Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Baseball, Hot Dogs, Apple Pie, Yada, Yada, Yada

Joey Chestnut regained his Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest championship crown when he downed 70 dogs in 10 minutes yesterday in New York.  I also ate hot dogs on the 4th of July but I had to stop at two. I know I shouldn’t compare myself to a professional athlete but I have to admit that I’m a little disappointed in my performance.

In my defense though, one of the dogs was this big boy right here:

That’s the "King’s Hawaiian Dog" that the Dodgers are selling at the ballpark this year. It consists of a Dodger Dog covered in pineapple salsa on a King’s Hawaiian Roll and damn, it’s tasty! The sweet roll and the sweet salsa combine just right with the savory hot dog and would have made the trip down to Dodger Stadium worth it even if the Dodgers didn’t come from behind to beat the Orioles, which they did.

Since I was already celebrating Independence Day with baseball and hot dogs, I figured I might as well go full on cliché and throw in some apple pie. It wasn’t Mom’s, though, it was Mrs. Redd’s.

As store-bought fried fruit pies go it was okay but I have to say that Ol’ Lady Redd skimps a bit on the filling for my taste which doesn’t really seem all that American but, whatever.

 As I was finishing my pie and wrapping up my Independence Day I took a minute to reflect on what a gift the Founding Fathers gave me. I mean, if they hadn’t flipped their powdered wigs over taxation without representation and whatnot all those years ago then I might have spent the day watching cricket while eating bangers and mash and meat pies. I'd like to see how much of that stuff Joey Chestnut could choke down.

Monday, July 4, 2016

Stars and Stripes Forever

It’s Independence Day here in the good ol’ U.S. of A. so I went out looking for some special 4th of July Reese’s. If you’re a regular reader (Hi, Mom) then you know about my chocolate-encased peanut butter obsession. There’s no bad Reese’s product but the best-of-the-best are the super-sized holiday specials. I’m talking the Halloween pumpkins, the Christmas (Winter Holiday?) Snowmen, the Valentine’s Day hearts, and the Easter Eggs. It’s not just the size, mind you, it’s the thicker chocolate and thicker peanut butter that makes them great.

It seems like Reese’s puts out more special holiday candy every year (2015 brought us mini-Christmas trees and mini-Halloween ghosts) so I was hoping, even though I’ve never seen a single special Reese’s star-spangled treat before, to discover that this was the year that they'd make a big ol’ Uncle Sam hat or something. Instead, I found these.

Are they little stars, like the mini-hearts and mini-rabbits I enjoyed in the winter/spring of 2016?  No sir, they are not. In fact, they’re just regular mini Reese’s in some fancy foil.

Don’t get me wrong, I love mini Reese’s and the patriotic wrapping is better than nothing, I guess, but I expect better from the company (Hershey’s, which owns the Reese’s brand) that gave our soldier’s candy bars during World War II. To me, the quintessential American hero is the gum-snapping, “Nutz to ya’, ya’ Nazi dope”-cracking, G.I. Joe passing out Hershey’s bars to kids as they liberated France from the bad guys back in The Big One. Let’s honor them with some real special candy, not some tarted up same ol’. I mean, I’m pretty sure Paul Revere didn’t leave the Boston Tea Party early and ride all the way to Lexington and Concord to fire the Shot Heard Round the World that cracked the Liberty Bell just for this:

I guess if I want some special Independence Day store-bought junk food I’m just going to have to be satisfied with these:

At least the folks at Hostess slapped on some blue icing and decorated the thing with red and white star-shaped sprinkles. Those are some right-thinking Americans, right there. Sure, the Star Spangled Cup Cakes don't taste nearly as good as the delicious regular orange or chocolate kinds (in fact, they don't taste especially good at all) but I guess you can't have everything.