food

#food

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Plate of Shrimp. Wikipedia photo by Souprascoco (CC BY-SA 3.0)
Plate of Shrimp. Wikipedia photo by Souprascoco (CC BY-SA 3.0)
300-pound New York Jets right guard Randy Thomas spent much of his time at training camp every year trading restaurant tips on local all-you-can-eat buffets. Major's Steak House, on Long Island, was one favorite. And East-West, an all-you-can-eat Chinese restaurant in New Jersey? It was a favorite too—until Thomas ran afoul of the management one day for packing away sixteen lobster tails. "I've f---ed up some buffets, man," Thomas said. "I don't worry about my fat, I just f---in' eat." Thomas's favorite features of the Jets training camp cafeteria? Unlimited portions and free food. "S---, if it's free it's for me, you know what I'm saying?" Amusingly, Thomas once lost a shrimp-eating contest to Sonya Thomas, a 105-lb woman ...
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Monaco, Monte Carlo. Credit: Martinp1 (<a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0">CC BY-SA 3.0</a>)
Monaco, Monte Carlo. Credit: Martinp1 (CC BY-SA 3.0)
Millionaire businessman James Bennett once discovered, and began to frequent, a restaurant in Monte Carlo whose mutton chops he considered perfect. One evening, he arrived to find someone seated at his favorite table. His solution? He immediately purchased the restaurant for $40,000, asked the diners at his table to leave, even though they were only halfway through their meal, enjoyed a serving of mutton chops, and returned the restaurant to its previous owner. [On another occasion, Bennett tipped a guard on the Train Bleu running between Paris and Monte Carlo $14,000. The guard left the train, resigned from his post, and opened a restaurant.]
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New Jersey Devils goaltender Martin Brodeur during a game against the Ottawa Senators at Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey, on November 25, 2009. Credit: slgckgc (<a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0">CC BY 2.0</a>)

New Jersey Devils goaltender Martin Brodeur during a game against the Ottawa Senators at Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey, ...(more)

"There's a moment when all the aches and pains are worthwhile," New Jersey Devils goalie Martin Brodeur declared in 2000, "when you get to hoist the Stanley Cup. Unlike other sports, where the trophy sits behind glass somewhere, in hockey you get to hang out with the Stanley Cup. Everyone on the team gets a turn taking it home. When we won it in 1995, I drove around Montreal with the Cup in the passenger seat—wearing a seat belt. It just about stopped traffic. "This year I took it home and had a party for my buddies. We played a street-hockey game, and we had the Cup on the sidewalk. The police closed the street, and 50 people came ...
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Franz von Lenbach's portrait of Bismarck in his 75th year
Franz von Lenbach's portrait of Bismarck in his 75th year
Otto von Bismarck, enraged by Rudolf Virchow's constant criticism, one day ordered his seconds to arrange a duel. Virchow, known as "the father of modern pathology," consented, with a small stipulation: "As the challenged party, I have the choice of weapons," he explained, "and I choose these two large sausages... One," he continued, "is infected with deadly germs. The other is perfectly sound. Let His Excellency decide which he wishes to eat, and I shall eat the other." The chancellor, informed of the Virchow's response, called the duel off with a burst of laughter. [Fun fact: Dueling is legal in Paraguay as long as both parties are registered blood donors.]
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Irwin Shaw c. 1933 (Wikipedia photo)
Irwin Shaw c. 1933 (Wikipedia photo)
After waiting an absurdly long time for a waiter to take his order in a French restaurant one day, the writer Irwin Shaw was finally approached by the maitre d', who politely informed him that snails were the specialty of the house. "I know," he replied, "and you've got them dressed as waiters."
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Heinz 57 Varieties fridge magnet
Heinz 57 Varieties fridge magnet
Despite his intention to become a Lutheran minister, Henry J. Heinz found himself in the condiment business. He developed more varieties than the 57 which famously figure in the company's motto, but he stuck to that number anyway. Why? It had come to him in a mystic vision he had while riding the New York City subway. Heinz marketing material c.1909
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Battle Creek Sanitarium
Peanut Butter in the jar. Credit: PiccoloNamek
Peanut Butter in the jar. Credit: PiccoloNamek
In 1895, St. Louis doctor John Harvey Kellogg filed a patent for a "process of preparing nut meal." His "spread of steamed peanuts" had been specially designed as a food for patients in his sanitarium (the Battle Creek Sanitarium in Battle Creek, Michigan) requiring an easily digestible source of protein. Ironically, the food proved to be unpopular with patients—but, as peanut butter, found huge success with the population at large. [The Kellogg Company was founded a decade later, in 1906, by Kellogg's son Will Keith Kellogg.]
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Charles Monroe Schulz ( November 26, 1922 – February 12, 2000) was a 20th-century American cartoonist best known worldwide for his Peanuts comic strip. Credit: Roger Higgins, World Telegram staff photographer (Public domain)

Charles Monroe Schulz ( November 26, 1922 – February 12, 2000) was a 20th-century American cartoonist best known worldwide for ...(more)

"Peanuts" creator Charles M. Schulz's comic vision was inspired by a childhood (in Saint Paul, Minnesota) punctuated by a series of misfortunes and failures. One day the future cartoonist went to see a movie at a theater which had promised chocolate bars to the first 100 children who arrived. Naturally, Schulz was the 101st kid in line. [The "Peanuts" comics were largely autobiographical: Schulz's father, for example, was a barber, just like Charlie Brown's. And Snoopy was inspired by Schulz's childhood family pet, Spike.]
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Damocles and Dionysius, by Richard Westall (<a href=https://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/>CC0</a>)
Damocles and Dionysius, by Richard Westall (CC0)
One day, Damocles—a sycophantic member of Dionysius the Elder's court in the Greek colony of Syracuse (in Italy)—remarked upon the apparent ease of the tyrant's life.  Shortly thereafter, by way of reply, Dionysus invited the man to feast at a splendid banquet—with a sword suspended, by a single horsehair, directly above his head.  [Thus the term "sword of Damocles" connoting imminent danger.]
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A Birds Eye Frosted Foods ad from the 1950s
A Birds Eye Frosted Foods ad from the 1950s
When Clarence Birdseye introduced the first frozen food in 1930, it was feared that the word "frozen" would suggest freezer burn and scare away customers. Birdseye's solution? He simply called it "frosted" food.