Friday, April 30, 2010

Dinner and a Wrapup

So now that you've read the marvelous story of our adventures in Dentistry Hell, I'll tell you that what I really don't understand about dentistry is why, even with insurance, is it so damn expensive?

Seriously, we dropped almost a full mortgage payment on, essentially, two fucking teeth. Sorry. Scratch that. All of the "copays" we spent were for one tooth. The extraction was free.


How does that even seem reasonable by any means other than "we don't have another choice"?

We actually have dental insurance and, further, what I imagine is probably a better policy than a lot of people might have because of the buying power of my employer. Still, it cost over $1,000 to get this issue resolved and that just seems ridiculous.

I don't even want to think about the two Monkeys that will be getting braces in the next couple of years.

About a year ago, I was contacted with a "Dear Blogger" letter that wanted me to share information about the value of Orthodontia with my readership. Well, shit, I don't believe anyone who reads this blog doesn't understand why braces are a good idea. What I don't understand is why they are still so expensive, and why dental insurances still leave so much of the cost on the shoulders of the parents.

It's just ridiculous that something that has become so common in the realm of health care should still be so prohibitively expensive.

In other news, it took less than one week for my fabulous klutztasticness to destroy my fancy new water bottle.

Tuesday night I was putting my stuff in the van, tossed the bottle on the seat and watched it roll off onto the concrete below. Apparently more than the water bottle could take and it cracked promptly.


That was the one big bonus of the Sigg water bottles: I could drop them all over the place and not damage them.

Dropping things is, by the way, my real super power.

This was dinner Tuesday night. I thought the burger would be good, but I had no idea it would be so good.

It's a "Griller's Prime" patty from Morningstar Farms, which was cooked on the griddle pan. About halfway through, pour on some Soy Vay Island Teriyaki and continue cooking. The sauce tends to cook down and even get kind of charred, the way you'd expect of grilled onions, say, or any time you're cooking something with a high sugar content. Personally, I like the burntness it gets. I think it adds to the flavor.

Once the burgers were all grilled up, they went on a thin sandwich bun and were topped with a slice of smoked jack cheese from Spring Hill Cheese Co., red onion and pineapple rings.

These were served with asparagus and sliced melon.

I'll be honest and tell you that the asparagus is the frozen "steamer bag" variety as purchasable from Raley's. I know, that's practically sacrilege, especially for a Californian. But I've had those bags since well before asparagus season.

Also? I would never serve fresh asparagus as the side to a burger and sliced melon. Am I the only one that sees fresh asparagus as worthy of being the main event on a dish?

I don't think so.

While shopping over the weekend, I picked up a pack of baby artichokes. Artichokes being another item that I think is the Main Event on the dinner plate. My dad taught me all about Artichoke Love, and I love sharing that with the Monkeys.

I believe that baby 'chokes are handled just a bit differently from the Grown Up version. Do any of you foodies have some tips for me about how to cook, serve and eat these wee delights?

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