A blog about movies and the Sturbridge area, including The Brookfields, Brimfield, Charlton, Holland, Wales, and Spencer as well as adjacent towns.

Monday, March 29, 2010

“Fat Head” - Now you know, Where’s the Beef?

At the movie site called EZTakes, you can download movies of different genres that you don't usually get to see. You can read the movie reviews I do for them here.

Below is my review at EZTakes of Fat Head. It is a documentary that eviscerates Spurlock's Super Size Me.

“Fat Head” - Now you know, Where’s the Beef?

Occasionally, I come across a movie I want to love even before I see it. Tom Naughton’s Fat Head is one of those. As a gourmand, it is certain that a movie that says you can eat all you want of what you like will be watched with fervor by those of us seeking justification for our love of meat in quantity.

Naughton starts by pointing out that the obese are not “obese.” Well most of them. The hype about the obesity “crisis” is hype. First he shows footage of morbidly obese, such as they show on the news when a new study saying whaleness is rampant is released. Then he shows an average looking person and points out that according to the studies, that man is obese. Now the man he is showing is himself, and though not skin and bones is hardly corpulent.

Then he goes on to the subject that got him notoriety. He infers, that Morgan Spurlock of Super Size Me fame is a fraud. I’m choosing my words carefully, because there is one simple thing Mr. Spurlock can do and Tom and I will have to admit his bona fides. So Far, he has not done so.

Spurlock claimed to have eaten 5000 plus calories a day on Mickey Ds cuisine. Naughton claims it is near impossible to eat that much a day even at the Golden Arches. Spurlock’s rules were 3 Mickey D meals a day. Eat everything on menu at least once and supersize only when asked.

How’d it go? He was only asked to supersize 9 times. Tom calculates a day went thus,

Breakfast 770
lunch 1450
dinner 1360
total 3580

Now that’s not even 4,000 calories. A supersize day would bring it up to 4,270. Morgie’s nutritionist says he ate 5,000 per diem. What gives?

Well, your man can completely exculpate himself if he gives over his daily food logs. He steadfastly refuses. So is Morgie a fraud? Won’t say I know, but my guess, and Tom does not say this, is that Supersize Me was a good career move. Would you not be tempted to fudge it if you had a chance to be loved by the cool people? Not to mention make some moolah.

He also skewers Center For Science in the Public Interest (CSPI). He never says it, but the term “pious fraud” came to my mind. The face of CSPI in the movie is the team of Michael Jacobson, who looks like he would stab his leg with a fork if he thought he was having fun, and Margo Wootan who does not look like she ever missed a meal.

CSPI thinks the fast food industry is evil and people are stupid. They are not shy about using the coercive power of Holy Mother State to make sure lumpen America live as they would have us.

Now deep down, why do Margo and Mikey do this? My belief is, it’s like Morgie, a good career move. Why eat tofu burgers in silence when you can make it a sinecure? This does not mean they are insincere. All fanatics mean it. Take it from me, monomania runs in my family.

Now we all know transfats are evil. Well, who pushed transfats in the first place? It was a CSPI jihad. Now that we know they are junk, who is suing KFC? CSPI’s motto should be eat nothing, die pure.

Naughton has a lot of fun in this movie, whether it’s standing by a McDonald’s entrance waiting to be forced to eat fast food or lampooning the lawyer who hates that McDonald’s provides free playgrounds in areas that don’t have any, and thus tempts kids.

Cutting out the high fructose drinks is something Morgie, Tom and I agree with, but the aspartame diet sodas are quite another. Aspartame is a trigger for my migraines, but c’est moi and maybe it makes him healthier.

So, yeah, I loved Fat Head. Then again, I believe bacon fat is the olive oil of the north.

Click here to download Fat Head.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

If you want a West Brookfield Farmers Market, come to the Town Hall on Tuesday!

No, the picture above is not from the West Brookfield Farmers Market. However, we live in hope that a scene like this may someday happen here.

There is another meeting scheduled with the selectmen on Tuesday, March 23 at 6:30p.m., Town Hall lower level, to discuss the market again. It appears that a market does fall under the definition of a farm stand and that it will be selling horticultural products and therefore needs a special permit. The permit process is rigorous, and costs about $150.00 (non-refundable) and clearly states that this permit is needed because a “building permit” has been denied. Requirements include:

1.A certified list of abutters
2. Full copy of the deed proving ownership
3. A photograph of the site where the proposed building or addition will be located
4. Boundaries of parcel with dimensions
5. Names of adjacent landowners
6. Outline of buildings with dimensions
7. Setback dimensions of structures
8. Locations of adjacent public ways
9. Existing and proposed sanitary systems
10 Provisions of surface water drainage
11. Landscape features
12. Evidence that all taxes have been paid on property

I hope no one expects Amy to pay out of pocket for the fee, as well as provide 5 copies for review. The 12 requirements above do not seem germane to what is being attempted. I intend to be at the meeting and hope that all the people who support a market and can come will be there. Amy has gotten almost 200 names on petitions, over 15 letters of support from residents, wrote two proposals, one letter and has been to three meetings and still has not received approval. She deserves support, but truly, in supporting her we are really supporting our town.

I hope everyone in town, no matter what position they occupy understands this.

Friday, March 19, 2010

I wish I had gotten to Quabaog Hills Chamber of Commerce Business Expo earlier than I did!

On Thursday, March 18th, The Quabaog Hills Chamber of Commerce held a business expo at the Sturbridge Host Hotel. Due to other obligations, I arrived with only 45 minutes left. No matter, none of the exhibitors was leaving as their were still a lot of folks making the rounds.

As I was moseying by the tables, I stared for a second at Rondeau's Dairy Bar. All too often the most dangerous place to be is between moi and a dish of ice cream. The staff might have been thinking about public safety when I was proferred a lovely dish of key lime ice cream.

My bank, North Brookfield Savings Bank had a table. My banker, Mary Mary Antinovich was there. She is not actually "my" banker, but she is always pleasant and helpful at the West Brookfield branch that it seems that way.

I next saw my neighbor, Ellan Catacchio who was at the table for The Centered Place located over in Warren. If you are tired of the sturm und drang of daily life, that is the place to take refuge.
Above, Nancy Nowak and Ellan for the Centered Place

After I left the Centered Place exhibit, I was accosted, well offered lobster on a roll from Janine's Frostie. I was happy to be ambushed.

At the Quaboag Valley Community Development Corporation I met up with two people I had not seen in a long time. Our son had known Sheila Cuddy's boy Cyrus when they were young and we had some of the same concerns about education. Susan Rutherford had assisted a client of mine with the agency's loan program. It is great to see that she is still helping out the small entrepreneur.
Above, Susan and Sheila for the Quaboag Valley Community Development Corporation

The Quaboag Hills Chamber of Commerce serves the following communities: Belchertown, Brimfield, Brookfield, East Brookfield, Hardwick, Holland, Monson, New Braintree, North Brookfield, Palmer, Spencer, Wales, Ware, Warren, and West Brookfield. To find out more about the organization, you can visit the website by clicking here.

As I was leaving, Belchertown's Roadhouse Cafe plied me with crumbcake. Boy, am I easy.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Shameless Self Promotion-March Edition

The Sturbridge Times Magazine's March issue is out and it is time for moi to again self promote.

On Page 2 is the story of my friends, Susan and Gayle. People of many talents, the past Christmas season saw them making unique bird houses that were a hit with everyone who received one.

Brookfield's most famous native, Elsie, is profiled on page 5.

My column is on Page 18

There are other great articles, some fun, some informative. So if you haven't recieved a hard copy, you can read it on line or click on the extra copies graphic below to find where to fetch one.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Mexico comes to Sturbridge

The working press of the Sturbridge area gathered together to celebrate a new restaurant today. It’s been near 20 years since Western Central Massachusetts has had a Mexican restaurant in the region, but the drought is over. Playa del Carmen is here.

Jorge Guzman and his partner Carmen, have taken over the Rom’s building. The soft opening was yesterday and the parking lot was full. Word travels fast.

There will be Mariachi music from 5 p.m. to 9 on Sunday. We will have more about this here and in The Sturbridge Times Magazine. Keep watching and feast your eyes below on the Enchiladas de Mole and the Enchiladas Playa del Carmen.

It all went well with the cerveza, Pacifico Claro.

Thanks to Bob Datz of datzmedia who invited all the ink stained wretches. Also in attendance were Tracy Seelye and Chris Tanguay, managing editor and reporter respectively for the Southbridge evening news. Craig Semon of the T&G came. WESO station manager, Joe Mangiacotti, was also there. Joe is the host of Out With Joe dining show at 3 p.m. Sundays. No one ever had a better name for a show about food than Joe Mangiacotti.

Dick Vaughan stopped by and regaled us with his stories of life in the public sector. Always good for a quote and he did not disappoint today,

“Nobody has ever said a government knows how to run a government.”