Thursday, September 18, 2008

[guest post] OUTDONEREDER

Ladies and Gentlemen (but mostly ladies), be herein entreated to the long-anticipated followup guest post by Ian F. King, who makes the rest of my blog look like crap (THANKS FOR NOTHING, DUDE*).

*actually, thanks for letting me crash with you in New York so often.

UPDATE: Ian: "you can discuss in an intro how much I badgered you into running my post!"


Ian: "I want to collect all the glory that awaits me"


Ian: "why are you stalling?"


Ian: "
I want glory"


Ian: "No one reads the internet on the weekend!"

Not too long after my recent entreaty to the Bac-Log faithful to join me in reliving one of the innumerable highlights in its rich and storied history, the letters began to trickle in, and then that trickle grew into a light pour, which has in the last half of a fortnight threatened to turn into a slightly heavier pour. These letters all say the exact same thing:

"Good Sir," they begin, "I hesitate to bring pause to the various important comings and goings of your busy days, but in my enrapt engagement with your recent guest post on what is indubitably the most important blog in the history of time, I couldn't help but be persnickety enough to notice one incredibly minor and completely irrelevant discrepancy between your recounting of the 20th century, and what certain highly questionable scholars might call 'the truth.' To wit, the ill-conceived butter substitute known as margarine was first brought to the general public quite some time before the 1940's, and not afterwards as you suggested. Please forgive my impulsive decision to encroach upon you with this concern, but I believed it to be something that needed to be brought to your attention. Yours sincerely, So & So."

It continued like this until my whimsical yet dutiful carrier pigeon Nugget spoke up one morning as he was making his delivery rounds. "Surely you must settle this matter once and for all, lest my letter satchel continue to overflow," he reasoned. Nugget was toeing the line of insubordination, but he did have a valid point, though I didn't hear him complaining about all the seeds he was collecting from me in fees - so much so that I decided it would be easier to simply leave a small dish of his fees suspended from a low branch on the oak tree outside my window, in a container shaped like a small house, as I knew that was his favorite shape.

"If you would only enlighten the people, they will greatly appreciate it," Nugget said, flapping his way off my windowsill, and it is in the hopes of forging an understanding in your minds that I will now make an admission I have heretofore been loathe to make: margarine was indeed available in the 1940's, and long before, but I have in the past refused to acknowledge its existence, as I will continue to do so, until Saint Peter drags me to my watery grave in the sky.

What I'm writing here is of course no revelation, as anyone with more than a fourth grade education is well aware that in 1869, Emperor Louis Napoleon III of France offered a prize to anyone who could make a satisfactory substitute for butter, suitable for use by the armed forces and lower classes. French chemist Hippolyte Mège-Mouriés invented a substance he called oleomargarine, and, as they say, the rest is terrible, terrible history. What monsieur Mege-Mouries didn't know was that his "prize" would be a permanent shackling in the foulest dungeon available in Paris at the time, where he spent the remainder of his days with his head clamped in an iron mask, having ample time to think about the abomination he had so wittingly wrought on the world.

How it came to pass that margarine has since stood the test of time and advances of civilization is quite beyond comprehension, and I've tried to give it no thought, as has Bac-Log's benevolent founder, Mr. Grant V. Laine. Indeed, the guiding force behind margarine stands diametrically opposed to one of the very principles that we formed this blog on, as certainly no foodstuff that was brought forth at the behest of a leader whose very name is synonymous with the inferiority complex is fit to take space on the refrigerator shelves of true and valorous men.

I beseech you, why would one slather their morning toast in an oil-based substitute for insecurity? Would you fill your delicious Sunday pie with apples that clearly lacked an inner strength and confidence? Would you cram your holiday turkey so full of cowardly stuffing that by the time you were able to coax it out of the oven it would be far too dry to savor? As one of the original battle-cries from the very mission statement that Bac-Log was founded on states: "Spread not the unnamable and insecure butter substitute on your daily bread, but the bold and brazen brazenberry jam. If brazenberry jam is not available, use boysenberry."

Though the much sought-after brazenberry went extinct in the late 50's, along with the equally delicious belching-fish, every other word on that original Bac-Log charter is as relevant today as it was when it was drafted on a series of now-historical napkins in the backroom of an alehouse in Hoboken that both Grant and I lived above, in an old tenement apartment that we would re-christen that very next morning as Bac-Log Gustatory and Ingestatory Documentation Partners LLC, turning a fine and upstanding young gentlemen bachelor's residence into an even finer and even more upstanding blogeteria.

Doing one better than even that other most glorious and empowering of documents, the Magna Carta Liberatum, in a single spirited sitting the two of us drew up our own call to arms, a series of laws to love and rules to live by, principles that would guide us all through the moral, philosophical, and actual wildernesses of the modern world. The Mangia Charta Degustatum, as it was later dubbed by the leading culinary scholars of the late 1970's, now rests behind inches of weather-proof glass, in one of the most prominent storage rooms in the vast Smithsonian institute.

Fueled by our own reciprocal largesse of inspiration, and bowl after bowl of peanuts that were as salty as Lot's wife, we compiled a list of commandments that numbered into the dozens. After reluctantly striking through all of the newly-minted lines that were highly amusing descriptions of the innkeeper's buxom daughter, we were left with nothing less than the eight principles that have seen me through my darkest hours and proudest moments, and, much more importantly, have helped to make Grant V. Laine the statuesque demi-god of the blogosphere that he is.

For those who have yet to lay their virgin eyes upon the glorious sunburst of knowledge that is the Mangia Charta, which is located on the "About Us" page (link here), I'll now reprint that entire document here from memory, as it is as fresh in my mind today as it was that wondrous night:

The Fifteenth of August, in the Annum Nineteen Hundred and Forty Three, Brings About To The Attention Of The General Public Of These United States This Order of Business Of The Utmost Importance: A new blog (tentative title: "Captain Eats-A-Bunch's Plenty O' Thoughts")


In Our Wholly Justified and Unquestionable Wisdom, We Hereby Declare That,

1. To eat is human, to devour is divine,

2. To improve the condition of any single object, wrap in a layer of bacon,

3. (note to self: look into a way of possibly combining breakfast and lunch, with an emphasis on egg-based dishes)

4. Red meat is the other white meat,

5. He who forgets the past is doomed to relive it, so make sure to write down even the stuff you ate that you didn't like to eat,

6. Spread not the unnamable and insecure butter substitute on your daily bread, but the bold and brazen brazenberry jam. If brazenberry jam is not available, use boysenberry.

7. Of all the world's vegetables, nothing beats a ripe and firm tomato, one as plump and comely as Bess, the innkeeper's daughter,

8. (TK)

Witnesseth On This Glorious Day, Signed,

Grant V. Laine

His Humble Assistant

1 comment:

Vikram said...

3. (note to self: look into a way of possibly combining breakfast and lunch, with an emphasis on egg-based dishes)

Isn't that what brunch is? I'm pretty sure it's made its way to NYC by now...

PS. Thanks for bringing my hat dude! You are a gentleman and a scholar...