606 – Chorka • 15

Splitting the Cheechakos from the Sourdoughs, One Balaclava at a Time.

Thank the Unicorn for Mindlab International. Bravely they explore the frontiers of science-ish discovery and scientific-looking polls to bring us the information we absolutely could not live without. Namely, an enormous risk that has risen it’s ghastly head to menace our cousins across the pond… the dreaded tea biscuit.

That’s right y’all. British newspaper The Telegraph reports that according to a Mindlab survey, over 25 million adult Britons have injured themselves… with cookies. Now lest I arouse any British ire with this bit, I feel I should in all fairness point out that I recently made an emergency trip to the dentist after a Burger King fish sandwich, so you aren’t really alone. Of course, I’d never give a fish sandwich to a baby.

Injuries range from the expected, (dunking in scalding tea) to the unusual, (poking themselves in the eye) to the kinda bizzare. (Getting stuck in concrete because of a cookie.) Five hundred of the reported injuries resulted in hospital visits.

The number one offender among cookies, with 1.41 million casualties to it’s name, was the Custard Cream. (Oreos, Hydrox, Nutter Butters and the like all fit into this category.) The least dangerous cookie was the Jaffa Cake, which is a chocolate covered sponge cake with an orange jelly filling. (Though according to a ruling from the Court of England jaffa cakes are properly cakes and not biscuits at all.) The cookie-sized sponge cakes were responsible for laying only 290,000 Britons low.

I have decided, upon gathering this information, to begin sending one package of Oreos a week to Brit Hume, news anchor for the Fair and Balanced Fox News. Brit (The name was an unintentional coincidence, I swear. Long live the Queen!) recently stated that if Tiger Woods wanted to end his troubles and redeem himself in the eyes of Amurica he should renounce Buddhism and become a Christian. I swear to Pasta that sometimes I feel like I’m living in the looking glass, and any minute the Queen of Hearts is going to slip up behind me and cut off my head because I didn’t ask for “freedom fries” at the drive-through.

The more cookies Brit eats (or stabs himself in the face with… whatever) the better chance I will have of losing some weight. I have been putting off making a serious effort for a long time, but I’m finally out of excuses. Over the weekend I bought a new scale, and I’m finally changing my eating habits to go along with riding the elliptical every morning. It’s too early to tell if the effort will stick, but I am very hopeful. If I fail, there is no one to blame but myself.

After all, cookies just aren’t worth the risk.

22 Responses to 606 – Chorka • 15

  1. Hah, Oreos being menaces to British teeth?

    I feel bad for them. There’s a cookie that would be outlawed, mostly native on my country. They’re really, really hard cookies made with ginger, known mostly as cucas (just, don’t try to Google it unless you add “ginger” to the search words. There’s a similar cookie from Colombia, but it’s not made of ginger). The signature property of the cookies, aside from their particular taste (not a strong ginger taste, and only slightly sweet) is how insanely hard they are.

    Though, I fear it’s that the tea-loving Brits have weak teeth. I had my little niece eat bits and pieces of cucas, with only part of her full baby teeth released, and she crunched them with virtually no trouble. Me and my older teeth required some care to crunch them. I’d fear what would tea-lovers do if they were to eat these cookies.

    And as a heads-up: they’re still hard even when you place them on your mouth and try to moisten them. They would serve lovely as tea biscuits, tho.

    • I kinda doubt that modern Brits have any weaker teeth than anyone else, I imagine that they simply consume more cookies than most. If you’re around cookies every day, your chances of having an accident with one is dramatically higher than other cultures where cookies are only an occasional treat. Which is of course what makes it so funny here.

      I was thinking that the cucas might be like ginger snaps here. The flavors seem similar, and snaps are also very hard. Ginger snaps are much thinner, (than the pix I saw of cucas) making them brittle so they crunch up nicely when you eat them.

      Many tea drinkers dunk their biscuits to soften them up, although this activity was actually the number one cause of injury, and not tooth damage.

      • Its true about the tea, they boil it in a… teapot… instead of single cups, the tea remains at boiling or just under when you pour it.

        I learned a lot about tea on my trip to England. There is tea and then there is tea.

        • Oh yes. And we are rightly and roundly mocked for our tea here in the States. Brits commonly brew “long leaf” tea for their cups, while we we quaff large glasses of syrupy sweet short leaf tea. In fact however, this is the same type of plant, and the same type of leaf, except that “short leaf” is what British drinkers would refer to as “leftovers”. It is the scrap remains of the better tasting and more expensive whole, or “long” leaves. (Technically, if it’s not from the camellia sinensis plant, it ain’t tea, but an herbal infusion.) It’s also much much cheaper to produce.

  2. I think the reason that the least dangerous cookie was the Jaffa Cake, is because orange jelly filling is just… gross. I mean, how many people can actually stomach those? 😕

        • I don’t know how much truth and how much expression of willpower goes into your statement but I do know that if you cut out all the normal sources of too much sugar in your diet for a while–ketchup and most other cheap condiments, soft drinks, pastry and baked goods you didn’t make yourself, all the freezer-aisle desserts–your tastes will change. They will change a lot.
          I discovered I was lactose intolerant in my teenage years and now I basically can’t stand shit with butter, cream, milk, yoghurt and their derivatives in it (with a few bizarre exceptions). It took me much less than a year for my tastes to change that dramatically. Better news for this new-year’s resolution: Modern excessive sugar and sweetener intake takes less time to get out of the habit of as long as you are certain about cutting out that shit from your diet.
          The most surprising thing about trying to do so is that nearly the only things in the grocery store that are safe from this stuff is raw ingredients or products that simply can’t be sweetened. (Unless you’re going to the hippy store.) If, like me, you try to go for a triple-play and cut out the known-dangerous ingredients (including especially hydrogenated oils and fats) and the genetically modified organisms (modern genetically modified soyabeans in particular are much worse than the natural kind) in the diet this is pretty much impossible at a regular grocery store and harder than you might think even at a hippy grocery store.
          Good luck with trying in any case, even managing one of the three will make a noticeable improvement in your longevity and health prospects as you age.

          • So far AC, and we’re only a week into this, Lena and I have been making a pronounced effort not to eat “diet”, but to eat well. We’ve been steering towards whole foods, grains, greens, fruits and fish, with as much organic as is practical. There are many chefs out there today with all kinds of help on eating SO much better for you, while still getting to eat really delicious food. The intrawebs are a godsend.

            We are trying to push processed foods out the window as much as is possible, and are becoming scrupulous label readers. Diary, sugar, and corn syrup are on the definite no-fly list. We never ate much red meat anyway, so that’s an easy one to chop, and stevia, agave, and honey (in that order) are now the only “sweeteners” we use.

            We’re still learning but at this stage of the game we’re really excited about our prospects and our plan.

  3. I fear scones…

    on another related Note, I received a Wii Fit Plus for Christmas, and well I didn’t really think I was that overweight, I was very fit in High School and for a little while was in great shape at College, since joining the work force and sitting on my ass 10 hours a day I have slipped a little… maybe a lot.

    So nothing actually got me into working out again to the affect that being weighed everyday by the Wii Fit and seeing how FAT my Wii character portrays me seriously pissed me off, and now I do about an hour of working out with the Wii a day if not more. I have to say it is actually a lot of fun, and the games you play are fairly entertaining.

    I do have a gym membership but for some reason running for 20 minutes while watching the news just is not as entertaining as standing on a scale and flapping my arms up and down frantically to ‘fly’ to a landing pad for 30 points.

    Keep at it Kevin, eventually when your muscles get warmed up it will make your body more alive, it is a great feeling. It doesn’t matter what you look like just how you feel.

    • Thanks Chris. I grew up overweight, and at 21 (and 310 pounds) decided to lose the weight. By 22 I was hard and trim, and it DID feel like I had come alive. I used to say it was as if I had been asleep my whole life up until then and had suddenly woken up.

      These days, for reasons which properly deserve their own blog, I have fallen back into my old habits and need once more to lose the weight. It’s harder now… not as many think because I am older… now twice the age I was the first time… but because I am married. Alone you are only prey to your own weaknesses, as a couple you are both prey to each other’s as well. You both need to be equally committed… and that’s hard.

      I really appreciate your comment though Chris. I had wondered if anyone was going to mention it, and I’m glad that you did. I think I might tack a bit onto the end of each Friday blog to let everyone know how I’m doing, and to help keep me honest.

  4. Losing weight is hard as Hell Kev, my wife is trying trying trying and it’s slow going. She lost a lot of weight after our first kid was born, but then gained it back when she got pregnant with our second. Now it’s an uphill battle, and you’re right about it being a team effort. Unfortunately I’m not much of a cheerleader as I tend to sit on the side lines and say “You can do it” while eating ice cream and cake. But I’m trying to be better about helping her out, god knows I could stand to lose a few pounds too so eating squash and going for a walk now and again probably won’t kill me. But apparently cookies might, so there’s that.

    Liked the comic today. Reminds me of playing Everquest back in the day and having some noob run by yelling “TRAIN” with a war party of orcs up his ass. I was always the guy who stood his ground and either killed them all, or died gloriously.

    • If either of those actions occurred it wasn’t a very good train.

      A good train is “anyone it catches up to dies immediately”.

      • Yeah, well I played a Barbarian Warrior so immediately took a little longer with me. Most of the time it was about a dozen or so orcs chasing some bard who had no reason to be there in the first place as it was waaaaaay above his level. So I had a fighting chance whereas everyone around me mostly ran away on the off chance they might die. Thanks to my noble sacrifice they did not die, since most of the orcs stopped to slaughter me before moving on to the easier prey. And every now and again some noble hero would stand and fight by my side, for about an orc or two, then run away leaving me to get stabbed in the back. Ah, noble indeed.

        • I find it’s easier to be supportive of your wife’s efforts to lose weight when you picture your life without her. That’s some real motivation.

          I kept a macro on hand for yelling at people that there was a train coming… and that I was at the head of it. Still it wasn’t always enough. A guildie had spent months getting to 55th level so he could get his title (or last name, or whatever it was) and had just popped into the caves under Luclin to show it off when he ran straight into me and about 50 of my new best friends. They slaughtered him, he lost the level, the title, and got so angry he deguilded himself.

          Heh heh.

        • Well, I was a bard who considered himself a train artiste. (Note the E for extra pretension!) I could nab every single mob in a zone. I once, at level 58, got caught up by my train of The Warrens, and was literally chainstunned (by the hundreds of level 3-8 mobs) for the entirety of the time it took to kill me (approximately a minute?). I couldn’t even turn around to deftdance, I was just… paralyzed.

          So in a level appropriate zone, if I had a train, it WAS instant death to ANYONE. After I got fade, though, no one ever died from them, just glorious glorious screenshots.

          Anyways, yeah, being a barb war doesn’t mean it was a good train. I SCOFF at your claims! SCOFF!

  5. losing weight is hard as hell, but have you ever tried gaining weight when your underweight? trust me its even harder I would know =/