Wednesday, November 01, 2006

I Am Learn'ed

I learn new things all the time. Not in grad school, mind you – there I only learn how much I don’t know. I mean that I learn things by exploring, by listening, by putting things in my mouth that make most people cringe. That’s how I learn – I eat weird things. I recently learned that chile on watermelon is stellar and that fried pickles are so much better than they sound. Recently, I learned something new about peanuts.

I had a chance to go to a Red Sox game a while back – they had started sucking royally and tickets to the games were easy to come by. The scalpers couldn’t give tickets away, much less turn a profit. Since I couldn’t make myself care about the Red Sox if I tried (although Theo Epstein is completely adorable) their suckage didn’t bother me one bit. I like going to games for the eating… and ok, the drinking.

We sat down right behind home plate with enough barely-yellow beer to last through at least half the game (my first thorough experience with Bud Light… *shudder* ), hot dogs, and a bag of peanuts. I don’t know why, but those were the best peanuts ever. They were salt encrusted and roasted to a perfect pale yellow (the good kind of pale yellow, not the Bud light kind).

I was busy drinking, talking about something perfectly insubstantial, and building a distinctly un-ladylike pile of peanut shells by my feet when I heard my friend’s peanut crunch differently in her mouth than in mine. You know why? She ate the peanut with the shell on. I didn’t know you could do that! Since anything that can serve as a vehicle for salt gets an A+ in my book, I tried it… and it was great. The nuts tasted a lot earthier (well, obviously). The papery dryness of the shell combined with the firm crunch of the nut inside and oh, there was all that glorious salt... Absolutely perfect with beer. Who knew that a plain old peanut could reach such tasty heights! Well, my friend clearly did, and now I do too… because I listened to her chew. I weird even myself out sometimes.

So engrossed was I with the peanuts and the conversation and ok, the beer, that I didn’t notice what was going on down on the field. The Red Sox had 11 runs scored against them in one inning. Eleven! In one inning! Seems like it would take work to suck that badly. It was at this point that I inquired as to who the Red Sox were actually playing… that seemed immaterial in the prior hour, with all those peanuts… and ok, the beer to occupy me. I may not have any recollection as to who the Sox were playing, but I sure remember the peanuts, and their shells. I am all kinds of learn’ed now.

13 comments:

Ben said...

Ha, awesome. I was like that the first time I ate shrimp head and shell on. Are you sure you aren't part Asian? I mean, Asians eat pretty much anything.

BTW, did they only sell Bud Light at the game? If so, GROSS. They might as well have served you a cup of pee.

atp said...

"I mean that I learn things by exploring, by listening, by putting things in my mouth that make most people cringe"

Is one to assume that you are making people cringe by putting things other than food-stuffs in your mouth?

Back in the day (before I was a lady), I decided to try a ham flavoured cracker with a glace cherry on top. It's a top contender for the most vile thing I have ever tasted. I used to question the thought processes that led me to try such a combination, but now all that bothers me is the existence of ham flavoured crackers.

Anna said...

Ben - I may be part Asian... It's quite possible, although the blonde hair would speak against it. I do love fried shrimp heads. And Bud = frat boy pee. Bud light = dilute frat boy pee. Apologies to all future and current frat boys worldwide. Don't think they sold anything else at the ball park.

ATP - Dammit. I was really hoping no one would catch that mouth part. I will leave you in suspense as to the answer. A ham cracker... Why? I mean, why? And was it not bad enough on its own that it needed to be combined with a cherry? To be honest, I am not sure what it can be safely combined with.

Alicia said...

I guess I am the only white trash newly Floridian on here that thinks Bud Light is a perfectly decent beer. LOL, I am into the fact that it doesn't taste too much like beer, or fill you up too much. But Miller Lite is even less filling, and tastes only slightly more like beer. I also have these Boddington's at the Irish Pub down the street, and those are pretty f'ing good. But, they are not light, so they get you drunk faster, and would probably make you fat if you drank too many of them. I am not a picky beer drinker though! I will have most things with alcohol in them. And I like to drink beer and eat hot wings. Does that make me swamp trash? Or do I have to like, dunk the hot-wing into chocolate syrup to really earn the title? LOL.

JC said...

I recently discovered the dried mangoes with chile powder at Trader Joe's (when I was in Arizona) - they are damn good.

I've never heard of eating peanuts with the shell. I'll have to try that. Have you ever had boiled peanuts? I scoffed until I tried them, now I'm hooked.

atp said...

Honestly, it's as much a mystery to me. I can only assume that I was trying to prove how open-minded I was? They don't sell them anymore, they didn't go down too well with or without cherries.

Ben said...

mmm Ham crackers sound awesome. How is that any different from sour cream and onion flavored crackers? I bet the ham crackers would taste awesome with real ham and wrapped in bacon.

Pure Genius.

michelle said...

aw, yes, anna, you have discovered the reason I will sit through 9 innings of a baseball game - the peanuts. kind of how everyone else thinks of hot dogs at a baseball game, but not me (i despise hot dogs anyhow)...it's all about the peanuts! i'd best not tell LB that you don't care about the Sox - he might not let me speak to you ever again! (he's from the Berkshires!) (But I think I'm on your side...shhhh...

Lisa said...

Oh yeah, and I forgot -- I actually do like Bud Light (my cheap beer of choice despite the Wisconsin roots).

Anna said...

alicia (lissa... can't break the habit) - see, that's the problem. I like the taste of beer. It's why I am not a fan of Bud - it doesn't taste like anything at all. I don't like wasting perfectly good energy on swallowing something with no taste whatsoever. Swamp trash. That's really good. I will have to use that :) And I like wings too, with beer even.

JC - I have been *obsessed* with boiled peanuts ever since I saw a post for them on freshcatering (really need to figure out how to insert hyperlinks in the comments) but I have never tried them. They looked soooo good. Must try to make them. Where do you buy them? The chile mangoes and Trader Joes are fantastic and surprisingly good with coffee.

ATP - Really can't imagine ham crackers going down with anything. Can imagine them coming up though. (Was that too predictable? Yeah, that was a cheap shot. I shall try harder next time.)

Ben! Ham cracker is totally different from sour cream and onion! Worlds apart, in fact. One is covered with a substance meant to resemble a freeze dried pig. I will take freeze dried onion over that anyday. I clearly have very strong feelings on this topic, mostly because I am wasting time and not working...

Michelle - It's nearly impossible to live in Boston and not get wrapped up with the Red Sox nonsense and yet somehow, I have managed it. I was pretty psyched when they won the world series though. I even watched the game! By myself! If I do go to another game it will not be for the team... it really is all about the peanuts.

JC said...

If you try to boil some peanuts, apparently you have to use raw green ones. The only place I've ever seen fresh boiled peanuts being sold is the deep South (Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, Alabama). Oddly enough, though, Kroger sells them around here in cans. I just heat them up a little on the stove before eating.

These look like the ones that Kroger sells (and check out those pumpkin spice malted milk balls!). Here you can order boiled peanuts by the case!

Anna said...

JC - #1: How do you insert hyperlinks into comments? I can't figure it out for the life of me.
#2: I will make sure to look for canned peanuts, although I do not hold high hopes for success in MA. I don't think I have ever seen a green peanut! Thank you for telling me about them. I now have a mission.

JC said...

#1: Hmm, let's see how I can put this in here without actually making a hyperlink:
Less than sign,a href="the address you're linking to",greater than sign,text you want to be a link, less than sign,/,a,greater than sign
Do not use any of the commas, I just put them there to distinguish between elements. Is that too confusing? It's hard to write it out without blogger thinking I'm trying to do html! And the only place where there is a space is between the first 'a' and href.
#2 I read somewhere that green peanuts aren't actually green, but that's what they call raw peanuts.