Jun 03 2005

Portrait Of A Belly-Bomb


Above: salad from Pasta & Co: the edible calm before the storm
Below: portrait of a belly-bomb: Lasagne verde is actually red!


Some of my music-related acquaintances were yukking it up on the subject of the new Battle-Of-The-Washed-Up-Bands-From-The-80’s show. Well, I’m always on the lookout for a) edible food cooked by somebody else and b) mindless pop culture action I can discuss with the aforementioned acqaintances without having to blame the patriarchy too much, so I tuned in while getting outside this frozen lasagne from Pasta & Co.

My relationship with the has-been pop star show lasted 93 seconds. I regret to say that the Flock Of Seagulls guy had left his hearing aid in the dressing room. The resulting sour discharge, combined with the revolting spectacle of him waving his frumpy bald-guy ponytail at the freakishly giant English spokesmodel dude, drove me to switch off the TV and pick up a gripping article from the Texas ag extension office entitled “Reseeding Rangeland.”

I wish I could say that the lasagne revived my flagging spirits, but the bitter and ironical truth is that Pasta & Co, a tiny noodlery in one of those tumbledown cottages on Kerbey Lane, sells terrible pasta. I am in a unique position to comment on this unfortunate situtation. Why? During the epic calamity that was my recent kitchen remodel, my kind but gourmetically-challenged sister, either because she did not wish to see me starve before she could wangle a few more babysitting hours out of me, or because she had mistaken me, as people often do, for a hungry Israelite wandering in the wilderness, often force-fed me Pasta & Co lasagne verde. I became intimate with its many inadequacies.

It is possible to survive even repeated encounters with this belly-bomb if one eats only the burnt cheese scraped off the top. However I cannot advise ingesting the noodles, which are greenish and affect the heavy, mucilaginous consistency of Play-Doh but lack the flavor of same. The sauce is tomato paste straight out of the can. Livestock bedding alle pomodoro pretty much sums it up. So when your sister brings a bag of this over, stick to the salad, which is pretty good.

You know, some scholars have described the gift of manna–“a strange, unpopular food”– to the wandering Jews not as a kindness, but as a trial.


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  1. J

    You just wanted to write an entry that used the word “mucilaginous” didn’t you?

    Succeeding that, the question becomes, was manna actually bread? (vs., say, latkes?)

  2. Twisty

    Ha. “Mucilaginous” is my middle name. Manna, on the other hand, was a divine substance resembling cardamom pods that was invented specifically for the children of Israel, to keep them dependent on their practical jokester deity. God doled it out every day, and every night the uneaten portions turned into worms. This inconvenient worm feature kept them from growing it on their own and gaining independence from the mean, paternalistic God dude.

  3. Rene

    On the subject of reality TV, have you seen the new Ashton Kutcher-produced abomination “Beauty and the Geek”? The premise is that it’s not a reality show, see, but a SOCIAL EXPERIMENT, wherein 10 silicone-enhanced cyborgs teach a bunch of virginal geeks how to be cool, and the geeks teach the gals how to be smart and interesting. On the debut episode, the contestants are divided into couple-teams and have to cram for a double contest: A general-knowledge quiz for the women, and a dance contest (and later, pop-culture quiz) for the men. Sample stumpers for the women: “Who was Al Gore’s running mate in 2000?” (the woman had no idea) “What state is farther South, South Dakota or South Carolina?” (the woman guessed South Dakota) “How do you spell ‘calendar’?” (the woman spelled it with two e’s and seemed very mystified and defensive that this was not the correct answer) “What former president came from Arkansas?” (the woman guessed George W. Bush). What a laff riot! The guys were using fifth-grade textbooks to prep the women, whose tiny brains, alas, could barely contain all this vital information. The P-D TV critic described the show as “actually kind of sweet.” IBTP.

  4. Twisty

    Ashton Kutcher? Responsible for a TV show that reinforces sexist stereotypes? Get out!

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