Fake food

Monday I found out the ingredients of the ''eggs" at Subway and McDonald’s for their breakfast sandwiches via a post by David DiSalvo on Forbes.

"Consider the egg. Simple, delicious, and incredibly easy to prepare. And yet, if you peruse the nutritional listings of America's favorite fast food restaurants, quite a different picture of the egg emerges -- and it's anything but simple. I took a look at the published ingredient lists for six fast food mainstays that sell"

This just underscores the importance of knowing what is in your food, the mega corporations do not your best interest in mind, their responsibilities are to maximize profits for their shareholders and to obey the applicable local laws to where they operate.

Now I have a little extra incentive not to hit the snooze button or three extra times in the morning. If I am running late, the plan is now to hit Burger King for my egg sandwich fix, or McDonald’s for their oatmeal. I’d rather not pay what McDonald’s charges for oatmeal, two of those and I can get a box of Quaker, I don’t even know how much the organic stuff costs, but it can’t be too far off from the Quaker.

Yesterday saw a slight reduction in weight, to 173.4 pounds. Body fat measured in at 19 percent body fat. Total body water was 55.5 percent.

Food: Organic oatmeal, bottled water, Taco Bell Taco Locos x3 add tomatoes, sub beans for meat, Large slice of red velvet cake, small Pepsi. Dinner was Whole grain pasta with marinara, filtered water.

Today's workout consisted of 1 set speed-jacks, 3 sets of lunges, 3 sets of pushups, 3 sets side-bridge per side.

Today's weigh-in: 172.2 pounds with 18 percent body fat. 56 percent total body water.

Today's food: 2 to 3 handfuls of French fry wedges, filtered water, 3 slices of Pizza Hut thin crust Pineapple pizza, 3 slices of their Hershey’s desert (not that great and very sticky, plus it had a bit of the oily taste from regular breadsticks), tall glass of Coke, bottled water.

Kacey Green

This post brought to you from deep within the thought-stream of Tangent.

Mythbusting

People in general are resistant to change, but they seem to take it to the next level sometimes here in the Southeast. Alternative fueled vehicles, hybrids, and now electric and range-extended electric vehicles don’t seem to get a fair shake here.

People seem to have some sort of idea in their heads about how things work and they don’t care to be informed further than what they think they are. Like my Volt people assume it’s slow, that it consumes monstrous amounts of electricity, that it can explode into a fiery ball of flames or that it works something like the Toyota Prius. Thankfully people try to keep an open mind when seeing the vehicle in the flesh.

Hybrids are slow

My Volt turns into a hybrid when it runs out of charge; it is an electric vehicle the other 93% of the time I’ve owned it. It can do 101 miles per hour in EV mode with no gasoline assistance; until it burns all of the charge (I’m curious how long it can maintain top speed on EV only). The car has more torque than many V6 sedans (273 lb.-ft., the power to get you up to speed) and a similar amount of horsepower (149 horsepower, the power to keep you going) to a 4 cylinder engine. My vehicle hasn’t lost a stoplight to speed limit heat yet (closed course do not attempt). Something I enjoy doing when leaving a stoplight is to leave everyone behind by three or more car-lengths, and the people around here don’t know how to conservatively take off from a stoplight, if you aren’t doing 30mph in one car-length you get all kinds of dirty looks. I prefer to take off at 2 mph per second until I get to the speed limit when I’m driving for fuel economy, people whip around me like I’d just cut them off when I drive like this.

You’re just trading a gas bill for an electric bill

The vehicle has a 16 KWh battery but it only exposes 9.7-10.2 of that for you to use. At 110 volt charging there are more charging losses due to the thinner cables and the increased amount of time the battery heating or cooling system runs vs. the 240 volt charging. This equates to 8-10 hours on 110v for a full charge vs. ~4 on 220v. At the rates I’m charged for electricity it’s about $1.02 per charge (and I don’t often drain the battery upon arriving home) at the rates they pay at work it’s about 75¢ to 80¢ for a full charge, again I don’t often have a completely drained battery, but it can get pretty close. My commute is 42 miles each way. I was spending $200 a month in gas before I got this car, now fuel is under $40 a month.

That car is dangerous

This is usually based on an unrealistic test conducted on the vehicle in the lab, about three weeks after a severe crash with a completely full battery (my battery starts dropping the minute I leave my driveway) a test vehicle caught fire in the scrapyard. This is similar to doing the same thing with a gasoline powered car and leaving the tank full after a severe crash. Both cars have approved methods to drain their fuel. The possibility of this rare situation happening was eliminated with a fix from General Motors and verified by the same agency that found the possibility. The two fires involving Volts in garages were ruled by their fire marshals to not be the cars or their charging equipment. One of those two cases involved a home-built electric car in addition to the Volt but it was ruled out too.

I know how a hybrid works

What’s your point? The Volt doesn’t operate as a hybrid until the battery runs below the usable threshold (EPA ~35 miles, for me ~50 miles) then it operates similar to the Prius. It doesn’t often operate in a mode comparable to the Honda hybrids or GM’s belt assisted hybrids, or GM’s E-assist system. The converted plug-in Prius vehicles and the official Toyota-built Plug-in Prius operate much like the original vehicle, in-fact if you dab the accelerator too hard or go too fast the vehicle will start the engine, and the rated range is only 15 miles. The scenarios where the Volt will start the engine when the battery isn’t empty are: 

  1. When it’s really cold out, below 25 degrees Fahrenheit (and only briefly)
  2. When you haven’t used the engine in 6 weeks
  3. When the fuel in the tank is older than 1 year
  4. When the user has selected mountain mode and driven past the new shortened threshold for calling the battery empty
  5. Finally if you open the hood while the vehicle is energized and not in service mode

People tend to see a car and compare it to the only two reference points they have, how much gas their car burns (usually in the 25mpg range) or how much their house air conditioner uses (when they set it to arctic and it runs constantly, this actually is kind of accurate but it's more like doing this for just 1 hour, the vehicle can only hold so much of either type of fuel, electricity or gasoline)

Kacey Green

This post brought to you from deep within the thought-stream of Tangent.

Like Spock, Alone time, and food & workout journal

Like Spock

A good way to think of me is like Mr. Spock from Star Trek, my emotions are there below the surface and very strong, but I often refuse to acknowledge or show them, many times it's because I can't describe them or perhaps I feel I'll be ridiculed or thought weak. Unfortunately, unlike Spock there is no cool death-grip and a much shorter short-term memory. Like Spock I value logic, truth, and enlightenment over the touchy feely stuff, particularly when someone’s gut feeling is wrong and nor even close. That isn’t to say I don’t appreciate or have feelings, but the other concepts of logic and truth are easier to grok.

Just like Spock, I am at my best when I embrace both my social/emotional and my logical sides. It seems this will be a life journey, especially since I went from being extremely shy to working with the public, albeit in small groups at a time. Progress is being made integrating my logical, analytical self with the side that wants to jump with joy, or weep sorrowfully. My sense of humor taps both sides already, I love a good joke, but many involving social situations aren’t funny to me and I need someone to explain these jokes to me sometimes.

Alone time

After a day "socializing" I do need alone time to regenerate (oh snap, this is like Spock's meditating) and recover. I process much of what I see of other people’s interactions, and how to react social situations using my analytical brain. My social brain skates trough life like a super spoiled kid, or a kid dropped on its head with its favorite sibling or a close friend covering for all its little mistakes.

Just like a real naïve kid, my social brain sometimes really screws things up when its champion (the sibling or understanding friend, aka my logical brain) has their back turned for a moment. An example is how I have learned most questions where a female asks me about her looks are loaded, I cannot tell which situations warrant a particular answer, and which are traps. I don’t know when to say or not to say, “oh that looks good,” and “you don't look fat”, so my default is not to answer and try to change the subject to more familiar turf.

Obviously social brain tried to answer these queries once or twice while logical brain was preoccupied with something else or logical didn't correctly flag the questions for deeper review. So now logical brain sounds the klaxon in these situations making me lock-up like a rusty mechanism, this prevents one type of harm while making me look very goofy rather than taking the time to re-analyze the situation for what type of answer is required.

Why the alone time? Logical brain uses more energy. If a typical person sits around doing math equations for hours straight, they will want to relax by vegging or socializing. Remember anytime I am socializing, I'm running figures and stats through my analytical brain, and if I was already doing mentally exhausting work, hanging out with more than one or two close friends pushes me past capacity, making me more error prone or agitated. This is the same as if a typical person is pushed just a bit too far on those same equations, they get angry and short with people, they make more mistakes on the task, and if pushed far enough, they don't socialize either, naptime.

 Wait, did I just describe a stereotypical geek? Yep, Aspies are often driven to fields like research, engineering, computer science, architecture, music, etc., though they are individuals just as varied as typical people, but it seems easier to see Aspies in these areas than others.

 Background tidbit

I didn't fit in with the normal kids and I was not truly special-ed, I was both gifted and in need of remedial organizational skills. In middle school, the teachers and my parents agreed it was best I just type everything rather than deal with the hand written stuff. You can see how much more I write with a keyboard, even the virtual keyboard on a phone.

Oh my!, this was supposed to be a quick note on the phone so I didn't forget what I ate; I'll polish the rough edges and post this.

Workout and food journal

Yesterday’s other foods 4/13

  • Snack: Sleeve of Smarties like at any party or found in a piñata.
  • Dinner: Mexican restaurant: bean burrito, cheese enchilada, beans, rice, 2 glasses of coke with restaurant typical amount of ice. Vegetarian item E, at Yucatan in Sumter.

Today’s foods and workout 4/14

Workout:

  • 3 sets Speed Jacks
  • 3 sets Pushups
  • 3 Wall Sits
  • 3 sets bird-dog

172.8 pounds with 19.5% fat and 55% total body water

Breakfast: Cocoa - two sleeves of Swiss Miss

Lunch: Bottle water, Japanese vegetables, and rice plate (Osaka in Sumter) can of coke

Dinner: Three pretzels with dipping sauce, 1.75 cokes with restaurant amount of ice both today's and yesterday’s cokes were in the standard coke and restaurant co-branded plastic glasses (plastic)

Maureen and I saw “Mirror Mirror”, I enjoyed it but it felt like the story dragged in a few places and it had a good amount of funny bits.

 4/15

Pami, John Robert, Gabby & I saw the new 3 Stooges movie, it was pretty funny, it probably would have been even better for someone who remembers any of the original program.

Today's "foods" were all processed junk food, this morning's weigh-in: 173.0 pounds, 19.5% fat, 55% total body water.

Kacey Green

This post brought to you from deep within the thought-stream of Tangent.
Homer Simpson ImpressionWhich Wich - Sandhill - Columbia - SCMy ClubMy Meal (spelled my name wrong)The Dreaded Brownie.jpg

Which Wich?

In pursuit of full disclosure, I paid for the following meal out of pocket; GCustom will reimburse me the full amount of my expenditure.  The following review is not a sponsored post.

I had never heard of Which Wich before moving to Columbia, I thought others might like a preview. Yesterday, I ate at Which Wich (WW) at Sand Hills, in Columbia, SC.  My brother has applied for a job here twice (the first time they lost his application), their applications are the traditional paper application plus one of their order bags.   This was unique enough that when combined with the spontaneous sounding name and decorations outside the building, that I made up my mind to try them out (that and my T-Mobile Wing picked up a free WIFI signal [802.11g unsecured]).  Now you know how I discovered this unique(ish it is a franchise) sandwich shop.

Interior:

The interior is like that of Chipotle, stainless steel and pine, but the walls were drywall, painted shades of yellow, with an exposed black painted ceiling and infrastructure (air ducts and electrical conduits etc.).  There is outside dining with umbrella-equipped tables, they seem to be close enough that you would easily hear any concerts that go on in Sand Hills' performance area.  I walked in and identified the only table with a power outlet (in the back grrr), then ordered my food. Like most trendy eateries, they had no issues with me plugging in my laptop; though I would like to see at least one or two more places with outlets.

The Food:

To order your food you pick up a baggie for the staff to put your meal in, on the front are the ordering options, there are over nine types of order baggies, you need to choose the type that corresponds to the sandwich you want, I wanted a Bacon Club so I chose number 8 or 9 "Classics".  After you place your order and pay, fill your drink (unless you ordered a shake), and pick a table, next you wait.  When the order is ready, staff members call your name (they spelled mine all kinds of wrong see photo) and some other words I could not comprehend. You can see the baggie in the picture below.  When they have finished prepping your food they put it in your order baggie, so far everything looked promising. 

Anyone who knows about me and Chipotle or Moe's will know that putting my hot food in an aluminum foil wrapper will activate some of my Pavlovian responses.  The food was pleasantly warm and not scalding, about what you would find at other Tex-Mex joints.

Inside the foil is a wrapped sandwich like you'd expect to find at Subway, Quisnos, or any other sandwich place.  The sandwich was nicely toasted and not overcooked or wilted in any way.  It could have used more flavor, but that might be due to the way I ordered it.  For instance, I don't care for whole tomatoes so if I can request not having any without offending, I will.  The Coke was well chilled and not overly carbonated (cough, Subway, cough) so I did not have to wait long for the bubbles to subside to the point where I could put more beverage in the cup before putting the top on.  I don't care for ice in my drinks due to my teeth's cold sensitivity, but I will tolerate it if not done excessively (here's lookin' at you Sonic) or if I have a straw.  I do not recommend the brownie, it tastes just like any other pre-made, pre-wrapped brownie, just tolerable, at least it was moist, most of these things taste the same but some establishments have notably dry brownies.

Final words:
I would visit again; WW has tasty, warm, wholesome foods. I might even add them to my lunch rotation but the food isn't at a level where I'd make specific trips out to go visit them, they do have a satisfaction guarantee, but I didn't have time to try it out, and it may have been my fault like I said.   I have gone on trips to other sandwich places when I am a craving for a turkey bacon club they might be one of these if my next Wich is better than the one today. The WW website indicates Sand Hills is the only location in the state; you can find all you want about them, with an obvious positive bias from their site.

Returning from the review, I spotted one Highlander hybrid, and three Prius (one twice for four sightings), if any of you are reading this, hello.

Kacey Green
KaceyGreen.com
"This post brought to you by Tangent's randomly firing synapses."