Monday, January 12, 2009

Mystery is All Boxed Up

Are there any mysteries any more? Remember when we used to just wonder about things we couldn't figure out? Then we would have to resort to either going to the library or finding some person much smarter than we were to answer our questions.

For example: What is cream of tartar? I know it's used in baking, but the name just sounds...well, wrong. Sorta like the stuff the dentist scrapes off teeth. Umm, not my teeth. Just some hypothetical person's teeth, as it were. I'm admitting to nothing here.

So anyway. Now we don't have to just wonder what this powdery, strange baking stuff is. We can just look it up in this convenient little box full of information called a computer. Just for your information, my box of information says cream of tartar is a natural, pure ingredient left behind after grape juice has fermented to wine. Other sites call it a sediment, a by-product, or a sort of crust on the side of wine bottles that is scraped off and ground up. Really not sounding that good, huh? In this case maybe it was just better not to know.

Which brings me to my next question. What is steak tartare? I've always had some vague idea about this stuff, but maybe I should really get this straight. Wikipedia, the font of all unnecessary and inaccurate information, calls it: a meat dish made from finely chopped or ground raw beef or horse meat.

Raw horse meat? Really? Who is eating this? Are they saying, "I'll take the horse meat, but I'd like that raw with some cream of tartar on the side?"

Yeah. Probably not.

So, I just type in: who eats horse tartare? and I find out it's mostly Canadians. Those crazy canucks. Is canuck an offensive, North-of-the-border slur? I don't know, so I type that in too and most of my inside sources like words@random and say it's not offensive. A hockey team is called that after all.

Which brings up icing. What the hell is that? I've been to a handful of hockey games and found them incredibly boring. All that talk of icing has always left me cold--and confused. So I asked Wikipedia again and it said: "Icing in ice hockey occurs when a player shoots the puck across at least two red lines, the opposing team's goal line being the last, and the puck remains untouched." Doesn't clear that up at all, but who cares? I'm already too bored to keep researching.

I think you probably get my point and I could easily do this all night. I'm just happy for this little box full of knowledge. Can't imagine what I did without it.

Mystery solved.


Bebe said...

I never really wondered about cream of tartar--but now that I'm enlightened, I can't believe I have lived this many years without that knowledge! Thanks for the (ir)relevant info! Love ya Olivia!

The Strosser Family said...

Mystery is not solved! Who the hell is Olivia????!!!

Lori said...

It's so funny you should write this! Steve just e-mailed me that he renewed his Driver's License on-line and I just had to wonder what the hell we did before we had the internet? I LOVE the internet!!!! But my kids seem to take for granted the cool box of information at their fingertips. If only they had to live in the olden days, huh?

SingItSistah said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
SingItSistah said...

Steak tartare in its best form... raw, freshly aged corn-fed beef wihtout a hint of gaminess, ground filet, seasoned with cracked pepper, savory salt and aromatics, optionally with a hint of olive oil and shaved parmesan, or even atouch of fresh pressed onion and garlic, served with tiny crusts of french bread and little sesame crackers with grainy french mustard ont he side, and an ice cold very dry gin martini with at least five garlic olives. Those terribly committed will even have a raw quail egg or two in the center to add to the protein-y drama. I had this at my cousins in the seventies out at the pool in Scarsdale NY, you know, with sun reflectors for the face, smoking, the maid serving, the whole bit. Now that was something to sink your (clean) teeth into....

Dana said...

Cream of tartar also makes a great silver polish. Go figure!