So I had some extra time the other day and decided to slip a video tape into my vcr to watch an 80s game show called Bullseye, which was a general knowledge question and answer competition (original, I know)… but anyway, the thing that got me was the analog format of the… the analog format of the…. of the… you know, waddya-call-em flashing lights and graphics and the… the… the lighted bullseye thingy on the screen… which made me feel like a goddamn prehistoric artifact! I couldn’t believe how primitive that shit looked back then! It made the letter-turning on the Wheel of Fortune game show look like the latest Apple… Apple… uhhhh… app!
I much prefer watching the dating game shows we had back then, like for instance, The Love Connection, hosted by Chuck Woolery. I had a crush on big ‘ol Chucky-boy too! I always wanted him to put his “analog” into my “Ms. Pacman”, if you know what I mean… Anyway, on The Love Connection you got to hear about the couple’s date and how it went, which was usually not very good, which was the whole point, and you got to see how awful the hair and clothing really was back then! This show was our version of online dating, only it was on t.v. instead of the computer. I guess you could call it I’m-on-t.v.-dating!
ahem. stupid, never mind.
Anyway, dating game shows were one of my favorite t.v. programs back in the 80s. Those, and the awkward, first-generation televised cooking shows featuring amateur television chefs trying to present a good show. This was well before being subjected to the pompous, mind-numbing chef-turned-mega-asshole-cooking shows on the goddamn Food Network of today!
We happen to be in the midst of one of the most historically diverse periods of chefology and cookery that we’ve ever experienced; where the chefs-turned-mega-assholes create some of the most unusual and exotic (read: overwrought) dishes that have the pleasure (or distaste) to grace (or grease) our plates!
Fortunately, there remain some of the classics; dishes that have survived the test of time due to their simplicity, authenticity and flavor. Shrimp scampi, eggs Benedict, creamed spinach, lobster Thermador, and so on, and so on… I’ll take oysters Rockefeller over a fat-wrapped, sriracha-dipped oyster topped with cucumber sputum and essence of duck fart any day of the week!
But there are some dishes that beg to be laid to rest; put in the cemetery; flushed down the pipes; given the slip; taken to the cleaners; hoisted up the flag pole; snagged on the fishing line; made like a tree and leave; get off the pot; say sayonara to; zip it and go; take this job and shove it up your… oh sorry, wrong subject…
…such as the dish I had at Brophy Bros. restaurant in Ventura the other day. Shrimp scampi (okay, fine) with a choice of rice pilaf or french fries… hmmm, wasn’t that hot in the 80s? I mean c’mon, rice pilaf? Isn’t that a dish your grandmother made for special occasions? Rice pilaf is not a San Francisco treat to me, my fuzzy little foodie friends! My idea of a San Francisco treat is a tall, dark transgender, closely resembling Dr. Frankenfurter, wearing candy underwear and carrying a six-pack of beer! Now that’s a…
ahem. forget I said that.
I didn’t even get veggies as a choice with my meal unless I wanted to pay 2 extra bucks for ‘em! Or rather, that my date had to pay 2 extra bucks for, since he picked up the tab. Yes, of course, I ordered them; a Girl’s gotta have her veggies!
Shrimp scampi, a classic dish that should always remain; stick like tape; stay the course; feel the love; keep the change; join the circus; claim the fame; read like a book; live and let live; Gumby and Pokey; take this job and shove it up your…. oh sorry, wrong subject again…
…but yeah, it wasn’t good. The sauce was thick, goopy and waaaay oversalted and the shrimp were overcooked. Not good. My date’s dish, which was a sesame salmon salad, was excellent though! Modern, tasty, and well executed, it was a dish that I’d go back there for, if I ever get the urge to go back in time…
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