Daily LOLZ

November 26, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

November 24, 2010

Broccoli Rice

November 24, 2010

In honor of Thanksgiving tomorrow I praise a standard of my family’s holiday table–broccoli rice casserole.

This is a vegetable side that even most vegetable haters love. I have seen kids who will gag at the sight of anything green but Jell-o demand seconds. I have seen so-called adults get into serving spoon fights over the last gob in the dish. I have seen people pout for an entire dinner because someone neglected to make it (never mind that the buffet was groaning with almost uncountable side dishes. We’ll give up the green bean casserole before we give up the brocolli rice.

The recipe below is courtesy of Ask.com. Google ‘brocolli rice casserole+Cheez Wi’. Yes, there are dozens of recipes out there, and one can easily cruise the web for their own preferences (some use canned cheese soup), but Cheez Wiz… Well, it appeals to my White Trash roots, I guess. 🙂 Mom usually makes a double recipe, just in case, and seeing the proportions on this recipe, you probably should, too. It’s a sad thing to run out of brocolli rice casserole before you run out of appetite. I love my Mom.

Ingredients:
•1/4 to 1/2 cup chopped onion
•1 tablespoon butter
•1 can cream of mushroom soup
•1/2 small jar Cheez Whiz(TM), about 1/2 cup
•1 cup cooked rice
•1 package (10 ounces) frozen broccoli, cooked and drained

Preparation:
In a skillet over medium-low heat, sauté onion in butter; add rice and broccoli. Heat soup over low heat; add Cheez Whiz. Combine all ingredients; pour into buttered casserole. Bake casserole at 325° for about 20 to 30 minutes, or until thoroughly heated.
Serves 4.

I believe Mom also adds celery, and I’d advise you to use a good brand of brocolli. Nothing kills the mood like biting into an old bit that has the mouth feel of chewing on a twig.

The Road to Wellville

November 23, 2010

One of my favorite places on the ‘net is the Listverse at http://listverse.com/ . Today they had an interesting list about Shocking Historical Beliefs and Practices. One of them was the concept of ‘female hysteria’, and it’s treatment by erotic massage. Anyone offering these treatments now would be up on molestation charges lickity-split, but around the turn of the century they were considered legitimate.

Anyway, this put me in mind of The Road to Wellwille, a 1994 movie. It’s a fact based fiction set in a turn-of-the-century (last) health asylum run by J. Kellogg (Anthony Hopkins)–the inventor of Corn Flakes, and the proponent of many a quackish belief.

The movie follows three intertwining plots (Kellogg’s relationship with an estranged adopted son (Dana Carvy) who is anti everything Kellogg is pro, a married couple (Mathew Broderick and Bridget Fonda) seeking health and wellness, and a young man (John Cusak) intent on making his fortune in the burgeoning breakfast cereal industry.

At the Battle Creek Saniterium, Fonda’s character is a proto-groupie for all things ‘cutting edge’ in medical treatment. She embraces with equal enthusiasm vegiterianism, vigorous exercise, mineral baths, mastication thereap (chew that bite 30 times!), and the manual treatment of female hysteria. This involves manual stimulation by a smarmy German doctor, and shall we say she’s a little more enthusiastic about it than she is about other treatments? Her poor husband suffers mightily, but slogs along with treatments that border on torture, for the sake of his wife. The scene where he finally has enough are hilarious and cathartic. It turns out that the wife who has guilted him into this purgatory is responsible for his condition. She secretly fed him a ‘calming medicine’ to prevent him from going out and drinking. Turns out the drug was an opiate, so he became alcoholic AND addicted.

Dana Carvy is wonderfully pervy and slimy as the prodigal-but-not-comin’-back-to-the-fold son. He surprises Fonda in a bathing treatment. You’ve heard of stripping someone with your eyes? That woman should be down to bones and nerves by the time Dana has managed to rinse the first few layers of filth off with a shower.

Cusak’s character is a sad sack, but my God–you keep wanting to yell at him to grow a sense of survival as the scam sharks circle round.

I loved this movie because I like irony, satire, and well done period pieces. I love pouring over the details of costume and set dressing. The acting is good (purposely overdone in some cases, but these are more characatures than characters). Hopkins is always fun to watch. Here he’s playing a man who’s self-assurance long ago fell over into ‘I’m always right, anyone else who disagrees is wrong or mad’ territory.

Oh, and look for the scene where Catheryn Manheim (as another health groupie) bicycles herself to a ‘hysterical paroxym’.

The movie was from a book of the same name, so I’ll recommend both. And it might be fun to Google Kellogg to look up his crackpot theories.

I always get that wrong. I’ve been told it’s a Freudian slip, but I never heard that Sigmund was a cross-dresser.

The blog got its title because one person’s triviality is another person’s important fact, and vice-versa. I’ll be blogging about things that cross my mind–nostalgia, pop culture, food, movies… Just don’t expect anything too serious.