Category Archives: Tenderloining

I Scream: Hilton Field Work

Today’s food adventure took me to Ames. To the cathedral known as James H. Hilton Coliseum. A storied basketball (and other sports like volleyball and gymnastics) venue where the Iowa State men went undefeated and the women went 13-2. I had this adventure at the final home game of the season. March 2. It was the first time I had ice cream since November. I went to the game with Alexis (who went in Carla’s place) and Teresa.

The opponent was the Cincinnati Bearcats. On the menu was the Clone Cone.

Here are some pictures:


I SCREAM: Hilton Field Work

I SCREAM: Hilton Field Work
You can barely make out the Clone Cone stand from the end of the line.

I SCREAM: Hilton Field Work

I SCREAM: Hilton Field Work

I SCREAM: Hilton Field Work

I SCREAM: Hilton Field Work
It appears to be 2 different flavors, but it is all vanilla.

I SCREAM: Hilton Field Work
The Clone Cone also enjoys watch Audi Crooks cook!

I SCREAM: Hilton Field Work
Big fan of Emily, Addy, Kelsey, Hannah… well really all of them!

I SCREAM: Hilton Field Work

I SCREAM: Hilton Field Work

I SCREAM: Hilton Field Work
Last bites

You know my policy on ice cream. It is the same as Ted Lasso’s:

“Ice cream is the best. It’s kinda like seeing Billy Joel perform live. Never disappoints.”

I have to confess… maybe it was the environment. Maybe it was because I hadn’t had ice cream in over 3 months, but this was about the best tasting ice cream of my life! It tasted like victory. Like a 16 point win over the Bearcats.

But it was also a little bittersweet as it was the last game in Hilton ever for Hannah and Nyamer. And as it turned out, for Shantavia and Jalynn.

You can your own Clone Cone at virtually any Iowa State sporting event at Hilton. You will only have to wait until November. But it will be worth the wait. Both the Iowa State men and women’s basketball teams should be pre-season Top 10 teams. Top 15 at the worst.

How is my efforting to live a healthy lifestyle going?

This week my weight went down 1.8 pounds. I am now down 26.5 pounds since starting Noom. I am 3.1 pounds away from reaching my May 1 goal weight. 28.1 pounds away from my ultimate goal weight*.

Weight obviously fluctuates quite a bit based on a ton of factors. From what you ate the day before to when you ate your last meal to when you went to bed the night before to when you last went to the bathroom to when you weigh yourself. I try not to get too high if the scale ticks down or too low if the scale ticks up. The important thing is that the general trend is going in the right direction.

But weight isn’t the only measure (or even the most important measure) of positive results. This week I did achieve a new badge on FitBit:



I achieved walking 250 miles since starting using Fitbit in February on April 4.

That is all to report for now.

Next Sunday’s food adventure will be back on the Catholic Fish Fry Circuit!

*Ultimate goal weight subject to change.

Fisher of Men: North Ames Field Work

Happy Easter! Christ is risen!


Wapello County - Ottumwa
CHRIST IS RISEN INDEED!

Here is an Easter devotional and a bit on the history of a popular Easter hymn. At least in the Methodist church.

Risen today! A Wesley hymn devotion for Easter

Many churches of all denominations begin worship on Easter Sunday by singing “Christ the Lord is Risen Today.” Charles Wesley’s lyrics wonderfully celebrate how Jesus’ resurrection is God’s victory over death, and call us to tell the world.

A little history
Charles and John Wesley, two of the historic founders of The United Methodist Church, published the beloved hymn in their first hymnal, Hymns and Sacred Poems in 1739. A section toward the back of the hymnal includes songs for special days where “Hymn for Christmas-Day,” which we know as “Hark! the Herald Angels Sing,” is just a few pages away from “Hymn for Easter-Day” that we sing as “Christ the Lord Is Risen Today.”

For those who know our United Methodist Hymnal well, reading the words Wesley penned can feel incomplete. The alleluias we are used to singing at the end of each line aren’t there. A later editor added them to make the lyrics fit the tune and to give added opportunities for praise.

Entering the story
Wesley writes about the Resurrection in the present tense, inviting us into the biblical narrative. As we sing, we easily picture ourselves standing among the witnesses of the empty tomb on that first Easter morning.

“Christ the Lord is ris’n to day,”
Sons of men and angels say,
Raise your joys and triumphs high,
Sing ye heav’ns, and earth reply.

Participating in this moment, we are also aware of the magnitude of the Resurrection. In this opening verse, Wesley introduces a theme that runs through the hymn. The Resurrection is celebrated both on earth and in heaven.

Our United Methodist Hymnal includes an edit to the second line. “Earth and heaven in chorus say” replaces “Sons of men and angels say.” According to United Methodist Discipleship Ministries, this change updates Wesley’s language to be gender inclusive and emphasizes the Resurrection’s impact throughout the world and beyond.

“The entire universe sings the triumphant chorus,” writes United Methodist scholar the Rev. Paul Chilcote in The Song Forever New: Lent and Easter with Charles Wesley, “with earth and heaven shouting their praise back and forth in ecstatic joy.”

Life in the midst of death
Earth and heaven sing because in the Resurrection we know death is not the final word. Wesley writes,

Love’s redeeming work is done,
Fought the fight, the battle won…

Lives again our glorious King,
Where, O death, is now thy sting?

In a podcast interview for UMC.org’s Get Your Spirit in Shape, Chilcote says, “Death seems to be a final word in the life of every human being. Seems to be, I say, a final word, because it isn’t,” he continues. “The final word is life, not death. The final word is resurrection. The final word is eternal life with God who loves us.”

Wesley calls us to live into eternal life every day,

Soar we now, where Christ has led?
Following our exalted head,
Made like him, like him we rise,
Ours the cross—the grave—the skies!

In a later verse, not published in our United Methodist Hymnal, he reiterates our call to follow Christ more closely each day:

Ris’n with him, we upward move,
Still we seek the things above,
Still pursue, and kiss the Son
Seated on his Father’s throne;

Life still to come
In the final three of Wesley’s 11 verses, the hymn’s focus shifts to our hope of a day of resurrection yet to come. Wesley returns to the theme of earth and heaven singing praise on that day:

Hail the Lord of earth and heav’n!
Praise to thee by both be giv’n:
Thee we greet triumphant now;
Hail the resurrection thou!

Jesus is the resurrection who brings new life to all of creation, and will bring it to completion.

We receive new life in Christ by God’s grace and are to share God’s love with the world. We do this by joining the song with our voices and lives.

King of Glory, soul of bliss,
Everlasting life is this,
Thee to know, thy pow’r to prove,
Thus to sing, and thus to love!

Living Easter every day
“We experience so many little deaths, don’t we, in our lives?” Chilcote asks in the podcast interview. Some are literal deaths like the loss of a loved one, but we also experience other griefs. Relationships end. Jobs are lost. “Christ the Lord Is Risen Today” proclaims that Jesus has conquered all those deaths.

“The central message of our faith,” Chilcote concludes, “is the Cross and the Resurrection. Its earliest proclamation of a God who is in the business of raising us from the dead. Oh, if that isn’t good news, I don’t know what good news is.”

When we gather for worship on Easter Sunday and sing “Christ the Lord Is Risen Today,” we celebrate Jesus’ resurrection, God’s good news that life conquers death. As his disciples in the world today, we must raise our joys and triumphs high to invite others to join us in this new way of living.

I hope all of you had an amazing Easter!

+++++++

After the horrific experience at The Waterfront, the next Friday FNSC got back to our roots. The Catholic Fish Fry Circuit. Although that probably technically isn’t our roots. The first ever Friday Night Supper Club was at Tic Toc. But a good old fashioned Fish Fry is more in our wheelhouse.

On this Friday Jay, Willy, and I checked out the Fish Fry at Saint Cecilia’s in Ames. Here are some pictures:


Fish Fry - Saint Cecilia

Fish Fry - Saint Cecilia

Fish Fry - Saint Cecilia

Fish Fry - Saint Cecilia

Fish Fry - Saint Cecilia

Fish Fry - Saint Cecilia

Fish Fry - Saint Cecilia

Fish Fry - Saint Cecilia

Fish Fry - Saint Cecilia

Fish Fry - Saint Cecilia

Fish Fry - Saint Cecilia

Fish Fry - Saint Cecilia

Fish Fry - Saint Cecilia

Fish Fry - Saint Cecilia

Fish Fry - Saint Cecilia

Fish Fry - Saint Cecilia

Fish Fry - Saint Cecilia

Fish Fry - Saint Cecilia

Saint Cecilia is in a relatively new building. Therefore it had a disappointingly low amount of creepy Catholic art. The fish they served was baked parmesan encrusted tilapia. Definitely healthier than a fried fish. Pretty darn delicious too!

Unfortunately, I wasn’t quick enough to tell them not to put bland, boring, worthless mac and cheese on my plate. So that part of my plate went to waste where I could have gotten more green beans. Yet I endured. They did this weird thing where they cut one end off the baked potato. I’m not sure why they did this, but my guess is that it made it easier to put them in the pan and could more in the pan. I’m not complaining, it was just weird. The green beans were green beans. They got the job done. It also came with a solid cole slaw.

There was a wide assortment of desserts available for donation. The chocolate pie I got was phenomenal! Definitely worth the few bucks I threw in the offering basket.

I would definitely go back to this fish fry again in the future. Lent and Catholic Fish Fry season is over, BUT there are still 3 more fish fries I have left to share.

How is my efforting to live a healthy lifestyle going?

You may recall I put a couple pounds on last week. Was pretty sedentary and I didn’t eat the best. This week was a better week. Particularly on the movement front. I probably made a few poor nutritional choices out of necessity, but overall it was a good week.

This week my weight went down -4.5 pounds. I am now down 24.7 pounds since starting Noom. I am 4.9 pounds away from reaching my May 1 goal weight. 29.9 pounds away from my ultimate goal weight*.

Weight obviously fluctuates quite a bit based on a ton of factors. From what you ate the day before to when you ate your last meal to when you went to bed the night before to when you last went to the bathroom to when you weigh yourself. I try not to get too high if the scale ticks down or too low if the scale ticks up. The important thing is that the general trend is going in the right direction.

But weight isn’t the only measure (or even the most important measure) of positive results. My endurance and stamina do seem to be improving. I did two hikes yesterday that involved going up some pretty sleep inclines. I only wanted to die for small portions of them. Instead of the entire time.

That is all to report for now.

Next Sunday’s food adventure will involve ice cream!

On the Waterfront: Ankeny Field Work

Those of you that are observant AND have a Photography 139 email subscription, may have noticed that the emails that have come out have been a bit off this week. MailPoet (the client I use to send out those emails) had an update and that has jacked everything up. I think I have it fixed and the emails should look correct again, but I might do some more dinking around with it. It was probably past time I messed with it anyways.

A few Fridays back Jesse, Jay, and I suspended our Catholic Fish Fry Tour and paid a visit to The Waterfront in Ankeny. It was one of those Fridays that I thought I was going to have to cancel because I get stuck on Fridays late at the Computer Mine rather frequently these days. Which is a great joy, because I LOVE having to cancel plans with friends to work late. This also happens on Tuesdays. Which means I no longer make it to Bible Study or to movies with Nader. If you have noticed my increased negativity towards Canadians on the Snapchat lately, this is why.

I was able to go and didn’t have to cancel on this Friday. But when I did think I was going to have to cancel, I decided I was just going to watch ON THE WATERFRONT instead. Thankfully Marlon Brando will have to wait.

I’ve never really ripped a restaurant or food truck or concession stand or pancake feed in one of these reviews… that streak will end here.

Here are some pictures from the experience:


On the Waterfront

On the Waterfront

On the Waterfront

On the Waterfront

On the Waterfront

On the Waterfront
Calamari

On the Waterfront

On the Waterfront
Rice Pilaf

On the Waterfront
Blackened Mahi Mahi

On the Waterfront

On the Waterfront

On the Waterfront

On the Waterfront

I’m just going to cut to the chase. This was an extremely disappointing experience. The only thing that I truly enjoyed was the calamari. It was fantastic. I can’t hate on the baked potato. But I mean, if a restaurant can’t bake a potato, what are we even doing here? The rice pilaf was incredibly bland. Maybe I’m expecting too much from rice pilaf, but it didn’t deliver. But the greatest disappointments was the mahi mahi. It was incredibly soggy. SOGGY!

I won’t say that my expectations were heightened because we were at a fancypants (by my standards) restaurant. I don’t like fancypants (by my standards) restaurants. Give me a greasy spoon. A local tavern. A 50 year old diner. This is where I live. After all, most of my food adventures (used to be anyways) revolve around the pork tenderloin. The least uppity and least elitist sandwich to ever grace God’s green earth.

Although I’m definitely not an elitist, I also do not stick my nose up at fancypants restaurants. I’ll give them a fair shake. However, if I’m paying $27.95 for some fish, it better not be soggy and it better have some flavor.

I wasn’t the only one to leave disappointed as they didn’t have the crab that Jay came for so he settled for some kind of shrimp pasta.

My exact words when we left were “I wish we would have went to Long John Silver’s.”

And that isn’t a slight on Long John Silver’s. I love me some Long John Silver’s. I miss the one in Ames.

I won’t bother telling you where to find The Waterfront. It is in Ankeny. You want to overpay for bland food, you can find it on your own.

Enough of that noise.

How is my efforting to live a healthy lifestyle going?

Well, there is no way around it. I had a rough week. I definitely didn’t eat well. I had a lot going on and probably didn’t exercise enough. I spent a lot of time in cars. I spent a lot of time in the Union Street Theater watching movies and basketball. I’ll repeat, I didn’t eat well. But this journey will never be a straight line.

This week my weight went up. +1.9 pounds. I am now down 20.2 pounds since starting Noom.

But I try not to get too high when I lose 5 pounds like 2 weeks ago or too low when I put on a couple pounds like this week.

But weight isn’t the only measure (or even the most important measure) of positive results. This week my stamina and speed was definitely up in my HIIT workouts. So not all bad this week.

That is all to report for now.

Next Sunday’s food adventure will involve another stop on the Fish Fry Circuit.

Taco ‘Bout It: Boone Food Truck Field Work

Today is St. Patrick’s Day. I don’t celebrate, so no greetings to those of you that do. Stupid greeting card holiday that has become overcommercialized to make people feel bad that aren’t Irish. Bah O’humbug to you I say.

You might be wondering why this post published at 8 AM instead of the customary 8 PM on Sundays. The reason is that there will be another post publishing at 8 PM that will include instructions on how to participate in Year 19 of the Roundball Oracles NCAA Tournament Pool.

This post is about a recent food adventure. I recently hit a taco food truck that was hanging out it Boone. After all, I love tacos. They were selling tacos. I had some cold hard plastic in my wallet that had at least a few bucks of credit left on it. Seemed like a match divined by the taco gods!

So I stopped at give Borracho’s Taco Truck a try. Here are some pictures:


Taco 'Bout It: Borrachos Mexican Tacos

Taco 'Bout It: Borrachos Mexican Tacos

Taco 'Bout It: Borrachos Mexican Tacos

Taco 'Bout It: Borrachos Mexican Tacos

Taco 'Bout It: Borrachos Mexican Tacos

Taco 'Bout It: Borrachos Mexican Tacos

Taco 'Bout It: Borrachos Mexican Tacos

Taco 'Bout It: Borrachos Mexican Tacos

Taco 'Bout It: Borrachos Mexican Tacos

Taco 'Bout It: Borrachos Mexican Tacos

Taco 'Bout It: Borrachos Mexican Tacos

Taco 'Bout It: Borrachos Mexican Tacos

Taco 'Bout It: Borrachos Mexican Tacos

Taco 'Bout It: Borrachos Mexican Tacos

Taco 'Bout It: Borrachos Mexican Tacos

Taco 'Bout It: Borrachos Mexican Tacos

I’ll just cut to the chase. While my empty plate surely indicates that I ate the h-e-double hockey sticks out of those tacos, they weren’t great. I was hungry. I had tacos in front of me. What is a guy to do?

They were less than stellar and in fact, I went to Rico’s Tacos the next day just to cleanse my taco palate.

So my rating is, they would do in a pinch, but I definitely would not go out of my way to eat them again.

How is my efforting to live a healthy lifestyle going?

I think generally things are going well. I seem to have adjusted to the CPAP. I’m hitting my steps goal pretty much every day. I guess one development is that on Wednesday I finally tried the hydromassage at the gym. It was everything it was hyped up to me and more. It is a good thing that they limit you to 10 minutes. Otherwise I would just lay on that thing for hours. I tried the laying down hyrdromassage. They also have a chair version. I will try that hopefully soon and report back.

This week my weight went down 5.5 pounds this week. And I am now down 22.1 pounds since I started Noom. 5.5 pound loss is a bit of an anomaly and is actually probably more spread out over the last 2 weeks, but weight fluctuations and blah, blah, blah. You know.

The 2nd number on my scale changed this week. So that is a 10 pound loss milestone. WooHoo! I am also at the weight that was my goal to be at in early May when I go to New Orleans for work trip for the Computer Mine. So now I’ve re-adjusted that goal my another 10 pounds. Which should be realistic, although you never know when that dreaded plateau is going to hit. But they say, the best thing to do when you hit a plateau is keep moving. So when I hit it, you’ll still see me on that High Trestle Trail on Saturday mornings via Snapchat. Although I suppose a person would be allowed to join me in the person. Maybe.

But weight isn’t a pure indicator of health. So I look for other ways to that show I’m getting healthier. One thing I noticed a couple weeks ago is just how much better I fit into the seats at Hilton. I’m not going to say I used to struggle to get into them. That would be an exaggeration. But now they feel roomie. Well roomie might be a stretch. But I definitely have more room.

I still haven’t purchased anything else for this living healthy lifestyle. But sometime soon I might borrow a kayak and see if that is something I enjoy. Later in the year I might buy a bike again. I’ve tried the bike game before and it didn’t work out. But I think if I get a bike that actually fits me, that might help. We’ll see. That smart scale is still in the back of my mind as well.

That is all to report for now.

Next Sunday’s food adventure will involve one of the greatest culinary disappointments I’ve ever had.

Cue: Ames Field Work

Today is Nora’s birthday so I need to wish her a happy birthday!


Nora
Happy birthday Nora!

I hope your birthday is filled with all the mushrooms you can handle and not filled with all the serious questions that the BARBIE movie makes a person ask!

+++++++

Back on Valentine’s Day/Ash Wednesday I went to Cornbred in Ames with Teresa and Carla before going to the Cyclone women upset the #7 Kansas State Wildcats in double overtime. Absolutely one of the greatest games I’ve ever seen in Hilton. Period.

As a big fan of barbecue, it is rather amazing that I had never been to Cornbred. It is mostly because I forget it exists. But on this day, I remembered it existed and I efforted to check it out.

Here are some pictures:


Cue: Cornbred

Cue: Cornbred

Cue: Cornbred

Cue: Cornbred

Cue: Cornbred

Cue: Cornbred
I went with the brisket.

Cue: Cornbred

Cue: Cornbred

Cue: Cornbred

Cue: Cornbred

Cue: Cornbred

Cue: Cornbred

The verdict? I think Cornbred is a touch overrated. Scott described it as “yuppie barbecue” and I can’t completely disagree. If it was hipster barbecue that would be better. Say what you want about hipsters, they make pretty good food.

It isn’t that Cornbred is bad. In fact part of my meal were great. The brussel sprouts appetizer was fantastic. I am a well known big time fan of brussel sprouts. I probably eat them about once a week. Not mixed with pork belly but there is a steamer bag of brussel sprouts that I really like!

The brisket was also fantastic. No complaints there. The bread that came with it, was average. I got the creamy pineapple slaw for my side. Hey, remember, trying to eat healthier! Now cole slaw is usually drowning in mayonnaise, so it isn’t super healthy, but it is certainly healthier than fries. And cole slaw also can contain lots of vitamin A and vitamin E. But most importantly, I like cole slaw. In fact, I even had a favorite cole slaw. The Country House in Colo had a fantastic cole slaw. Too bad they have went out of business. But trust me, it was because of their cole slaw. Or their tenderloin for that matter.

This cole slaw was very mediocre.

In the grand scheme of things, I would definitely eat at Cornbred again. I don’t know I would go out of my way for it, but I would eat there again. But all things considered I would rather eat at Jimmy’s.

You can find Cornbred here:

526 Main Street #106
Ames, Iowa

But what is the update on my efforting to live a healthier lifestyle?

I think generally things are going well. For the first time since I’ve started to monitor it, I’ve had a couple of sleep scores in the 80s! I’m not sure how much that means, but I will take it as a positive.

The Noom lessons were about sleep, so it is a good thing I’ve gotten some good sleep. Here is your health fun fact for this week.

According to The American Journal of Clinical nutrition, missing a few hours of sleep one night can cause a person to eat an extra 559 calories, on average, the next day. So I guess sleep is important.

This week my weight went down 1.9 pounds. Down 16.6 pounds since I started Noom.

I haven’t purchased anything else to help in my attempts to live healthier. I’m still thinking on that smart scale.

The next food adventure will involve a food truck.

Fisher of Men: Boone Field Work

Today is Andy’s birthday so I have to wish him a happy birthday!


Day 194 - July 13, 2022
HAPPY BIRTHDAY ANDY!

I hope your day is filled with 17 hour old tenderloins!

+++++++

It is Lent! During Lent I like to hit a Fish Fry here and there. Which gives me the added benefit of hitting some Catholic churches and checking out what is usually some pretty creepy Catholic art!

On the first Friday of Lent Jay, Jesse, and I hit Sacred Heart in Boone to check out their fish and their creepy art:


Sacred Heart Fish Fry
Every single one of these dudes looks like a serial killer. Especially the guy in the upper left.

Sacred Heart Fish Fry
Is this a serious question? Is Geraldine a super outlandish horse name? Also, nice use of the term “Indians”. Racism isn’t dead.

Sacred Heart Fish Fry
If this kid didn’t die when he was 15 he would have put up H.H. Holmes type numbers.

Sacred Heart Fish Fry
I kind of like this one. Like the world’s largest shrinky dink.

Sacred Heart Fish Fry

Sacred Heart Fish Fry
No pictures of them standing on the corner of Story & US-30 shaking down people for donations.

Sacred Heart Fish Fry
Fish, baked potato, cole slaw, green beans, and a roll. They also offered mac & cheese, but I was able to cut them off before they put that pile of bland on my plate.

Sacred Heart Fish Fry

Sacred Heart Fish Fry

Sacred Heart Fish Fry

Sacred Heart Fish Fry

Sacred Heart Fish Fry

Sacred Heart Fish Fry

Sacred Heart Fish Fry

Sacred Heart Fish Fry

Sacred Heart Fish Fry
Gave a kid a $5 donation for this brownie. It was worth it.

Sacred Heart Fish Fry
We closed that Fish Fry down. Which is cooler than closing down the bar in my book.

Sacred Heart Fish Fry

Sacred Heart Fish Fry

The verdict? It was a darn good fish fry. I would definitely hit it on the regular if I wasn’t trying to hit all different fish fries this Lent.

Here is the update on my efforting to live a healthier lifestyle. I guess the big development is that I have joined a gym. I joined Planet Fitness in Ames. Although with my membership I can go to any Planet Fitness in the world. I am a little leery of joining a gym in a different town, but I don’t really like either gym in Boone and my tentative gym plan isn’t super ambitious. I mostly want to hit it twice a week. Once after working in Ames and then once again on weekends. I mostly plan to use it to do some HIIT workouts. Maybe some weightlifting. It seems like a good fit cause Brandon goes there and I think I got a deal by being referred by Elizabeth. Or she got a deal. Somebody got a deal and that is all that matters. Now I’m thirsty for some Deal’s Orchard apple cider! Adding the fitness watch and the gym membership are really the 2 big changes. I don’t know of any else that I’m planning to add in the future. Okay, I’m considering buying a smart scale. But we will see.

I have taken to posting some highlights from my daily walks on Snapchat. I really only send those to my Top 8 Snapchat Friends. That is currently Elizabeth, Fran, Brandon, Logan, Sabas, Alexis, Nathanial, and Micky. I have substantial Streaks with 7 of them. I mean maybe they don’t want to get them, but that is the burden of being one of my Top 8 Snapchat friends.

But if you are feeling left out and want to get Snaps from the thrilling world of me walking, let me know and I can send them to you as well. Maybe someday you will be able to squeeze into my Top 8 friends as dictated by the Snapchat algorithm.

I don’t have really any interesting statistics from Noom this week. I was going to try to dig up the statistic on how eating eggs for breakfast increases weight loss, but that was a couple weeks back and suddenly seems like a lot of work. So just take my word for it. Eating eggs for breakfast helps with increased weight loss because they can boost metabolic activity and increase satiety.

This week’s Noom lessons were mostly about how exercise doesn’t really help you lose weight. Mostly cause people overestimate how many calories exercise burns and then justify overeating because they think they burned more calories than they did. While exercise might not help you lose weight, it does help you maintain weight and exercise definitely makes you healthier. And your ultimate goal shouldn’t be to lose weight, exactly. It should be to be healthier and exercise is a big part of the healthier lifestyle.

That being said, I did lose some weight this week. I am down another 2.3 pounds. 14.7 pounds since I started Noom about 5 weeks ago. 51 pounds since January 1 of 2023.

But weight isn’t the only way to measure improvement. It is just the easiest way to measure cause you can stand on a scale every morning. So a couple less directly measurable results are that I’ve been going through my closet to downsize my extensive clothing collection. I definitely fit into some shirts better that I haven’t worn in a long time. While I am a well documented fashionista and twice recognized as the best dressed man at the Computer Mine (in my head at least) the one result that I have found most meaningful to me is my photo backpack. When I first purchased it the bottom strap, the strap that goes around my waist, it would buckle, but it definitely didn’t like it. I didn’t like it. People that saw me probably didn’t like it. It definitely dug into my sides. Now I can cinch it up. Maybe not a lot. Maybe an inch. Maybe two. Maybe just several millimeters. But it is definitely an improvement.

Next Sunday’s food adventure will involve a local barbecue joint. I swear it this time!

Super Bowl Spreads

On Super Bowl Sunday I got invited to 2 Super Bowl parties. Which is strange, cause it isn’t all that common for me to get invited to adult parties. I’m big time on the toddler party circuit, but other than that, my party dance card is pretty much empty.

So when I got invited to not ONE, but TWO parties on the same night, I had to cash in!

If we’re being honest, I wasn’t that emotionally invested in the outcome of the game. I wanted the 49ers to win because I wanted Brock Purdy to win, but I had no expectation they would win. The 49ers have a trash offensive line and their defense was also trash down the stretch. If the game was close, it was only going to be because the Chiefs also have a trash offensive line. In fact, it is amazing that two teams with such trash offensive lines made it so far in the playoffs.

But, despite my having a rooting interest for Brock Purdy, I wasn’t going to lose any sleep no matter the result. It is only his 2nd year in the league, he will have more chances.

But I might never have a chance to graze at 2 different Super Bowl parties.

I watched the 1st quarter and the 4th quarter at Logan’s party. I watched the 2nd and 3rd quarter and the halftime show at Scottie D.’s. Although I was attempted to leave immediately when only 2 people there knew who H.E.R. was.

Maybe next year I can get invited to 4 parties and watch each quarter at a different party. #GOALS.

Moving around didn’t really hurt my enjoyment of the game cause it was one of the single worst games I’ve ever watched in my life. The levels of ineptitude shown by the 2 “best” teams in the NFL made me thing that the defending USFL Champs (Birmingham Stallions) might have been the best team in professional football last year. You think the Chiefs defense could shut down Deon Cain? No. No they couldn’t. The 49ers pathetic secondary certainly couldn’t.

What? You thought I was going to talk up the Arlington Renegades. Please! They finished the regular season 4-6. The XFL should be ashamed for letting them be their champs.

And if you want to know who my team is in the UFL? It is the St. Louis Battlehawks!! Why? Cause Anthony Becht is their coach.

Here are some pictures of some of the spread at Logan’s:


Super Bowl Sunday Spread  - Logan's Party

Super Bowl Sunday Spread  - Logan's Party
This isn’t finished, if you are wondering.

Super Bowl Sunday Spread  - Logan's Party

Super Bowl Sunday Spread  - Logan's Party

Super Bowl Sunday Spread  - Logan's Party

Super Bowl Sunday Spread  - Logan's Party
Some of these have a Dr. Pepper sauce.

Scottie D. had a larger party, so a larger spread:


Super Bowl Sunday Spread  - Scott's Party

Super Bowl Sunday Spread  - Scott's Party
Scott is a Chiefs fan, but almost everybody else there was rooting for Brock Purdy.

Super Bowl Sunday Spread  - Scott's Party
I bet this was delicious.

Super Bowl Sunday Spread  - Scott's Party

Super Bowl Sunday Spread  - Scott's Party

Super Bowl Sunday Spread  - Scott's Party

Super Bowl Sunday Spread  - Scott's Party
I confess, mashed potatoes took me by surprise, but I bet they were delicious.

Super Bowl Sunday Spread  - Scott's Party
These were homemade meatballs.

Super Bowl Sunday Spread  - Scott's Party
Scott’s very proud of his countertop ice machine. Might like it more than at least one of his children.

Super Bowl Sunday Spread  - Scott's Party

Super Bowl Sunday Spread  - Scott's Party
I’m a sucker for little smokies. In fact I bought an 8 pack of them just the other day.

Basically what needs to happen is Logan and Scottie D. need to have their parties again next year. Then 2 more of you need step up and invite me to your parties. I don’t really care about missing much of the game to travel, but all 4 of the parties should be in Boone or close to Boone. As long as I get to see all of the halftime show, I’m good. One of my favorite yearly tradition is watching old people complain about that year’s halftime show. Like clockwork.

If you are wondering what my favorite Super Bowl treat was???

Drumroll please…

This will disappoint Scott and Logan…

It was the sliders Melissa made. I’m a sucker for a good slider.

But also thanks to my cousin Sarah for sending me pictures of her Super Bowl spread. I think hers looked healthier. I swear I saw vegetables and maybe hummus in one of her pictures.

But I promised, you… my accountability buddies, that there would be weekly updates on my attempts to establish healthier habits.

I thought I would sprinkle in a little knowledge on these updates. Here is something I learned from my Noom lessons this past week:

According to the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition that when you eat a meal with someone else it increases the number of calories you eat. If you eat with one more person, (this is at the aggregate level) you consume 44% calories. 58% more with 3 people. 69% with 4 people. 96% more calories with 7 people!

So don’t be jealous when you see a skinny person. They are just a loser that nobody wants to eat with.

A for the weight update, I’m down 5.9 pounds this week and 12.4 pounds since starting Noom about 4 weeks ago. Obviously 5.9 pounds in a week isn’t sustainable and is definitely a bit of a fluke and weight fluctuates from day to day due to a large number of factors. I expect that weight to go up a little bit this week. But all in all, a positive trend.

How is the CPAP going? I think I’m starting to get used to it. My FitBit sleep score has been in the 70s this past week. Which puts me in the Fair sleep range. I’ll take it.

I did breakdown and get a fitness watch. I went with the Google Pixel Watch 2. So far I’m really digging it. I am NOT a watch person. I need to pick up a different band though. Apparently people think my baby blue watch band isn’t manly enough. Just kidding, I don’t care what other people think.

At this time, I’m still thinking about joining a gym. Planet Fitness in Ames is the current leading contender. I do worry about joining a gym in a different town, but the price is right and I don’t like either of the gyms in Boone. So stay tuned on that front.

Next Sunday’s food adventure will involve a local barbecue joint that shockingly, I had never eaten at before.

Colon Scopin’

Not gonna lie. Going to state it right out in the open. This post isn’t for everybody. I was already told once that I overshared about this process, but it was a food adventure of sorts and the information I’m going to share fits into my future food adventures.

I started 2024 without really being to the doctor much over the last few years. If I’m being honest, much in my lifetime. But I’m getting old Auto Focus and the targeted ads when I listen to podcasts or peruse the internet or watching streaming services remind me of this fact every single day.

To start this year, I got a physical and since I haven’t been to the doctor much, he announced that this was the year that we were going to tune me up. So he scheduled me for a sleep study and a colonoscopy.

I was definitely dreading the colonoscopy. I have heard the hype about how awful it is for years. I don’t know what your experience with having something shoved up your butt is, but it was going to be a new experience for me. Not one I was looking forward to, like going to New Orleans for the first time. But when you are old like me, these are the kind of things you have to do.

Today’s food adventure is the prep I went through before my colonoscopy. I had my colonoscopy on Thursday. The prep started on Monday.

Monday Instructions

East absolutely nothing with seeds or corn: NO tomatoes, celery seeds, raspberries, poppy seeds, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, popcorn, bread with seeds (whole grain), nuts.

This was particularly challenging for me because I eat a lot of raspberries and I enjoy a variety of nuts on the regular. Almonds. Pistachios. Walnuts. All favorites of mine. And, if you remember, a poppyseed kolache had made its way back for Nebraska with my name on it. Oh kolaches! So goooooooood! The no tomato part was also difficult cause I like a good tomato on my sandwich. Not tenderloins, but other sandwiches. I also have been eating lots of corn lately. I persevered though.

Tuesday Instructions

Milk of Magnesia: Take one ounce of Milk of Magnesia at bedtime. No seeds. No corn.


Colonoscopy Prep

I opted for the wild cherry flavored milk of magnesia. Only 1 ounce. It actually didn’t taste too bad. I don’t hanker for it, but it wasn’t bad.

Wednesday Instructions

Drink only clear liquids for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Solid foods including milk and milk products are NOT allowed. Clear liquids include water, juice, chicken or beef broth, plain Jell-O, Gatorade, popsicles, black coffee, teas, soda. PLEASE STAY AWAY FROM RED AND PURPLE LIQUIDS.


Colonoscopy Prep

Member’s Mark Chicken Broth and 7-Up. That is what I had for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Other than it wasn’t all that filling, it wasn’t too bad. I can recommend this chicken broth. It is pretty dang tasty. I actually like 7-Up. Of the clear citrus sodas, it is my favorite by far. I’ve never liked Sprite much. Sierra Mist was slightly better than Sprite, but not the best. It’s replacement Starry, I can live without.

3:00 PM: Take 4 Dulcolax tablets. Continue clear liquids.


Colonoscopy Prep

There isn’t much to say about these. They are tiny. You can’t taste them. They definitely do the job as a laxative.

5:00 PM Pour 64 oz Gatorade into large pitcher or container. Add 238 gm Miralax into the Gatorade. Mix Well. You will want to drink one 10-12 oz glass every 15-20 minutes until it is gone.


Colonoscopy Prep

I’m not a fan of Gatorade. It is one of those things that if my body needs it (like after a workout) it tastes fantastic. If I’ve been sitting around like a worthless couch potato all day, then it tastes like ass. My body rejects it.

“Dude, you haven’t earned this.”

I hear a lot of people struggle with this, but I was able to knock all this down fairly easily. Probably cause the other diuretics had been doing their work and I was getting pretty hungry. The broth wasn’t exactly filling me up.

NOTHING BY MOUTH AFTER MIDNIGHT.

THURSDAY INSTRUCTIONS

Day of the exam, 3 hours prior (3 AM): Take 10 0z of the Mag Citrate (set your alarm). If you have known kidney disease, please discuss with physician fist. DO NOT drink with water.


Colonoscopy Prep

I opted for the cherry flavored magnesium citrate. It actually went down pretty smooth. The taste wasn’t bad and I was so hungry by this point, 10 more ounce of liquid. If you have constipation, you could do worse. Flavor wise.

I’ve heard stories of people throwing this up, but really, I was so hungry. I downed that bottle like it was an ice cold Pepsi-Cola.

The colonoscopy experience itself was not anywhere near as bad as the hype. Teresa took me to the hospital and drove me home afterwards.

I checked-in. They took me back to the waiting room. I put on a gown that was a million times too short for me. They ran an IV. The first one in my life. That one took a little bit. Apparently my veins are a bit shy. But I’ve know that from every time I’ve ever gotten my blood drawn.

Then we walked back to the operating room. I lied down. The anesthesiologist told me the anesthesia might burn a little bit going in, but I didn’t feel any burn. Next thing I knew, they were waking me up and walking me back to my room.

Once I was situated there, they came in and told me that everything went well. They found one polyp, which is common, but shouldn’t be anything to be worried about. They would send it to get biopsied and then I would hear the results next week.

Then I got dressed and went home.

The following week they called me and told me the polyp was benign and that I wouldn’t have to go through this again for 10 years. Which is exactly what I was hoping to hear.

I’m not going to get on my soapbox and tell you that if you are over 45 years, you should get in and get a colonoscopy. But if you are starting to get an inordinate amount of ads in your feeds for bentcarrot.com, then it is probably time.

If I were you, I wouldn’t listen to me either, so like I said, I won’t preach. Cause you already know and one more person telling you won’t make a difference. But I might be the one person that you hear say, “it isn’t really all that bad”.

So it is like the poster says:



I also said that I was getting a sleep study done. I was lucky enough to get to do an at home sleep study and that was an awful experience. I wore a sensor on a finger and another one on my chest. It doesn’t sound like much, but I had the worst night of sleep ever.

When they rate how you sleep, it is on a scale of 1-35. 35 is the worst. I got a 31. Which is basically, “How are you still alive?”

So starting on Thursday, this is what I look like when I go to bed at night:


Colonoscopy Prep
Sexy Auto Focus

I have slept with it for 3 nights now. The first night was pretty awful. I might have just thrown in the towel, but the insurance company won’t pony up the cash unless I average 4 hours a night with this guy on for 3 months.

However, the 2nd night wasn’t too bad. The 3rd night I would characterize as not bad. I’m hoping in a week or so I can crank that all the way up to good.

The third and final health related thing that came out of my physical is I’m becoming increasingly more active trying to establish healthier habits. That includes both eating and exercise.

Last year I did change many of my eating habits. I wasn’t completely mindful about it, but I established a few guidelines with what I considered to be healthier eating. I won’t going into much detail, but I tried to limit the bad foods I ate. Tried to eat healthier snacks. Tried to stop eating by 8 PM. Tried to be more active. The active part can be hard for me because my job is a TON of sitting down. I try to take some brief walks on my 10 minute breaks.

And I did have some positive results. In fact in 2023 I lost like 30 pounds.

Exactly 1 person noticed.

Thanks Michelle!

From my physical my doctored said I should try Noom. It is that weight loss program that is based in psychology. I wasn’t eager for this, but I decided to give it a shot. As a bonus, I’m pretty sure I can get the Computer Mine to pay for it through our continuing education budget. So at worst case scenario, I shouldn’t be out any money.

The Noom system basically consists of 4 things you do every day:

1. Read lessons on forming good habits and nutrition.
2. Weigh yourself.
3. Track what you eat.
4. Track your exercise.

Which I suppose doesn’t seem like rocket science and I wasn’t looking forward to logging what I eat. But as it turns out, that part has probably been the most helpful part for me. I’ve really learned a ton. There are so many foods I thought were healthy that turns out, ain’t all that healthy. Some food I thought were pretty bad, actually a lot healthier than I expected.

I’ve been working the system for about 3 weeks now. I am down 6.7 pounds. Probably would have been more, but you know Super Bowl Sunday happened in there.

Now weight isn’t the only measure of health and isn’t even the best measure of health, but it is the easiest to measure. So I will continue to share this journey on hear. Congratulations! All of you just became my accountability buddies!

Super Bowl Sunday? Yeah, next Sunday’s food adventure will cover many of the delicious food offerings I experienced on Super Bowl Sunday. I attended 2 parties. That is a lot of food adventuring!

Tenderloining: Boone Food Truck Field Work

Last Sunday I reported that I was out of food adventures to… uhh… report? Then on Saturday one just kind of fell into my lap*. A tenderloin food truck came to Boone. I’m not hitting the tenderloins hard, as they do fly in the face of my eating healthy journey, but I’m budgeting to eat about 1 a month. Since I had zero in January and it had been 2 months since I’ve had a tenderloin, my favorite enabler said I should do it. And I listen to people when they tell me exactly what I want to hear.

On the positive, a tenderloin actually isn’t super unhealthy. It is a healthy cut of meat. The real problem is that it is fried. The bun also doesn’t help much. The fries I ate as a side were way unhealthier than the tenderloin. Probably. I’m not a food scientist. I just play one on the interwebs. But there are no “red foods”. Only “green foods”, “yellow foods”, and “orange foods”.

I met Jay up there after a trip out to Wally World to pick up a new record, some pastel paper, and a Lego set.**

Jay got their pulled pork as he is not a fan of tenderloins.

Here are some pictures:


Tenderloining - Triple B's Tenderloins

Tenderloining - Triple B's Tenderloins

Tenderloining - Triple B's Tenderloins

Tenderloining - Triple B's Tenderloins
I’ve never heard of this brand of condiments.

Tenderloining - Triple B's Tenderloins

Tenderloining - Triple B's Tenderloins
Assist to Jay for holding the box open in the wind.

Tenderloining - Triple B's Tenderloins

Tenderloining - Triple B's Tenderloins

Tenderloining - Triple B's Tenderloins

Tenderloining - Triple B's Tenderloins

Tenderloining - Triple B's Tenderloins
Picture by Jay.

Tenderloining - Triple B's Tenderloins
Picture by Jay.

Tenderloining - Triple B's Tenderloins
Picture by Jay.

Tenderloining - Triple B's Tenderloins

Tenderloining - Triple B's Tenderloins

Tenderloining - Triple B's Tenderloins

Tenderloining - Triple B's Tenderloins

Tenderloining - Triple B's Tenderloins

Tenderloining - Triple B's Tenderloins

On a technical note, these images are the first foodtography images I’ve taken (well for mass public consumption) since I switched from the Pixel 5 to the Pixel Pro 8.

But you probably care more about the food.

The Good for starters:

+ The fries really hit the spot. Maybe it was because they were the first fried food I’ve had since… well it has been a minute. Unless you count air fried foods. Then it hasn’t been all that long. Unless kolaches are fried. If that is the case, the first fried food since I ate a poppyseed kolache 4 hours earlier***.
+ The tenderloin was a good thickness.
+ The bun-meat ratio was right on.

The Bad:

+ The breading on the tenderloining was salty. Not to a point where it was inedible, but definitely to a point where you knew it was there and you didn’t love it.
+ Jay said his pulled pork was also very salty. Still good but too salty.

The Ugly:

+ Scottie D. and his crew went up there shortly after we did. He was not impressed with the food safety of the crew working the joint. He noted a decided lack of gloves. Their tenderloins tasted like plastic. He said they definitely had a decided plastic aftertaste. I definitely didn’t experience that and I’m not sure what would even cause that. I did not observe the cooks at work. Jay did the ordering and I just mostly stood back and waited, wondering why it was so much colder in the Dollar General parking lot than it had been on the High Trestle Trail just a few hours earlier. Jay did note that he saw some plastic gloves blowing around (so they did have them) and it is just speculation that maybe some of those blew into a fryer.

The Final Verdict:

+ I wouldn’t eat there again. I mean I would if I hit a small town festival and they were the only food truck there, I would imbibe, but I definitely would not go out of my way to eat there and if I saw them serving up grub on the side of the road I would just drive by.

I don’t exactly have another food adventure in the hopper, but I have a sorta food adventure that I am considering.

* Teresa gets the finder’s credit for letting me know there was a food truck setting up shop.
** Teresa also gets the finder’s credit for finding this sweet Lego set that you build into a film camera.
*** You want to see a picture of the kolache don’t you? I took one, but it stays between me and my Czech friends. Better luck next kolache.

Liberty Bowl Road Trip Grub

When Jesse and I went down to Memphis to watch the embarrassing debacle that was the Liberty Bowl we made sure to eat a bunch of delicious food. Fortunately the Pastor at my church lived in Memphis for several years and he gave us several solid recommendations on places to eat.

Here are the pictures from my Memphis food adventure with Jesse:


Liberty Road Bowl Eats
On the road trip down, we stopped at an Imo’s pizza for a meal.

Liberty Road Bowl Eats
St. Louis–style pizza is a type of pizza popular in St. Louis, Missouri, and surrounding areas.[1] The style has a thin cracker-like crust made without yeast, generally uses Provel cheese, and is cut into squares or rectangles instead of wedges.

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats
For supper that night we ate at Central Barbecue.

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats
The cole slaw was maybe the worst thing I’ve tasted in my life, but the rest was amazing!

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats
Breakfast the next morning in the hotel.

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats
B.B. King’s Blues Club with Andree and his brother.

Liberty Road Bowl Eats
It was so dark in there, there aren’t many pictures.

Liberty Road Bowl Eats
But the entertainment was hard to beat.

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats
Breakfast again the next morning. We really didn’t eat supper the night before.

Liberty Road Bowl Eats
More breakfast at Gibson’s Donuts.

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats
We got a free donut cause it was our first time.

Liberty Road Bowl Eats
Before the game we had brunch at Railgarten with some awesome people! Cyclone fans!

Liberty Road Bowl Eats
Food was nothing special but it got the job done.

Liberty Road Bowl Eats
Also we met up with Jon and his friend.

Liberty Road Bowl Eats
Corky’s after the game!

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats
Give me a pile of everything that is delicious and bad for you!

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats
Way better coleslaw!

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

Liberty Road Bowl Eats

It was a great trip and so much great food! I would say that Corky’s was my favorite. But I don’t think we had a bad meal. That includes the lunch at A&W in Mount Pleasant, Iowa on the trip back.

That is the last food adventure I have to share right now. Maybe I will come up with one in the next few days. So I will have one to share next Sunday. Time will tell!