The Devil(ed Eggs)

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January 23, 2017

You guys, I’ve failed: I haven’t listened to Ann Coulter in 4 days (*upset, sips Soylent*).

Also, I realized that I won’t be able to pig out on Super Bowl Sunday. No beer, no dips, no chips; no nachos, no pretzels, no defrosted crispy bites; no quesadillas nor buffalo wings; no deviled eggs-

OH GOD DEVILED EGGS

You guys, there are too many delicious ways to devil an egg.

Classic:

Avocado:

Fucked up:

JUST LOOK AT ALL OF THIS BULLSHIT

I want a Thanksgiving deviled egg with mashed potatoes, gravy, and-and-and teeny-weeny cranberry bits.

I want a McDonald’s deviled egg that’s just a ground beef with special sauce and-and-and an itsy-bitsy french fry.

I want a sour cream & onion deviled egg with dip and-and-and a woopy-poopy potato chip.

I want a garlic shrimp deviled egg with yellow rice and Spanish garlic shrimp with so much oil.

I want a macaroni and cheese deviled egg.

I want an Indian deviled egg filled with curry.

I want a deviled Ostrich egg that’s deviled with a deviled chicken egg.

I want a sushi deviled egg that’s actually a raw egg on top of spicy tuna tartare mixed with mustard.

I want a fancy-as-fuck deviled egg that’s just filled with Beluga caviar.

I want an empanada deviled egg that’s just an empanada filled with deviled eggs.

I want a Chinese food deviled egg with fried rice and Sriracha.

I want a Chicken Tonight deviled egg.

I want a peanut butter and jelly deviled egg.

I want a wasabi deviled egg.

I want deviled egg soup.

I want a battered and deep-fried deviled egg.

I want a cannoli deviled egg with cream, chocolate chips, and powdered sugar.

I want a pickled deviled egg with a shot of whiskey in the yolk hole.

Please, send me a message – I can be discreet – no one will know it was you – I have money – just get me some goddam deviled eggs PLEASE.

Frank

P.S. Metrics, She Wrote

Horse

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January 21, 2017

We filmed today. A college friend (thanks, Nick!) generously offered his horse, Zorrie, for a quick shot in Tight Pants – the final piece left in that puzzle. After the shoot, I took a quick ride around on the horse. I think it was technically my first experience on one. It was thrilling and scary and fun. We had lunch afterwards at a diner – my crew ate what looked like incredibly tasty breakfast foods: pancakes, toast, eggs, bacon, biscuits and gravy, home fries, french toast, and milkshakes. I treated myself to a pre-bottled Soylent Nectar. It tastes like Froot Loops. Yum? Yum. Sure.

imag0444

I’m on a fucking horse.

Moved by events in my country, and disgusted by the threats of violence that our new presidency poses, I’ve begun digging into works related to non-violent resistance. I’ve ordered Gandhi’s Satyagraha and I’ve begun reading correspondence between Leo Tolstoy and Gandhi.

“The punishment of evil doers consists in making them feel ashamed of themselves by doing them a great kindness.” – “A Letter to a Hindu”, Leo Tolstoy

Which sounds lovely, and possibly effective in certain situations, but how do you apply such an idea in the real world?  As someone who has rarely been the subject of violence (a cis-gender, relatively masculine, white male, though queer), is proposing non-violence as a solution disrespectful to all those who suffer or have suffered under violence? And what does that even mean, non-violence as a solution? What does that mean?

And as for early 20th century India, the success of the philosophy of non-violence was not merely due to its (possibly) inherent and forceful truth but also due to the extreme popularity of its greatest advocate, Mohandas K. Gandhi. Perhaps, like India in the early 20th century, America (or the entire world?) needs a central figure that is lovable, respectable, intelligent, and galvanizing all at once. But Gandhi never had to deal with the level of transparency that is so unique to 21st century life. I’m not sure if anyone will ever be both nationally or globally lovable and political again (but maybe).

Reading in Beige,

Frank

P.S. Metrics, She Wrote

Anxiety

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January 19, 2017

My general anxiety has more or less receded since starting this challenge, but it seems to have returned in the past couple of days. I believe it’s due to my intake of caffeine – and possibly due to the time at which I consume it. For fun (and hopefully increased weight loss, maybe), I’ve added green tea extract and HCA to my daily routine – I take them both around noon, about a half hour before my lunch drink. I instantly feel a spark of energy, but I also feel slightly on edge. It lessens after an hour, but then I am fully anxious – and hot, so hot – around 4 pm. I will try taking the supplements around 4 pm instead to see if my body takes to them better at a different time. I’ve also switched from mixing coffee into my Soylent to mixing a shot of espresso into my Soylent (less diluted that way), but I think there is significantly more caffeine in the espresso shot than there was in my 8 oz cup of coffee, so I’m going to try halving that espresso shot (my company’s machine spits out a pretty full mini-cup). I’m probably not drinking enough during the day because I’m usually forcing it down around 9 pm each night, and I prefer to stop food intake after 8:30 pm, because I tend to have difficulty sleeping if I eat after 9. I haven’t had a great night’s sleep since the weekend.

I hope I can sleep tonight.

Frank

P.S. Metrics, She Wrote

 

Complementary Behavior

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January 19, 2017

On my commute, I volley back and forth between Ann Coulter and dark, loud, melodramatic music; unable and unwilling to process only her casual, hateful, condescending bullshit. I genuinely miss the thoughtful, intelligent, and empathetic listening experiences that I typically choose for my commute.

When listening to Ann Coulter, I keep in mind an episode of the podcast, Invisibilia, called “Flip the Script”. The episode tells several stories that are prime examples of “Noncomplementary Behavior” – the strange things that happen when violence is met with hospitality, when insecurity is met with frankness, and when anger is met with kindness.

In one story from 2012, the police in a Denmark town deal with an unexpected surge of home-grown Islamic Terrorism in an unexpected way. A worrying number of local Arab youths have snuck off to Syria to join ISIS: parents of the missing children are distressed and police officers are unsure of what to do. On one hand, you have all these cases of missing children; on the other, you have the threat (real or not) of Terrorism and violence perpetrated by these children.

What is very familiar here is the macro-level picture: Muslims in a Western country run to Syria to become “Terrorists”. It’s a now-classic, politically-conservative, Islamophobia-fueled nightmare. When Ann Coulter thinks, “Muslims,” this is what she pictures, among other horrible things.

What is not familiar (or at least not familiar enough) is the micro-level picture: daily, sometimes micro-/sometimes macro-aggressive acts of racism and discrimination against Arabs, by non-Arabs. In one case, an Arab man is pulled over nine times in a single day; in another, after engaging in a debate about the nature of Islam, a very obviously decent Arab student is accused of being capable of bombing the high school.

To follow the thread of that student’s experience: shortly after being accused of possibly planning an extreme act of violence and subsequently formally investigated on the basis of that accusation, his mother dies. His world is upended by tragedy, and in his suffering, he thinks:”[…]all this shit happens, everything has gone wrong because of an unjustice [sic] system: racism[…] So, I thought, ‘They call me Terrorist : I will give them a Terrorist.'”

He begins associating with other angry Arab youth in his community – together, they consume the ideas of radical Islam. Eventually, he and others flee to Syria.

So here’s a shitty flow chart (because I don’t have time to make a pretty one):

Muslims experience Islamophobia (violent, verbal, or otherwise) >>> Muslims Suffer, Deeply >>> A minority (this is important) of those Muslims react with Complementary Behavior; some run off to Syria and join a radical movement; some make violent plans at home >>> Radical Violence

For this post, I am choosing to pay most attention to the first and last steps of this shitty flow chart because they (potentially) involve me personally. I think enough attention has been paid to the last step (thanks, Ann), so I’ll focus on the first.

If I express Islamophobia, I inadvertently cause violence – it may not be immediate; my hatred may be like a raindrop in the reservoir of violence; but it contributes nonetheless; and billions of these acts of Islamophobia fuel the growing problem of “Terrorism”; it is a hatred fueled by our own hatred.

I believe that we, the non-Arabs of the Western World, should hold ourselves responsible for this epidemic of violence. Maybe the responsibility doesn’t lie with us alone, but it certainly lies with us at least. I hold myself accountable for this violence; and even more, I hold voices like Ann Coulter accountable for this violence. Hers is a thinly-cloaked rhetoric of violence: a terrorism of thought and of words. As for radical violence: let’s not call it “Terrorism”; let’s call it “Complementary Behavior”. It is the mirror image of our own hatred.

But holding ourselves accountable for the current state of radical violence can’t be the only solution. For the police officers of that Denmark town, the (albeit odd) solution to their problem of home-grown Islamic Terrorism was Noncomplementary Behavior. They decided to fight “radicalism with love” by setting up a program that included a peaceful re-entry into their community for the errant children along with a mentorship – no prosecution. I won’t ruin the ending of the story for you, and I encourage you to listen to the episode; but what I’ve gathered from it, and what I won’t stop thinking when I listen to words like those of Ann Coulter, is that we won’t find peace until we see all of the causal threads of these stories – most importantly, the causal threads leading back to ourselves.

In Soylent news, I added a serving of organic cacao powder to one of my meals today – it was good, but difficult to blend without an actual blender. I’m also pretty sure that I’m more sensitive to everyone else’s breath – garlic is a problem.

Milky and woke,

Frank

P.S. Metrics, She Wrote

GIFeelings

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January 17, 2017

Today was weird.

I don’t feel like writing.

I’ll compose a gif story about it:

(except with Soylent)

BUT, I’ll get up again tomorrow and I’ll try again. Even though today was technically a bad day, I felt generally positive, energetic, and capable. Still, the wind wasn’t really blowing my way.

And yet positively creamy,

Frank

P.S. Metrics, She Wrote

 

Week 1, In the Can – We da Man

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“We da main man Stan!” – The Blair Thumb

With the first week of my Soylent adventure coming to a close, I’ve got a lot to be proud of, despite a minor failure (the four gin-and-seltzers I had on Sunday night).

I have frequent flavor-pangs (technically, I’m not unusually “hungry” on a daily basis – I just want all sorts of tasty foods). However, I’ve consistently stuck to my strict diet of Soylent and select accompanying supplements.

I’ve noticed a few changes:

  • I’ve already lost 5 pounds (yay).
  • Soylent really is so satisfying (though only when cold). It’s a fantastic product, once you get over its campy, dystopian qualities. Yes, it’s weird; but it’s also incredibly easy to prepare, delicious, satisfying, and adaptable to your personal taste. After each sip, my brain says, “Yum – that’s delectable. Also, I want a fried chicken. And Twizzlers.”
  • My muscles are recovering less quickly following workouts. This is probably due to both my reduced calorie and reduced protein intake. As recommended by my muscly roommate, I’ll be adding a BCAA supplement to my post-workout protein shake. (Thanks, Terrell.) If I don’t notice an improvement after a few days, I will add a serving of almonds to my diet as well.
  • My emotional and physical stability are at awesome highs: to be frank, I feel great. I’m productive, I’m positive, and I’m energetic. When I experience any sort of negative emotion, I find that I have the extraordinary ability to wave the feeling away, allowing me to deal with the cause of the negativity. My anxiety levels are at a record low – when in social situations, I feel charismatic, confident, and capable. If pre-Soylent Frank, met during-Soylent Frank, pre-Soylent Frank would probably be really annoyed at during-Soylent Frank for being so goddam cheery all the time. “God I wish that during-Soylent Frank would stop fucking whistling,” pre-Soylent Frank would say. And honestly, pre-Soylent Frank can suck a dick.
  • A new dimension of difficulty has been added to social situations: extreme temptation. Drinking (alcohol) and eating food are not only enjoyable in and of themselves, they are also enjoyable as human bonding rituals. Opting out of those rituals has been a painful exercise and will continue to be one of my biggest challenges during my month of Soylent.

As always, here are the Metrics I wrote:

Metrics, She Wrote

About 70% Soylent at this point,

Frank

 

OK, so I had 4 gin-and-seltzers,

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but you know what, it was a long week, I was out with friends, I was surrounded by alcohol, and I could have done way worse. I picked the low-cal option, so you know what, I’m happy. And you should be happy for me. How dare you be anything but happy for me.

I was so tempted to make a pit-stop at McDonald’s on the way home, but I didn’t. I made it through – I’m here. I saw Bob the Drag Queen. I’m happy.

Whatever.

Frank

P.S. Metrics, She Drank

 

Things I Want

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1/14/2017

Things I Want (in no particular order):

  • Cheeseburger
  • Falafel
  • French Fries with So Many Sauces
  • Masala Dosa
  • Knob Creek Single Barrel Reserve Whiskey
  • Popeyes
  • Soup
  • Kit Kat
  • Red Wine
  • Cigarettes (I don’t smoke)
  • Sesame Chicken Salad
  • Dried Goji Berries
  • Peanut Butter
  • Peanut Butter & Jelly Sandwich
  • Literally Any Sandwich
  • Coffiest (this is my favorite Soylent product taste-wise, but it has so much caffeine in it that it gives me hours of terrible anxiety)
  • Chocolate Covered Cacao Beans
  • Fucking Pickles
  • Barbecue Sauce
  • Spaghetti
  • Tortilla Chips and Salsa
  • Pita Chips and Hummus
  • Potato Chips and Sour Cream & Onion Dip
  • Ben & Jerry’s
  • Rice
  • White Wine Sauce
  • Pizza
  • Raw Bread Dough
  • Sourdough Pretzels
  • Cheez-Its
  • Baby Carrots and Ranch Dressing

What is the point of a Saturday without snax?

😦

Frank

P.S. Metrics, She Sobbed