“How much hairspray does it take to make a McDonald’s Big Mac look edible?”
Our fellow travellers and tasters on our Culinary Tour of Istanbul were the famed food photographers Nancy and Chris Cassidy. Among other projects, they do nearly all of the mouthwatering photography for the Rick Bayless empire. It’s unlikely that they have ever photographed a Big Mac, but we couldn’t resist asking. For the first and possibly only time in our lives, we were sitting across from people who could answer this time-honored question.
Chris shook his head, clearly indicating that our question was a stupid one. “You can’t do that any more,” he said. “There are still tricks you can use, but everything in the photograph has to be part of the actual dish.”
We would’ve been less shocked if he had told us that the process involved medical waste extruded through a 3D printer. The last thing we expected to learn on our trip was that the fast food pictured in advertisements contained even a small percentage of actual food.
Andrea is the cook in our house. Steven is in charge of dishes. In most households this would be an unfair division of labor. In our household, it balances out perfectly because when Andrea cooks she uses every pan, dish and utensil in the kitchen. Andrea cooks like our four-year-old nephew eats. It’s a joyous, full-body experience. Nothing is left untouched. The aftermath looks like the Gulf Coast in the wake of Hurricane Katrina.
We are not to be trusted. We will lie to you. We will tell you that your outfit matches if we think you are too fragile to hear otherwise. We will tell you how much we enjoyed dinner with your new boyfriend. If we are performing a card trick, we will look you square in the eye and tell you that your card is “lost in the deck,” even though we know exactly where to find it.
We will not, however, lie to you when it matters. You will never hear us say, “You’re guaranteed to double your money” or “To us, that lump looks harmless.” Nor will we try to convince you that cocktails are just as enjoyable under the No Mixer rule. The sad truth is that most cocktails are now off limits.
Our friend’s seven-year-old daughter refuses to draw heads on her figures. Give her a piece of paper and set of markers and she will create a colorful world of birds, clouds, trees, flowers and headless bodies dressed in elaborate costumes. The last step in her creative process is to sketch a teapot onto each set of empty shoulders.
“Have you ever heard of the artist Magritte?” Steven asked. She shook her head no. “I love your picture,” Steven added. “But I have to ask, why is everyone in your drawing half human and half tea service?
“I’m no good at faces,” she answered, “but I’m great at teapots.”
We took Drink Your Carbs to the bottom of the world to test it in one of the harshest environments on Earth.
While planning our expedition, we imagined ourselves as modern day Shackletons surviving off our wits, seal blubber and cask strength whiskey. It turns out that this lifestyle is now prohibited under the Antarctic Treaty. These days, visiting is more like being transported into an episode of the Love Boat in which Puerto Vallarta has been replaced by a frozen continent. In our case, the role of Captain Stubing was played by a stereotypically gruff, but caring, former Russian naval commander. Charo was played by a balding Canadian named Scott.
In other words, instead of hauling a wooden sledge through chest-deep snow, we did our trekking from a balcony suite on the Ocean Diamond, a Quark Expeditions luxury ship.
According to Forbes Magazine, only 8% of Americans achieve the goals set in their New Years resolutions. Every one else fails, bombs, flops, nosedives or otherwise falls short of their own expectations. Forbes presents this as bad news.
The defining characteristic of DYC in 2013 was research. We decided that it was finally time to channel our inner Woodward and Bernstein and head into the library to see what we might uncover. It was a risky move. It was possible that evidence would force us to scrap the entire DYC project.
Lucky for all of us, the opposite proved true. We stared into the face of cold hard data and came away fully convinced that alcohol is not an obstacle to either weight loss or exercise. DYC may have started as a joke, but we inadvertently stumbled onto a system that works.
Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house / Not a creature was stirring, except for Santa who trying to choke down his billionth cookie of the evening.
In our experience, the over-21 set tends to be Santa skeptical. Some people get hung up on the impracticality of delivering presents to the roughly 2.2 billion Christians worldwide. Others concern themselves with the physics of flying reindeer or the difficulty of stuffing a morbidly obese man down the narrow flue of a modern chimney. At Drink Your Carbs, our skepticism springs from the sheer volume of cookies left on hearths that, for politeness reasons, Santa is required to consume.