Originally intended to document my experience of DeLorean ownership, focus is often radical and strange, boring and obtuse.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Maple Leaf Charcoal

Maple Leaf charcoal from Quebec. Thankfully my last meal wasn't as far back in the past as my last charcoal review. I know there are thousands of you out there dying for my reviews each week and I want to personally thank you for your patience. Rest assured that I have been trying many different charcoals.

At the start of the grilling season I spotted another kind of charcoal I'd never seen before. I picked it up immediately as it was only $8 for this 8.8 lb. (4 kg) bag. One-dollar-per-pound is a rough benchmark for me. Once it rises above that I start to question buying it, although that hasn't always stopped me.

I was happy to see that this was a Canadian product, originating in the tres petite town of Ste. Christine, Quebec. Town? Wait, sorry. Village. Shit. A village has over 1,000 people. A hamlet. Yes, that's what I meant, the tres petite hamlet of Ste. Christine, Quebec.

It is now the end of July and my bag of Maple Leaf Charcoal is long gone.

I used the entire bag making regular hot dogs (read: lots of hoofs and beaks), Kosher hot dogs (54% of your daily intake of fat, anyone?), super juicy Johnsonville sausages, veggie dogs, and of course hamburgers (because I can't survive on tube-shaped meat alone!)

There was no scrap in the bag. It consisted of mostly good size pieces of wood which looked like this, and it smelled fantastic. However, the smell did not transfer fully to the food like some of the other charcoals I've tried. Although this was quality wood with no sparking, the smokey taste was almost too mild. Some of you might say it's perfect, but I think I would prefer it a bit stronger.

Still, when you consider price per pound, Maple Leaf is less expensive than the Royal Oak Star Grill charcoal and in my opinion, far superior. Would I buy it again? I think the answer is an obvious yes. However, if you're still not sure - the answer is Oui.

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Tuesday, July 23, 2013

A DeLorean-Powered Fridge

Using one bit of stainless to power another!This past weekend a tremendous storm caused a colossal power failure in my city. We were without power for almost 3 full days as two transformers exploded and electrical lines caught fire just a street away.

But I was prepared for the zombie apocalypse with my 2000 watt inverter.

Our hydro company, a bunch of douchebags, refused to even acknowledge that our neighbourhood was powerless. A day passed and still no trucks and no information available. Not knowing when power would return, furious neighbours stormed the grocery stores with pitchforks and bought up all the ice supplies.

As they returned home some of the curious ones asked me why my garage was open, and why my DeLorean was running. The answer?

I splurged on a garage door opener with a battery backup - and my 32 year old DeLorean was powering my fridge. Pretty ironic if you know the original BTTF Time Machine was supposed to be a fridge.

Le extension cord. It's tres long.Most people use inverters for... well... I really don't know. Comfort camping? Doing karaoke on the way to work? Building birdhouses with power tools inside minivans in remote areas? Anyway, the inverter allowed me to plug in my fridge for quite some time. I simply ran the extension cord through the garage door, into the house and around the corner to the fridge.

It was a hot day, and the DeLorean idling in the garage quickly raised the temperature to 32C - but my Toby fans ran strong. Everything was looking good, and envious neighbours said "Wow" a lot.

In the end however, the inverter gave out. Apparently a 520 watt fridge is too much for a self-proclaimed "Heavy Duty" 2000 watt inverter to handle. Thanks, Motomaster!

But soon hydro was restored. I suppose in an alternate 1985 we would've had to throw out the entire contents of the fridge. But as it turns out we only lost some frozen bread, shrimp, corn and bananas. And I don't mind. Because I certainly wasn't about to make a shrimp/corn/banana sandwich.

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Monday, July 15, 2013

Mario's Not Interested in my Lawn Mushrooms

Stupid, ultra-boring white mushroom in my backyard, does not make me grow big.When a bright red one caught my attention about 2 weeks ago, I suddenly and inexplicably became interested in mushrooms. Mushrooms are generally kind of terrible. I have never liked them. I've also never understood people's fascination with them, despite growing up (no pun intended) on Super Mario Bros.

Within a few days of spotting the red 'shroom I discovered a fairly medium-sized cluster of glossy brown mushrooms growing beneath my crabapple tree. Unfortunately, they were trampled by my nephews before I thought to take a photo.

However, that led to mushroom research which, upon discovering how delicate some of them are, led to obsessive early morning mushroom hunts in my backyard. How delicate are mushrooms? By noon the shrivelled 'shroom corpses are collapsing all over themselves. By the end of the day there's often no evidence left at all.

I know nothing about mushrooms. I don't know why they grow straight out of grass, how long they take to grow or which ones are edible. But I do know that they are part of a good ecosystem. When you have mushrooms, you have a good party. I mean a healthy lawn.

Tiny shrooms, sun was just coming up.In the past I'd noticed a couple here and there, but never this many. Every morning I find a new crop of them. Most are the ubiquitous white things that if you said to a child, "draw me a mushroom" they would replicate perfectly and boringly. Others are mega-tiny, with flat brown tops.

Never before had I been curious about mushrooms, and I admit this interest is probably going to be fleeting. Especially if all I can find are these boring white coneheads! I want my poisonous spotty mushrooms!

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