Hiatus

I officially have no free time, and any extra energy after working this much usually goes to my book, so I won’t be updating this for a while.

I have big plans for the Vicious Vegetarian, just not the time to execute them yet – expect to see big things come September!

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A New Mexican Journey, pt 1

I had an alternate title for this one, something along the lines of “Love Lorn is Love Worn is Love Lost”.

To explain this mathematically, I suppose it’d go something like this:

If X = love, then (x+lorn) + (x+worn) = x/0

Or something. Shit, I didn’t pay attention in school. But I can tell you this much: that’s all I’ll say on the matter, although it sure does feel as if I’ve divided by zero.

I decided at the beginning of this year I wanted to revisit my roots, reconnect with my past and somehow remember what I’d done, what I’d gone through – and most importantly, make contact with those closest to me back then. It was 8 months, but somehow the most intense 8 months of my life to date, culminating with the most intense experience of my life.

I’m not really sure where to begin here, so I guess I’ll start where most good stories do – at the beginning.

6 years ago I attended New Mexico School of Mining and Technology – although I use that word pretty loosely, since most of my time wasn’t spent in class, necessarily. I moved into a house that became affectionately referred to as the Black Hole, or P.O.T house (Punks of Tech, not related to weed) with 8 other men. In a 3 bedroom house.

With a stripper pole in the basement.

And one bathroom.

The shenanigans we got up to were SO EPIC they rather defy basic explanation. I’m actually writing a book about the adventure, so you’ll have to wait for that. Suffice it to say we even had nick names for each other, things like Scuba Steve, Punk Rock James, Vegan Phil, Crackhead Chris, Classic Joe or Dirty Joe to name a few. All with justified and hilarious stories.

So my trip began by arriving in Albuquerque with less than 2 hours sleep, only to get a room at one of the shittiest, dingiest, hooker killingest rooms i’d ever seen.

The actually filmed the ending to 'No Country for Old Men' here. And there's a moose head on the wall. Yeah.

We then went to dinner with the Carrick Twins, two of the most beautiful women I’ve ever met. And I’ve met a lot of beautiful women. Cue a nice wine bar with a cute cheese plate (nothing out of this world, but hey, they tried), some epic conversation, and them going to bed early since they actually cared about college and all that.

The next day was the one I’d been waiting for – a trip back to my old college town, Socorro New Mexico.

Now, to describe Socorro. Picture the shittiest little town you’ve ever driven through. Now, compound that shittiness with nothing to do where the highlight of the town is a single bar.

Actually quite spectacular inside

The largest thing is the campus – everything else is either running out of business or running on no business. Population of around 18,000, but fuck if I know where they’re hiding. To look at the place theres maybe 100 people. Anywhere.

Yup. Thats pretty much it.

Still, I love it. So many memories…put it this way. The house we lived in was featured in the local newspaper – we were SO FAMOUS the campus talked about us for years after we’d disbanded. Seriously.

I ran the door at parties wearing my baby blue blazer with a sledge hammer on my shoulder.

Yes, I used it.

Charged 5 bucks and made enough to pay rent and several other…incidentals. Truly spectacular, if you asked me. For Halloween one year I was a priest with a makeshift 3 foot erection I’d crafted from Vacuum Cleaner attachments, with a realistic tip.

Got some amazing pictures that have conveniently disappeared.

From there it was off to San Lorenzo canyon, where I’d once camped with some friends and drank some tea a Navajo friend had given us. Although I’d imagined that mountain lion to be fake, I was sorely mistaken, and we spent the better part of that night in my ’93 Jeep Grand Cherokee whilst my friend smoked imaginary cigarettes all night.

Sans Mountain Lions

The amazing rush of memories that flooded my impotent brain can’t be described – at several points, most especially while touring the campus again, it became painful, causing me to sit down as hundreds of adventures assaulted my psyche, like that one time a few friends shot each other with tranquilizer darts just because they could – was I involved? Maybe).

Still, this was important. Nay, critical, so that I  could write this book, and come to terms with who/what I was.

From there it was a 2 hour jaunt up to Santa Fe, where we got so fucking lost I nearly punched an infant and I’m not joking, then back down to ABQ for some serious binge drinking.

Oh, and for all you drinkers, stay the fuck away from New Mexico! Many bars close at 12 AM. On the flip side, you can smoke in some where at happy hour you can get pints of Stella for 2 bucks.

Still, we posted up at Gecko’s on Central and enjoyed some Black and Blues and Jameson neat.

Perfectly Poured.

Nice location too.

Short crawl back to the second dingy apartment.

You stay classy, Albuquerque. Note the size of the 'TV'

I’ll post the rest of my mis-adventures, and possibly regale you with a few more of the less risque stories, tomorrow.

AFK

Sorry folks, its super happy awesome Crunch Time here at Treyarch – and I won’t have the time (let alone the day off) to do any cooking. I’ll be doing updates as possible,  but in the meantime, I present some funny pics.

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA

I never trusted that honey bear

Stupid smug lil flowers...judging...waiting...

Just ask the guy in the floral sweater

Petulant Pan Fried Pot stickers

Its official. I fucking hate pot stickers.

Up until Wednesday they were my favorite appetizer – any chance I had, any quasi Chinese restaurant I’d go to, I’d order them. So it would follow that I’d enjoy cooking them, right?

No. Nononono. A thousand times no.

3 hours later, I’m pissed off, sweaty, and likely dehydrated thanks to all the salt I’d consumed.

APPARENTLY these are meant to be a group endeavor, not taken on by one man dead set on making as many pot stickers as he had filling of which he made WAY TOO MUCH.

I’ll add the recipe when I’m not so pissed. But I don’t recommend you make them, not at all, unless you’re some masochistic freak.

Reversing Entropy, A Simple Mind Fuck

So I recently read ‘The Last Question‘ by Isaac Asimov. Its a short story written in 1956 dealing with the concept of entropy and implying another justification for our existence – you can find the entirety of the text in the link above, I highly recommend you read it.

Ever since I’ve been plagued by this thought, this idea, that entropy seems to be the only true method to measure change, and consequently time.

Popularly speaking, there are two concepts of time, cyclical or linear, circle or straight line – in one interpretation this has all happened before, and will again, small variations on a theme, until we break free of the cycle. To the Hindu’s, this is reaching ‘Atman’ – call it what you will, I’m not interested in discussing religion. That’s a whole other discussion entirely.

Whether its a circle or a line, think about how you actually measure the passage of time…can it be done empirically? Perhaps. Given the absence of sensory input, how is one aware that time has passed? Firstly, this can only be done once the senses are regained. Following this, one evaluates their surroundings. If time has passed, the only way you’ll know is through the perception of CHANGE.

Now, Entropy.

“en·tro·py

//

(ntr-p)n. pl. en·tro·pies

1. Symbol S For a closed thermodynamic system, a quantitative measure of the amount of thermal energy not available to do work.
2. A measure of the disorder or randomness in a closed system.
3. A measure of the loss of information in a transmitted message.
4. The tendency for all matter and energy in the universe to evolve toward a state of inert uniformity.
5. Inevitable and steady deterioration of a system or society.”

The most important aspects of those definitions are 4 and 5, for my immediate purposes. Everything, no matter is form so long as it has one, is subject to entropy. The concept of something immune to entropy  equates to timelessness, an idea which further contributes to the theory that entropy defines time.
So take it one step further and analyze your own perceptions. Show your work.
Assumption: All knowledge is a result of sensory perception
Assumption: Extrasensory perception is a theoretical impossibility
Assumption: If it is perceived it is subjective.
Deduction: All knowledge is subjective
If we cannot know anything beyond a subjective sense, is this then the launch point for any further discussion? The acceptance of the absence of true knowledge should set you free, it would seem, to explain existence. Really, at this point, anything can be truth, since truth is what we make it, right?
then again, I leave you with this:
If everything is perceived, perception is subjective, then nothing is true, how can I make this statement?

Moving Forward, Or the Journey so Far

Started, I suppose, many years ago at El Coyote in downtown LA. Sitting at dinner, looking into her eyes, it was a pretty normal occurrence. Nothing out of the ordinary – once again, I was over analyzing my meal. Picking out ingredients that didn’t match the composition, discussing flavor profiles without the knowledge or language to articulately express myself, when she said it.

“You should cook.”

Often, when a significant other suggests something like that its “ok, sure honey, that sounds like a great idea”…and you blow the bitch off to return to the ‘real world’ where everything’s the same, comfortable.

Not so lucky this time.

A flippant statement changed my ever loving life! I still don’t truly think she knows the profound effect she had on me that odd evening in a kitschy Hollywood restaurant, with the dim lighting and jalapeno pepper Christmas lights.

Far from immediate, the change was gradual –

More TV, cooking at home, and then the leap into classes, headfirst into a previously unknown world.

That’s when things began to change.

Years passed and things changed. I  used to think that people didn’t change, who we were is who  we will be – and I proved myself wrong. Our lives separated and she went on to pursue her fresh dreams, and? good fucking riddance.

Onward, ever onward and forward but first down the light started to fade, and at the bottom of this self inflicted pit of despair I found light in a certain specific absence.

Started after a particularly vicious weekend in Vegas, the stories from which are still being told in hushed whispers, as if we speak of legend, I needed a detox, and a friend suggested not eating meat for a few days, to see how it felt. As you may have guessed, the results were immediate and incredible – I had found life anew! Something that had been so wrong with me was not corrected. FINALLY, I could say without doubt that I was who and where I was supposed to be.

Tough at first, going it alone in a carnivores world, but it was a challenge, something I enjoy. The experiments that followed helped prove me as a ‘chef’ – creating new and interesting dishes without meat of any sort, that were still delicious, filling, and best of all, not chock full of bizarre, nasty fake meats. My repertoire grew and grew, as did my limited expertise, until the proverbial levees broke, and the blog was born.

So here I am, in all my gritty glory, to share little pieces of me with the world.

I hope you’re strapped in – its going to be one helluva ride.

CHEESE, or Food Porn 101

Obsession.

To quote the equally depraved John Waters:

“Without obsession, life is nothing.”

On the other hand, Norman Mailer:

“Obsession is the single most wasteful human activity, because with an obsession you keep coming back and back and back to the same question and never get an answer”

Either way, its a word I use a lot, something I myself have often fought with describing. At first, when I decided to rant on the subject of my darkest, unhealthiest obsession I wasn’t sure quite where to begin.

After some though the obvious became more so – where better than the beginning?

obsession begins somewhere. For me it began (truly) at my first regional italian cooking course in Southern California. My previous exposure to cheese had been minimal, a condiment used, albeit liberally, in many dishes I’d had and cooked. Very rarely had I eaten the stuff on its own, so for me I didn’t see it in the same light.

Now here I was, 21 and attempting to turn my couch ridden most likely alcoholic ass into something presentable, cultured, maybe even…worldly? A foolish endeavor I realize now, yet at least it earned me a little more knowledge than i was previously possessed of, and gave me an opportunity to expand my mind.

At the start of each class the teacher would present us with an assortment of cheese, olives, and olive oil.

Thick mozzarella sack...creamy filling... so dirty, so delicious

What popped my cherry, opened my mind and blew down all previous inhibitions?

Burrata.

Sweet, savory, creamy, fucking orgasmically brilliant – a simple cheese at best. But still, it birthed my obsession with all things cheese. From there it was a downward spiral, filled with dark alleys and cheese filled trench coats, pushers hawking their villainous wares to the horribly depraved addicts, desperate for that next creamy fix.

Well…ok, perhaps not that severe.

I’d had Brie. I’d had Gouda. I’d had Cheddar. I thought I knew cheese.

Fuck me, was I ever wrong. As soon as the proverbial levees broke, I began reaching ever outwards, looking for stranger, more bizarre cheese, for those as like minded as me.

I began to learn more about cheese (wikipedia for starters) and the process behind making this soft gem. So many steps!

Shortly thereafter I was introduced to Andrew’s Cheese shop, and a like minded individual who’s obsession far exceeded my own.

What he showed me, I lack the words to describe. So let some pics highlight my favorite cheese, and help guide you down the rabbit hole, towards the dark side of cheese…

Oddly enough

Watch me and read


There is something I haven’t shown you yet.

Given the opportunity, especially at the wee hours of the morning whilst sleep escapes me, there is something I haven’t shared.

A good person I am not. Simply spoken I am at best a pretender in the most pretentious skin – for that I am thankful. Everything I do, I do for me alone.

This, many would consider, is freedom.

Separate at best I see this as bondage. Freedom lies in the idea that we are different – yet I have no such illusions. I see my truths for the spit in a gods eye they truly are. What I am and/or could be is counter posed by the reality of a simplified existence. And this existence? Merely an illusion granted by delusion, something crafted as you sat in your parent’s ‘guest room’ quantifying reality in simple measures and scoops.

It seems easy, I know it must, but understand the small falsehoods we are lead to ingest, and glimpse a truth so often overlooked.

There are simpler realities, those we make our own, and these are things to which I myself stick – something ideal, a cute utopia in the face of so much adversity – perhaps, when all’s been said and done, we might have more of worth, something easily identifiable.


As I see it, this is false. This is to deny what we are and what we seek – doubt not what we have, but rather what we mean…

…in everything I am, with everything I was, I see doubt and destruction. Look closer and smell the chaos in those eggs/that chili/these potatoes…a line of questioning well founded. If there is an end, who am I to define it? Seems to me this simpler path walked makes sense, but i know your questions, for at the same moment they enter thought they are once again self same. Please, don’t doubt this small thing – when turtle eggs hatch on the shore, it isn’t the mother that finds them weak and willing.

Cooking party!

This is it folks, the day is upon us – expect to see a lot of pics shortly!

Today i’ll be preparing:

Hot delicious mess

Blasphemous Bruschetta

Apeshit Mac N’Cheese

WTFucked Vegan Scramble.

So stay tuned!

I gave in…

HELLO INTERNET.

This is the Vicious Vegetarian.

I come to bring you my awesomeness, in word format. I plan on posting whatever I fucking please – restaurant reviews, recipes, pub crawls, drunken rants…

So, stay tuned. This will get interesting.