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A Legend In My Own Mind

I have a confession to make.  I have to get it out in the open.  No matter how cool and obscure my music is (I like Wilco, Ryan Bingham, and The Avett Brothers).  No matter how many funny jokes I make (What did the doctor do to the chemist? Curium).  No matter how well I play my guitar (not very well, but anyone who plays a guitar is cool, right?).  Come on, I played college football!  I’m a freaking legend in my own mind!

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In my heart, though, I know the truth: I’m a geek.  There, I said it.  I’ll say it again.  I’m a geek.  You happy now?  You might say, “Wait a minute here!  You list so many things above that make you cool.  You can’t be a geek.”  Take it from me, I am.  Let me prove it to you.  I play fantasy football.  I follow the NFL draft.  I think Lord of The Rings and Star Wars are cool.  I know what the T stands for in James T. Kirk.  I actually sat around for a day in college and dissected American Pie. I could have been out chasing young ladies, but noooooo, I was too busy figuring out what “. . . As the players tried to take the field/ The marching band refused to yield/ Do you recall what was revealed/ The day the music died.”  (It’s reference to the Kent State Riots, if you must know).  I can recite lines from Monty Python and The Holy Grail.  (She turned me into a newt! . . . . . I got better).  I can look up in the night sky and name several constellations. I have a star guide app on my phone!  I watch the History Channel for the history.  Wifey and I went on a ghost tour of Fort Erie at Niagara On The Lake.  When it was over, my comment was “What a great way to discover the history of the place!”  I mean . . . I mean!  I’m sitting here on the Group W bench and you want to know if I’m moral enough to join the Army after being a litterbug . . . There I go again, digressing into my knowledge of music (if you know what song that came from, I’m impressed).  And the college football thing?  I played on the offensive line.  The only position geekier than that is the kicker.  No matter how hard I try not to be, I’m a geek.

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What made me take a long look at myself and come to that conclusion is my total immersion in the book series of A Song of Ice and Fire.  You may not know this book series by name, but I’m sure you have heard of the TV series it inspired: A Game of Thrones.  It has everything: knights, dragons, swords, big magical walls of ice, castles, maidens fair, maidens foul, feasts (hey, this is a food blog), magical beings that only come out during long winters, ten year summers, prophesies and prophetic dreams (we will get into that later) and a mouthy little dwarf.  This series is not for the feint of heart.  It’s gory, graphic, and sexual.  But those aren’t the real reasons I like this series so.  I absolutely love it for the political intrigue and unpredictability.

Maybe it goes back to my hobby of figuring out the meanings of song lyrics, but trying to predict what happens next is so intriguing to me.  There is so much to predict.  The books are written from a point of view (POV) of certain characters.  You know what they know.  The backstories are tremendous, and give just enough information to make you connect the dots, but leave out enough to draw the wrong conclusion from.  The story takes twists and turns.  Characters aren’t what they seem.  Don’t get attached to certain characters, as you may be disappointed.

The characters themselves are neither good nor bad, but a mix of both.  Hero’s make poor choices and their personalities lead them to their mistakes.  You feel empathy and even sympathy of the worst of the antagonists as they go through their trials.  The books give a gritty realism of what I imagine life was like back in the medieval times.  You not only follow the kings, queens, lords, ladies, knights, and maidens, but the common folk. Whether it is or not, the story feels real.  Parallels can also be made about life today.  They really make you think.  I love that about the books.

So join me on my journey through the books.  I will be reviewing my thoughts on each.  I’ve read them all but A Dance with Dragons, and that’s being shipped from Amazon as I type!  I will have spoilers, but not too many.  I will also try my hand on a few of the prophecies and predictions.  For now, I will leave you with one of the trailers from Season one of The HBO series.  Enjoy!

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A Frozen Delight

Having a couple of drinks with the wife can difficult sometimes.  You see, I’m a beer snob (a music snob, and a football snob as well) and like my “craft” beer.  The wife does not like beer one bit. Wine is good, but we can only do that every once and awhile.  So if we are going to have a couple of drinks together, we have to get creative!  One I have found is kinda trendy, a Mojito Slushy.  I have even come up with a few drinks of my own like Onion Juice.  I have also come up with a frozen fruity drink that is very versatile.   I call it a Caribbean Blizzard.

This is what you need:

Ingredients

3 cups frozen strawberries

2 frozen bananas cut into slices

Juice of 2 limes (or 1 lemon)

¼ cup Triple Sec

½ cup Light Rum

¾ water

After Blending

Add the ingredients into a blender and mix. There is enough for two “drinks” when put into a margarita glass. You may have to add more water (or rum/triple sec) if you like yours a little thinner. I don’t mind eating mine with a spoon.  These are really good, though, so you have to be careful.    The great thing about this one is you can change the ingredients to fit what you like or, more importantly, what you have.  As long as you have the two frozen bananas, the lime/lemon juice, 3 cups frozen fruit, and an additional 1 and ½ cup liquid, you can make anything!  We have made this with watermelon, OJ, with no booze.  You can add tequila instead of rum. You can even add dark rum if you like.   The only limit is your palate (and your pantry/freezer).

Finished Drinks