destroys computers, it makes the temperature in the room too uncomfortable for the writer to think of anything creative, and forget trying to get yourself readership when the building’s on fire.

But the blank page is a bastard. Starting to write — to really productively, thoughtfully write — is sometimes a process that can take days or even years. The fallacy is making yourself think that, when inspiration strikes, that’s when you’ll blaze a trail of words. Roger Ebert had a great quote along these lines: “The Muse visits during, not before, the act of composition.”

Many times, I’ve sat down to write this blog and, after finishing the post, ended up deleting the entire introductory paragraph or two. Because the true writing starts when the Muse arrives, and the Muse doesn’t usually feel at home until the words are already pouring out.

I do realize how stupid I sound writing about the Muse and even capitalizing the word. I’m mainly referencing Roger on that one. I’m the guy who got a good gut laugh from learning that Carlos Santana is visited by a muse named Art. That’s not short for Arthur. It’s short for All The Great ART That Ever There Was, Featuring Rob Thomas.

The reason I broach this topic, though, is that prior to my commitment on January 1st to produce a blog a day in 2011, I wouldn’t have even cracked the laptop lid to write a post on a day like today. It was an easy, routine, pleasant, somewhat dull day, and nothing leapt out at me as being worth capturing.

I’ve got a few cute kid stories stacked up, I’ve got some interesting backstory I haven’t touched yet, and I could always just write about baby poop and Beefaroni for 350 words, but muse or no muse, I can’t bring myself to go down that path today.

So this is what stream of consciousness writing looks like for me, I guess. This is the writing you get to read when I have to write and either don’t feel like I have anything to say or don’t want to say the few things I do have to say.

A muse named Art. A blank page. Poop. Beefaroni. “Real” words to follow tomorrow. Maybe.

BABY PICTURE OF THE DAY

Silas in the hand-me-down bouncer.

Beefaroni and Tofu

January 10, 2011

Andrew Hicks

In the last entry, “The Editor” mentioned how much I love our new toaster/egg-poacher, which is a true nugget of heavenly countertop-appliance goodness. I’ve also become rather fond of the slow cooker, though my expertise and versatility limits me mainly to pork and beef roasts thus far.

On the stove and in the oven, I make chicken dishes, chili (mostly without grease), a mean tofu fried rice, even a cream of mushroom soup tonight with bacon and fresh sauteed green beans. And, though I didn’t think of it until just now, I haven’t microwaved a can of Beefaroni for myself in a couple months. Progress? Perhaps, but Beefaroni is more of a springtime dish, anyway. When the days get longer, the weather gets warm and the trees come to life with fresh green leaves, it’s time for some hot Beefaroni*.

Sarah’s pleasure is the duplex sandwich cookie, and today I introduced her to a striped chocolate shortbread cookie from the Keebler Fudge Shoppe. I didn’t pick them out, my wife did, but I opened and closed the Fudge Shoppe like four times yesterday. I opened the shoppe** for Sarah a couple times, too.

Sarah’s kind of a Beefaroni and Tofu eater herself — she eats fries and cookies, but she also enthusiastically eats salad, grapes, strawberries, apples, crackers, cottage cheese and sliced American cheese. I’m working on getting her to eat meat, but she’s still kind of traumatized from seeing the movie Food, Inc.

Silas, meanwhile, is fast becoming a champion eater of the cereal/baby food/formula swirl. Which is the daily special every day — room temperature swirl in a ramekin served on a colored plastic baby spoon. Will the swirl include the Stage 1 pureed peas or Stage 1 sweet potato today? Well, that’s where we keep the excitement of variety alive for the little guy. He never knows which bland vegetable flavor he’ll get each day until the colored plastic baby spoon gets jammed into his mouth.

And they say the Mr. Mom routine is borrrrrring…

*Any time I write about Beefaroni, all I ever hear back are negative things. Beefaroni gets a bad rap in America, and I blame the 1996 classic “Seinfeld” episode “The Rye” for that. You remember the episode. Kramer is charging for romantic horse and buggy rides, and he feeds the horse a Costco-size can of Beefarino. Stench and hilarity ensue for the passengers, and the ride comes to an early, abrupt end.

**Tiffany wants to joke that “shoppe” should be pronounced “shoppee,” like “Sharpie” in a foreign accent or something. I figured “shoppe” was probably of French origin and used by Keebler to seem more elite and justified in charging 4 bucks a bag or whatever. A little online research just now, though, revealed that “shoppe” is not French; it’s a made-up American capitalist word.

BABY PICTURE OF THE DAY

Sarah swings on her first birthday.