Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Moody Blues - Ride My Seesaw! What?

 I always thought that seesaws were pretty much pointless as a youth. Two points and fulcrum, seemingly to offer some naive pair of humans a cyclic and silly ride?? And, then I woke up, seeing formulas so pure! God! You're a prick, so sick yet ingeniously near....

Now understanding anew, these times are troubling and blue . Please send me guns, booze and smart lawyers too.... Uh no, fuck the lawyers, a very loose woman will do!

[Self-styled poets like moi suck, we all tend to think way too much! God bless the US!]

A day in May! And, a bridge update!

Long Horn Family Dining!

Forsyth MO. – It was late May and since my most recent efforts at dieting had gone to hell, I decided to go out and eat something that was really fattening good! I was craving a good old fashioned hamburger and fries sort of meal, but I also didn't want it from a take out window. The Long Horn then came to mind as they have one of the best hamburgers around!

As it was mid-week, there wasn't a ton of customers eating there when I arrived for lunch at about a quarter to Noon. Just one family with a screaming kid. Outside the day was warming up quickly and was expected to reach the low nineties by the afternoon. Thank goodness for air conditioning!

I ordered the Kountry Burger Deluxe which was your basic hamburger along with a side of crinkle cut fries. Throw in a cold diet Pepsi and you have a not very shabby lunch! (I've ordered this meal for years and can attest to it's ability to satisfy the main human senses as well as filling the stomach up in good fashion). And were it not for a family with that screaming kid just a few feet from my ears, it would have been a nice experience. I left the place deciding that perhaps abortion wasn't such a bad idea after all....

Peggy's Park Place Market!

After enjoying that loud lunch, I decided to take a run down to Peggy's Park Place located near the intersections of Hwy's 160 and 76 for some grub. I've found that, very often, their price points for staples like beer seemed to be a little lower than some venues closer to home. They also offer a good selection of wines, liquors, canned goods and snacks all at competitive prices! While at the store, I ran into the Mayor who wanted to know what exactly was wrong with me... I made my purchases and skedaddled...

Shadowrock Park!

Peggy's has been dealing with a number of challenges, for some time, related to the fact that MODOT was building a multi million dollar bridge nearby and construction of that nature is most always disruptive to small and large businesses alike. I took a moment to drive down to the neighboring Shadowrock Park to see how well the RV's and other campers were dealing with everything. Only about one half of the camping spaces were now available due to the heavy equipment being located at the far end of the park. The sister park located across Bull Shoals and know as River Run, was closed for the season due to both bridge construction and to the flooding from recent rains. And, on this day, there were only a few campers in evidence, anyway.

As an aside, I did have some concerns as to what was going to happen to the old bridge as I'd heard a couple of different stories concerning its fate. One person told me it would be torn down and the other that it was going to remain for food traffic use. I called MODOT at 417-895-7600 and as to speak to the Project head, Johnny Teegardin, but he was not in office. I settled for sending him an email that addressed these questions as well as asking for an update on the roundabout that was still planned to go in later in the year.

[Good day Mr. Teegardin. My name is Dan Owen. I'm a Taney County resident and I've spoken with you before concerning the Bull Shoals Bridge project and just wanted to say you've done a very good job thus far. My concerns this day lie in two areas; 1) what the ultimate fate will be of the older bridge and 2) whether you had a time line for the start and completion dates for both the bridge and for the roundabout.]

MODOT response:

Mr. Owen:

The old bridge will be demolished after traffic is switched onto the new bridge.

The roundabout was awarded to the low bidder Lehman Construction which is the same contractor who is building Bull Shoals bridge.   At this time, I am not sure when he will start on the roundabout.  He was able to start it in mid-march, but has chosen to not impact traffic in this area until he gets the Bull Shoals project near completion.   We will have a pre-construction conference to discuss this and should know in the near future.  They could start any time after that conference.

The completion date for both the roundabout and the bridge projects are November 1, 2018.

Resident Engineer

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Zungguzungguguzungguzeng?... What does that even mean? Oh yeah, Jamacian...

Long ago, I roomed with a dark man, soon to be Dr. McPherson at SIU and who went on to practice at Kingston. He taught me the straight stuff on the color of people and what to then look for underneath.... Ah yes. There is no color, only good, bad or sad individuals.....

Sunday, May 27, 2018

My memorial weekend BBQ chicken!

Whenever a holiday like Memorial Day comes around, I like to cook myself up a batch of BBQ slathered chicken drumsticks to eat and enjoy. Of course anyone can cook chicken, but it takes a very 'special' person who knows the art of grilling to come up with a batch like you see above!

Best ever Holiday weather with temps close to 90!
Now appearances notwithstanding, there's a lot that goes into both the sauce and the method of cooking. First off, while I do use a commercial BBQ sauce like Bulls-Eye, I've never been content with leaving well enough alone! No sir! I will normally add a touch of hot sauce as I like my chicken to bite me right back when I'm eating! That's why I add a squirt or two of Tabasco sauce to liven the party up a little! Just before grilling, I wash the chicken, pat everything dry and spray on a light coat of cooking oil. They are then placed in a small Weber styled grill and cooked for about 45 minutes to an hour over hot coals.

Needles to say, the food was great, especially when served with a side of potato salad. 

Friday, May 25, 2018

Memorial Day 2018!

For most Americans, the horrors of war are unfelt and distant. For the brave few who do fight them, they are very real and are often terrifying. As of 2018, over a million men and women have died fighting for the citizens of the United States. I just have to wonder, while so many will be 'celebrating' Memorial Day, just how many will truly feel gratitude to the few who paid the ultimate
price on the anvil of freedom.

Monday, May 21, 2018

Home fries as part of the DanO Dog and fries! Easy to make and a whole cheaper than store bought!

While the focus of this post is in making home fries, I also wanted to tie it all together with a DanO Dog!

Prep your fries: Take a medium Russet potato, roughly square off the sides with a knife. I had about 80 grams worth after the cutting.

Cut the potato lengthwise into french fry sized pieces. Pat dry with a paper towel.

Place the potato fries on a microwave safe plate and nuke them for a 1min 45 sec.

Cool them off a bit, pat dry again and seal in Saran wrap or an air tight container.
Finally, place them in the freezer until ready to use. I generally make up four to five batches to use whenever the mood strikes me. When that time comes, they get a quick shot in the microwave just to get them to room temperature!

When ready to cook: Preheat ¼ cup of oil in a frying pan over medium high heat. Place these pieces into the hot oil and cook until brown (about 3 minutes). Remove and place the fries on a paper towel and light sprinkle with salt. Viola you be done!

Nutritional info:
Here's the whole DanO Meal deal. Other than the fantastic taste, what good can be said for this meal - Nothing! This is something you could feed unwanted in laws every single day, right up to the point in time that an ambulance took their bloated carcasses away.

Summary: Easy and cheap at only about twenty five cents! With a little practice, you might find that you even like these more than the commercial ones.

Sunday, May 20, 2018

French fries – are they really a very good deal?

DanO Dog and homemade fries!
Let's face something right off the bat. French fries are really not a very good food to eat from a health standpoint. But, just like potato chips, everyone including myself seems to be addicted to the potato. Addicted that is if said potato is boiled in oil, made into sticks or peeled thin and saturated with salt!

I wrote this shortly after stopping at a local McDonald's and buying an order of medium French fries for a cost of $2.09 that then came to $2.26 after taxes. Seriously? At 340 calories, 16 grams of fat and 44 grams of carbs, this is definitely not your standard serving of health food! (A rather expensive way to sledge hammer your heart too)!

So, rather than stop at a fast food emporium, I took a small potato, fried it in olive oil, added a DanO Dog and pigged out. Prep time was about seven minutes and the total cost was under half a buck! I also suspected that this method wasn't all that bad for me!

The two for one deal sucks! For some!

It's long been a practice of fast food companies like McDonald's to offer the 2 for one meal deals whereby you pay for one an get a second like item for free!

The problem I have with that is that it plays to a limited segment of the population. Specifically, to tow friends, a mom and her one kid or some such similar combination. It does nothing for the single diner other than act as an insult. I'd even go as far as to state that this is a form of prejudice in that it helps one segment of the general population while penalizing the another. 

Now, I'm not picking on just McDonald's as other venues has played the same card from time to time.... 

Saturday, May 19, 2018

What's missing at local eateries? A good cheap hot dog!

DanO's Dog
After trying out the hot dog offerings from the various and sundry eateries that offered them from time to time, I came to a couple of realizations; 1) I didn't particularly care for the so-called 'all beef' dogs and 2) those fancy rolls they used in place of a plain old hot dog bun were not for me. Give me a Ballpark bun and a really cheap pork and chicken stuffed dog every time!

So, I wondered when any of the local venues I eat at might wise up and offer a dawg and fries at a very affordable price?

Pictured above is a 'contrived photo' that shows a DanO Dog I had made (cost .33 cents) and a batch of fries ($2.26) from McDonald's. The condiments I used were a simple mix of mustard, relish, and chopped hot peppers and onion in about equal proportions. The end result was a dog with a slight kick!

Now, to the best of my memory, only a couple of locations have offered this sort of fair over the years; Sonic (which has since discontinued the Chicago dog) and the Frosted Mug. Both charge about five to six dollars for the combo. A price point I felt was a bit on the high side. By using the cheapo bun and dogs, I would think that could be chopped down to about $2.00 or so... Just a thought. In the meantime, I've contented myself with making my own meal for about half a buck!

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Random Thoughts for May 2018!

Are area restaurants understaffed?

Forsyth MO – It may be hard to believe, but local restaurants sometimes get very busy. The problem is that at other times, they can be very slow. As a result, some venues may appear to be understaffed. A situation that can result in longer than usual wait times.

That was the situation, when I stopped for breakfast at an eatery, where I normally get lightening fast service. It took my order a lot longer than normal and to add insult to the situation, I had chosen a booth next to an open window. As I had no jacket, I was close to freezing the entire time, not to mention having to eat my food as fast as possible before it too was ice cold.

I took away two lessons from this experience; 1) pick only off hours to go eat and 2) make sure that the booth I picked did not have a freezing gale blowing through it.

Amnesty International, a total crud group!

Let's not mince words here, the group of nut jobs and insane lawyers that form immigrant caravans every year, just so that illegals can gain entry to the US, are terrorists in my book. Pure and simple. They are out to destroy national borders and to thereby wreck civilized societies. People who are not unlike ISIS, only they don't burn people. My thinking is to go ahead and to label them as terrorist outlaws and to place a nice bounty on their heads. You know dead or alive, and preferably the former.

Iran lies?

I wish you could see the complete shock on my face! It seems that Iran has been lying to the world for years concerning its nuclear ambitions. As a matter of fact, recent intel has uncovered the fact that if an Iranian official is flapping his gums, he is also likely lying his balls off. Turns out that now, even by following the letter of the agreement, these Islamic nut jobs can have not one, but an entire nuclear arsenal ready to launch in just a couple of years! Swell... Good job Obama you A-hole!