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ErnieD's Profile

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"Starbucks Demands Barista Remove Tattoo or Resign"

All of these things affect you forever. Even ill-advised tats have less of an impact for many people than having a child or enlisting. All those people who decided to get YOLO tats last year are probably kicking themselves, but it's a minor blip on the radar compared to getting shot up in Afghanistan.

I also got a tattoo at 19 that I still love at 36. It wasn't a horrible life choice, and I have a responsible job. I work in a neuro rehab facility (2/3 therapists with visible tattoos) and in the school system (probably 15% of teachers and support staff with visible tattoos). It hasn't ruined any of our lives and I'm pretty sure any of us could hustle coffee effectively if needed.

Jul 22, 2014
ErnieD in Food Media & News
1

"Starbucks Demands Barista Remove Tattoo or Resign"

I don't find your boss policing women's bodies to be particularly classy, so I'd probably take his opinion on class with a grain of salt.

Jul 20, 2014
ErnieD in Food Media & News
1

"Starbucks Demands Barista Remove Tattoo or Resign"

Making a latte (I agree there should be gloves over the makeup) is hardly the same as sticking your hands in my chest cavity.

I'm aware that people can get fired for things they do outside of work, and for the most part I find it a grotesque invasion of privacy. If I have five martinis on my own time before my shift, that's one thing, but whatever legal activities people do that don't impede work performance are their business.

I'm not saying Starbucks did anything illegal or even really immoral, just that it's a dumb application of an already-dumb policy.

Jul 18, 2014
ErnieD in Food Media & News
2

"Starbucks Demands Barista Remove Tattoo or Resign"

Changing things you can do on company time is not at all comparable to asking someone to undergo an expensive and unwanted modification of her body, though. Starbucks is perfectly justified (although wrong IMO) to ask her to cover the tat, which according to the article she's already doing. But telling her it has to be removed even though she's taking steps to ensure it's not seen by customers is akin to your company saying that not only can you not watch YouTube on their time, you can't watch it on your own either.

Jul 18, 2014
ErnieD in Food Media & News
2

"Starbucks Demands Barista Remove Tattoo or Resign"

According to the article, she hides the tattoo while she's at work, too. It's not like she interviewed under false pretenses and suddenly started flashing her ink. I think it's a pretty silly policy to begin with, but whatever,you're right-their store means their rules. However, terminating a long-term employee over a tattoo that's technically on a visible part of the body but is being covered by makeup seems excessively intrusive to me.

Jul 18, 2014
ErnieD in Food Media & News

Ground Meats Limitations Overall in USA: Patty vs. Patty-less Dishes

"Served by a very exotic and beautiful woman from Italy, who is just visiting for a few months work vacation."

See, this is where you keep losing me. People from other cultures aren't exotic. They're people. Some Italian women are beautiful; some are homely. Some Chinese people are wise; some are foolish (also China is far from the anti-capitalist "no Pop Tarts" utopia you seem to be envisioning). Some people in ALL cultures can cook well, while some can't. Using people from other places to score points in a game of poke-the-bourgies is disrespectful.

When I can understand your overall message, I agree with some of it. American culture and society are intensely problematic in many ways (pro tip: ground meat preference ain't on the list). But the people responsible for this are bankers, corporations, and politicians. Your issue is with the Cokes and Kochs of the world, not Joe Schmoe down the street who likes burgers instead of Ginger Garlic Sausage Surprise. Unfortunately you can't needle them on a message board.

Jul 16, 2014
ErnieD in General Topics
3

Ground Meats Limitations Overall in USA: Patty vs. Patty-less Dishes

I have always wanted to learn how to deflect fact-based arguments with non sequiturs and word play. I wonder if it would be best to seek out a wise Buddhist monk untouched by the corruption of the 21st century to learn this lesson? Or maybe I should go to a wizened but dignified Hungarian grandmother whose greatest joy comes from baking bread from scratch for American tourists.

Jul 15, 2014
ErnieD in General Topics
1

Ground Meats Limitations Overall in USA: Patty vs. Patty-less Dishes

I admire the tenacity of your beliefs regarding things you admit to knowing nothing about.

Jul 15, 2014
ErnieD in General Topics
6

Ground Meats Limitations Overall in USA: Patty vs. Patty-less Dishes

Yeah, I totally agree. Costco staff is happy, cheerful and pleasant. It looks like a warehouse because in essence it is. I would rather them spend their money compensating their employees than trying to add fake ambiance. The pileups at the sample tables can get a little annoying if it's a busy time but it's hardly a soul-sucking experience.

Jul 15, 2014
ErnieD in General Topics
2

Ground Meats Limitations Overall in USA: Patty vs. Patty-less Dishes

I'm having a hard time even understanding what you're advocating here in terms of non-patty ground meat. So far you indicated an interest in 1.) under seasoned ground beef boiled to a grey color, 2.) frying onions/aromatics with ground meat so the flavors intermingle, 3) frying random meat with an absolute cacophony of overdone flavor, then adding fried onion at the end.

You've made a poor assessment of the lack of non-patty meat dishes in American culture because your data is faulty. Saying Americans can't appreciate anything but patties based on a DDD marathon and some trips to the pub is like watching The Simpsons and asking why Americans are bright yellow.

Assuming that you actually see this paucity of loose meat as a problem and aren't just trying to write a multi-part Philosophy 101 essay and enjoy your feelings of superiority, maybe a constructive way to address it would be to learn about some non-patty dishes and share them. Either online or with friends. There were any number of dishes in this thread that you were clearly unfamiliar with. Also, you keep mentioning New York-I'd be willing to bet you can find a hundred ground meat dishes at restaurants if you ask for recs. Then you could post about them or share with your friends, rather than just telling people they're eating the wrong way.

Jul 14, 2014
ErnieD in General Topics
9

Domestically Disabled

This might sound condescending or obvious, but it really helped me to figure out how my burners worked when I first started cooking on my own. They ran a lot hotter than the stove I grew up with. If you have a package of chicken or a dozen eggs or a pound of tofu-just keeping track of whether it set off the smoke alarm or took three hours to cook, and how did it do three notches lower, turned out to be really beneficial to me.

Getting one of the cooking bibles is also good. I don't really use it anymore but my mom gave me The Joy of Cooking when I moved out and it was tremendously helpful for things like "how to I poach an egg" or "how to cook a pork chop."

Also I think it is useful to learn to do one thing at a time at first. I grew up with the 3-item plate: meat, starch, and veg. But cooking was a little stressful for me when I first became responsible for it, and getting three things done at once just adds to it. There are plenty of one-dish wonders out there, and sliced raw veggies are a perfectly wonderful side. Soup can be a great one-disher, and full-meal salads, and casseroles. I think things often get incinerated when you are trying to make several things at once.

Jul 11, 2014
ErnieD in Home Cooking
6

do yu "drink" at work??

Yeah, I drink tons of water. I get it from the cooler so all of my refills are cool, but I'll drink it at whatever temp. If you like ice, more power to you-do whatever you need to do to stay hydrated! But there is literally nothing that will make me gag to see someone else drink.

Jun 18, 2014
ErnieD in General Topics

Sprout's Farmers Market

They have a few bulk items that I really like-veggie chips are delicious, my husband likes the butter toffee peanuts, they have a much bigger variety of whole grains than most of the big box stores. They're also more likely to have slightly obscure produce like endive and escarole than the other stores in my area (although no one including Sprouts seems to carry radicchio anymore-I know I've bought it in the past but it's not to be found anymore). They have good sales on things like bell peppers a couple of times a year.

Jun 16, 2014
ErnieD in Chains

Anyone else disgusted with dogs in restaurants?

Clearly a killer! What a nice pic. My dog gets only unadulterated protein but even that fairly rare occurrence is enough to instigate intense stares whenever anyone eats. My husband refers to her and the two cats as "the triangle of begging" because they always align themselves in the hopes that this will be the one day out of 20 that they get something.

May 21, 2014
ErnieD in Not About Food
1

Home Cooking and Marital Discord

That's perfectly fine. I was responding to the statements "men have always enjoyed cooking more than women, and most of the great cooks have been men" and "there are women who not only dislike cooking, but actually resent it," neither of which were made by you.

"Get in the kitchen and make me sandwich" directed at women by men as literally become a meme, and there are plenty of men (albeit a decreasing number as time passes) who think cooking is women's work and beneath them. It absurd to say that only women resent cooking. This obviously doesn't apply to your marriage, though.

May 12, 2014
ErnieD in Not About Food

Home Cooking and Marital Discord

There are women who resent cooking because they deal with it as an expectation, whether they enjoy it or not. Men who cook, even it it is just grilling steak, are lauded, while women who cook are treated as though it is expected. Men who don't cook are perfectly normal, but women who don't cook are failing as caregivers. As fldkybnva stated, there are social/cultural reasons why most great cooks are men. Restating that most great chefs are men doesn't really address this.

And family meal time is only really "important psychologically" if it's working for everyone. If you're able to put a meal on the table at a time that is functional for you family to converse and bond, it's awesome. If mom is pissed and the kids are frustrated because they're starving, no amount of cooked-from-scratch or shopped-for-it-today is going to make that meal a pleasant or nurturing experience.

May 12, 2014
ErnieD in Not About Food
6

Posters who Police

Wait, do I recommend linguafood too often? AM I PART OF A POSSE?

May 09, 2014
ErnieD in Site Talk

Home Cooking and Marital Discord

Ha, I'm super guilty of participating in that component of of the thread-thanks for being a good sport about it...

May 09, 2014
ErnieD in Not About Food
1

Home Cooking and Marital Discord

They're contemporary cultural norms because we live in contemporary culture. The OP's wife does not have the privilege of not working outside the home. I'm not sure why it's all on her to accommodate, although it's nice that this worked well for you.

I love family meal times too, and they're often better at 6:30 when everyone is a little hungry and ready to chat than they are at 9 because you felt like making osso busco on a week night was important.

May 09, 2014
ErnieD in Not About Food
1

Home Cooking and Marital Discord

Will it change anything about your life if someone else has experienced the same? Currently 50% of the adults in your house are not happy with how the meal situation is going. Any way you cut it, that's not really great news.

FWIW I'm by no means an advocate of a 50/50 division of food labor unless that works for you. I like cooking and therefore do 99% of it, and after watching my parents argue for 45 years about how my dad does the dishes wrong, I really prefer to clean up too. My husband likes anything that plugs in, so he pretty much deals with all electronics, vacuuming, etc., and the stuff that neither of us enjoys we divvy up. But if your wife is unhappy with the current regime, wouldn't it be best to figure out how to address that?

May 09, 2014
ErnieD in Not About Food
3

Is a hot dog a sandwich?

No.

:)

May 09, 2014
ErnieD in General Topics

The Rent err…..Groceries are Too Damn High!

But apparently humorous to a certain subset of the population.

May 09, 2014
ErnieD in General Topics

The Rent err…..Groceries are Too Damn High!

Not so much. I have a cousin with a disability that's not always immediately noticeable. She also has chronic pain that worsens with cold weather so occasionally she'll limp a little outside but not when she gets in to the heat. People who use placards that don't apply to them are jerks and I hope they all step on Legos, but it's not the business of random strangers to stop people and demand their health history.

May 09, 2014
ErnieD in General Topics
2

The Rent err…..Groceries are Too Damn High!

Not really. Full loss of sensation below a certain point. She was a lot nicer about sharing that particular detail with a roomful of people than I would have been.

May 09, 2014
ErnieD in General Topics

At the end of my rope -- please help

This is interesting about getting your senses involved. I like listening to audiobooks and I went through a brief phase where I thought I would listen to them on my MP3 player while I cooked but I started burning everything. Turns out that I tell things are done cooking partly by the sound they're making. Now I stream Netflix instead-I'm okay as long as I don't have earbuds in.

May 09, 2014
ErnieD in Home Cooking
3

At the end of my rope -- please help

So true! I like that you mention finding the method that works for you. I'm not a letter-of-the-law recipe follower but my mom is and so are some people on here and I think that's great. Anything that lets you produce food you are happy with and doesn't make you feel bitter, anxious, or resentful is fantastic to me, and if what works for you doesn't work for everyone it's no big deal.

May 09, 2014
ErnieD in Home Cooking

At the end of my rope -- please help

I don't necessarily think your love for your husband was being criticized (and most people didn't even mention that componant). But he's not a king. He's a dude, albeit one you love. Just reading that made me feel stressed and pressured.

More on-topic, is your husband displeased with the meals five days a week? If not, is it possible you're getting a tasting fatigue thing going on? I love big cooking projects but often if I'm working on something for an hour or more, I've tasted it enough times that my appetite is reduced and the flavors are no longer novel or exciting.

And I strongly second the idea to build on what you know. You know how to make risotto, which means you know how to make risotto with something stirred in at the end. Tomato-basil, lemon-chive, blue cheese, whatever. And you don't always have to make the same menu. Risotto can be a side, but make a salad and a roasted veg or bread, and now you have a significantly different but still complete meal. It doesn't have to be basic, but learning the simpler stuff first is really good. Very few things (for me) are more satisfying then a really well-cooked steak, nicely roasted chicken, or most roasted vegetables. You can learn these pretty quickly because there are only a few variables-salt, cooking time, and cooking temp if you're going for the least complicated option. Once you're happy with those, you can start adding spices, and then gravy/aioli/vinegar/pesto/vinaigrette.

If you know how to make hollandaise you know the only tricky part of eggs Benedict, which makes a great dinner. Once you feel comfortable with that, you're really close to having smoked salmon eggs Benedict. You can probably learn to steam or roast asparagus (you really just need to manipulate the cook time there) and then you have another perfect meal.

May 09, 2014
ErnieD in Home Cooking
2

The Rent err…..Groceries are Too Damn High!

True. That's something I used to think should change-at first glance it just seems like requiring it would cut down on fraud. But as time passed, I got to the point where I'd rather someone, somewhere get an illicit chihuahua into the Quizno's than have people who use the dogs to navigate the world independently get stopped and carded everywhere they go. It's already kind a pain I think-there's a patient at my rehab facility who uses a service dog and the number and intrusiveness of the questions she gets asked is astonishing. I once heard someone forty years younger than her ask her a string of questions about what the dog does for her and the details of her injury, and then top it off by asking if she's still able to "enjoy sex".

May 08, 2014
ErnieD in General Topics

The Rent err…..Groceries are Too Damn High!

So...how do you to determine whether they are "deserving" of their placards? Please tell me you're not demanding that they tell you what type of disability they have. By all means call the police if you want but demanding that random citizens tell you their health status isn't really appropriate.

May 08, 2014
ErnieD in General Topics
5

Home Cooking and Marital Discord

Yikes. If your wife doesn't want any one-on-one time with you (sexual or otherwise, no assumptions being made there) it's extremely unlikely that cooking is your primary problem.

That brig said, there are plenty of interesting meals from a wide variety of cultures that are pretty quick. I'm sure there are lots of quick meal books at the library as well as online. Then you could save the more labor-intensive meals for the weekends or maybe do some advance prep as LindaWhit suggests.

May 08, 2014
ErnieD in Not About Food