Monday, July 13, 2009

Potentially unsettling beach images

One of the beautiful things about going to a small and lightly populated North Carolina beach is that you see a lot of strange stuff. Though I haven't remembered to capture all of those images for you, I did snag a few.

As we were heading into our traditional first-day-at-the-beach restaurant, we spotted a rather large plastic crayfish standing along the walk. How large? Bigger than Jennie, as you can see in this photo in which she somewhat reluctantly agreed to pose to provide a size contrast.

On the way back from dinner, we stopped at the grocery store to pick up such staples as ice cream and frozen novelties. (I didn't know the term until that moment. Odd.) Earlier, Jennie and Dave had spotted a cheap red crab cake and an equally inexpensive green turtle cake.

Hey, I thought, we have a house full of dessert-loving Americans, and we certainly want to be kind to our crab and turtle friends! We need those cakes!

So, I bought them.

As you can see, they are somewhere between disturbing and disgusting. As to their taste, I think Sarah nailed it when she said something roughly like this: Take sugar. Cook it down. Coat it with sugar to form a block. Bake it. Add a lot of sugar as frosting with a little food color. Coat in sugar.

Needless to say, the cakes are not going quickly, but somewhat to my amazement, they are going.

In case you're wondering, yes, I tried one of the cakes, a one-inch-square piece of turtle, which I consumed late last night. I'm sure my teeth will stop hurting by tomorrow.
Lest you worry that I am eating only unhealthy desserts, at last night's dinner I and many others shared an appetizer the restaurant proudly called "Redneck eggrolls." The theory was that you take an eggroll shell, stuff it with collard greens, country ham, and shrimp, then fry it. I could not taste the ham or the shrimp, and I'm not a big fan of the formidable collard, so I was unimpressed by the experience.

Or, as Jennie said, "That's kind of nasty."

That said, the ingredients did include greens, so I'm sure it must have been good for me.
After lunch today, we stopped by a place we refer to as "The Squeeze," the very same place where I once posed as the dancing ice cream cone (another story, and, yes, there are pictures that you could talk me into posting) for some delicious and chemical-laden soft-serve dessert substance. (The FDA won't let anyone call it food.) Kyle and I chose by color, with him opting for dayglo green and me selecting the attractive molten orange.

Afterward, our tongues were, I'm told, strange and unsettling colors, but we forgot to take photos of them. That's probably best for all of us.
I leave you with this sign from the window of a beach shop. If you can read it clearly, then you will not see the humor in it. Suffice to say that from the road the word in blue read as "bowels", and we had to guess that somehow this particular sale involved a device that would better equip us all to handle the insane things we've been eating.

Even that benefit would not be enough, however, to entice me to let anyone transform my bowels into anything worthy of the description "cabana stripe." Ouch.


Michelle said...

A dancing ice cream cone? Oh, please, do tell. And, collard greens should be described the same way as kudzu and okra, inedible green snot. Ick.

Mark said...

Perhaps later in the trip for the ice cream cone dance. I generally agree about greens, though once, at L'Etoile in Madison, WI, I had greens so good I returned to the restaurant just to have them again.

Of course, those were cooked in molasses and a lot of local fatback. Yum.

John Lambshead said...

Never mind - the next Dr Who special, Waters of Mars, has zombies.......


PS One of the first thing that strikes an Englishman on his first visit to America is the unusual things you eat.

Mark said...

I look forward to Waters of Mars. As for the food, as Kyle said, "Likewise."


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