Salami, Fruitcake and Special K

June 5, 2009

I love salami. I donít know why. I love pepperoni, too, but thatís about the extent of this vague fixation.
†† Someone gave us some summer sausage once. Perhaps it varies by brand, but that was about as close to useless and nasty as you can get in a food product, excluding cottage cheese and artichoke casserole.
†† Iíve been dieting for a few months now, taking off some pounds surely but with great pains. This is not an endorsement, but I tried the Special K challenge. I love cereal. In the past, my choice ran to primarily Lucky Charms, but thereís nothing challenging about that cereal except buttoning my pants. The Special K advertisements to ďLose up to 6 pounds in 2 weeks!Ē got me.
†† Well, it worked, though I was averaging about four a week, which is fine. I didnít need to star in a Chuck Norris commercial. On the box it said I could ďeat one meal a day normally. Yes, we said normallyĒ and I was so impressed with how well they knew me I immediately bought four boxes.
†† I like the red berry variety, the cinnamon pecan and the fruit and yogurt. The blueberry isnít bad, either. The chocolate makes me tremble violently with revulsion Now, the problem with a cereal diet is that, even though Iím getting ample nutrition, especially with my vitamins, I need more protein sometimes. These days, I reach for a slice of salami.
†† I love cotto salami. Pure goodness in a round slice, there. I like honey ham, too, but despise turkey and chicken slices. I hate it when they call it ďturkey hamĒ because, my friends, what is ham? Itís pork. Turkey is not ham. In fact, hamburger is not ham, itís chopped steak. You remember the television commercial, right?
†† Chicken is not meant to be put on bread in some gelatinous sliced glob. Fry it, bake it, barbecue it, but for goodnessí sake, donít try to make it a substitute for ham. Turkey isÖwell, turkeyís not worth a plug nickel for anything, if you ask me. I would just as soon consume packing peanuts.
†† I like Italian sausage spaghetti. I still wonder what the devil Italians ate before Christopher Columbus fell off the yard arm and landed on his head in Hispanola, setting off a chain of unlikely and somewhat comedic events (if you werenít an Indian) that eventually led to Mexico, where tomatoes were ďdiscoveredĒ (read: pillaged, stolen) by the Spaniards. Lots of dry pasta was the main course in Europe before that, I suppose. Drenched in olive oil? Eww.
†† You take a slice of salami and a slice of American cheese or cheddar, wrap the slice around the salami as you fold it over, mais cher, datís da bomb, I kid you not. Keeps me going until breakfast, too. Forget the bread. Takes too much time.
†† I have largely given up white bread, too. I now eat the Natureís Valley 7-Grain, good stuff, and good for you. Looking in the mirror in the morning, I also believe I am starting to look like Ewell Gibbons. But the man had a great talking point: Anybody who could eat Grape Nuts and still have teeth is a testament to health foodís power.
†† Jerky is also a favorite of mine, especially on hike-in fishing trips. Itís hard to find good jerky. Most of that junk they sell in the stores around here is boot leather soaked in vinegar and spices then dried in a carbon black plant furnace. Even Ewell Gibbonsí teeth couldnít survive that stuff. Iíve been thinking of trying to jerky salami. With cheese. Now that would be a winner.
†† Which brings me to fruitcake.
†† Yeah. I know.
†† My girl gave me a fruitcake for Christmas. Iím pretty particular about fruitcake. Again, the stuff you get normally around the holidays is mummified fruit removed from a 3,000 year-old Egyptian pyramid then set in epoxy, though some kind persons have brought me some fair ones, apparently from some alternate dimension they visited.
†† But Suzie got me a fruitcake from the Trappist monks of the Gethsemani monastery in Kentucky. That, boys and girls, was fruitcake that never knew a polymer of any kind. Dang thing weighed a dozen pounds. I stretched it as long as I could, and held a memorial service when the last slice was gone.
†† We also tried some kind of cheese from the monks and when we opened the wrapping, the paint peeled from the walls, the ceilings buckled, pipes burst and we had to throw open all the doors and windows before running from the house and staying with friends for a few days. A hazmat team went in suited up and disposed of the cheese, I think at the Chernobyl site. I understand now why monks are silent: They have to inhale first to speak.
†† I read the other day that nuts help you burn belly fat. This was great news. I love mixed nuts, and no, Iím not talking about most of the people I hang around with. Iíve been eating a handful of mixed nuts every day, and Iím not sure itís really working, but I do notice I tend to stop channel surfing anytime I find the Three Stooges.
†† My biggest weakness is ice cream. I had to stop keeping it in the refrigerator because I am completely capable of devouring a half-gallon of Blue Bell in two sittings, depending on how much spare time I have at my disposal.
†† I only like blackberry jam. Jelly. Preserves. Whatever you call it. I despise grape jelly, but can tolerate strawberry. Blackberry jelly with peanut butter on two slightly toasted pieces of 7-grain bread is nirvana. Throw some sliced bananas on there and Iíll hang by my feet from a tree limb and scratch my armpits to get a second helping.
†† I would like to blame my weight battles on aging, but the truth of the matter is I have always vacillated like an old farm tire. Up and down. Cost me a fortune in clothes before I found the neat trick of tucking my belt under my belly, not across it. In this way some of my friends the same age as me claim to be wearing the same size jeans they did in high school. I believe this unfortunate deception is also responsible for the saggy pants phenomenon of late.
†† Where was I? Oh, yeah, salami. Good stuff. Good for you. OK, well, letís not go overboardÖ