Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Forbidden Nomz

As I type this, I just finished a piece of gum, trying to tell myself that I'm not really in the mood for a snack. But I'm not just craving any snack. I want a forbidden snack, a snack from my past that has long since been recalled.

Now it took me an hour to find them all, and good luck to anybody trying to find that lost Hershey's drink, but here's a little taste of the foods I miss. Please click on the pictures for a larger view.

Glow in the dark cereal (Not pictured):
Now when I was in kindergarten, there were at least 5-10, neon colored, glow in the dark cereals and for the life of me, I can't tell you which ones I ingested. All I remember was thick food coloring, a sweetened corn cereal taste and that all of my stools came out... well... glow in the dark!

My mom and the mom of every kid I knew back then, bitched and complained to the companies about the cereals, and as an adult, I can tell you that if it was me, Hell YEAH I'd be calling the Post company morning, noon and night, trying to figure this out. If your stools come out with a radioactive glow, by all means please schedule a doctor appointment, and then call a bio-hazard team.

But when I was 5, all I cared about was that I had the coolest poop in school, because it glowed and was neon.

Teenaged Mutant Ninja Turtle Cereal:

I don't actually know how much of this stuff my parents and I ingested once upon a time, and to be honest, I really dont remember the flavor. All I remember are the bowels. At one point, I had about three sets of them, but my father managed to destroy them all either via microwave or violent dishwashing. I still have Rapheal, though the paint is chipped very badly. He hasn't been used for food purposes since 1993, and now holds up a few of my trinkets.

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers Ice Cream Bars:

I used to pester my parents for one of these anytime the ice cream truck rolled by, or dad took me to the liquor store. (There was an ice cream/ booze hybrid store he just loved.) A serbert like ice cream, I always got Billy (Blue Ranger) but I never did have the bubble gum center. It was always rock hard and never thawed right. I was heartbroken when they discontinuued them. (F'n Zeo.)

Hershey's Cookies and Mint Bar:

Chocolate and Peppermint are one of my favorite flavor combos. I first saw these during the pre-Christmas rush of 1992 and fell in love, instantly. A pain in the ass move to Virginia from Indiana was made just a little less painful the following summer with just a little bite of this bar.

Hershey's Chocolate Banana-split Milk:

The ads were scarse. Hardly anybody could believe such a thing was real. but in 1993, Nestle, Hershey and Butterfinger had their own "chocolate drinks".

Not exactly labled "chocolate MILK" (which I admit as an adult now raises my suspicions) but that is technically what it was. Shelf stable flavored milk.
I found the Banana-split drink at a 7-11 that was seated just below the temporary condo I was living in, and I fell in love. It tasted just like a liquid banana in my mouth, but with a sweet sensation of Hershey's! I practically lived off of this stuff for a year, when suddenly it was yoinked from the shelves.

Even more curious, the people who amde it swear to God that it never existed, along with another box, which went by the names "Marshmellow" or "Smores" Hershey Drink.
If you're lucky, you can find the Root Beer, Plain, Chocolate and Strawberry varieties, but I promise you, they are nothing like this Banana concoction.

McDonald's Chicken McNuggets:
BEFORE YOU START no, I am not referring to the McNuggets you find today. These 1993 ones tasted differently I tell you! This was a different time,
when nobody knew about pink slime ~ because it wasn't being used!! This was also before McDonald's started advertising "Now made with WHITE meat"
raising suspicions as to what the hell I was eating before then. No. These little barely-seasoned morsels had a corn-oil like aftertaste and often
came in a box with two of them shaped like Christmas stockings. And in 1993, I visited a Virginia Beach McDonald's that both did home delivery and took checks. Did you hear that? That was angels singing at the mention. It should actually be a law for all fast food joints to employ more workers, specifically for this very thing. It would turn around the economy overnight, get people off the streets and provide the poor with a cheap alternative to starvation.

Burger King Chicken Fries:
Discontinued just this past Spring, these little morsels made travel time a breeze. I'd kick back a box of these and some fries before hitting the road to a wrestling show.

They were light, never left behind a mess, and great for the rental. Now I'm curious as to why theyr'e gone. Hmm...

Batman Cereal:

Just a few years ago, my friend Jason and I stayed up all night, talking about how awesome this cereal was. A crispy, light, honey tasting cereal that stayed crunchy in milk. Somewhere, I should still have my Batman bank, complete with sticker eyes and a poorly cut slit in Michael Keaton's head for coins.

Swanson Fun feasts:

From ages 5-12 I practically lived off of these feasts. Slightly bigger than Kid Cuisene and 80% less salty, these meals weren't exactly filling (I needed two per meal) but damn they were tasty. And each meal came with a little cardboard book, game or other oddity.

My favorites had chicken tenders, fried chicken, brownies, a baked apple cup, corn and mashed potatos. On rare occassion, I'd have one with a cool ice cup. (Neon blue ice cream that tasted like vanilla.)

Burger King Mozerella Sticks:

I'm not sure if these are totally gone, since they seldomly pop up at different Burger Kings, but if they are gone they need to be brought back.
I'm a huge fan of mozerella sticks and these were quite tasty.

Burger King Tacos:

Small tacos.... deep fried.... and then fried again for crunchyness. What more can I say?

Slimer Ecto Cooler Hi-C (Pictured) and Mango Sunny D (not pictured):

Items number 32 and 33 on my mother's divorce decree are likely these drinks. My father actually did let me drink two entire jugs of Slimer once, and the sweet, nearly-lime flavor was so intoxicating, that after it made me throw up for three days straight, I went back for more.

He let me do the same with the mango
drink, which also made me violently ill. Combine the two, and it's brain damage. tasty, tasty brain damage.


The closest thing I have to this now that it's been recalled would be mixing a can of Pocky/Chocorooms and a cup of frosting.

Just about every single person my age wishes they could go back in time for an after-school date with these sweetened cookies in sprinkle loaded frosting.
PB Crisps:

Often times, people try to tell me that Nutter butters are exactly like PB Crisps. And while the flavor is the same, I must say ... NAY!! NAY I tell you!!

PB Crisps were the staple food of 1993. They were light, little crisps, filled to the brim with sweetened peanut butter. I could down an entire bag of this in one sitting. (My metabolism was high at age 7, so I barely gained a pound that entire year.) Long have I searched, but there are no replacements.

Now of course, I could name 100 more foods curiously missing from my pantry, but none of the long discontinued products match the taste and memory these hold for me.

Friday, June 8, 2012

So my idiot father is dating a psycho woman.

I think I’ve blogged two things before. One that my parents are split and second that my father is dating a crazy woman, whom I have re-named “Maryse”. Why? Because I don’t want to be sued. That’s why.

For a short back story on Maryse, please read my last major post about her: Additional notes to today's story, Maryse is 39 years old, a Twilight fan, an ex-cheerleader, and a Public School French Teacher for SMALL children. Oh, and she talks like a nasally wing bar waitress. Leik a total Hooters waitress an' stuff. Leik Ohmaigawd!! Oh and I'm sorry to tell you, she has bred. Her son is a teenager, and she has more than one boyfriend, outside of my idiot father.

Oh, and one more thing, her teenaged son has a 1 and a half year old daughter. So she's a grandmother. Isn't this special??

Now my father the last three weeks has been more than a nightmare to handle. So far, he’s called me a lazy bitch loser for not cooking for him, and a deadbeat because I just “draw pictures” (that’s what he calls cartooning) and I never have a “real” job like the one he was fired from. (Working at a 7-11. No really, I can’t make this up.)

Now he’s blamed most of this on the gout attack from Hell, and just a bit ago, I got a reason “why” he’s been acting like a demon in a Baptist church.

So in a “civil” conversation with my single mother, he tells her the following story:

Maryse is angry with me, because I won’t babysit my father. Mind you, he’s over 50 years old, that’s old enough in my book to take care of himself. But because I won’t go to his apartment, and cook and clean for him, massage his feet and peel him a grape, I am somehow a horrible human being, and she thinks I need to go to her house, obey her commands, clean it and apologize to her for not being my father’s slave. I am not joking, I have yet to even speak to her face to face, and already she wants to destroy my freedom? Bitch, I’m 25.

Oh, and she keeps telling my dad that my life is a lie, that every show I ever went to, and every person I ever met is me lying to her through my dad, and I need to apologize to her, and all three of her other boyfriends, because she also thinks I’m somehow standing in the way of her marrying Billy Corgan. Mind you, she’s never been to Chicago, and God willing, it stays that way. I think Billy deserves better, don’t you??

So because she is so angry, Maryse has been taking my father all over the place at all these garage sales. She feels that by keeping my dad around (and I’m being honest when I type this) she is keeping “the devil” at bay. Yes, that’s right, she thinks that the devil has been living inside her back, and somehow my father and shopping garage sales makes the devil go away.

Oh wait, this is just the forward to the tale.

There’s one strip of land that she calls Garage Mahal. She claims she made up the word to describe this strip, that is chock full of nothing but people having garage sales, and that the new TV show with Bill Goldberg doesn’t exist… and neither does he.

Maryse is aggravated at my father’s gout, and his constant complaining that his doctor told him not to spend too much time on his feet. Doctor’s notes are just silly excuse post-it-notes that mean nothing, after all. Now he says he cooks and cleans for her, and tries to do right by her, because she is a hoarder. He says there is trash in her house from floor to ceiling, she says he needs to respect her pizza boxes. (Wow, what a charmer, right? Keep reading.)

So since he won’t “just stop” having gout, she put a hex and a spell on him.

… I will state this again. She put a hex and a spell on him, because she isn’t able to handle the fact that he’s got gout. That’s as batshit crazy as if you saw somebody putting a curse on a guy in a wheelchair, because that person is handicapped. And I’m fairly certain that witches tend to believe that what ever spell you put out, comes back to you 10 times over.

Now the hex and spell she placed on him? She did this to make the gout WORSE to teach him a “lesson” for his having gout.

By the way… she’s a school teacher. For small children. In a public school. Wait, there’s more.

So then she tells him that she wants to continue casting spells on him, so that they will both eventually die (dad first she says) and then their souls will become intertwined, and he will be reborn as a Black man, so he can properly pay for his sin of having gout in her presence.


Now the logical question here folks, is “Why don’t you break up with her????” which is exactly what I asked while looking in the phone book for the padded wagon.

He says “but I like her drama. It gives me something to talk about.”

For Christmas last year, one of my uncles sent me an apology, for smacking him face first with a baseball bat when they were children. Had he known the damage would be permanent, he would have just played with his erector set instead.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Outlaw Euthanasia

I started a petition to outlaw euthanasia. Now I don’t consider myself much of an animal rights activist, but there’s a reason why I felt the need to start this.

When I was 15 years old, my next door neighbor had a four year old mutt named Fluffy. The whole neighborhood loved him dearly, even though his owners were very cruel people.

His owners, a woman named Dorothy and her son, would leave garbage in the backyards of the other neighbors, would vandalize property and would force the dog to go to the bathroom on our lawns. But when Fluffy would bark and refuse to go, Dorothy would kick him, and call him such names as "filthy" and "stupid".

When her son's wife became pregnant, everyone in the neighborhood knew they were going to get rid of Fluffy. We all took turns begging and pleading with Dorothy, her son and her daughter-in-law, to let one of us adopt him.

Instead, they chose euthanasia. Fluffy died a very slow and painful death.

The same day I was told about Fluffy's demise, I was reading a newspaper about a cruel politician. One who had closed down an orphanage and a women's shelter in his district, raised taxes and had a gambling problem. When he got sick, not only did his doctors cure him, they gave him a facelift, made him look 10 years younger, and handed him a bottle of Viagra.

It got me thinking, if we can save a wretched human being like that, why not a dog?

Every day, animals are killed in this country for little reason. Shelters over charge for animals and refuse to use the money we give them to build bigger shelters, and owners often opt to kill their pets when they move or go through a life change. This is highly unnecessary, outdated and barbaric.

So I started this petition. Hope it helps.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Disney Princess Status

It was 2009. Winter was fast approaching. And I knew that meant one thing, The Princess and the Frog was on it’s way to nationwide theaters.

I had been waiting my whole life to see a Black Disney Princess, and I had even convinced myself that it might never happen. But here she was, Tiana, a creature as lovely as Belle. The Disney channel was promising a special look at the movie, and I was glued to the TV.

… But what I saw wasn’t Tiana. It was Rapunzel.

Before I had the chance to see my first Black Princess, I had to endure 25 minutes of endless advertising for Tangled, the first CGI princess. And for the next few weeks, I couldn’t see Tiana without seeing Rapunzel. Which would have been fine, if this was a double feature, but Tangled wasn’t due out until summer of next year. This was Tiana’s time.

The following year, the movie went to DVD, but at first the only place you could find it was at the Disney Store. I was going to apply for work anyway, might as well peek in and see how much a Tiana doll would be.

No sooner did I walk into the store did I see an enormous banner for Brave, then very early in development. Banners for Rapunzel and the new, then un-named princess from Brave were all over the place.

As for Tiana? She and the Arab princess Jasmine were pushed together on a very tiny shelf, in the corner, behind the Alice in Wonderland display.

A Disney Store employee asked me if everything was alright. I handed my application over, and she left me with another employee.

I asked the second employee when Brave was coming out. She said that it was too early to say, but Tangled was going to hit theaters very soon.
I then asked her about the Princess and the Frog DVD, but somehow, this was “magically” out of stock and not likely to be ordered ever again. Mind you, it was opening day for the DVD.

Curious, I had to ask a question that I had been trying to stifle this whole time. “Please don’t think me rude or anything” I began in my cleanest voice “but could you tell me… um, why are there so many banners already for Tangled and Brave? I mean… we already have tons of things here for Cinderella, Ariel and Aurora, and even more for little Alice, and the Enchanted display is still very big, but where are the displays for Tiana? Or Mulan? Or Pocahontas? Or Esmeralda and Jasmine?”

Without missing a beat, the lady looked me right in the eye, and in a firm but kind tone, told me “Because White girls need to feel included. Right now, there isn’t very much for them at all, so we at Disney strive to provide these girls with the kind of ambition and drive that they are usually sheltered from. Besides, every little girl needs to be told they’re beautiful, and White girls don’t get to see this message at all these days.”

I leaned backwards onto the counter. She asked me if I was alright. My eye was twitching and I had gone pale. She even said “My goodness! You’re as pale as Snow White, should I call a doctor?”

I smiled weakly, and told her I was just a tad dehydrated. I bit my tongue so hard though that I did draw blood. So innocently, I ask another question. “Do you still have those beautiful Esmeralda dolls? I was thinking of getting one for-“ she cut me off. “Oh no, those things DON’T sell well. People really just want Cinderella these days.”

“Oh that’s too bad” I start. “I’ve always likes Esmeralda’s ambition. Some of my friends joke that I look just like her.”

This is when the first employee came back, shouting in my face that Disney was on a hiring freeze, and that they were even so close to downsizing their own staff. As she said this, I saw the second employee whisper something into the telephone.

Exactly one week later, a friend of mine emailed me that Esmeralda had been removed from the Disney Princess line-up. I can’t make this up, it’s even on Wikipedia. And that truly is a shame. Esmeralda is the closest thing to a mixed-race princess for one, and for another, she's very savvy. Seemingly the type of ambitious go-getter that the Disney store employee would want girls to see.

I can’t help but wonder though, why does Disney continue to do this?

Now don’t misunderstand me. I like all of the princess almost the same. I like Rapunzel’s spunk, Snow White’s childlike innocence, Tiana’s insistence on hard work, Esmeralda being cut from a different cloth, Aurora’s whimsy and Belle wanting to read books without pictures in them. But right now, the princess scene is a little lopsided.

Take a good look at the above photo. You can see exactly what i'm talking about. In this bunch, we have Two brunettes, Two red-heads (when you count the new princess, not pictured) and three blondes. There's one Native American, One Arab, One African American and one Chinese princess. Most of the photos look like this too, where Jasmine is in the forefront, but everyone else in pushed back. Is this just a simple oversight? Or is this something more?

For years, the Disney company has also de-regulated females from princess status. Esmeralda was not the first.

For example, Tinkerbell and Alice are "semi-princesses" meaning that they will only be seen with the other women two times a year. Being tweens, they are usually deemed too young for princess status.

Melody is the tween daughter of Ariel and Eric, yet is
seldom mentioned, even during the advent of a third Little Mermaid film. Is this because she's a tween? Has her father's man-brows? Maybe it's because the sequel just didn't do so well.

The blonde haired, blue eyed Eilonwy held princess status long before the Princess line was over developed into the merchandise house it is now, but after her film (The Black Cauldron) nearly sank Disney, this princess was excused.

Tween Wendy, her also tweenaged daughter Jane, Tiger Lily and even the siren/mermaid ladies from Peter Pan all at one time were called Disney Princesses. But by the time the DVDs of the two films went into circulation, this status was revoked.

Another Jane, this time a young British woman from the film Tarzan, was also a "Princess" in 1999, but in 2000 this too was swept under the rug.

Sally from The Nightmare Before Christmas was almost Disney's first princess of the dead, (discounting the middle-end part of Snow White) but since she wasn't born a princess and doesn't marry into royalty, the Princess Hot Topic line ended.
Kida from the Atlantis franchise (seen above) is a born and raised princess, but for reasons unknown, her status was also revoked. Could it be because that movie also was a flop?

Greek Megara from the movie Hercules also held this status during the Fall of 1997, but by winter, this was revoked.

Several animal princesses including The Lion King's Nala and Kiara, Robin Hood's Maid Marian, and Bambi's Feline have each held the same status, but likely were revoked due to their being animals.

The two women in the movie Enchanted only recently lost their "Princess" status, after an issue arose about when and how to pay the live-action actresses portraying Giselle and Nancy. Until this issue, the strawberry-blonde and brunette ladies were featured in animated form alongside the other princesses.

Each of the non-animal princesses I've mentioned all have the same two body types. Either they're slender tweens or slender young women. And each of them seem to undergo the same trials and tribulations, such as having to prove yourself to your community, and change to suit other people.

But there's little diversity in the cast. I've yet to see a princess with a rounder figure, a princess with an easier life (read: no Gaston or Ursula types) or a princess with a special need, such as glasses or a wheelchair.

Disney has a large and talented staff, so it wouldn't be a far-fetched to guess that they could remedy this. It's not just little White girls who would like the boost the Disney employee was talking about, it's all girls. Dare I say boys too. It may seem crazy to think that Disney would ever allow a transgender princess, but let's be real.

I thought it would be crazy for a princess like Tiana to exist.