Ramen-lama-ding-dong

I’m mad for Ramen at the moment. In fact, any noodle soup that doesn’t obviously contain testicles, hearts or boiled egg (covert balls are ok) is floating my boat, but Ramen is the current soup de jour.

I love its simplicity: water, noodles and various, tiny pieces of unidentifiable, tasty shit; like someone has crushed a circuit board over a bowl of steaming beige wires. Yummy-tronic.

So with this simplicity in mind, I thought that it would be a cinch to make some ramen at home, in the few minutes I have at lunchtime between writing jokes and trying to keep my daughter Florence from swallowing her own fist.

ingredients of ramen
The Ingredients of Ramen (by weight)

Of course, as five minutes on the inter-tubes would reveal, there’s nothing simple about ramen at all. True to form, the Japanese have taken something which has more parts that a full-size death star built entirely out of lego and just made it look like a bowl of soup.

In hindsight, I was an idiot to think that it would be easy. The Japanese don’t believe in easy; they just believe in making things that look easy. Things that lure in arrogant interlopers with the promise of simplicity, but then reveal themselves to be as unfathomable as the bastard child of UK tax law and the off-side rule.

Unfortunately, the “She’ll be right” attitude hard-coded into my Australia genes told me to make the ramen anyway, and so with ingredients blindly purchased from a Japanese supermarket where I was too embarrassed to talk to the staff, I made what I thought was, but turned out not to be, ramen. It’s hard to describe what I actually produced, but let’s just say that “she wasn’t right”. She, was pretty far from alright. I might have gone in with the best of intentions, but I came out with something that looked cholera-infested, sump water and tasted like old socks and wet cardboard.

You know that you’ve really buggered up in the kitchen when someone who doesn’t even understand the concept of sensory perception, screws their nose up at the smell of what you’ve just created. So when Florence vomited in response to smelling my pseudo-ramen, I stopped trying to convince myself that it tasted of anything other than balls and tipped it down the sink.

So as of 4pm this afternoon the scoreline stands: JAPAN 1 – KENT 0 and I’ve learned yet another lesson about the hidden intricacies of something that looks like a piece of piss, but invariably tastes better when made by someone who knows what they’re doing.

– Kent

Out With The Oldenburg, In With The Newton

Sorry, I know it’s a little early in the day for 17th Century, European, scientific-community jokes, but I really couldn’t help myself. It was certainly better than the Gary Oldman pun that I was considering.

What this post is really about, is a new website.

As much as I liked hand-coding my site with HTML from 1999, it was getting embarrassing being the only comedian on the internet still using the <- blink - > tag, so I’ve just gone and put the whole thing on WordPress.

This will now be the default location for all comedy related things that I do, see or recommend so stay posted.

Squirrel #1

Modern Warfare 2, Super Mario Penises and many more things that probably shouldn’t be broached by two men in their 30s.

[podcast format=”video”]http://www.kentvalentine.com/podcasts/Squirrel-on-a-stick_Episode_1.m4a[/podcast]

The podcast appears here as a video but it’s just a regular audio file which you can download here: http://www.kentvalentine.com/podcasts/Squirrel-on-a-stick_Episode_1.m4a

or alternatively you can subscribe to on iTunes here: http://itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/squirrel-on-a-stick/id343659513

Delusion Smoothie

If self-delusion were an Olympic sport, I’d be on the podium with a gold medal around my neck, fist in the air like a Black Panther. I’m not black, or a panther, but that’s kind of the idea in this sport.

I can convince myself that a dawdle is a jog, that a light dusting is an adequate clean, and that reading xbox360.ign.com for 20 mins each day should be considered “work” because in 2005 I wrote two jokes about video games.

This is why I love breakfast, it’s the ultimate meal for hardcore delusionists. So many foods that in years gone by would have been firmly entrenched in the “only occasionally” section of the food pyramid, that would have been locked inside the sweet, fatty apex that crowns the foundation of boring root vegetables, fruit and lean meats; have somehow worked their way down to the more acceptable sections in what must surely be nutritional voodoo, pure and simple.

Smoothies, muffins and banana-bread (aka milkshakes, cup-cakes and banana-CAKE) have all been making appearances in the AM, littering the desks of office-workers around the world, too strapped for time to eat a bowl of muesli at home before work.
Is it any wonder that we’re living in the fattest countries on Earth? Not when we’re all jamming cake and milkshakes into our face-holes before the clock has even struck nine.

Now a normal, socially conscious person might feel the urge to speak out against this madness that we’re engaging in, but I freaking love it. Back in the eighties I use to have to subtly sneak an extra spoonful of brown sugar, past my Mum and onto my Weet-Bix each morning in order to satisfy the sugar craving that will ultimately cripple me with type two diabetes; but now I just say “I’ll have a banana smoothie please”.

Everybody loves smoothies, and rightly so, they’re amazing. Some love the fruity taste, some love the cold freshness of the milk, but I best love the moment that I spend each morning, deluding myself that a drink with ice-cream in it is the cornerstone of a healthy breakfast. Yum!

– Fatty Valentine