Thursday, April 22, 2010

Happy NFL Draft Day!

Happy Earth NFL Draft Day!

With the Curse of the Jockey Underwear alive and well in Baltimore, my Orioles are 2-14, NFL Draft weekend is a welcome distraction.

For the first time in 75 years the NFL Draft will air in prime-time. The first round airs tonight on ESPN and NFL Network at 7:30 pm ET; followed by rounds 2-3 tomorrow night at 6 pm ET with the final picks, rounds 4-7, being selected Saturday starting at 10 am ET.

Round 1: Pick a stud or trade your pick.

1) St. Louis Rams

2) Detroit Lions

3) Tampa Bay Buccaneers

4) Washington Redskins

5) Kansas City Chiefs

6) Seattle Seahawks

7) Cleveland Browns

8) Oakland Raiders

9) Buffalo Bills

10) Jacksonville Jaguars

11) Denver Broncos (from Chicago)

12) Miami Dolphins

13) San Fransisco 49ers

14) Seattle Seahawks (from Denver)

15) New York Giants

16) Tennessee Titans

17) San Fransisco 49ers

18) Pittsburgh Steelers

19) Atlanta Falcons

20) Houston Texans

21) Cincinnati Bengals

22) New England Patriots

23) Green Bay Packers

24) Philadelphia Eagles

25) Baltimore Ravens

26) Arizona Cardinals

27) Dallas Cowboys

28) San Diego Chargers

29) New York Jets

30) Minnesota Vikings

31) Indianapolis Colts

32) New Orleans Saints

If my Broncos pick OSU, WR/PR Dez Bryant...I won't cry. But the rumor mill seems to think that Jerry Jones will trade up for the speedy wideout. Dallas sportswriters are still bitter over Jones taking a pass on Randy Moss in the 98 Draft. They see the opportunity to trade up and snag Bryant as a chance for redemption, or something. At least one mock draft has Bryant going to the Raiders at pick number eight, which would be both a waste and a shame.

Have your Mel Kiper, Jr insults ready! I'll meet you on Twitter (@duchess_rebecca).

Cross-posted at Liberty Pundits.

It's Earth Day...Let's go to the Movies?

Tadpole #2's fifth grade class is going on an Earth Day field trip today. No, they're not going to pick up trash or to visit the local recycling facility. His class is going to the movies to see Disney's latest eye-candy, Oceans.

Remember back in September when conservatives had their panties in a wad over Obama's back to school speech (I wasn't one of them)? I find today's field trip slightly more outrageous than our President talking to school children about the importance of education, call me crazy. If the school was serious about Earth Day, I can think of ten different activities that are more appropriate...but going to the movies is just easier and more fun, I guess.

Oh well, my kid is going on the field trip. If I don't let him go, I am officially the world's meanest mother. I consider it a compromise, considering he did have to listen to me rant about the ridiculousness of this nonsensical time out of school. I likened it to taking the class to eat pie on Pi Day, poor kid.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Earth Day and Immigration Reform and Unemployment...Oh My!

Tomorrow is Earth Day, my thoughts:

Don't get me wrong, I love Earth. It's where I hang my hat, even more specifically in America. Calling it "Earth Day" is a bit grandiose, no? I'm pretty sure, no matter how big our government gets, it will never have regulatory jurisdiction anywhere else besides the US.

A bit'o history: Sen. Gaylord Nelson (D-WI) was the principal founder of Earth Day in 1970. Ahhh 1970, what was going on in our country in 1970? A bunch of hippies were protesting the war conflict in Vietnam. The timing for such political nonsense as Earth Day was perfect. Make love not war and save Mother Earth!!!

But wait a second, there my hippie/baby boomer stoner friend...Fun fact about Sen. Gaylord Nelson, he was a proponent of real immigration reform:

"The bigger the population gets, the more serious the problems become…. We have to address the population issue. The United Nations, with the U.S. supporting it, took the position in Cairo in 1994 that every country was responsible for stabilizing its own population. It can be done. But in this country, it's phony to say 'I'm for the environment but not for limiting immigration.'"

Sen. Nelson must be rolling over in his grave over the Schumer, Graham Immigration Reform "Blueprint":

"Under the proposal, employers would be allowed to hire illegal immigrants only if they were unsuccessful in recruiting Americans for open positions. Undocumented workers living in the country would have to pay fines and back taxes and perform community service in order to earn citizenship. They would also have to pass background checks and become proficient in English."

According to the WSJ, it's next:

"President Barack Obama called Massachusetts’ new Republican senator, Scott Brown, from Air Force One today to deliver some news: Democrats are moving forward with an immigration overhaul in a month."

With unemployment numbers lingering around 10% and the endless continuation of jobless benefits being paid out, how in the world can they seriously think this is a good time to pass immigration "reform"?

I guess we're all about to find out what (Scott) Brown can do for you.

Cross-posted at Liberty Pundits

Monday, April 19, 2010

Charlie (Crist) and the Chump Factory

After getting his butt kicked, 3-to-1, in fund-raising by fellow Republican US Senate hopeful, Marco Rubio, there was some speculation that Gov. Charlie Crist would jump the GOP ship.

April 8th: "To put these rumors to rest once and for all, as we have said countless times before, Governor Crist is running for the United States Senate as a Republican. He will not run as an Independent or as a No Party Affiliation," campaign manager Erik Eikenberg said in a prepared statement.

April 19th: “Damn right, I’m staying in this race.” He tells us that he will not run as a Democrat.
“I was never going to do that.” He will either stay in the GOP Senate primary or he will choose to run as an independent by the April 30 deadline. As of today, he says he is “still undecided” about which of those two options he will pursue.

Let us know when you get your head outta the sand, Crisco Charlie...which I'm guessing will be on April 30th, the deadline for declaring yourself as an Independent. Don't worry, if things don't go your way...George Hamilton isn't gonna live forever.

h/t Hot Air

Wanna donate to Marco Rubio? Click Here

Everything's Bigger in...Brooklyn???

Well, maybe not everything but when it comes to bagels...everything *is* bigger in Brooklyn and how! Meet the latest breakfast yum-yum from Scott Rossillo over at Brooklyn's The Bagel Store: the bacon, egg and cheese bagel. As in...the bacon, egg and cheese is baked in the bagel !!!

photo credit: Gabel/Ny Daily News

Click here, to read Rossillo's interview with the NY Daily News in which he explains the delightful details of this Frankenbacon fiend. My fave part of the interview, when asked:

"What's the best way to eat the bacon, egg and cheese bagel?"

Rossillo answered:

"This bagel does not replace the texture of regular bacon, egg and cheese, but if you add bacon, egg and cheese to a bacon, egg and cheese bagel, it certainly increases the flavor. That’s very popular right now. It will heighten the experience for you to a new level of satisfaction."

A bagel made from bacon, egg and cheese with bacon, egg and cheese on it...three words: nom, nom, nom.

Visit The Bagel Store online for their entire menu. Then get your butt over to Brooklyn and enjoy!!!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

The Russian Standard Vodka: Octane Rated?

From their website: "Recognized in its homeland as a benchmark for excellence, Russian Standard Original owes its name and quality to Dmitri Mendeleev's classic formula, commissioned by Tsar Alexander III for optimum balance and purity."

Putting Russian lettering on a bottle of vodka and calling it The Russian Standard ensures some sales, so as far as marketing goes...well done. But I'm here to report on the taste.

As a non-Russian I like my vodka to be smooth. After all, vodka means "little water" in Russian. Hmmm, note to self: when in Russia, don't drink the water. I'm not saying that vodka shouldn't have a bite, I'm saying it shouldn't make me want to run and stick my tongue under the faucet after I taste it...

I removed the Russian Standard Vodka bottle from the freezer and poured it over ice. I brought the glass to my nose and breathed in deeply, the aroma is telling but not terribly overpowering. I put the rim of the glass to my lips and tipped it gently, the cold clear beverage burned everything that it touched. The alcoholic flavor was so strong I made an involuntary Howard Dean-type screech. I added more ice a touch of water and two lemon wedges, cutting the bite. The aftertaste remains.

Bottom line: After I tasted the Russian Standard Vodka, I reread the bottle for an octane rating. At $27 a bottle, there are many other choices that don't taste like acetone. If someone buys a bottle for you, file it in the regift cabinet.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

360 Vodka: Eco Friendly Vodka = Gasoline

Tonight I tried 360 Vodka. It's marketed as an eco-friendly choice. You can read their green spiel over at: (duh). Anyway, the husband bought me this bottle to taste, it cost around $20.

I put it in the freezer, where it sat for a couple of days. Tonight I poured it over ice. I lifted the glass and inhaled the aroma, I has an intense alcohol odor. I put the glass to my lips and grimaced....360 Vodka tastes like gasoline. Full disclosure: I've never tasted gasoline, but I do love the smell (yeah, I'm one of those weirdos).

You feel the burn of 360 Vodka everywhere: your lips, your tongue and all the way down into your belly. Lawdy, I hope it stops there...I may never go pee again. I'm going to finish this glass off with a liter of club soda, hopefully tomorrow I'll be able to use my taste-buds.

Bottom line: $20 per bottle is pretty cheap as far as vodka goes, but it does make for expensive gasoline...I'm pretty sure this liter of booze could power your car, likely better than ethanol. Hmmm, maybe that's what they meant by "eco-friendly". Oh well, until next time...Cheers!!!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Vodka Taste Test: 1 down, 99 to go

I may have made a huge mistake trying the Jewel of Russia Ultra as the first of my 100 vodkas in 100 days (give or take) taste test. The bar, pardon the pun, has been set...high. I'm not going to bore you with chatter about nuances of white pepper and the like...if you want to read that you go. If you want an unpretentious report and review from a regular chick that drinks vodka, continue reading and enjoy!

From the Jewel of Russia website:

"This is the ultimate Russian Vodka. By combining authentic Russian character with exceptional silky smoothness, this vodka ascends well above existing Premium vodka brands to the levels of a true work of art, beyond the Super-Premium classification.

The ancient recipes are revived to produce ULTRA vodka, but the distilled spirits used to prepare this vodka undergo additional rectification treatment to practically eliminate the traces of congeners present in all lower quality vodkas. Special proprietary techniques are used to restore the original historic taste of Russian vodka.

The packaging of our Limited Edition line is exceptional. Each bottle is also a work of art, with a traditional Russian miniature hand-painted on each bottle, and individually signed by the artist.

The ULTRA bottle has a dome-like hand-painted cap cover that together with the painting makes it a perfect gift. It is also an attractive item for display or for collectors, because the scenes are changed on a regular basis.

The total availability of the ULTRA Limited Edition in the U.S. is 2,000 bottles a month."

I ordered a Jewel of Russia Ultra shot chilled. I picked up the glass, stuck my nose inside as I breathed in deeply, it was virtually odorless. I smiled and put it to my lips. This is going to be good, I thought as I tasted the clear, cold beverage. At a very chilly temperature, it is in a word: smooth. It slid down effortlessly with only the slightest bite.

As the Jewel of Russia Ultra lost its chill, the flavor and aroma intensified. At room temperature this vodka's flavor became more robust and the bite increased slightly. The finish was clean without any unpleasant aftertaste even at room temperature.

After tasting it chilled and at room temperature, I finished it off with a splash of club soda and a lemon twist. The spirit's essence was swallowed up by the crisp carbonation of the club soda. The Jewel of Russia Ultra would definitely be best enjoyed over ice, without a mixer or in a dry martini.

Jewel of Russia Ultra Vodka is on the pricey side. I live in Des Moines, at my favorite watering hole this gem cost me $20, more than three times the price of the average shot of vodka. It retails, online, for around $100 a bottle.

Remember: If you have a favorite vodka or vodka (as the only alcohol) cocktail that you'd like me to try, please tweet me @duchess_rebecca or leave your suggestion in the comments section.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Discontinued: Big Ben's Beef Jerky

From USA Today's The Huddle:

"Ty Ballou, a Steelers fan and owner of the PLB Sports in Pittsburgh, told the New York Times that he is discontinuing his contract to make Big Ben Beef Jerky."

Big Ben's Beef Jerky??? Ew. I'm going to go throw-up now.

Tea Party Militia?

From the AP:

"OKLAHOMA CITY – Frustrated by recent political setbacks, tea party leaders and some conservative members of the Oklahoma Legislature say they would like to create a new volunteer militia to help defend against what they believe are improper federal infringements on state sovereignty."

Say what??? Listen, I'm angry too. But, hold on Pistol Pete...a militia? Full disclosure: I've never been to a Tea Party, nor do I plan on attending one. But, I thought the Tea Party Movement was a grassroots organization focused on throwing support and raising moolah for small government/like minded candidates; not readying an anti-government paramilitary.

I don't want ANYONE from ANY political party adding to or reinterpreting the existing US Constitutional Amendments. Case and point, Oklahoma State Senator Randy Brogdon, R-Owasso (who would like to be Governor): "The Second Amendment deals directly with the right of an individual to keep and bear arms to protect themselves from an overreaching federal government."

No, no, no. The actual text of Amendment II: "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed." Notice that there's no mention of protection "from an overreaching federal government".

Sooners, y'all need to rethink things:

1) As the article points out: "the National Guard already provides for the state's military needs"

2) Just in case you're thinking about it, succession is illegal: Texas v. White 1869.

3) As Glenn Beck's favorite sound bite points out, Obama told us so:

4) The United States is a Democratic Republic. We delegate authority to our elected representatives, they are supposed to follow the Constitution. If they don't follow the Bundle of Compromises as Doug Llewelyn would say: "Don't take the law into your own hands: you take 'em to court." 19 states are following Mr. Llewelyn's advice (Oklahoma ain't one of 'em).

5) Rhetorical chatter about militias doesn't serve any purpose, unless you like being called a 'right wing extremist'. An armed Tea Party militia in Oklahoma would be reported in the news next to a photo of Timothy McVeigh, guaranteed.

Don't get me wrong, I'm a big fan of the Second Amendment. The Founding Fathers knew the value of a strong and organized militia. They had this little thing called the Revolutionary War that they had to fight. Things are a bit different now, I'd say. While paranoia is great for TV ratings, the mid-term elections are just seven months away. I would much rather rally the conservatives and take back the House and Senate than rally the militia to do God knows what.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Happy Nostalgia


From Rolling Stone:

"Beck’s Record Club — his running series of quickly made cover albums featuring a rotating cast of collaborators — has returned with a satisfyingly surprising choice: INXS’ 1987 hit album Kick. This time around, the Modern Guilt singer recruited Liars, St. Vincent and Os Mutantes’ Sergio Dias to join him in the studio."

Ask anyone who knew me in 1987: "What was Rebecca's favorite band? The one she really bled for." The answer: INXS !!!

Beck and company's versions of the songs from Kick will be released weekly in order of the album's track list at Beck's Record Club website.

Thanks Karl.

I think I just peed in my pants.

KFC Double-Down Report and Review

It's finally here (for a limited time)! KFC's new Double-Down sandwich meatwich:

This taste test almost didn't happen. The gentleman who works the drive-thru window at my local KFC was wearing a shirt that had so much spillage on it that it could feed the children, all of em. Anyway...I told myself that he didn't make my food and braved the task.

I arrived home, opened the somewhat greasy box that housed the unusual concoction known as the Double-Down which consists of two boneless fried chicken filets held together by cheese and something called "the Colonel's sauce"...oh yeah and there's bacon too. I pulled the meatwich out of the box and took a's. . .okay.

The chicken filets were on the dry side. It's more cheesy than bacon-y. I don't swoon for cheese. "The Colonel's sauce" tastes really salty. [Enter that's what she said joke here] Ew, did I really just write that?

I'm not a fast food snob. I eat fast food. I like fast food. I just like wearing other pants besides sweatpants, so I don't eat it that often. Also, I'm a label reader. A lot has been made of the Double-Down's 540 calories. I checked out the competition:

Fast Food Calorie Comparison

Wendy's Crispy Chicken Deluxe Sandwich: 460 calories

McDonald's Premium Crispy Chicken Classic Sandwich: 530 calories

KFC Double-Down: 540 calories

McDonald's Big Mac: 540 calories

Hardee's 1/4 lb Little Thickburger: 570 calories

Burger King Whopper: 670 calories

Jack in the Box Homestyle Ranch Chicken Club Sandwich: 700 calories

Hardee's Big Chicken Fillet Sandwich: 710 calories

Burger King Tendercrisp Chicken Sandwich: 800 calories

You get the idea. Though the Double-Down is not being marketed as a low-carb menu item (that I've seen), it's worth noting that it only has 11 carbs. A Bacon Ranch salad with grilled chicken at McDonald's has 12 carbs. Also worth noting, the Double-Down is high in sodium (1380 mgs). Newsflash: fast food is loaded with Na.

Bottom line: I don't get the name. It tastes like chicken...and no, I couldn't finish it:

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Vodka Taste Test

As you all know, I love vodka. When I am partaking in the drink, I pretty much stick with Grey Goose although Vox is my personal's just harder to find in bars. Anyway, as a lover of the Russian libation I've decided to do a taste test.

I will try 100 different vodkas, two ways. I will first taste each on its own, chilled and then the same vodka with a mixer. I'm not setting a hard time table for this project, but I'd like to complete it in 100 days. I want to try some atypical brands, if I can make that happen within the 100 day time period, great...if not, I'll go over. I will report back to you my thoughts on each.

If you have a favorite vodka or vodka (as the only alcohol) cocktail you'd like for me to try, please tweet me @duchess_rebecca or leave your suggestion in the comments section.

Thanks in advance and stay AP would say: "What could go wrong?"

Friday, April 9, 2010

They're Baaaack !!!

As a girlie girl with an affinity for overpriced shoes and handbags, Sunday nights haven't been the same since Sex and the City wrapped on HBO. I tried to get by with reruns on TBS and when that wasn't enough I went out and bought the boxed DVD set.

In May of 2008 when the fashionable four ladies of Gotham debuted on the big screen, I was thrilled; in spite of the film being critically mediocre. Since talk of the sequel, there has been much speculation mostly about, what else, babies and cheating. In seven short weeks, we will have our answers. For now, here's a tease:


Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Play Ball !!!

Tis the season to P L A Y B A L L !!! As a lifelong fan of the Orioles, I have experienced mostly despair with a side of disappointment. And while my love for the Orioles remains unchanged (i.e. unconditional), my hatred for the organization's turd owner, Peter Angelos is also unchanged (i.e. wide-ranging). The AL East is arguably the most challenging division in Major League Baseball. Angelos seems more interested in growing his fortune by suing Big Tobacco and other large corporations instead of building a consistently good ball club *weeping*. It's unlikely he will ever sell the team, but if/when he does I will celebrate in a very special way...but, o'course it's not *all* his fault.

A lot of you may have heard of the Curse of the Bambino in Boston (which ended in 2004) and the Curse of the Billy Goat in Chicago (which continues)...but. . . you may not be familiar with the Curse of the Jockey Underwear in Baltimore. The Orioles haven't won the Series since 1983. I blame this:

Tonight the Orioles begin their season, the first game of 162. Breaking the TWENTY-SIX-year-old curse is a dubious thought. So, here's to finishing the season better than we have the last TWELVE years.