November 27, 2004
Reader Chris Joyce celebrates Thanksgiving the sorry way:
"My family is truly sorry that we live in a great country, that we have an abundance of food, and that George Bush beat John Kerry like a rented mule. So, in solidarity with all those sorry individuals, here are five sympathetic head tilts and two very weak power fists."
Posted by Tim Blair at November 27, 2004 02:57 PM
My God! What a scene of horror! It's Thanksgiving, people, and what's on that table?
Brussels sprouts (FED TO TINY HELPLESS CHILDREN)
Corn (OK) or hominy (yuk)
Spinach lurking by the Dad
Mystery lentil casserole
And in the middle: a plastic pumpkin.
This is not Thanksgiving. You have been punked, Tim. PUNKED.
My thoughts are similar. The Brussel sprouts cannot be ruled out as the likely cause of all the sad faces. Everyone in the picture knows that someone at that table is going to have to eat the things, and it might just be them. Until the Brussel sprouts are removed from the equation, there is no way to judge the situation fairly and decide how much has to do with the "Sorry Everybody" crowd.
I think Chris Joyce and his family just don't seem very sincere and don't think for a moment that Old Europe won't pick up on that.
They are very adept at picking up nuances.
All the World asks for, nay deserves, is an abject, debased United States to come crawling contritely on it's hands and knees and kiss the World's ass (which coincidently is not far from my house).
All the Joyce Family can think to do is make fun and have a nice meal together.
If there's one thing Chirac, Osama, and Kim Jong Il hate, it's phoniness. It's a trait they share with most Playboy centerfolds.
Thanks Tim. That made me giggle. Love the fists!
What a hilarious idea, I really wish I had thought of it. Nicely done, Chris.
It would be more credible if they only had one kid, for whatever reason most head-tilers don't typically have a lot of kids. Perhaps they care so much that fertility suffers.
I'm suspicious. Where's the turkey? Oh, right - Turkey pulled out at the last minute. For this we give thanks.
And what's with the extra plate? Could it be for Elijah the Prophet?
Was this submitted to the 'sorry' people's site? I bet they wouldn't even get it and would post it. They are pretty sorry, afterall. :-)
Okay, they're not bad, but where's the guitar, the booze and the really artful sign?
Does everyone have that damn willow pattern?
The littlest guy is just digging the scene. The elder boy is having a hard time controlling his giggle. The little girl has an academy award winning phony pout.
Those are the most insincere power fists I have ever seen.
"The Brussel sprouts cannot be ruled out as the likely cause of all the sad faces"
Kcom not true. I happen to love Brussel sprouts.
Best if cooked as follows;
Cut sprouts in half
Microwave 2 mins
Put into wok with butter, anchovies,dill and toasted slivered almonds.Mmmmmmmmmmmmm
Sprouts aren't the reason for sad faces.Must be something else.
Equitus asked "And what's with the extra plate? Could it be for Elijah the Prophet?"
Nah, it's for Elijah, the Cameraman.
Brussels sprouts taste exactly like lake water. They taste like the mouthful of lake water you took in when you were swimming by the algae-coated dock piles. There's a reason you were warned not to swallow it.
Are they "power fists" or "solidarity fists?"
Whatever, a great idea and the tilting heads are a nice touch.
Add to the compassionate head-tilts and the power-fists the marvellous suffering eye-rolls.
The empty plate is Chris's. He put the timer on the camera, ducked round to the wife's side AND remembered to synchronise the left-leaning compassionate head-tilt with other family members. Nice work, mate.
If that table is not a great advertisement for carnivorousness then I'll order a slice of plastic pumpkin.
Can`t be thanksgiving ,Wheres the plastic turkey.
Here's a better recipe for Brussel sprouts:
Place sprouts in large pot with one housebrick.
Boil until you are able to push a fork into brick.
Pitch out 'sprouts and eat brick.
Reflect on the fact that nothing good ever came out of Brussels, especially Jean Claude van Damme and fruit beer.
Gubbaboy (and everyone else), the recipe sounds great. Try brussels sprouts quartered and tossed in pesto, then showered with grated parmesan with extra basil leaves if you have them and salt and pepper and a squeeze of lemon - amazing as a side dish with - whatever ... but especially a blood-running rare sirloin. With thin, salted home-cooked fries on the other side.
No sad faces anywhere, especially with a glass of red in front of you. Or three.
Fabulous pic. The little girl is awesome.
I think the table's been mostly-cleared for dessert? They have clean plates.
We also have the willow pattern.
Oh my sainted aunt, that willow pattern really is EVERYWHERE. Even in our kitchen.
Brussel Sprouts Maison Brain :
Microwave till no longer crunchy. Serve with a pinch of salt.
Brussel Sprouts Traditional English : Boil them for approximately 47 minutes, until all colour is leached out (all flavour fled after thye first 10 minutes), and they have the consistency and taste of wet toilet paper. Serve these pathetic, grey lumps of slush which have had all vitamins and neutrients surgically removed (without anaesthesia) and remark on how good vegetables are for you.
Beautiful family, and Mom & Dad are raising 'em right. Well done.
That's hilarious. Funniest thing I've seen in months.
Get out Habib! Brussel sprouts are great.
As for *nothing* good coming out of Brussels, haul your arse down to the Belgian Beer Cafe some time. The little beer garden out the back. It's a great place to spend a lazy weekday afternoon when you really ought to go back to work! You might need to take out a second mortgage if you get stuck in a shout of five or more, but.
Cheers - TFK
Tim: Great Brussel Sprout blog. Always wondered who ate those things.
Brussel sprouts is the reason why Germany bombed Belgium during WW2.
Good golly, Miss Molly! If I had known that my husband was going to send this picture to the charming Mr. Blair, I would have taken care to compose the scenery better (ie, remove the plastic pumpkin- although it is nice to note that no pumpkins were killed in the making of this photo). Yes, this is my family, and I feel the need to justify our menu selections.
First of all, there is a turkey (non-plastic variety) out of view at the end of the table. The health food store was out of tofurkey, so what can I say?
Secondly, our oldest boy loves beets. 'Nuff said.
The brussel sprouts were a mistake actually. I had somehow gotten the notion that my hubby loves brussel sprouts; actually, he doesn't like them. So they were mostly just decorative. We don't like brussel sprouts, okay? Not that there's anything wrong with that.
Having said my piece on the food, I must say that you blogespherians are the wittiest and most observant folks I've ever seen. Cheers!
Just slice and fry in butter for 5 minutes until they're brown but still crunchy (perhaps with some chestnuts) and you'll agree that they are underrated
Le Clerc — "Where's the plastic turkey?"
They donated it to the troops because they care so much...
Laurie -- As the one who started the food commenting, I'll point out that you don't have to justify your food choices to anyone.
Having said that: what's the brown stuff in the casserole dish?
Australians love beets, which they call beetroot. In fact, they love it so much they have their own special McDonald's sandwich, the McOz, which contains a slice of beet. No, I'm not making this up. McDonald's had the sandwich for a time, then discontinued it for some reason, and the public outcry made them re-instate it. When I arrived in Australia in mid-'99, it was just being re-introduced, and the (extremely young) American head of PR or something for McDonald's was filmed choking it down and pronouncing it delicious. I thought it was damned funny that Australians were clamoring for a vegetable that was the focus of many tearful scenes and tantrums at American dinner tables (and sometimes the kids get upset, too).
Fabulous. I've been guffawing for the last 5 minutes. Well done, Joyce family - thanks for the laughs.
"We don't like brussel sprouts, okay? Not that there's anything wrong with that"
Perhaps if you try one of the creative and nutritious suggestions (not the brick recipe) of this thread you could give the humble sprout another go Laurie (smiles hopefully,not wanting to appear as a sprout activist or anything).
The brown stuff is stuffing, or dressing if you prefer, since I didn't actually stuff the turkey with it. This was a starch-laden meal.
I'm going to try that McBeet sandwich on our son. Perhaps that will curb his catsup consumption. Probably not, though....
It seems that all the sprout recipes cover them up with enough goodies so that you can't actually taste the sprouts.
Why go to all that trouble when you can just avoid buying them?
Anyway, didn't anyone notice that it looks like they were going to give the kids WINE? Isn't that illegal in some states?
Nah, Brussels sprouts are okay if you take them with a great walloping dose of saturated fat.
"I'd eat my own head with drawn butter" --Crow T. Robot
We all adore brussels sprouts here at Rancho Alta. I for got to prepare them for Thanksgiving, and I deeply regret it. Now, if you want a truly revolting vegetable, there's nothing worse than OKRA!
I wish I had a penny for every time somebody said to me: "OH, Try my Aunt So-and-so's recipe for okra. It's not the least bit slimey!"
I'm a little smarter than Charley Brown, so I now just catagorically refuse to eat the foul stuff.
Bob- That's because you're eating it wrong. You're supposed to fry okra (pronounced OH-kree in these parts) and serve it with ketchup. It's black and crispy and good.
Okra is only edible on it's own if battered lightly and deepfried like popcorn chicken. Or included in gumbo, where everything else disguises the slimyness.
I like brussels sprouts if they are lightly doused with white vinegar. I think I got this from my Southern grandmother, who also poured vinegar on fresh cucumber slices -- a practice I don't like.
I haven't gotten into beets, but occasionally have eaten them on a tossed salad (they are often found on American salad bars).
Try a slice of Beetroot on a Hamburger. A good Aussie Burger (as opposed to a Mackers McOz(tm) or a Hungry Jacks/Burger King Aussie Burger (tm) - both of which contain beetroot) consists of:
Beef patty, often with herbs embedded in it
Either Tomato sauce (Ketchup) or BBQ
Bun, usually with sesame seeds
The HJ/BK and Mackers mass-produced varieties delete the Egg and Pineapple, and substitute pickles and mayonaisse. The HJ/BK version is far superior, but still not as good as some of the local "greasy spoon" versions.
Beetroot Dip (GREAT with Pita Bread, and the perfect accompaniment to Roo fillet)
1 part Beetroot
1 part natural Yoghurt
Blend. Add Paprika and salt to taste.
It's funny you should mention vinegar and beets, because that's just how I fix them, with apple cider vinegar. I find it helps to disguise the dirt taste (I think beets taste like dirt, frankly). But they're so darn good for you. I tried making kvass once (that's a Russian fermented beet drink). It was an abject failure.
The problem with the brussel sprout is that they're still green. For really great tasting sprouts you need to coat them with olive oil, sea salt, and black pepper then roast them in a hot oven until they turn a dark brown to black on the outside -- no kidding. Beets are okay in borsch with a large dallop of sour cream.
Thanksgiving should mainly include dishes that are decadent that you wouldn't normally make, including my great-grandmother's meat stuffing.
Laurie: Maybe next time you can post your plans the day before and we can do some pre-blogging. Unfortunately hard news gets a bit slow during holidays so your brussel sprouts have become a hot topic for deep intellectual discussion.
You should consider selling them on Ebay..."as seen on Tim Blairs" blog. "Conservative Down Under Brussels" should draw the right crowd to make you a few bucks each.
Funny stuff: enjoyed it very much! My friends have been sending the link to sorryeverybody.com around with a note about how great it is. I think they are beginning to doubt my commitment to the cause.
Hmmm, only eating the sort of food on offer at this meal would make one light-headed and unable to think straight, thus making those kiddies more likely to become left-wing.
When I grew up I ate meat and three vegetables every night from right after my birth to now, and apart from a heart condition, high blood pressure, diabetes and sundry other maladies, I am a damn straight healthy Aussie on the 'right' side of the political fence.
All the kvass I've had was made from breadcrumbs. Generally pretty good.
Be careful of the kind with horseradish, though.
To serve brussel sprouts properly.....
Pick when ripe. Lay on gravel road. Compact gravel road with 10 ton smooth steel roller until gravel is reduced to dust. Don't serve. Place signs along road warning of hazardous material spills.
PS: Great family shot!!! :-D
Alright fellow Spleenvillians-
People all over the world are discussing my sprouts and beets...I feel so dirty!
FYI: The turkey is off camera to the right, along with the gravy. The rest of the carcass is already submerged in white wine broth on the stove. Believe me, my kids are carnivorous; keep your hands and feet clear of the little guy's mouth at feeding time!
As Laurie (the lovely wife) was prepping the Holy Brussel Sprouts, I happened to kvetch, "Who eats these things anyway? They're like lima beans and okra...tools of the Devil."
(kitchen temperature dropped 15 degrees instantly)
Laurie (eyes glazed after having cooked and cleaned for two days) gestured threateningly with a knife, "I thought you...well, you're eating them, mister!"
To Europe and the rest of the world, I tried my best. 50% of the Joyce family voted for rutabagas. Sorry.
I hope you didn't serve red jello.
Only green jello is appropriate.
I was a having a shit of a day, and you've cheered me enormously :)
When I was a kid ...
beetroot used to be a great favourite at pub buffets, like tomato, onion and vinegar salad and salmonella.
If you stirred the beetroot juice in, your WHOLE meal turned pink - cool!
We took our sprouts sans basil which I thought was a place in South America.
What's with the bloodnut trophyhead though? Visitor from next door? Funny how they always turn up when you're cooking a big dinner, eh?
Theres something very suspicious about that pumpkin...there is a hidden subtext to this message...symbols abound... those sprouts from Brussels...the unconstructed Borsch...the Gallic pout...the bird has flown...heck, what day is it??
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What in the hell does this have to do with Brussel sprouts?
Yes, charlemagne, you are, always have been, and always will be correct about everything. Now go impress some college sophomores with your staggering, incomparable yet modest and humble genius, because this thread is about Brussels sprouts, in case you can't read.
I have heard of brussel sprouts but what is a charlemagne?!!!!!
The more charlemagne posts, the more I'm convinced he's a 15-year old wannabe packet kiddie-type who gets access to his parents' computer on weekends and holidays only.
(Note to Charlie: The only people who claim to be "moderates" are flaming leftists whose extended stay in urban areas has warped their sense for the actual width of the political spectrum. The fact that you're [probably] not a neo-Stalinist doesn't mean you're moderate, it just means that unlike others you haven't quite fallen off the left edge yet.)
More on-topic though: If Brussels sprouts are what my dictionary says it is, then bleargh! I know that some people really like them, but even with the limited variety of foodstuffs we had behind the Iron Curtain when I was a kid, I would have needed to undergo extensive brainwashing before I'd have eaten that stuff.
You've obviously never been to a British Boarding School then.
Heinrich Himmler (of unhappy memory) prescribed a regimen straight from British Boarding School practice for the SS - said it "bred Imperial vigour". Which was BS - it just made them mean and ornery. The porridge is Seared, Seared I tell you, in my memory. Along with the pathetic lumps of grey-green that once were raw Brussel Sprouts, before having been boiled first into submission, then into total degradation, and finally beyond all recognition.
They were the good bits, compared to the rest. I won't described the horrors of "Kedgeree". Some things Man was not Meant to Know, and Kedegeree contains at least five of them.
You must remember that Economically, though not politically, the UK was much like Eastern Europe during the Cold War for about a decade after WW2. Rationing was worse in 1946 than in 1940.
Rationing did not end with the war. It was years before the country was rebuilt and life got back to normal. Some things like sweets were still on ration in 1953.
All good-quality products were marked "for export only" and couldn't legally be sold in the UK. Building materials couldn't be had for love nor money (unless you knew the right person...).
Quote from a schoolgirl during the war:
I remember my uncle fetching back some bananas when he came home on leave. He gave me one and I took it to school. Everyone crowded around me and my teacher showed it to the whole class. It seemed like a priceless treasure. I was a very popular girl that day. Everyone wanted me to open it and eat it, but I wouldn't. I took it back home with me and left it till it went black, but it still smelled so good. Even now I can't smell ripe bananas without evoking that memory.
People could be, and were, sentenced to stiff jail terms after the war for the crime of selling Sliced Bread. (Bread was only rationed from 1946 to 1948 - and selling Sliced Bread (which involved some unavoidable wastage) could get you 6 months in jail).
Some people on the Left want to return us to those good old days.
Anyway, the reverberations were still being felt in the early and mid-60's, when I was at Prep school. My sister - in her 50's now, and born just post-war - has lousy teeth simply because the diet was so apalling, and the newly installed fully-socialised "National Health" system was so Lowest Common Denominator. The troughs got deeper, and the peaks were filed off.
Any wonder that I'm a Right-Wing Death Beast?
Being fair to those in power in 1946, the economy was shot. WW1 and WW2 put together had pissed away wealth equivalent to the combined GNP of the UK from 1815 to 1930. The war debt was only finally paid off by Margaret Thatcher, one of the reasons why the UK economy took off at about that time. And bread rationing in 1946 was so that (literally) millions of people in Europe - especially Germany - didn't starve. Tens of thousands did anyway in the West, "starve" as in "to literally die of hunger", and God knows how many behind the Iron Curtain. But if English kids hadn't been slightly malnourished for a few years, millions of children in Europe would have died.
Think of that the next time you see a Brussels Sprout.
Alan E. Brain — All well and good, but the damn things still taste like feet.
I'm surprised that no one has discerned the proper way to make Brussels sprouts edible.
Cheese, cheese amd then more cheese, Damn it!
And I suggest that y'all "simmer on down" before attacking the beloved okra.
Guys, remember, every time you respond to a troll, God kills a kitten! (Also, as I am liable to delete or change the troll's comments as soon as I come upon them, you might find your own responses will subsequently make no sense. Spare yourself the energy and the typing and ignore the attention-starved little freaks.)
What do you call a prostitute's child?
I like brussels sprouts, with lashings of butter.
Beetroot DOES taste like dirt.
And it stains everything.
Brussel sprouts are the testicles of the plant kingdom...Much like the country.
Sorry...Much like the city.
Damn Yankee public skool!
Brussel sprouts are the devil's golf balls. At least the way my mother cooked them. Yeck. But I loved the picture. It made my day. Thanks.
"All the World asks for, nay deserves, is an abject, debased United States to come crawling contritely on it's hands and knees and kiss the World's ass (which coincidently is not far from my house)."
JDB - you must live right up the street from me. :)
Well, beets should be pickled, darn it. That makes them taste pretty good, and the purple juice contaminates everything else on your plate. Especially mashed potatoes.
Okra is an Indian name for "slimy, inedible, nasty stuff only fit to be eaten by Southroners."
Brussel sprouts, on the other hand, are best lightly heated, cut in halves or quarters, and doused in mildly flavored vinegar. Food of the Gods.
Okra is okay in gumbo -- the heat of the pepper kills the taste -- but once a friend of mine insisted I taste deep-fried okra. It was like deep-fried boogers.
Beets are good pickled because if you pickle them right they don't taste like beets anymore.
Nothing encapulates your worldview better than self-indulgent white people mocking the powerless and stuffing their faces with rich foods while 32 million Americans---one-third of them children---suffer from crushing, soul-grinding poverty.
Dear Don Myers:
Boo fucking hoo.
Don Meyers--No, no. We're not mocking the powerless or those in poverty. We're mocking *you*!
Would it make you feel any better to know that we send over $100 a month to two groups that feed starving children overseas and we are in the process of adopting a child from a third world nation? We weren't making fun of starving children; we were making fun of liberals like you who have absolutely no sense of humor.
Oops. MG, I should have read your post before I sent mine. I guess great minds think alike.
Hear, hear Laurie!
It amazes me that anyone could look at the photo above, read such genial comments and be so mean-spirited.
That a photo of a family sitting down to a Thankgiving meal could be seen as a symbol of 'white' selfishness reveals that with friends that this, the poor don't need enemies.
Don Myers is an unpleasant, fungus-eared, wet-spined, hairy-assed little toad who has trolled my comments in my blogs and michele's at asmallvictory.net and has one of the drippiest blogs in existence. His smelly little presence has been banned from this website.