Sacramento Eats

Before I leave Sacramento, I just wanted to share some of my favorite places to eat. If you live there or ever visit there, here's some places to be checked out. They are in no particular order.

Squeeze Inn

The Squeeze with cheese has made it the The Food Network, and deservedly so. Basically, you take high quality piece of meet, and as it's cooking you throw a pile of shredded cheddar on it, let it melt, cover it, and then serve it with a halo of burnt cheese around it on a high quality bun. It's a heart attack on a bun, and it is also the best cheeseburger I have ever had.


I never had Moroccan food until I went here, and it was a dinner I won't soon forget. The atmosphere is fantastic, especially on the weekends when there is bellydancing. You eat with your hands (they bring mineral water to your table to wash, and I'm sure if you're anal they'll bring you utensils), and your courses are brought out gradually, which allows plenty of time for conversing. And that's important, because they atmosphere is extremely conducive to talking and having a good time. I'm sure my date had a lot to do with what a good time I had, but that does not lessen how cool this place is. Oh yeah, they food is fantastic too. The kabobs were like eating a good steak, and the chicken was cooked and seasoned perfectly.

Naked Lounge/Tupelo

I frequented these two coffeehouses (different names, same owner) more than any other spot in Sacramento besides work or home. Quite plainly the best coffee and espresso I've had. I'm not an aficionado or anything, but I'm telling you, this stuff is good. Naked Lounge downtown is more hipster, and conducive to people-watching. Tupelo, in East Sacramento, is better for studying and quieter conversation.

True Love Coffeehouse

Cool place with cool local art. Run by Kevin Seconds (lead singer of 7 Seconds). But the best reason to go here is the Peanut Butter Mocha. Wow, it's good.

Los Jarritos

Not going to pretend it's gourmet Mexican food or anything, but it is very good, especially considering the price. You will not have a better $5 meal than a Los Jarritos combination plate. Or if you're even cheaper, the $1.25 tamales (smothered with red sauce and cheese) and enchiladas (get the chicken) cannot be beat. Oh, and if you get extra chips, just pay the 25 cents, alright?


I don't know a lot about the rest of the menu, but the "Little Nopalitos Special" is my favorite breakfast ever. It's cactus, egg, and um, some other stuff all smothered with an excellent red sauce.

Kabul Kabob

Went here for the first time last week and was really impressed. I git the Kabob Combination, which when I think about it, was like ordering a GREAT steak, a GREAT chicken breast, and A GREAT seasoned burger patty along with some GREAT basmati rice. Awesome food, and the people running it are super nice.

Gaylord Indian Restaurant

Stop snickering. What are you, 12 years old? Not much to say, it was just the best Indian food I've ever had.

Other things I really enjoyed:

Breakfast at The Fox and Goose.

Fish and chips at Streets Of London.

Pizza at Giovanni's and Johnny's Sidewalk Pizza.

Late night Pad Thai and cleavage watching at Ma Jong's.

Sandwich's at Dad's and Bud's Buffet.

Dessert at Rick's Dessert Diner.

And a bunch more that are escaping me at the moment (feel free to add to the list in the comments). Bottom line, there's a lot of good food in Sacramento, you just have to ignore some of the overhyped places (Mikuni, Zelda's) and try that place in the strip mall you've passed a million times.

Thanks for keeping me not skinny, Sacramento.


Don't cry for me, Sacramento

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I'm leaving for San Diego on Wednesday, and here is the Sacramento forecast til then. Yes, the Sacramento skies mourn my leaving. Buck up, Sacramento, I'll be back to visit. Howz about some sunny skies for Thursday?


Patriot for a day

I'm usually a fan of the underdog, but not this Super Bowl. Go Patriots!


Cuz FUCK ELI MANNING, that's why.

It hurts more to see that fucktard in the Super Bowl than to see the Chargers NOT in it.

If you don't know the story, Eli was drafted by the Chargers in 2004, but his daddy made it clear that there was no way in hell he would play for them. A few moments later, he was traded to the Giants, but not before he had to defile himself by holding up a Chargers jersey and forcing a fake smile:

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Fuck that guy, and fuck his dad. Peyton, you're okay with me, just keep losing to the Chargers and maybe try not to be in every single commercial that's on my teevee, k?

Dear God,

You do know you would be setting a bad example for all of humankind to let Eli Manning succeed, right? I know you work in mysterious ways, so I am assuming you have allowed him to succeed this far in order to prove a bigger point. I don't know what this point might be, but a 63-0 loss in the Super Bowl might make it clearer. I know the Patriot's are Satan's team, but can you just let bygones be bygones just this once?

Thank you,


The agony of defeat

I don't really blog a lot about football during the season out of some retarded belief that if I do, I will jinx things. Kinda like how I do wear my team's shirt on game day anymore. But now that the season is over for the Chargers, I can speak freely.

Did I have some complaints about today's game? Yeah, of course I did. But I'm overall not really disappointed. All of the complaining I did during the season, you'd think I was a fan of a 1-15 team, not a team that won its division and seriously challenged one of the NFL's all time great teams in the AFC Championships. Despite all my whining and moaning, the season was a success.

So here are my complaints:

I wish we would have thrown a couple of jump balls to Vincent Jackson in the end zone when we were in the red zone.

I wish we would have gone for it on 4th down in the 4th quarter on the Patriots 40. You HAD to stop the Pats, it didn't really matter where on the field you stopped them, so why not go for it?

I wish Antonio Cromartie would have just downed the ball in the endzone after picking off Brady. Running it out and getting tackled at the four was not smart. BUT, this is Antonio Cromartie, who has a knack at making big returns, we're talking about, so I'm gonna go ahead and give him the benefit of the doubt.

The timeout situation frustrated me as well. I don't like burning timeouts. But if you are going to use them, couldn't the following play at least be something that justified the time out? Losing yardage on a routine play after a time out is not cool.

And finally, a complaint all year, I wish we were more dynamic. Example: at one point, the Pats lined up three receivers on the right, snapped the ball, and Brady looked to his right for a few seconds, then turned and dumped the screen pass to the left. Simple, yet brilliant, play. It was a great acting job on Brady's part, but it wasn't rocket science. This is stuff we did in sixth grade. It doesn't require a lot of imagination. It does, however, require some imagination. That imagination is what seperates the Pats from the rest of the league.

But on the positive side, the defense, especially the secondary, played great. The run defense faltered in the second half, which was a little unexpected.

I was also impressed with the Chargers discipline. There were no stupid penalties. No stupid false starts. No stupid delay of game penalties. Can't remember the last time a Charger team played this cleanly.

I thought Rivers played a decent game. There were some great passes to the middle of the field, and some horrible ones to the sidelines, as is his wont. But hobbling around like a second coming of Stan Humphries, I gotta say, I was proud of the guy. Rivers has been a grade A asshole for much of the year. His popularity among Chargers fans plunged this year, mainly due to his Ryan Leaf-esque antics at times. Not his play, mind you, but the whining, the dramatics, the yelling at fans, it rubs people, even your own fans, the wrong way. But his performance today went a long way in winning me, for one, back. Now Philip, please don't ruin this by saying something stupid.

Finally, LT. Fuck, man. I feel so bad for the guy. I seriously do. I don't know LT, and maybe he's a rotten dude, but everything, EVERYTHING that I do know about the guy says he's a great person off the field. I mean, seriously, who doesn't like LT? He wore his helmet the whole game, I suspect so no one could see how emotionally hurt he was. It is known that LT is not scared to cry. Yeah, yeah. professional football badass getting emotional, make all the fun you want, but it still sucked to see such a great guy have to sit and watch, knowing there was nothing he could do. That's the only thing I really feel bad about.

So, this probably sounds like a bunch of whining, but I don't mean it to be. I'm proud of the Chargers, and I apologize to Norv Turner for all of the hate I sent his way during the year. We had our chances today, and it just didn't happen. The better team won. Hard to feel bitter about that.

So, uh, when's Spring Training?


The King Of Kensington

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So I found a place in San Diego. It's a small studio, but it's pretty nice, and best of all it's in Kensington, a neighborhood I've wanted to live in since I first moved to San Diego in '96. If you're in Sacramento, it's kind of like a small version of East Sac, nice houses, cool stores, and a tolerable level of hipsters. I'm pretty happy.


But I don't wear a pillbox hat or listen to Ministry or catch frisbees behind my back or write nice poetry.

That's it, Jack.

There's one born every minute

These two cables do exactly the same thing and they are exactly the same length. Yet one is $2.49 and one is $19.99. Why? Cuz omgomg it's white just like an iPod! How neat-o!

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I'm thinking about painting some pennies white and calling them iDollars. What do you think?


Wolf In Sheep's Clothes

Huckabee almost had me. I knew he was a religious fellow, but his self deprecating sense of humor tricked me into thinking he's a harmless dude, the "right" kind of conservative who might actually work to help the poor. I mean I'd never vote for the guy, ever, but he didn't seem to be that odious. Luckily, he is being fully vetted, and the results are extremely ugly. In addition to quarantining AIDS patients, equation homosexuality with necrophilia and environmentalism with pornography, we now get this lovely little quote:
"It's a lot easier to change the Constitution than it would be to change the word of the living god. And that's what we need to do -- to amend the Constitution so it's in God's standards rather than try to change God's standards so it lines up with some contemporary view."
I'm very sure he'll be vigorously grilled on this by the media. /sarcasm


I believe I ordered the VENTI receipt. Hello!

Ordered one, that's one, uno, 1, grande iced Americano, and Starbucks presented me this beast of a receipt. Necessary?

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The Wire Is Not The Greatest Show Ever

But, yeah, it is very, very good. I'm just done with all the fanboy hype over it. All of the "best show ever talk" has actually influenced the way I watch the show. Instead of enjoying a show I really like, I'm looking for chinks in its armor so Matthew Yglesias will shut up about it. Quit ruining this for me , Matt. Yes, great show (Obama agrees!). No, not best ever. I think the people who say so just do it to set themselves apart from the "Sopranos is the greatest show ever" crowd.

Also, why is Big Love not talked about more? That's some quality TV right there. Never thought I'd take Bill Paxton seriously after Twister, but watching this guy you want to like continually dig himself in a hole is pretty damn riveting.


life in the hood

Note: This was supposed to be posted before I moved to San Diego. But moving combined with my slacker nature, so I'm just posting it now.

A few months ago, I moved from a very nice area in East Sacramento to a place next to Del Paso Heights, one of the more notorious parts of Sacramento. Not only that, I moved into a house that was in foreclosure. And I knew it was going in. So, house in the hood, could be kicked out at any moment. Why in the hell did I do this? Well, I was reading A Heartbreaking Work Of Staggering Genius, and a couple of sentences really hit home. The author, Dave Eggers, is explaining why he is taking a trip to his hometown, the place his parents died.
This trip is about the fact that things have been much too calm in San Francisco- I am making enough money, Toph is doing well at school - and thus completely intolerable. I will return home and look for ugly things and chaos. I want to be shot at, want to fall into a hole, want to be dragged from my car and beaten.
Maybe that's why. For the first time in my life, things seem rather stable, jobs good, moneys good, no one's died recently, no drama at all really. So maybe I was looking for some. Maybe chaos is my comfort zone. Probably not, but it sure sounds good.

Anyways, it has been an interesting experiment. While I'm not loaded with money or anything, living in the hood has been a choice for me; I can leave anytime I want. A lot of the residents here have no such choice. This is home for them. I'm just a visitor. Still, you notice certain things. These things aren't news to anyone who's had to live in a lower income area, but they were new to my relatively privileged ass.

For one, there are no convenient major supermarkets in the immediate area. There are however, tons of smaller markets and corner stores, whos prices make the already high supermarket prices look cheap in comparison. It's not like I can blame the major supermarkets either. I have been told there used to be a Safeway, but they had to close due to all the theft. I don't know if that's true or not, but it wouldn't surprise me. I have no answers, the situation just is.

The post office is a complete joke. It doesn't even have an after hours drop box or one of those blue bins. It's almost an afterthought. Sad, really.

For an area with as much crime as DPH has, there's certainly not a heavy police presence. Around the corner from me, there's a pretty obvious open air drug market, which no one seems to care about.

There is however, a large church presence.
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This is a sign down the street from me.

Image Hosted by ImageShack.us False advertising. Like I said, there's an open air drug market around the corner. And I've gotten a little too used to gunshots. You know it's bad when you have company over and a conversation geoes like:

"Was that a gunshot?"



"Dude, relax, they aren't shooting at us."

So all of this probably paints a pretty bleak picture of my hood, but it's really not so bad. One time, there was a guy going through some stuff out in the garage, but he thought the place had been abandoned. Then there was the tweaker.

Oh, the tweaker. I get home at about 11pm, and at the end of my drive way I hear a woman's voice repeating, "excuse me sir." So I go down to find out what she wants. A ride. She explains that she's my neighbor and used to know the owner of the house (the one I'm "renting" from). She needs a ride to pick up some stuff from her "other" place. That doesn't sound good, but I'm in a dilemma. If I was away from home, I would say, sorry, can't help ya. But she lives next door. Bad enough I live next to a tweaker, do I really want to live next to a tweaker with a vendetta?

So, she gets in the car, and as we drive she proceeds to describe to me an awful depressing life. But she describes it as if it's completely normal and I should somehow relate. She tells me quite matter-of-factly, but in the mile a minute cadence of the tweaker, of how her boyfriend is in jail for a few months for beating on her. "You know how it is." Uh, sure.

So we get to her scary "other place" and she gets what she needs, a rotary phone. What the fungus? I have no idea. On the way back, she jokes that maybe she should make me her boyfriend, except she kind of looks to see my reaction, like perhaps she's serious if I appear to be down. I nervously giggle and immediately change the subject to god knows what. We get back home, she offers me money, I refuse and we part. I survive.

Knock knock. Oh Christ. I open the door, there she is. She's smiling. There's a weird silence. I'm guessing she has a porn soundtrack playing in her head or something. When I say, "Can I help you?" she kind of snaps out of it and asks if I happen to have a phone cord. I am so praying that "phone cord" isn't some tweaker sexual innuedo. Then I remember the phone sh got at the other place. Nope. Sorry. No cord for you. Proudly cellular only since 2004.

She scurries off into the night, never to be seen again. In my time in one of the worst parts of Sacramento, that's the worst thing that happened. Not so bad really.

I'm not about to star in Boyz N The Hood II or anything, but I've now been street tested, mother approved. Word.



I make it no secret that I am an avid supporter of Barack Obama. Obviously I was elated when he won the Iowa Democratic caucus. I'm not about to get overconfident and suggest this was more than it is, but man, it was wonderful to feel so proud to be an American. I haven't fell like that in years. A black man named Barack Hussein Obama winning in Iowa? Hopefully, this signifies something broader going on in this country.

Like I said, this in no way means the nomination is Obama's. It's one primary in one important, yet small state. But thinking about the whole Obama vs. Clinton thing, it just seems like there is so much irrational hatred of Hillary Clinton that getting the nomination might be easier than you would think. You don't need to take any sort of Gallup poll to prove this; just ask some apolitical people you know about her. People hate her. Not just Republicans either. I know Democrats who shudder at the mention of her name.

Now, don't get me wrong, I don't understand or agree with the anti-Hillary sentiment. When I press people I know on why the don't like her, I get answers like, "I just don't", or "she's just so...so...ugh". There's never a valid policy reason. I have my own reasons for not supporting Hillary, and all but one of them concern policy (the one that doesn't is that I would be quite uncomfortable with the Bush-Clinton-Bush-Clinton succession pattern). But I don't hate her, in many ways she's quite remarkable, and I think as a president she'd be much better than any of the buffoons on the other side. But the reality is what it is, a lot of people just plain do not like her for a bunch of stupid reasons, and their minds are not going to change. You can't force someone to like you.

We'll see if my thoughts bear out. My initial support of Obama was pretty idealistic. My support was real, yet I didn't see him winning the nomination as being realistic. Not anymore. This is doable.



What the hell, just because I ordered a salad, the bastid's at Rubio's think they have a right to call me "Jeri"? HOW DARE THEM. Obviously, they've been scheming with the dude's at Hot Rod's.

And yes, I used a coupon. Of COURSE, I used a coupon. I am Jeri.

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