Thursday, February 26, 2009

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Tofutti time

I’ve been without a cell phone for over a week now. Admittedly, this one didn’t go out quite as epically as the last. My previous phone was equipped with some sort of voice recognition software and would attempt to pronounce the names of everyone on my contacts list. In its final death throws, the poor thing attempted to elicit help from several of my dearest friends by calling out to them alphabetically, an effort which was doomed to failure, considering that these names came out in what amounted to a series of high-tech burps. It was a very HAL moment.

But I’ve now grown acclimated to life without the burden of technology. Initially I was filled with paranoia. What if someone wanted to call to say “hey” ? But now I am at peace with nature and myself. After only three days, I began to commune with the moldy granola particles scattered on my floor. Currently I am experimenting with telepathy as a more environmentally sustainable way to keep in touch with friends and loved ones.

Now, time for some trivia…
Let’s go back in time to Depression era America. Times are rough, but through all hardship, love prevails as a new hero emerges: Henry Ford, Soybean Pioneer!

Yes indeed, Mr. Ford was in the thralls of a passion, a passion he wanted to share with the world- his joy for soy. He became so enamored with the humble legume that between 1932 and 1933 the Ford Motor Company spent approximately $1,250,000 on soybean research. By 1935, every Ford car had soy involved in its manufacture. Soybean oil was used to paint automobiles as well as fluid for shock absorbers. Ford scientists even developed a fiber from soy protein which was wool-like and very soft and Ford found himself mighty cozy in his suit made entirely from soybeans. So smitten was he that he threw dinner parties with nothing but soybean based foods on the menu.
One such menu included all of the following items:

* Tomato juice seasoned with soy sauce
* Celery stuffed with soybean cheese
* Puree of soybean
* Salted soybean
* Soybean crackers
* Soybean croquettes with tomato sauce
* Buttered green soybeans
* Pineapple ring with soybean cheese and soybean dressing
* Soybean bread with soybean butter
* Apple pie with soy crust
* Cocoa with soymilk
* Assorted soybean cookies, cakes, and candies
* Roasted soybean coffee
* Soymilk ice cream

Ford also funded the development of a soybean biscuit, which both Ford and white rats apparently liked, but was, as one of Ford's secretaries described it with unabashed candor, "the vilest thing ever put into human mouths."

But most of all, Ford loved soymilk. He was constantly inviting his friends and research assistants over to sample it, stopping just shy of using brute for to get them to acquiesce. The man certainly had an indomitable spirit. You can’t help but admire his take-no-prisoners attitude.

Which reminds me… Tofutti Break!

Sunday, February 22, 2009


Lately I’ve come to see all of the mundane little mishaps of my day to day existence in terms of grand totalizing metaphors for my life. The results are not particularly poetic and the comparisons are pretty awkward to begin with. For example, the electric toothbrush I received from my mom for Christmas crapped out on me after about a month of faithful service. I had long since thrown away my man-powered toothbrush and even found myself reflecting on it as old-fashioned and quaint, my brushing routine irrevocably modified. Too cheap or too lazy to replace the batteries, I now find myself (and it’s been well over a month) holding the clunky handled gadget, wistfully pushing the button down a couple of times and thinking well of course this was bound to happen to ME, as if I were the only person to ever encounter a finite energy source.

On Friday I set the fire alarm off for the entire student apartment complex that I live in. At 5 AM. Yup Jerky McAsshole strikes again. I was writing a paper and had decided to make myself a little snack. All I had was spinach, so I put that on the stove with a little bit of water and promptly forgot about it, seeing as I was totally absorbed in writing a paper and all. Fifteen minutes later I heard that familiar sound which in years past may have indicated “wake up, you’re on fire” but now only means that someone is steaming broccoli somewhere within a five mile radius.

Everyone had the evacuate the building and the fire brigade arrived within five minutes, ready to hose down the son of a bitch who woke them up before dawn for no goddamn reason. Shivering in the cold (60 degrees is downright frigid for a retirement town). I watched the spectacle unfold, lit up a cigarette and kept my mouth shut.

It took 30 minutes to shut off the alarm. My guilt only increased in the morning when I heard 5 or 6 different people gripping on their cell phones about it. I hoped that none of my roommates would rat me out (there has to be some sort of implicit loyalty pact…) and told myself that I was going to bake cookies for everyone in the building (or at least enough for my roommates , as a bribe to keep everything hush-hush). I planned on attatching little notes saying “sorry to cause alarm <3 Anna.” They would have to forgive men then: a pun, so pathetic and so heartfelt was sure to endear me to all the potential haters and I could clear my conscience once and for all. But by the time I got out of class, I was so tired from pulling an all-nighter that I just collapsed on my bed and fell asleep. That’s me: my good intentions might actually mean something if I wasn’t so tired all the time.

As for the rest of the weekend… I scaled a barbed wire fence and ended up in a retirement enclave.