Saturday, May 22, 2010

Belated Mother's Day Post

Yeah I know it was a while back but since I rarely blog more than once a month everyone should just be thankful, not pissed that it took me a couple of weeks to blog about Mother's Day.

Mother's Day is the, pardon the expression, Mother of all the made up Holidays - OK Valentines may be worse but Mother's Day is right up there. It's a day which piles guilt on top of expectation and then tops it with more guilt just to make sure . I mean c'mon I know we all have, or had, Mothers and yes motherhood may be the purest expression of love we can find but really: Does that mean everyone has to go for brunch on the same day ?

Back in the pre-child days there was no single day as a server that I dreaded more than Mother's Day, wave upon wave of tables with two or three generations all dutifully feteing Mom when for the most part Mom would probably much rather have been at home in the back yard with a martini in hand . Father's Day has it right, buy Dad a golf shirt, throw some beef on the grill and call it special, but Mother's Day has just gone over the top .

Fortunately for me the server industry is skewed both young and irresponsible so I am generally the only father working and as such the only one with immediate "Mother's Day" responsibilities, which mean's I get the day off . Also fortunately for me wife understands the industry I work in and has no desire to be "part of the problem" . Our "special day" was stress free and, according to wife, "A lovely Mother's Day".

We arose a little late, I made breakfast and we hung out a bit and then whisked daughter away for a couple of hours in the early afternoon to allow wife to nap. A bit of gardening was followed by wife's chosen meal: Burgers and Caesar Salad . It was a lovely spring day so we dusted off the Weber and grilled the burgers with cheddar and provolone cheeses.

Generally wife prepares burgers in our house but I took care of them for Mother's Day, my recipe for burgers is simple: get the best meat you can and don't screw it up. In this case the local IGA were featuring Ground Prime Rib so that's what I used, add salt, pepper, minced shallot, dry mustard powder, grated Romano and a splash of Worcestershire and handle very little . Get your grill hot and then grill each 6 oz. patty for 3 minutes on each side then add the cheese and grill one more minute with the hood down to melt the cheese. The results were wonderful moist, meaty burgers still pink in the middle with a lovely char on the outside, topped with Keen's hot mustard, mayo and fried onions.

The wine was my favorite burger wine California Zinfandel . While my fave it is not something I generally drink with burgers because decent Zinfandel starts at around $17-20 in our market and I generally can't justify that with burgers but it was a special day so I cracked a bottle of Ravenswood Sonoma County "Old Vines" Zinfandel, 2005 which was delicious with tons of black fruits (blackberry, cherry and raspberry) in the mouth along with a touch of mocha and black pepper . I really love good Zinfandel, or even decent Zinfandel, but at $25 it's not everyday burger wine.

The most consistent Zin, for the money, in the BC market is probably Rosenblum Cellars Vintner's Cuvee, CSPC#785345 $18.95, Rosenblum make 18 different bottlings of Zinfandel from general appelation wines like Vintners Cuvee to single vineyard wines so any time you see their name on a bottle of Zinfandel you can take it for a guarantee of quality. If you can't afford $20 BBQ wines and like the Zinfandel profile I would recommend looking at any number of Argentinean Malbecs or the excellent value Colonia las Liebres, Bonarda, CSPC#369066, $12.95 which I reviewed a long time ago and is still a consistent pleaser with any red meat off the grill .

Monday, May 17, 2010

Best Nickname for Rabid Sports Fans

First off let me preface this with the statement that I admire dedication in sports fans, I hate bandwagon jumpers .

I think when you pick a team you should stick with them through thick and thin, that you should have an unhealthy dose of optimism and bravado regarding "your team".

I don't see anything wrong with calling actions, or accomplishments, of your team as things "we did" or in asserting that "We really need a top 6 forward", these are acceptable statements.

There are certain groups of sports fans who are more obnoxious than others for various reasons . I think Canucks fans are pathetic for their constant whining and refusal to accept that maybe, just maybe, they haven't won a cup because they aren't good enough rather than some intricate plot devised by the NHL head office and the league's officiating crew.

Leafs fans, of which I am one, are obnoxious because it's a bit silly to refer to a franchise that hasn't won anything in 43 years as "a premier franchise" (unless you hold stock in MLSE), Raiders fans/Cowboys fans are obnoxious and Habs fans used to be before Les Canadiens stopped being relevant at which point their fans just became cute and quaint - sort of like Hobbits .

In fact all fans, by nature, are a bit tiresome but the worst example of fandom are those in "RedSox Nation" and by extension fans of the Bruins/Patriots/Celtics. For some reason the fans of Boston area teams feel a sense of entitlement that confuses me, the Bruins haven't won since 1972 (and just became the 3rd team in NHL history to blow a 3-0 series lead), the RedSox went 86 freakin' years between titles, the Patriots are cheaters and the Celtics are just like every other NBA franchise - irrelevant .

And yet still the fans of the New England teams will wax eloquent for hours on end about the glories of all things Bostonian .

Recently I discovered the perfect terminology for these members of the mythical "Nation", since Boston is located in the state of Massachusetts the perfect name is: