Flavor of the Week: Chopped Salad

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Ew, who eats bread anymore?

If I wanted to, I could make this post short and sweet: If you haven’t eaten chopped salad, then you haven’t lived. If you haven’t custom-made your own chopped salad, then you are not alive at all. And if you understand why chopped salad is about as trendy as Kim Kardashian’s breast milk is right now, then you are a fricking genius.

But of course, I can’t complain in just these three short sentences. So let me spell it out for you:

I adore chopped salad. It served the role of “Gay Best Friend” to me. But what I cease to comprehend is exactly why chopped salad has become such a “thing.” Salad and it’s ability to be chopped has been around since… like… ever. Yet, girls and women alike act as if suddenly someone discovered that indeed, there is a vegetable called lettuce and, holy shit, we are #blessed enough to be able to chop it into tiny pieces with a pizza slicer?????!!!!

I mean, when you put it like that… am I wrong? Does this not seem absolutely ridiculous?

#YesWeCan #DreamActBroughtToYouByChoppedSaladPlaces

Women always have and always will love to eat salad–this is not a “new” thing. So why does it seem like it? And why is salad seemingly better when it’s chopped? It’s almost as if we keep getting our baby food diet mixed up with our only-eat-things-that-are-96%-water diet. Rookie move. Get a grip, people.

Salad used to only exist as a sad, lifeless, and stationary being. It was left out on “salad bars” in the centre (yes, centre) of restaurants where it was totally exposed to the germy air and any waft of passed gas that sauntered in from the bathroom around the corner. Now, salad is respected. We gave salad back its rights like it’s 1965, baby. It is kept in a refrigerated, enclosed environment behind a counter where only trained professionals have access to its leafy loveliness.

Decades ago, our country was scattered with luncheonettes where hardworking men would get a 99-cent sandwich and fries. Today, luncheonettes have been replaced with “Creative Salad Companies,” feeding the brains of the driven women and weight-conscious homosexual men who are taking the workforce by storm. It is likely that my dissertation will one day hover around the concept of, oh, I don’t know, something along the lines of “The Rise Of Chopped Salad As A Lunch And/Or Dinner Food Is Definitely Like 100% Linked To The Fact That Women Are Better Respected In Society And Are Taking Over The World In A Great Way.” It’s just a working thought, you know?

On Visiting Day

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Between hype over “The Running of the Jews,” a concept my parents made sure I understood before I knew how to say “Shabbat shalom,” and the annual event that took place all along the northeast last weekend, I thought it fitting to make this week’s flavor d-day v-day. According to the Christian faith, v-day is an abbrev for Valentine’s Day. According to the Jewish faith, v-day is short for Visiting Day–an annual holiday filled with more love, blood, sweat, tears, and romance than any other.

I spent last weekend visiting my two younger brothers at sleepaway camp in Maine. I decided that I would make it a social experiment. I promised myself that I would, however tedious it may be, take copious notes of the ridiculous things I heard people say while I was up here. I knew that surrounding myself with ironic, lobster-craving Jews for a full four days would provide the perfect opportunity to compose a beautiful quote book.

This is my 15-year-old brother when I made him put on a fashion show for me including all of the equipment he needs to wear on his week-long canoe trip. He’s obviously psyched.

Before I delve deep into the realm of #ShitPeopleSayOnVDay, I thought I could share a story that will perfectly set the tone for the type of weekend I had. During my brother’s intramural basketball game in a field house hot enough to be the burning embers of body odor in an all-boys camp hell, I really really really had to pee. Whenever I visit my brothers at camp, I have a few fears that are ever-lingering as scars from various experiences of my own at summer camp (i.e., the time I was ten and shit my pants during the age group play… yes, that is one of the most underrated and best kept secrets from my time at camp). Unbeknownst to me, this would become one of those deep cuts in the side of my female dignity.

“Where’s the girls’ bathroom?” I asked my mom.

“The bathrooms are unisex here,” my mom replied in a voice much too nonchalant, implying that for one, it should have been obvious that there were no girls’ bathrooms, and two, that she was trying to sound “mad chill.” As in, every girl uses urinals here.

Thus, I entered the so-called unisex bathroom in the field house. It wasn’t a bathroom that locked–it had two urinals and one private stall. Unisex enough. I went into the stall to pee and spent the entire time praying that no one would walk in. Just as I was about to leave the stall, the bathroom door opened. Of course.

I cannot express enough how this easily could have been a scene from Bridesmaids or The Heat or some other woman-powered comedy flick that macho men refuse to admit is one of the funniest movies they have ever seen. The following ensued: I peeked under the stall and saw that the intruder was a male. How did I know this? He was using the urinal. Fabulous.

Then, so he wouldn’t see me, I put my feet on the toilet seat and crouched there, hugging my legs so he wouldn’t know I was there, until I was in the clear and it was safe to go. For more reasons than one, I was holding my breath. I crouched on the toilet for a good five or six minutes. Might I add, I was drenched in sweat in the most ungraceful way possible.

Finally, he left. I came out of the stall. Just as I opened the door to exit the bathroom, nervous about the strange looks I was guaranteed to get from everyone who realized that I was alone… in a bathroom… with this man… ugh… a GRANDPA walked in. That was an awkward encounter for sure. Especially when I waved and said “Hi!” to him, as if I normally used the boys’ bathroom. How progressive of me.

Enjoy the quotes!

After the first day, I was an accessory to my parents at a dinner of six couples, all with sons in the same group of camp friends. Word for word, here are the best quotes of the night (from the mothers):

“You’re only as happy as your most unhappy child.”

“I’m so proud of myself for friending you on Facebook!!!!!”

“I think that the Yankees-Red Sox rivalry has gotten much more respectable.”

“Every kid was asking for candy, and my kid’s asking for the Boston Globe!!!”

“Let’s face it. Jews love to overdo.” (This could be almost be considered a mantra.)

After dinner, I walked around the quaint, colonial town with my parents.

“Everything says ‘Kennebec’ up here,” said my father.

“I think that’s the name of the river,” I told him from my experience as a seven-year Maine camper.

“No,” he shook his head. “I think that’s just a big word up here,” OK, Dad.

The next day:

“These boys look malnourished.” –My mother in response to the “skins” team during basketball

“What’s civilization?” –My11-year-old cousin’s totally serious and non-sarcastic response to my brother’s claim that he misses civilization

“It’s like the Hunger Games.” –My youngest brother in line to get ice cream

“Rate me on a scale of 1 to 10 of how skinny or fat you think I got since I’ve seen you last and especially pay attention to how I look in these jean shorts.” –Someone who may or may not have been me to my 11-year-old brother

I hope your visiting days were lovely and included both lots of fun and a three-pound max weight gain!

I blog about my time as a camper for the Maine Camp Experience. You can read some of my posts by clicking here.

This post is dedicated to 1AB 2011.

Flavor of the Week: Ailsa Anderson

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Who is Ailsa Anderson?

If you don’t know this, then you don’t know The Royals. And if you don’t know The Royals, then you don’t know me. So preppy teenaged girls who thought they were bigger groupies to Prince William than any token Belieber is to J. Biebs has got it all wrong. Turn around now, honeys. You may have won the battle by hosting a viewing party of the royal wedding, but you lost the war by not knowing Ailsa. You’ve gotta know Ailsa.

Ailsa Anderson is the babe who placed the obviously-framed royal birth announcement upon its golden easel that, in British terms, probably cost about as much as it did to fix Austin Powers’ teeth. Only a loyal servant to the Queen (not referring to Beyoncé this time) would have this honor–oh, yes, the dutiful honor of placing a frame upon an easel–bestowed upon her.

Ailsa is no ordinary civilian, however. She’s actually part of Her Majesty The Queen Elizabeth II’s mothaf****’ clique. She started from the bottom now she’s here. Ailsa’s title is “press secretary,” and is one of the three woman that the Queen surrounds herself with each and every royal day of her royal life. Because the Queen ain’t no queen without a possé, amirite?

According to PEOPLE.com, “Living in the home counties just northwest of London, [Ailsa] likes to shop for clothes at the designer outlet stores at Bicester Villlage (where Kate has been known to visit) and has a nose for a good deal. ‘She’s great at sussing out the good bargains in sales,’ says a friend.” So, basically, we love her.

Ailsa sported a sick snakeskin pencil skirt with a pearl cropped jacket and three-inch heels to make the birth announcement. We love you Ailsa, because you’re a champ. Keep it up girlfriend.