Beers with Movie Sauce: Poltergeist & Foothills Brew

Okay, so I have been gone for thirty-two years and okay I have announced the start of a killer project and made everyone wait. I know that was rude but trust me I am back in with vengeance. By vengeance I mean back with some free time to post a few entries before work rears its head and eats time like may dog eats carrots. The life we live.

So you will notice that I have ponied up and purchased a Vimeo account because have found if you are posting a video waxing nostalgia about horror flicks, yapping about beer AND chugging ghost pepper sauce, you need time. The copyright nazis of YouTube and the small space of VideoPress just doesn’t work. So, if you want to browse the hundreds of videos I am doing for “Beers and Movie Sauce” as well as “Spooky NC”, that’s the place to check them out other than here at Veggiemacabre, of course.

Now, on to the show. Tonight we are chatting about the 1982 classic directed by Tobe Hooper and produced by Steven Spielberg, Poltergeist. I loved this movie going up and when it comes to things that goes bump in the night, my mind still questions if people only moved the head stones. A spooky thriller that grossed millions and possibly cursed cast members to their doom, this flick holds up even by today’s standards.

While we chat about why Poltergeist spooked us we are drinking the Winston-Salem’s own, Carolina Blonde from the good people at Foothills Brewery. It’s a good one folks and one I have a little pride in as a Winston local. And finally, we set it on fire with the new Texas Pete XXX hot sauce. A perfect Saturday night.

So sit back and enjoy. It knows what scares you.

VeggieMacabre’s Favorite Horror Movies EVAR! Project.

Here I go again starting a new project to spice things up in the bedroom. Well, if that happens to be where you cruise the internet. Anyway, I have decided to shoot quick little videos all about my favorite horror movies, why I love them and even some little known facts about them. I have loved this genre since it was still sociably acceptable to piss my pants (looking at you, Scooby Doo) so I think now that I have just enough the video experience and no life, I can finally spread the joy to wonderful people like you.

Watch this intro in to the big ol’ project that will include probably 100 movies, shows and commercials that have spooked me to no end. I am pretty stoked to kick this off.

So you see, I want your input just like the other pages. Shoot a video telling the world how you made a cow sound during Sixth Sense. I’ll post it here and we can all laugh WITH you about your misfortune.

Tonight I am starting this series out with Tobe Hooper’s classic, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. I am not airing these videos in any particular order so this one actually ranks really high on not only the scary scale but also the most memorable. You will see why in this video blurb but seriously, I made half of the males in my fifth grade class too scared to venture west of Alabama for the rest of their lives.

Come and watch why The Texas Chainsaw Massacre not only scared me from Texas but BBQ in general. (just kidding. I would sell my soul for brisket)

GODDAMN IT VIDEOPRESS!!!!! EVERY TIME! I LOOK LIKE I AM IN MID SNEEZE!!!! I HATE YOU!!!!!!!!!

UTZ Spicy Wavy Tabasco Chips

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Don’t tell me! Don’t tell me! These have been out for a long time and most likely will not be going anywhere so why would I include these on the page, “For A  Limited Time Only”? Well, they are new to me and I eat potato chips about as often as the equinox. Okay, that’s not true but I really try not to shove chips in my face. It’s a personal choice.

UTZ has a special history with me. I remember during my high school years I went on a ride with my Uncle Mark and his best pal, Jim. The two were a couple of goofy guys but their excitement over the little things in life really brought me to stop and smell the roses. I definitely miss them.

Anyway, on a trip (or trek) to Bass Pro Shop in Allentown, PA we made a detour to the UTZ packaging plant. Before I knew it we were dressed in lab coats, hair nets, goggles and hard hats and toured the facility. Looking back I was pretty confused over the excitement of UTZ packaging but as a Pennsylvania staple, this was the mecca of the pretzel. I guess that is why I love Marc Summers so much.

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So what about these chips? Well, I do love Tabasco so already I know these can’t evoke hatred unless there is a dead bird in the bag. If that happens I guess I will be a very rich man so maybe hatred is a strong word. No, these chips would have to kill me for me to dislike them. But then how would I dislike them if I was de- NEVERMIND!!! I am sure these are just tits!

Right away that signature tang of the Tabasco sauce hits your mouth like a 80-year-old driving through a farmers market. There is no mistake it is Tabasco sauce either. I come from the hometown of Texas Pete (I live in NC not in TX so wrap your head around that) and there is a definite difference in the two sauces. It’s almost like a spicy salt and vinegar chip which is a very good thing! All three elements in this chip will keep a person eating these for three days straight. Dangerous.

I can’t leave these chips without addressing that the bag is dressed like a Tabasco sauce bottle. Also, it looks like it could be perfect Christmas wrapping paper. I’ll keep that in mind for next year’s company Christmas party. “Look! I got you chips!”

Over all I think these chips are up there with the kings of junk food like Doritos and Funyuns. They won’t burn through the bottom of your jaw and land on your lap but they do have a little bit of a kick. A tangy addictive kick that will double up your consumption as well as chins. This truly is what potato chips are all about. In fact, if I was a potato I think my last request would to be…I’ll stop. Go out and try these. I promise they won’t make you go out and commit crime.

VeggieMacabre! But What Does It Mean???

I think it’s about time I share with the world where the devil I came up with the name “VeggieMacabre”. After all, it’s only seven years old. What am I waiting for?

In order for me to explain this one we need to get into the way-back machine and travel to the year 1997, in a small camp nestled way up in the North Georgia mountains which trains some of the most elite soldiers at the art of mountain warfare and survival. I found myself there working, training and being screamed at by some of the toughest people the United States military has to offer. Although I was constantly cold, wet, exhausted, hungry, sore, stressed, bloodied, bruised and nervous, I don’t think I have ever been happier because I belonged to something so much bigger and apart of the best. I fit and there wasn’t a day that passed where I wasn’t expected to give over 100%. My hands were callused, my mental acuity was at its zenith and it was not abnormal to be awake for three days straight with little to nothing to eat and asked run ten miles as fast as we could only to return back to the woods for more combat exercises. I loved it. And at 36 in my civilian life, I am certain I would absolutely die living that life again.

One particular evening, I was tasked to stand guard outside a makeshift firebase we constructed and challenge anyone approaching with the what is known as a “challenge and pass”. In order for someone to come into my area without getting shot, I had to issue the secret challenge word in the form of a sentence and they had to respond with the password also in a sentence. If they failed to do so, deadly force was authorized and I was a pretty high-strung kid so I have no doubt I would have shot the shit out of anyone who screwed this up. And it could easily have been done.

You see, back then we still used a lot of Vietnam war era technology including a secret code book that depending on the day of the week, month and year would reveal secret code words, numbers, and other combinations for soldiers to use when communicating over the radio, calling mortar fire or simply finding out what a password to pass through a friendly base. But you had to know how to use it because if you screw up, it could cost you your life. Not only that, if it fell into the wrong hands it could cost your buddies’ lives as well which is far worse. That’s why if you thought you were going to be captured, you had to burn it or eat it. Yes, it’s able to be eaten.

So, before leaving the perimeter to take up my post, I flipped through the small blue paper book in the secret combination of ways to find the challenge and pass as well as the time when we change frequencies on the radio. I still remember most of it however I am not entirely sure if they teach or use this in the Army today. It was classified back then so I have to keep that one on the down-low.

Anyway, the challenge for that day was “Veggie” and the password was “Macabre”. I remember thinking to myself that “macabre” was going to be strange to use in a sentence especially in response to a “veggie” question but really didn’t give it much of a thought after. I packed my Prc 77 radio in my rucksack, locked and loaded my M16, and my SCOUT buddy and I headed out to set up shop in the woods outside the perimeter to meet the scheduled Recon team who was due to come back from patrol with the next few hours.

The craziest thing about standing guard in the middle of the night, especially severely sleep deprived, is the way your mind plays tricks on you. I have so many stories of hallucinating things that were never there through sheer fatigue. One time I thought I saw a pizza roll out of the back of a military troop carrier only to come to and see it was a spare tire that had shaken loose and was wildly rolling down a hill. Another time I thought I saw a horse galloping across a pond. Then there was the time I saw a soldier try to put a quarter in a tree thinking it was a vending machine. Very true. All of these were just my brain’s fight between consciousness and straight up REM. Guard duty was the worst for this. Especially when you haven’t slept much in a week and you’re constantly pushed to the physical limit to now, in the darkest part of the night, sit silently and keep your ears and eyes open for not only the enemy creeping toward you but also friendlies coming in from a night patrol. It’s a fight just to keep your brain from screwing you.

As we laid there, sketching our fire lanes for the platoon leader, my buddy asked me what the challenge and pass was for the night. I could tell I was one of the few who was well versed in the term “macabre” from a childhood loving Freddy and Jason but to meathead jocks, it was a new addition to their vocabulary. I explained its definition and used it in probably a dozen sentences but it was soon decided that I was to challenge the incoming patrol. It was easier that way. No one wants to die in a macabre way over the term macabre.

After a few radio checks and what felt like an eternity, there was a faint movement in the dark. Over the radio crackled the familiar call sign of the recon patrol asking permission to approach, “Romeo 1 this is Stalker 6, break, about 400 mikes november whiskey from your alpha alpha, break, requesting permission to approach, over“.

That means “Hey you this is me (say break to un-squelch the mic on the radio to keep the enemy from breaking the frequency code) we are about 400 meters northwest of your area, don’t shoot.”

I responded “Stalker 6 this is Romeo 1, advance to be recognized and challenged, over.

They responded, “Roger Romeo 1, we are advancing, out.”

So with my SCOUT buddy behind the M-60, I prepared to meet the patrol thinking of a sentence to use “veggie” and so very curious how they would respond.

Soon I could see the patrol, looking beat up, tired and overall ready for MRE’s and cigarettes. The biggest and dumbest one passed in front of their Ranger file formation and approached to be within whisper distance.

“Halt!”, I whispered. Advance to be recognized.” The kid did and obviously exhausted from a night in chin-deep ponds and steep mountain terrain. I challenged him.

“It’s almost time for dinner, what veggie do you want with your meatloaf.”, I asked. He responded.

“Anything on the macabre would be nice.”

There was snickering from the patrol but not only was I flabbergasted from the response and the utter shock of stupidity but I had no idea what to do! I had spent over a year being drilled to follow everything to the letter I didn’t know what to do when the password was right but severely misused in a sentence. Half of me wanted to let these guys in for well needed rest but the other half was terrified by the possibility of compromising the base. It was a moment that led me to draw my weapon and stating “INCORRECT”.

Confusion.

In an instant the NCOIC took control and blurted the word “macabre” in a sentence which made sense. I looked back at my SCOUT buddy who was hidden in defilade behind me hoping he wouldn’t unleash Hell but thank goodness he absorbed my explanation of the word earlier that night and laid off the trigger.

After we indexed the training mission, the NCOI who jumped to the rescue of his patrol put in that I was to be (and did) awarded the Army Accomendation Medal for…almost shooting up his platoon over poor vocabulary.

It was a bit embarrassing but ever since then the challenge and password Veggie/Macabre has been burned into my brain. In 2007 when I was inspired to create a site of all things stupid, I could think of no better name than VeggieMacabre.

And now you know.

 

 

 

 

 

Chips Ahoy! Ice Cream Creation?

So I was roaming the grocery store looking for vegetables and mineral water when I bumped into the cookie aisle. No idea how that happens. And what do my wandering eyes focus on? Well, the good people at Nabisco rolled out ice-cream flavored Chips Ahoy cookies FOR A LIMITED TIME ONLY and I could not help but buy the root beer float edition. Sure they had mint chocolate chip and rocky road but if you make a cookie and link it to soda, I have to try it. And maybe throw it up.

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Sorry this is vertical but in my haste to put these in my mouth I needed to stand and snap this. As you can see there are white chocolate chips and normal ones. The batter, however, tastes EXACTLY LIKE ROOT BEER! I am mildly impressed and not because it tastes good but because it tastes so much like root beer. Almost like Jones Soda Green Bean Casserole soda. It’s not good but fuck if it isn’t green bean casserole.

I made the mistake of trying one and closed my eyes. And thought of pink Necco Wafers. Then sad took over my whole body as I hurked and jerked. The following faces represent my feelings. (Biggest to smallest).

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Pick some up and eat them now. They will not be around long!

Junior Mints Pastels: Limited Edition

Junior Mints will always be the candy that Kramer accidentally dropped into the open cavity of a body undergoing surgery during an episode of Sinfeld. I have no real ties to them other than that and they seem to be the #3 choice for all movie-goers. Honestly, do people buy Junior Mints outside of the movie theater? I don’t think I have seen anyone walking around eating them in another environment.

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Well, regardless if Junior Mints are eaten in a movie theater or over an operating table, the Tootsie Roll Company has painted the deer turd-looking treat a pastel shade of blue and yellow in celebration of Spring and Easter. Whoopie! They have the same texture and minty flavor as the everyday Junior Mint but whether it is psychosomatic or the chemical makeup has changed, they are weird.

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To me, I think it is the choice of color. Yes, yellow is the normal Spring color but the blue kind of throws me and I think I know why. That shade of blue and the fact it has a mint taste brings me back to forced visits to my great aunts in Pennsylvania. I hated going there because for whatever reason, I had a fear of old people. And they were old!

I know this sounds like I was a cruel spoiled dick of a kid and maybe so, but sitting on a couch wrapped in plastic as my Mom and Grandmother talked with them about phlegm and bruises that won’t go away just really took a kids appetite and killed it for seven years. From the vaporizers to the electric chairs on stairs, I prayed for these visits to be quick. Also, I hate slippers.

Coming back to the blue mints, my great aunts also had bowls of blue mint candy. From what year, it’s anyones guess but I bet if the mints could talk they would tell you their vote was casted for Dwight Eisenhower. No matter what excuse I made, the aunts would not let me leave unless I had a pocket full of these dreadful pieces of candy. I had to endure this until the Japanese invented the Gameboy. God bless that wonderful country.

So, Pastel Junior Mints taste the same but their ability to unleash suppressed memories is pretty amazing. Congratulations Junior Mints! Now I am thinking of lipstick stained crumpled tissues.

USS Yorktown and Spicy Tuna Fail

Hey!

I have been busy working hard so I can keep the power and internet on to bring you idiotic videos and rants. Aren’t you fortunate? Today, I am posting a video about an impromptu excision to South Carolina. I was SUPPOSED to be down in Mobil, Alabama with one of my dear friends, Travis, but thanks to life, I only made it about five hours south instead of the planned ten. Oh well, we made the most of it.

Watch this video and see what a spooky naval ship and a Man vs Food challenge have in common.

Oh yeah, the spicy tuna rolls had the texture of cookie dough with the temperature of your cheek. And the number Ten Roll was so hot it made the back of my skull hurt.

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