Archive for May, 2016

Episode: 157

Today’s drink special is the Saddam Slam!


Once upon a time, a long, long time ago, in a very dark, grim place in my past…

I waited tables at TGI Friday’s.

Yes, really. Hard to believe, I know, but I needed a job, I couldn’t get hired anywhere else, and a friend got me the job. It was the early 90’s, we were in a recession, I was depressed and dumpy looking, and no higher-end restaurant would give me the time of day, so I went the corporate route. For a few months…

Suffice it to say, TGI and me…we didn’t really, uh, “mesh”? My flair wasn’t flair-y enough, I kept trying to stick political buttons on my suspenders, I refused to promote the “Saddam Slam” drink special we were offering (it was the first weeks of the first Gulf War)…you know the story. This fish was seriously out of the water.

But I got myself a taste of corporate hospitality training, and all of its enforced cheer and generic conformity. And instead of hanging myself by my red-and-white suspenders, I did the right thing, and got fired instead.

Today, on LGR, we have a guest who is all too familiar with the ways and woes of hospitality training, my great buddy, Kate Edwards! Kate’s a hospitality management expert and coach, and she’s worked at the best places in NYC. No TGI’s for her, she’s too classy!

We’re going to hang out in the newly AC’d Fallout Shelter and talk corporate training, chains vs independents, and whatever else comes up. We may also discuss sea otters…it could happen.

Episode: 156

We Hold These Foodiness™ Truths to be Self-Evident…


Here, in corporate Big Food America, we apparently hold certain Foodiness™ truths to be self-evident, which is that all industrially produced foods are created Equal, that they are endowed by their corporate Creators with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are potentially destroying Life, crushing the Liberty of the small farmer and the pursuit of profitable Happiness for those running the corporations.- Sorry, I’ve been thinking about American holidays, and the 4th is right around the corner, so I thought I’d rewrite the Declaration of Independence, to make it more appropriate for today’s world.

The whole memorial day/Independence day/Labor day structure of the summer got me thinking, about how the season is bookended by holidays, and peaks with one. July 4th, Independence day, is really the beginning of the end of the summer. What do you have, like 6 weeks after that? And the back-to-school ads start running by the 4th, and the Xmas crap starts to show up in stores alongside the Halloween candy, it’s like time doesn’t really exist, the whole year is a mashup of pre-and post holiday sales, for every holiday, all at once. There’s a dollar store near my summer house, and one year, in early July, they had leftover Father’s day and graduation party crap, alongside 4th of July star-spangled junk, and an early display of Xmas decorations…All at the same time. It was like the time-space continuum had totally collapsed! I’m already getting nostalgic for and feeling the loss of this summer, and it’s only May 24th!!

But back to the agenda for today’s show, which is primarily about truth…Truth, Justice, and the American Foodiness™ way. If you’re under 40, that’s a variation on the tagline from the old Superman TV show. Superman fought for truth, justice, and the American way, because…the cold war. Here in the fallout shelter, we’re fighting for truth, and justice, and definitely the American foodiness™ way, or more correctly, against, the American foodiness™ way, because…our food systems are so effed.

So come on down the rabbit hole, and into the shelter, where’s it dry and cozy and we have snacks, too! The CBS news team was here last week, and the place is all spiffed up and tidy. See you there!


Episode: 155

You’ve got the cutest lil baby, cake


So I’ve got babies on the brain. Everywhere I go, everyone I know and see is breeding, birthing, being fruitful and multiplying as if babies were going out of style or were about to be banned or rationed by the government. Brooklyn is baby-breeding central. I miss the old NYC where once you had kids you moved out, fearing for their lives.

Not me, of course, I’m too old, that ship has sailed and there’s no turning back into the wind now. Oh sure, so-called well-meaning people say to me, “Oh no, it’s not too late, you can still do it! I know someone who got pregnant at 50, with a donor egg and donor sperm and 17 rounds of IVF and a surrogate” Because that’s what you want, to have a lab-grown, $100,000 infant at 50. Uh…thanks, I say, but nope. I don’t need your reassurance that it’s not too late, because it is too late, and it was a conscious decision, and please go away and take your little Junipers and Masons and Oleanders and their runny noses and sippy cups away from me. Please. Just. Stop.

I went to Bethlehem PA last weekend for a baby shower for my beautiful cousin Robin, who is a devoted LGR fan, btw. Robin took charge of her food life and completely overhauled her diet a few years ago and dumped all the Foodiness™, and her picture hangs on the Foodiness™ Fallout Shelter wall of fame, and she looks great. We give her a shout-out now and then on the show. Hi Robin!

So Robin and her husband Jay are expecting a baby boy in July, and I am genuinely super happy for her. She is an amazingly loving, generous and kind person and will be an exceptional parent, and if anyone should be a mom, it’s her. And a couple other friends have either recently had babies, or are expecting, and it’s fine, it’s what humans do, right? It’s the norm. I chose not the norm. But I like being an aunt, to my real nieces and all my friend’s kids.

And I like baby showers. I think the pregnant moms need that lavishing of attention before their lives change so radically and they risk losing themselves in parenting. They need to eat little sandwiches and open presents and get all weepy, it’s very good for them. Plus, at almost every baby shower, there’s cake. And I like cake. I hardly ever eat cake, so when I go to an event with cake, usually, I eat some cake. And that’s kind of what today’s show is about. Cake. Not babies. Well, indirectly about babies. So today, on Let’s Get Real, let’s talk about cake. Ok? Oh, and IHOP, and the government, and even autism. Yikes.

Page 1 of 212