Lean Cuisine

Let’s face it…all Lean Cuisines, no matter the “flavor”, all smell the same cooking in the microwave.  No matter where you are… at home or in the office you can identify from one wiff, that it is indeed a Lean Cuisine.  It doesn’t matter what you’re cooking, the classic French Bread Frozen Pizza or the Butternut Squash Ravioli, it all smells the same. No run of the mill low cal frozen dish here…but the premier, crème de la crème of frozen diet letdowns:  Lean Cuisine.  Now, don’t get me wrong, I love Lean Cuisine.  I eat it all the time.  I’ve just decided that it is so much better when I add my own little twist.  And then I’m still eating well, because it’s a Lean Cuisine!  But, it tastes much better thanks to all the fattening, heavenly crap that I put on top.

I’ll get on to my killer recipe in a skinny minute, but I must preface it by saying Lean Cuisine is my favorite of all the “table for one” frozen dishes.  I’m sure I’ve tried them all.  Nothing says depression, more than a single serving of bland, tasteless diet frozen food.  They make it look so delicious on the box, golden brown, on a beautiful plate complete with parsley garnish.  You follow the instructions thoroughly in feverish anticipation of that beautiful dish that will also make you skinny.

First, remove frozen dinner from box.  Done.  Next, cut one slit about 2 inches long in the plastic film covering frozen loneliness dinner to vent.  (This part is tricky because I’m never sure if my slit is exactly 2 inches- too small? Too long? Maybe this is what it feels like to be a guy?). Step 2 Done.  Step 3: Microwave entrée for 3.5 minutes at 25%. (Shit, how the hell am I supposed to program the fucking Microwave for 25%??  Screw it, I’ll just combine it with Step 4). Step 4: Rotate frozen loneliness dish.  Wear protective hand wear as the gourmet delight may be hot.  Continue microwaving on 2 minutes. (Okay- so that combined with Step 3 should equal about 5 minutes on high?). Step 3 & 4 Done.  Step 5: Remove Film. Stir so-called vegetables. Return to microwave on high for 2 minutes.  Let stand in microwave for one minute after cooking. Enjoy!

Jesus Christ, that is a lot of instructions!  I might as well be cooking if I have to do all this rotating and film removing and shit.  The whole “remove from box” part- is why I love America.  We are so dumb, you have to tell us to take the crap we’re going to nuke out of the flipping box.  I also love America for being the home of the free and the brave, the crazy, the sane, the rich, the poor, the disenfranchised, the franchised, reality television, public television,  hot dogs and hamburgers, IROC Zs, all the Back to the Future movies and Chevy Chase.  I’m sure there’s more, but that sentence had long past the run-on statute of limitations. Oh and I’m writing about Lean Cuisine.  Ok- next blog entry will be about zesting up your Memorial Day festivity- which you’ll probably be doing by yourself- with an all American tribute Lean Cuisine Recipe!

So you’re really starting to wonder about the Lean Cuisine recipe du jour?  It’s really quite simple.  And genius is born from stupidity.  Is that a quote from someone?  If it isn’t, it should be.  I’m not really sure if it’s a compliment or an insult- but it does sound profound.  Anyhoo, I learned all my cooking secrets from no one else than dear, old Mom.  To say she was a whiz in the kitchen is like saying Stephen Hawking is an awesome figure skater.  Some people hate “diet” food, but that’s the only kind of food she served- and if it could just be microwaved or heated up as is- all the better.

Mom was always on a diet- probably is now- I don’t know.  I try not to get that “engaged” on the phone.  She may think we’re pals and want to talk every day.  As it is, I have her convinced that we have to rush the conversation since its, “long distance and all”.

But I digress, we’re here for cooking tips!  So you too can take your depressing dish of microwavable loneliness and jazz it up! One of my personal favorites: Santa Fe Style Rice and Beans by none other than Lean Cuisine.  Apart from not resembling anything on the box and tasting a lot like the actual box, the best thing I could say is the low calorie count was right.  But, really, how do I know it’s really right?  Can I test that?  Aren’t we just using the honor system and hoping they tell us the truth?  Shit, we may be on to a major conspiracy by frozen depression delights to keep us ensnared in their wicked web of frozen diet cuisine addiction.

Alright- here goes.  Just to recap, the Santa Fe Style Rice and Beans- follow all microwaving instructions thoroughly as demonstrated previously.  Gaze upon the pile of mush that comes out in the half melted cooking container and take in all its glory.  Because, gurl, it is about to get a whole lot better!  Step 1: Walk to the refrigerator. Step 2: Retrieve Sour Cream. Step 3: Get a big spoon. Step 4:  Take a huge, spoonful of that creamy goodness and plop it right in the middle of that bland, cardboard tasting so called food.  Step 5:  Stir that shit up and throw some s&p in already.  Step 6: Truly enjoy because when someone asks what you had for lunch you can honestly tell them you ate a Lean Cuisine. And then act all passive aggressive, high and mighty about how you’re sticking to a diet.  Recipe: Complete!

I’ve never seen Top Gun

I’ve never seen Top Gun.  I know…its completely unbelievable that any American in my generation has not seen this cinematic “masterpiece”, but its true.  And I never want to see it and you can’t make me.  Yes, I’ve seen bits and pieces.  And that is all I need to see to know that I don’t want to waste part of my life sitting through another Tom Cruise crapfest.

I can hear you gasping in shock that I just said “Tom Cruise crapfest”.  But its true.  In my humble opinion, (which I know doesn’t count for shit) he is the most overrated, overpaid, untalented actor of our generation.  Whenever I tell someone that I don’t like Tom Cruise, they look at me in disbelief; as if I’ve just said the world is flat and unicorns are real and can shoot lucky charms out of their asses.  Look, its not like I’m being racist or antisemitic or hurting anyone (except maybe Tom Cruise), I just don’t find him attractive in the slightest and the mere sight of him makes me want to vomit.

I recently discussed my dislike for America’s sweetheart with a friend of mine and he asked, “you didn’t like Risky Business?”  Well, I guess there is an exception to the rule.  But that was also the first Rated R movie, I’d ever seen and it had boobies and whores in it and I was only like 8 years old, so yeah, I liked it.  I haven’t seen it in 30 years- so if I watched it today, my opinion might change.  But then again, who doesn’t enjoy a movie with boobies and whores?  And why was I watching such a racy movie at 8?  Because my Dad was in charge, he had the Betamax and was drunk all the time- so we pretty much got to choose whatever movie we wanted. Again, no sympathy for drunk dad stuff here- its okay- really.  I got to watch rated R movies at 8 and then write meaningless blogs about them 30 years later…so, thanks Dad.

To be fair, I’ve tried to weigh out all of the Tom Cruise movies I’ve seen and figure out if there is one that stands out.  The only one that comes to mind is The Outsiders.  If you haven’t seen it, I highly recommend you run to your nearest Erol’s video (oh, they’re out of business), Hollywood Video- oops them too, how about Blockbuster?  They at least still have those little kiosks- okay their shit kiosks are nearly invisible compared to Redbox- oh who are we kidding you can probably just find it on Netflix.  That’s what I hear all the young knickerbockers are using today.  Everyone keeps telling me, “oh its so easy, you can just hook it up through the Wii”.  I can’t fucking figure that shit out.  Anyone who wants to come over and achieve this “simple” task for me is welcome to…but my life is busy writing extremely important blog entries about how I dislike Tom Cruise- so I really don’t have time.

Anyhoo, back to The Outsiders.  This truly is a cinematic masterpiece about gangs in the 50’s or 60’s or I don’t know sometime back then when there were greasers, gangs and switchblades- sort of like West Side Story but way tougher- and no dancing or musical numbers….alright its really nothing like West Side Story- but still really good.  The reason I think this is my favorite Tom Cruise movie is because most people can’t even remember that he was in it- because he was a minor character and completely sucked balls.

The real stars of the movie were the teen heartthrobs, Ralph Macchio and C. Thomas Howell.  You all know good ol’ Ralph from Karate Kid.  But, his role as Johnny in The Outsiders is truly one of his finest and most memorable performances.  I’ll never forget him laying face down on the table in the hospital after being mortally burned saving kids from a house fire.  I decided then and there, that I would never be brave enough to rescue anyone, kids, dogs, cats, the pope…okay, maybe my own kids…from a burning house- but that’s it!  C. Thomas Howell played Ponyboy.  Why he had to have “C” in front of his name, I’ll never know.  Was there another famous actor that we were supposed to get him confused with?  If so, he certainly was not featured in the pages of Tiger Beat or Teen Beat or any other serious piece of journalism that ended in the word Beat.

Speaking of C. Thomas Howell, you may also remember him from the blockbuster hit Soul Man, quite possibly one of the most racist movies of the 80’s.  I’d say of all time, but hey, let’s not forget all that shit that came before the civil rights movement, and the 70’s black exploitation films, so relatively speaking, it wasn’t that bad- but racist all the same.  The premise was that this rich white boy could not get into Harvard or some other Ivy league school- I really can’t remember because, again, its been like 30 years since I saw this shitfest.  Moving along, for some reason the only way he could get in was to pretend he was black.  I guess this was supposed to be an anti affirmative action movie?  Or maybe it was supposed to be the comedic version of Black Like Me?  I have no fucking clue what the writers, producers, directors….well anyone involved in this movie was thinking.  So, C.’s (I’m guessing that’s what all his friends call him for short- because C. Thomas is kind of a pain in the ass to say all the time), as I was saying C’s character literally paints his face and body a really poor shade of brown and puts on an afro wig that looks like it came straight from those pop-up Halloween stores.  Magically, everyone in the movie is completely fooled and thinks he is actually black.  As you can imagine, hilarity ensues by heightening black stereotypes about watermelon, pimps and fried chicken until young C. finds the error of his ways by falling in love with a black chick.  So then, all us white people who are watching the movie (because I think black people were smart enough to stay away from this racist shit flick- but I’m not sure- I’m not black, so I can’t really speak for an entire people) are supposed to realize the error of our ways and leave the theatre and embrace every black person we see and sing Kum ba yah or some shit.

Anyhoo, this post is is supposed to be about why I hate Tom Cruise and not why Soul Man is a racist movie.  So let’s get back on topic.  Honestly, I haven’t seen that many Tom Cruise films, but that’s because they usually involve race cars, or hanging off cliffs or some other stupid thing that I’m not interested in.  So I guess, its more of a personal type of dislike than one based on any kind of real facts.  Okay, I know, my whole argument sucks.  But, shit, this is America and if I don’t want to like someone, I’m allowed.  So all you Tom Cruise loving idiots can go suck it.

He really sealed the deal for me when he went after poor Brooke Shields.  This was about the same time he went completely nutso and was jumping on the couch on Oprah and squealing in delight like a 13 year old girl over his new love Katie whatever her name is.  So back to Brooke, she had written this self-help type book- I don’t know, again I haven’t read it.  I know you think I have lots of opinions about things I know nothing about.  But so do all those political pundits on Fox News and lots of dumb ass (sorry to my dumb ass friends that watch that “unbiased” shit) people listen to them and take them seriously, so there.

At any rate, Brooke’s book was about her struggle with postpartum depression.  I’ve always been fascinated with the word postpartum.  When you break it up it is post, part, um.  So is that like after you part with ’em?  Clearly, this term was thought up by a man.  I’ve had two babies and suffered serious “after you part ’em” depression, and I can tell you you don’t feel like you’re parting with ’em.  Its more like “you’re completely overwhelmed with ’em and don’t know what the fuck you’re doing and are crying every second of the day for no reason” depression.

Apparently, he suddenly became an expert on postpartum depression and thought Brooke was completely irresponsible for telling people she took anti-depressants to help herself overcome this shit hole and be a better mother.  According to Dr. Tom and his crazy ass science fiction religion (no offense to those of you that believe all that crap about space people and shit- I’m pretty much skeptical of all religions including my own) you’re supposed to just “think positive” and then everything will start coming up rainbows and kittens and crap.  Well, Tommy boy, I’ve tried all that “thinking positive shit” and no rainbows or kittens are popping up so you can hop on you’re little space ship and get the fuck out of here.

In conclusion (that’s the term my 5th grade teacher always taught us to use to wind up an essay), I know, my argument that he’s a bad actor based on the fact that I haven’t seen most of his movies is not very strong or even a little strong.  I’m willing to admit its more about how everyone seems to love him, he gets paid millions of dollars and is a crazy fucking lunatic who grates my nerves. But, hey, I’m entitled to my opinion.

And, I really would like to get on this Netflix thingamabob because the old Betamax has kind of been on the fritz.  But, even if I get Netflix, I’m still not watching Top Gun.