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Lost In Translation

CBS World Watch needs a new translator as witnessed by this headline: Russian, Cuban Presidents Meet Over A Nice Plate Of Lard.

They weren’t eating “lard”, which is rendered pork fat, they were eating salo which is similar to pork rinds. It is the skin and attached fat from the back of the pig which is then heavily salted, or possibly covered in pepper or paprika to preserve it. It is called salo because it is salted.

The Russians tend to slice it thin and cook it slightly before eating it on rye bread. Others eat it cold. It is the equivalent of salted butter on rye. It is really a form of bar food, as it is normally associated with drinking vodka. It does nothing good for your cardiovascular system with its high sodium and fat content.

We would fry it and call it pork rinds, but they generally don’t have as much salt and the fat layer is thinner than salo.

For whatever reason, “sky-blue salo” is a derogatory term for gays in Russian. Vladimir Sorokin got in a lot of trouble for his novel, Goluboe Salo (Sky-Blue Salo), but he never plays nice with any government in power.

January 29, 2009   3 Comments

Now It’s The Military

MSNBC reports that in the widening peanut product recall the U.S. Army the latest to pull items

Worried about salmonella, the Army said Thursday it’s removing some peanut butter items from warehouses in Europe, the latest in an ever-growing list of recalled peanut products linked to a national salmonella outbreak.

…The Army’s recall does not affect Meals-Ready-to-Eat, but another kind of military grub called Unitized Group Rations-A, which provide a complete 50-person meal.

These rations are served at field kitchens for units at remote locations. Some of them were pretty good in the ancient times when I served, and I assume they are still good, but definitely not diet food, and definitely not in individual portions.

January 29, 2009   8 Comments

Ex-Governor Blagojevich

The BBC reports that Illinois governor guilty of abuse

Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich has been ousted from office after being convicted of abusing his powers.

Senators voted 59-0 against him after an impeachment trial, despite his claim that he had “done nothing wrong” and that there was no evidence of a crime.

I haven’t been following the case closely, but I get a definite feeling that if he had “done nothing wrong”, the vote would not have been unanimous. Most people seem unaware that the appointment of a successor to Obama was not the only charge against the governor, and that he had been annoying the legislature for some time with some rather high-handed methods.

January 29, 2009   Comments Off on Ex-Governor Blagojevich