Thursday, April 30, 2009

OFF TOPIC: Swine Flu Explained, CDC Video

Hey, I know this is far off topic, but this is the best, most straightforward explaination I've seen of Swine Flu, that I've seen.

So, here it is, direct from the CDC (US Center for Disease Control):
"CDC influenza expert, Joseph Bresee, M.D., describes how to recognize the signs and symptoms of swine flu including how swine flu is transmitted, appropriate medicines for treatment and steps to take to prevent or treat illness."
Swine Flu. Flash Player 9 is required.

A Swine Flu & Fast Food Connection?

It is important to note that you cannot contract Swine Flu from eating pork.

Now that the first person to get Swine Flu has been located, there are suspicions about it's origins.

Edgar Hernandez of La Gloria in eastern Mexico has been identified as the first person to have Swine Flu. He's fine now.

But attention is now being paid to a pig farm near La Gloria called Granjas Carroll de México.

Residents of La Gloria have been complaining since March that the odour from Granjas Carroll’s pig "manure lagoons" was causing severe respiratory infections. They held a demonstration this month at which they carried signs of pigs crossed with an X and marked with the word peligro (danger).

Granjas Carroll de México, which is a 50 per cent owned subsidiary of Smithfield Foods, based in the US state of Virginia, supplies the McDonald’s and Subway. They were also fined $12.3 million (£8.4 million) in 1997 for violating the Clean Water Act.
see Times Online for more.

UPDATE: Smithfield Foods has sent a letter to their employees about the virus. They are awaiting test results on pigs from the farm near La Gloria.

Healthiest French Fries

A WebMD nutritionist took a look at fast food french fries with an eye to which are the healthiest (and which or the worst for you).

She concluded that Sonic's regular fries are the healthiest fast food french fry choice because they are lowest in calories, fat grams, percentage of calories from fat ant total amount of "bad fats." The runner up was McDonald's.

The worst: Carl's Jr. Natural Cut French Fries and Jack in the Box Natural Cut fries which are the highest in calories and grams of fat and are shockingly high in "bad fats" (4 grams saturated fat and 5 grams trans fat).

read the rest at WebMD.


First Look: Bombay Bowl

A new fast food restaurant concept has opened in Denver called "Bombay Bowl."

Their origins (from their web site):

"America can be a cold, dark place for immigrating students. That is, until you find the all night grocery stores and fast food drive-throughs. Then, starving homesick students come to understand one of th emany things that make the US beautiful. Food and opportunity! Add in a passion for great taste and healthy options and you have, me, Amar. I've been through nine years of corporate American and many more adventures but now its time for me to follow my passion. Now its time for the birth of a new fast-casual dining option -- Bombay Bowl."

"The Bombay Bowl vision is to focus on a simple menu and cooking process so we can serve quality and healthy food quickly and inexpensively. Because every store will have consistent food quality and taste, Bombay Bowl will be a common healthy, alternative fast-food in American's diets."

Their first timer diner's guide:

Some of their signature dishes include:

Tikka Bowl - Cumin-cilantro Rice, Grilled Chicken or Shrimp, Sauteed Vegetables, Tikka Sauce with Cilantro Garlic Chutney topped with Cilantro. ($6.99 for chicken, $7.99 for shrimp)

Korma Bowl - Cumin-Cilantro Rice, Braised Beef or Tofu or Grilled Chicken, Chickpea curry, Korma Sauce with Sweet Tamarind Chutney topped with Green Onion. ($7.50 for beef, $6.99 for Chicken or Tofu)

One enthusiastic on-line reviewer wrote on Urban Spoon: "The food is amazing!! I have been there three times already and I think they have only been open a week. LOLI dont know what it is but I have yet to get bored with the food. My favorite is the tofu and the white-colored curry with veggies."


Cinnabon Gives Nurses Free Rolls

from Cinnabon:

In appreciation of the extraordinary service nurses provide on a daily basis, Cinnabon and The DAISY Foundation are offering these professionals a free Cinnabon Classic Roll when they show their healthcare ID or badge at participating bakeries May 6-12.

"Nurses constantly put others before themselves, so we're happy to celebrate them during Nurses Week and thank them for their constant 'WOW' service," says Geoff Hill, president of Cinnabon.

"We also commend The DAISY Foundation for their passionate efforts, and we are happy to continue growing a long-lasting relationship with this outstanding organization.

Boston Market's Military Discount Partnership

Instead of offering a discount to active-duty military personnel who present their military ID card, Boston Market is offering a discount only to members of "Veterans Advantage," a 'membership card' program that costs $59.95 per year.  (Even the 30-day trial membership carries a $4.95 "processing fee.")

from Boston Market's press release:
To thank and honor those who served our country and their families Boston Market announces a partnership with Veterans Advantage. Through this partnership, members of Veterans Advantage will receive a 20 percent discount at any Boston Market restaurant nationwide when they show their membership card.

“Boston Market is proud to give back to those who bravely serve our country,” said Rick Arras, President and CEO of Boston Market and a U.S. Marine Corps veteran. “Veterans Advantage serves thousands of families each year, and we’re excited to offer discounts on our wholesome meals as a member benefit.”
Well sure, it is a great deal if you find yourself eating more than 43 meals a year at Boston Market. That's how many $7 meals you'd have to eat at Boston Market for your 20% savings ($1.40 per $7 meal) to add up to the $60 for an annual membership in "Veterans Advantage." ($7 for a meal at Boston Market is an arbitrary number I picked for the math.)


McCurry beats McDonald's in court

Fast food chain McDonald's lost a lawsuit in Malaysia on Wednesday after an appeals court overruled a decision that its trademark had been infringed by a local restaurant called McCurry.

"Where the learned judge, with respect, erred is to assume that McDonald's had a monopoly in the use of the prefix 'Mc' on a signage or in the conduct of business," Judge Gopal Sri Ram said, overturning a 2006 ruling in favour of McDonald's.

The McDonald's operation in this Southeast Asian country of 27 million people is run as franchise by prominent businessman Vincent Tan and has 185 outlets, according to the company website.

McCurry, by contrast, serves Indian fast food from one restaurant in Kuala Lumpur as well Malaysian dishes such as fish head curry and is short for "Malaysian Chicken Curry", according to the company website.


Taco Del Mar's Cinco De Mayo 5-lbs Burrito Challenge

For Cinco de Mayo, Taco Del Mar is rolling up 5 pound burritos on, the biggest in the restaurant chain's history, for their "Cinco de Mondo Five-pounder Burrito-eating Challenge.

On May 5, anyone that can successfully take down the Taco Del Mar’s Cinco de Mondo Five-pounder Burrito within 30 minutes or less gets a $20 Taco Del Mar gift certificate, a variety of Taco Del Mar SWAG and some serious bragging rights! The Five-pounder Burrito, equivalent to four-and-a-half of its Mondo Burritos, is four flour tortillas packed with rice, refried beans, chicken or ground beef, cheese, pico de gallo and a choice of sauces and jalapenos. It’s priced at $17.95.

Anyone up for the challenge should visit a Taco Del Mar on May 5 during regular store hours and ask for the Five-pounder!

Here's a video of a 5-pounder being made: