Monday, January 11, 2010

"When i fall down, i'll fall apart. Trade in my bike for a shopping cart."

Sorry I'm late
I was out spoiling my liver
I couldn't wait
The sun was up for far too long today
And I can't see straight
But the two of you look awfully pretty
And I couldn't wait
I've been awake for far too long today

-Alkaline Trio "Cooking Wine"

At one time, Alkaline Trio was one of my absolute favorite bands. They had great songwriting - deep, but not really overly dramatic - and this incredible buzzsaw sound to their guitars. Plus they appealed to person I was at the end of the millennium.

Seriously, this is a great love song line: "Fine time to fake a seizure to feel your mouth on mine, you're saving me."

And this is just a drop in the bucket for all of the great music this band put out on their first couple albums. We saw them religiously when they came through Detroit, bought the guys drinks after the shows, and for a while, for a large handful of us, these guys were "our" band.

Now, not so much.

What happened? Well, they got really popular. But it's not the type of thing where I stopped liking them for that, it's how they got so big. They stopped writing the dirty, drunken slacker love poetry that we all loved them for and started making a style of music that caters better to 12-year-old girls, who turned out in droves to buy their records and get them booked to stadiums.

I never faulted them for this. Hell, I even went to see them not too long ago. They played two old songs that I knew, and I left before they were done, but I tried. The only reason I even bring this up is that next month they have a new album on a new label and they're promising a return to the old sound. I hope it's true.

TFN purchased a crock pot last week. It's the first time we've had one. Each of us can grasp several advanced cooking techniques, yet the mystique of the crock pot evaded, confused, and yes, frightened us. I think it was just the idea of leaving a heat-generating appliance running all day while at work.

But now we have one, and we're embracing it.

Last night, we made pulled pork for BBQ, and took it over to Astroman's for dinner. We looked at many recipes for this situation, and went with the easiest. It turned out awesome.

Crock Pot BBQ Pulled Pork

A pork shoulder or pork butt (2 1/2 - 3 1/2 pounds)
Medium Onion
1 tsp brown sugar
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 18-oz. bottle BBQ sauce (we used Sweet Baby Ray's)

Throw the pork in the crock pot, and run it on Low for 8-10 hours, or on high for 4-6 (ours was done in 6)

Remove the pork from the pot, dump the juice. Shred the pork with two forks.

Throw the shredded pork back in the pot with the onion, brown sugar, lemon juice and BBQ sauce, and cook on high for another hour. Then serve it on buns with your choice of fixins - we had cole slaw, baked beans, Better Made potato chips and some cold beer.

Good stuff.

Right now, as I write this, the crock pot has a vegetarian split pea soup in it that will be done in about six hours. I may have resisted this appliance for a long time, but I am quicely embracing it.


Angeline Rose Larimer said...

"I think it was just the idea of leaving a heat-generating appliance running all day while at work."


I think we have pork in the house. Gonna go throw it in the pot.

Sorry about your band. I still hang on to the hope Lucas will come back with the kickass final trilogy. Not that I ever bought him drinks...and I was a 12-year-old girl when I first fell for the movies. Aw, heck, nevermind. I jog to Lady Gaga (one, maybe two songs) so I have no right to comment.

Anonymous said...

You gotta love crock pots and Sweet Baby Ray's. We currently have three bottles, all half-empty in the fridge.

Jennifer said...

I think every generation subsequent to my mother's, in its youth, rejected the Crock Pot. My brother and I called it the "Crap Pot." Then, we turned 35.

It is now one of my favorite kitchen tools. I have two: a 3 quart and a 5 quart, and the 5 quart has a second crock which has two side-by-side wells rather than one.

I like to think of the Crock Pot not just as a cooking device, but also as something the cats might cozy up to if the furnace goes out while I'm at the grocery store looking for a deal on pork. I also carry homeowner's insurance, just in case the cat gets a little too close and ends up running under the bed before the flames blow out. Some Crock Pot users don't bother with homeowner's insurance; they just fill the pot with jet fuel, kennel the pets, leave for a week, and trust Jesus. (This is an observation, not a suggestion.)

It would be so hard, so hard, so hard, so hard, to be a really good band getting by in the face of the constant lure of the bigger pay-off for a more commercial sound.

Maybe the real pay-off comes with the return to art after the sell-out's created name-recognition. Maybe that's one way 12 year old girls broaden their musical tastes. I don't know or pretend to know; I'm musically challenged.

I hope you'll update this story when you've heard the new tracks.