Thinking Out Loud on Paper

Got the house to myself, for the day, and my mind has a few things on it, but none of them could really fill out an entire blog post, so I’m combining them.

I love the idea of Zac Taylor. It looks like the Rams QB coach need only dot some T’s and cross some I’s and he’ll be the Bengals next head coach. I love the thought of new things for my favorite NFL team. They’ve been stale, for awhile, and an infusion of fresh-thinking is just what the doctor ordered. Some are saying this could revolutionize Andy Dalton. I don’t know about that, but new thinking could change his career. Currently he, and the Bengals, have been the definition of mediocre for years. Just good enough to not be bad enough. The man, himself, Taylor has limited experience, and a checkered resume in the eyes of Cincinnati sports fans, but he’s not Marvin Lewis of Hue Jackson. For that reason, I am really excited for everything that is about to happen at Paul Brown Stadium.

Mid-major basketball is my favorite regular-season college basketball to watch. It’s usually pretty nip and tuck, both teams carry the identity of their coach instead of their star players, and for all but one in their conference, they’re not guaranteed action in March. At time of writing, I am watching the second half of Kent State and Ball State with Seton Hall and Butler waiting in the wings to switch to on commercials. Plus, there’s always that little glimmer of information to gather for bracket picking…that will inevitably lead to me making a dumb upset pick. College basketball rocks.

I really enjoy playing video games, but I’ve met enough people to know that I am not a “gamer.” With that being said, I feel like the culture of video games, for the last decade-and-a-half, really, has leaned heavily on first-person shooters. I think my personal video game taste has undergone that whole periodic taste change, thing, in that I don’t like FPS-style games, any more. I love adventure games, and sports games, but I don’t like FPS. Is that allowed? Maybe I’m moving past video games? This is weird to me, but I just can’t with FPS anymore.

I also hate trying to “correctly” hang jeans, but that’s neither here nor there.

Looking forward to checking out a new place in Middletown next week called the Swire Inn. It’s brand new and it’s a pub. My expectations are a little slice of heaven. Are they too high, probably, but I will most likely blog about my experience, so stay tuned.

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This and That

The day job is a little slow today, so here are a few midday thoughts that I wanted to pose. Things I couldn’t make an entire post about, but blurbs I felt deserved some writing.

Firstly, I tried a new pizza place today for lunch. Flying Pizza, in Centerville, Ohio, is pretty good. I got a medium pepperoni and mushroom pizza for $13. Nice, big, foldable slices. The crust was sort of dry, but had a good taste to it. The sauce was fantastic, and it didn’t have too much cheese. The shrooms, as always, were great, and so was the pep. There was a manageable amount of grease on it. If I were some sort of person who had a rating scale for pizza, I’d give it a 4 out of 5. Check it out!

I used this awesome app called Door Dash to get it delivered to my office building. I was lazy today because it snowed a decent amount and the roads were atrocious when I came into work this morning, so I figured I’d tip someone well to bring me food. Door Dash is phenomenal.

I also heard about this pizza place called Johnny’s over in Centerville. I’ve been told I have to try it…so I will, soon.

Another rando thought, how about this lady in New Hampshire? Wins the Lottery, $560 million, but doesn’t want to go public, so she may leave it unclaimed. Are you kidding me? What on Earth has her so spooked? I mean, sure, making it public that you are now richer than sin isn’t exactly everyone’s cup of tea, but that is a lot of money to say no to. I don’t know, maybe I am some sort of snowflake for thinking she is crazy for not taking the money (which she hasn’t confirmed that she won’t, yet) but I’d take that money in a heartbeat.

Maybe she is scared of the constant stories of people’s lives being torn apart by Lottery winnings….but then why’d she buy the ticket? I have never bought a Lottery ticket, personally, because I believe it is a waste of money. Sure, I know, you can’t win the Lottery if you don’t buy a ticket, but the odds are so astronomical that it is like burning money. That being said, had I bought a ticket, I would firmly be prepared to announce to the world my winnings. Not because I am a cocky son of a gun, but that’s because those are the rules. Get out of the kitchen if you can’t stand the heat…or something like that.

One last thing, a sports thought, the Cleveland Cavaliers. Man, I live in Ohio, but I don’t like em. Mainly because of one fellow. “The King,” or whatever, Lebron James. I’m glad they’re in turmoil. I’m glad they stink. Last night they blew a 20+ halftime lead to one of the worst teams in the worst conference in the NBA. Say what you will about Aaron Gordon, Elfrid Payton, or Nikola Vucevic, the Magic just aren’t that good. They made the Cavs look like a rebuilding team. Cleveland can’t defend anyone this year, which leads me to a hot take that no one will remember: the Cavaliers will not make the Eastern Conference Finals. You heard me. I think the Eastern Conference Finals this year come down to the Wizards and the Celtics. But who am I?

Anyway, I’ll have a less random post coming later…these are just some thoughts burning in my mind. Stay warm (or if you are warm, stay classy).

You’re Going to Like This

Doritos are awesome. Chicken is awesome. When you combine the two, the result is awesome.

Yesterday I had a good, dumb idea. Why not make chicken that is covered in crushed up Doritos? If people can make chicken bakes that are covered in cornflakes, surely the deliciousness that is Doritos would be even better. Spoiler alert, it was.

Now, I’m not going to tell you that this was life-changing (it was) or Earth-shattering (totally was) but I will tell you it rocked (in an epic way not too far off of the feeling you get when you are front row at an Imagine Dragons concert…or, at least I imagine).

I used most of a regular bag of Doritos, crushed em, and put em in a shallow Tupperware container. Meanwhile, my beautiful fiancée mixed up some egg and milk to dip the chicken breasts in. Once the chicken had the egg mix on it, then it was covered in Doritos. Once covered, we put the Dorito-encrusted chickens in a stone from Pampered Chef and threw it in the oven for about 20 minutes. That’s it. It’s that easy.

I added a cilantro-lime rice side from Zatarains and steamed up some microwaveable broccoli and voila! An easy dinner in 30 minutes, flat.

Just so I don’t sound like a really busy mom who has a blog about making life easier on the way to soccer practice, Dos Equis Amber went real well with the food.

I definitely say give it a shot, though. It’s cheap and darn good. Plus, when you’re done cooking, you have Doritos left over for snackin!

P.S. – I got those Doritos Blaze that Tyrion advertises…they’re hot. Like I tried to see how many I could eat without getting a drink…I ate 7. Eater’s discretion advised.

Disappointment

Let me qualify what I am about to say with this: I love queso and I enjoy Chipotle. The taste of that cilantro-rice with their fresh meat and really good salsa just works together really well. And queso…well…c’mon. There is no better dip for your chip.

I mean, a jar of Tostitos queso and whatever tortilla chips there are in the house is my number one pick for a Saturday or Sunday of football. Tastes amazing, and cleanup is just tossing stuff in the fridge (if there is some left) or the trash. The easy cleanup has it just ahead of Velveeta&Rotel, to me, because you have to make that queso, meaning there is a pot to clean.

Heck, in a pinch, melting some cheese on top of your chips is a solid play.

Heres where my posture turns.

Chipotle made queso. The one thing their menu lacked. My friends and I have always agreed, should Chipotle make queso, world domination would not be far behind for the Tex-mex giant. Chipotle becoming a hotbed for killer foodborn disease notwithstanding, the restaurant has actually blundered with their installment of the cheesy delight.

It sucks. I really don’t know how else to describe it. Chipotle got caught up in some glory battle over fresh ingredients or something and made a not-so-good-tasting product. By itself on a tortilla chip, it actually tasted more like cheddar potato soup. I was incredulous. All they had to do was take some of their delicious salsa and some of their fresh cheese and combine the two. Whatever they did instead of that created something more confusing than auto insurance fine print. Once combined with a burrito, taco, whatever you get at Chipotle, it completely disappears. I got it on my bowl and couldn’t tell it was there. Thinking I was losing it, I grabbed a chip, scooped some queso, and added some rice from the bowl (and only rice) and I was unable to tasks the queso of which I had a good bit of on the chip.

Starting at $1.25 to add it to your burrito, it’s a bit costly. By this line in the blog I’m sure you are thinking “Okay, maybe you’re overreacting? Is it possible you hyped it up too much and were betrayed by your own expectations?” The answer is no. Not at all. This stuff sucks. Don’t waste your money on it.

Bottom line, if you want queso on your Chipotle, do this. Go to Kroger, buy some Tostitos queso, then go to Chipotle and order your stuff. Then combine. Don’t waste your money or time with Chipotle not-queso.

Passing Down a Little Knowledge

If you like IPAs, you will love Rhinegeist’s newest year-round brew, Knowledge. Having had a few I can tell you straight up, I will be having more.

Let me get this out of the way first, I am not going to sound like an expert. From www.thegnarlygnome.com:

Intense & refined, Knowledge delivers notes of resinous pine, dank sap, pithy grapefruit, & ripe pineapple. Chewy hops, a zesty punch; this erudite Imperial India Pale Ale sharpens perceptive depths in the studious night.”

That dude knows how to say stuff about beer in a really “guy wearing a monocle and drinking out of a snifter” sort of way. Check out that website for more stuff like that.

What I have to say about beer will make sense, but won’t sound studious/scholarly/smart, just straight average Joe talking about beer. So here it goes.

Knowledge is crisp and refreshing. I love drinking it with food. It’s great with hot dogs or pizza or burgers. It also rocks out with some Doritos.

Also a plus, it sounds like it makes you smarter (even though we know with beer, that isn’t true).

I hope you don’t mind…but I’m going to get back to drinking some Knowledge.