I’m now halfway through this roto. Seems like a good time to look back over the myriad notes and photos in my iPod and try to cobble together a blog post. This post won’t have the usual philosophical depth and far-reaching social impact you’ve come to expect; it’s simply some food commentary along with insignificant shit I found amusing, demusing or bemusing…like this water bottle ->
Ha ha ha…look! It’s leaning but not falling over!
I gotta get the fuck outta here.
Given the line ups at the Cambridge and Niagara recently and the Lux dinners being a repeat of our Northline lunches, D and I have been eating at the Monti a lot. After a couple of good chicken curry meals there, we figured we had a reliable “go to” meal akin to the fish and chips at the Cambridge and we sorta do…
A few nights ago, seeing nothing on the Monti main line that didn’t induce mild nausea on sight, I wandered over to the curry line with D close on my heels. I glanced at the tray and excitedly called “Chicken Curry” back to D. As I carried my heaping plate over to the dessert bar, D came up behind me and muttered “It’s fucking fish”. Ugh…my experiences with fish curry at the Far East had all ended in taste bud curdling horror. We both dejectedly sat down and I took a tentative bite. Much to my surprise, it was pretty goddamn good. While the fish in the curry at the Far East was a mushy mess with a flavour reminiscent of the scent of carp decomposing on the shore of Lake Erie circa 1972, this stuff was firm, meaty and unrotten tasting. A nice accidental surprise.
The next night, we thought “It’ll be chicken curry, for sure!” Alas, it was not to be. It was vegetable curry which basically means its the same as chicken curry but without the chicken, i.e. it’s fucking curry sauce. So no. I didn’t get it. If you’re a vegetarian, I highly recommend it because you’re used to eating shit that doesn’t taste good.
The next time we were there, it was beef curry. I didn’t try it because there was something unvile on the main line and I wasn’t in a curry mood. But D and I wondered, since the curry lines are seemingly intended to cater to the tastes of the many Indian workers here, “What the fuck?”. Aren’t most Indians Hindu? I don’t know much about Hinduism but I thought Hindus couldn’t eat beef without, like, going to hell or having to clean up after that elephant god or some shit. “If Indians invented curry, how can beef curry even exist?” D pondered aloud.
Finally, a couple of days ago, it was chicken curry night again. Unfortunately, it was made with boneless chicken…and, apparently, the rules apply to curried chicken. While it had a whole lot more meat in it, it was kinda dried out and just didn’t taste as good. It’s well worth the risk of the occasional chicken ass to only choose the Monti’s chicken curry when it’s on the bone.
One night, after a good Monti chicken curry, D mentioned that “curry is good for you. It protects against some disease or other.” “Well, I doubt it’s cholera.. I bet if you overlaid a map of the top curry eating areas with one showing cholera prevalence you’d have a pretty close match”. “Ok, it’s not cholera…or TB for that matter.” “Hell, maybe curry causes cholera”. D and I talk science a lot.
Overall, the curry at the Monti is the best I’ve had in KAF. I know, I know, some of you will insist you know better and that the Cambridge or Far East has better curry. Well, you’re wrong.
My resolve to give up desserts succumbed to the siren’s song of a delightful sugary mistress…the Monti’s cookies and cream cake.
If cookies and cream cake is the beautiful seductress at the end of the bar, the Monti’s pear crumble is her shy but attractive friend who’s busy holding the dried out pound cake’s hair.
D went through the Monti’s short order line the other day to get chicken tenders. DFAC Server Guy put only 3 on D’s plate while the large American army man behind him was given a grossly heaping plateful. D can only figure that DSG found the giant Yank’s barely coherent demand for “Chin tenda” somewhat more intimidating than D’s properly articulated “Some chicken tenders, please.”
Last week, I erroneously told D that there were chin tendas on the short order line only to find out they were those giant breaded wings from mutant chickens. “Oh well, how bad can they be?”, I naively thought. Well, let’s just say I now consider KFC to be a heartsmart choice. D was lucky, some of the grease from his wings pooled on his plate. The grease from mine, however, has taken up permanent residence in my aorta.
And hey, why don’t Monti and IH offer extra napkins? That little toilet paper like thing in with the cutlery doesn’t cut it when you’re eatin’ Crisco-oozing chicken wings or nibbling the meat from a chicken ass. The other DFACS have stacks of extra napkins. Oh yeah…and put some fucking salt and pepper on the tables. Jeez.
Monti’s orange and almond carrots are delish.
Cambridge seems to have mastered the fish and chips. They’ve been perfect the last few times I’ve had them. I just wish the management would maybe take a hint from the fact that almost no one is choosing the main line meals while the chippy line up gets longer everyday. Either improve the main line offerings or just give up and turn the whole fucking place into one giant chippy, Cambridge.
One time, I got an iced tea from a Tim Horton’s drive-thru at home. My long suffering wife was driving. As I took my first sip I exclaimed “Joanie, turn around”. “What’s wrong?”, she sighed. “There’s no fucking ice in this tea and it’s fucking warm”. “Is it really worth complaining about?” “Yes”. She parked and I stormed into the joint. “Excuse me, but this iced tea is warm and has no ice in it”. “Yeah, the ice machine is broken”, I was belatedly informed by the dead-eyed clerk. “Do you know why they call it iced tea?” I inquired only to be met with silence and another dead-eyed stare. “You know, when people order iced tea you should probably inform that you have no ice and intend to serve them a room temperature beverage”. “You want a new one?” “Do you have any ice?” “No.” “Just give me my money back”. But I digress.
Tonight they upped their iced tea game even more by offering both Lemon Iced Tea and Iced Tea. I got a glass of each and was fucking amazed to discover that they were, indeed, two different types of iced tea.
D had the Pork Adobe for lunch at the Northline. While the colour was reminiscent of the American southwest, D could only “barely taste the sun-baked clay bricks”.
Random Umbrage Generator
Hey Cambridge, nobody fucking likes Arabic ketchup, not even Arabs. And I hate it even more than most. Surprising given my sanguine temperament, I know. But the consistency annoys me. The colour annoys me. The taste annoys me. The squiggly writing annoys me. But above all, the utter impossibility of opening it without using one’s teeth, annoys me. The Heinz packet and even that weird German tubular packaging you had, could be torn open with no mess. I’m sick of having to put up with shitty, weird looking ketchup dribbling down my chin just because I want to make your cottage pie less cottage pie-y.
Speaking of Arabic, D was showing off his skill at this rather difficult language just the other day. He pointed out that Zero in Arabic is spelled “9 Shopping Cart j” . I did not know that.
COMKAF could easily solve the DFAC line up problem by making use of the DFAC-o-matic mandatory. With it’s default settings, this awesome technological wonder would send approximately the same number of people to each DFAC. I’ve heard rumours that COMKAF himself reads this blog. If so, I look forward to the imminent release of the COMKAF dining selection SOP, sir! I’m sure your staff officers will be able to keep it to around only 30 pages and not involve any more than 2 or 3 forms requiring 6 or 7 signatures each.
My Belgian nut-sorting nemesis apparently has an American counterpart who frequents the Far East for breakfast. R’s Significant Other, henceforth to be known as RSO, says that this guy slowly picks out only the orange melon from the fruit salad every fucking morning. I haven’t even seen him..but I hate him.
The amount of diesel we can get for our vehicles is pretty restricted right now. I wouldn’t have a real problem with this given the whole war thing and all if I hadn’t seen a giant running diesel generator sitting in our parking lot with nary one wire taking the resultant electricity anywhere. I suspect someone told a logistics manager that generators are highly efficient when there’s no load on them.
So, I’m listening to BFBS the other day and they’re giving the weather for the various places UK military folks are based. It went something like this “London, 23 and cloudy, Akrotiri is partly cloudy and 32, Paderborn 20 with rain while Canada is 27 and sunny”. Ok, look, BFBS weather dude, just because you live on a postage stamp sized island doesn’t mean everyone else does. Believe it or not, Canadian weather actually varies across its 6 time zones and 9,984,670 square fucking kilometers. Sheesh.
I saw a couple of guys in a US navy blue camo uniform in the Monti a couple of days ago. I’d never seen this before…the fishheads around here were usually in a standard green/tan outfit. I gotta tell ya, Popeye, that blue shit looks kinda ridiculous. I figured you felt silly enough so I didn’t take a picture of ya but I found one on the web which rendered moot D’s observation that “You shouldn’t wash your jeans with your uniform”. I mean, really, is the blue to help you hide when you’re in the water? Because I figger that, if you’re in the navy and you find yourself in the water, you kinda want to be found at that point. I don’t get it. I really don’t.
A co-worker saw a US army guy put a full 20 dispenser shots of sugar into a 1/2 cup of coffee. Just thought you ought to know.
Talk of tattoos came up during lunch the other day. I, as I am wont to do, drew the obvious parallel between tattoos, piercings, lip plates and neck rings. R, having several tattoos, spoke eloquently about them while A and I did delightful imitations of Surma tribeswomen. D then wistfully expressed his desire for some ink, “I’d like to get a tattoo that really means something to me…but nothing means anything to me”.
AFN’s back on the air after it’s inexplicable disappearance. Pretty cool that they played April Wine, Heart and BTO back to back today. April Wine and BTO are 100% Canadian while Heart, although made up of Americans, was formed and got their start in Vancouver. Kinda makes up for Dion and Beiber.
As we were carrying our trays to the
wind tunnel trash receptacles at the Monti a couple of nights ago, there was an Indian guy waiting his turn to get through the door. I was a good 6 feet back and it was obviously his turn to go through but he beckoned me forward “After you, after you, sir”. This odd deference that the TCNs automatically accord westerners offends my egalitarian leanings and his refusal to properly take his turn in line offends my very Canadianness….we Canadians fucking rock at lining up. We’re orderly, no one butts in, we all take our turn when it is our turn with the appropriate number of “excuse me”s and “I’m sorry”s (4 and 7) during the process. When we got into the parking lot, I told D “Goddamn it! Did you see that guy? It was clearly his turn but he made me go ahead of him. It disturbs my sense of order.” “Yeah, well, if the guy had gone ahead of you, he probably would have fumbled with his tray for 2 seconds as he dumped it and that would have pissed you off too. He was damned if he did, damned if he didn’t”. “Shut up.”
The Inner Sanctum
You ever wonder what it’s like inside that VIP room at the Lux? Yeah, me too. Oddly, despite my rakish good looks and incredibly important position as the KAF
food critic, I’ve never been invited in there. Luckily, I have a mole who, despite not being all that and a bag of chips, somehow gets invited to the Illuminati’s VIP dinners. Sure they get to use real metal utensils and plates made out of whatever that stuff is that plates that aren’t made of paper are made of…but the food looks like the same shit they’re serving us. So fine, VIPs, don’t invite me. I don’t care. I’m so over it. I’m quite content eating with the great unwashed masses. I don’t need you. You’re nothing to me. I like paper plates. Plastic knives cut just fine. The screech of scraping chairs and drone of inane chatter are like tonic to my soul.
Time for the third quarter.
“This ain’t a football game. We do this every day.” – Earl Weaver