A history lesson:
In medieval England, political prisoners, murderers, and women who could do math (witches), were the subject of all sorts of cruel and unusual punishment. From burning at the stake to being fed to rats, the dungeon master's ingenuity and penchant for mutilation knew no bounds. Somewhere around this time, a truly malignant torturer, one who's name has been long forgotten by history, invented a new method of abuse, one that played upon the psychological weakness of his victims. Its name, a curse in many foreign tongues and illegal to say in most of South East Asia, was soccer. At first glance, soccer didn't look all that bad, and prisoners often confused the uniforms the players were wearing for those of players involved in the popular sports of the day, sports like rock throwing and dog punching. This was soccer's cruelest trick, its ability to approximate all of the things that make sports fun without delivering any sort of entertainment value for its spectators.
Victims watched in horror as 115-pound men lightly jogged around the field kicking a (at the time) wooden ball towards a 30-foot wide net. There was seemingly no time limit, penalties were arbitrary, and players spent large portions of the game rolling around on the ground in pretend anguish, a particularly brutal trick considering the poor souls who were forced to watch often did so after being severely beaten. The most devastating aspect of this game, as it was cruelly referred to, was the fact that when the match was finished, after some indiscriminate amount of time, no side was declared a victor. Every single game ended in a draw of 0-0, or if the prison warden was feeling generous, 1-1. Eventually, much like with public executions of all kinds, members of the citizenry began going to soccer matches to watch enemies of the state get brutalized. Over the years, the line between crowd and victim got muddled, and by the mid 1400s, soccer's popularity had eclipsed that of every major sport in England, from speed reading bible passages to chicken strangling.
Flash forward a few hundred years. After a period of British rule in which colonists in America were not only forced to watch soccer–which had sarcastically been given the moniker The Beautiful Game–but to subsidize the building of soccer stadiums in major cities, agitators across the land took up arms against the crown. In 1774, a brave man named Benjamin Franklin uttered the immortal words "This shit sucks. Put the Birds on." during a match between the Boston Soggy-Bottomed Gentleman and the New York Periwinkles, two short-lived soccer clubs. Nearly arrested for his outburst, Franklin went back to Philadelphia and gathered all the fans and organizers of the newly-formed American sport murder-ball. Unlike, soccer, things actually happened in murder-ball. Blood was spilt. Inches were fought for. Men who were carried off the field on stretchers didn't get up on the sideline and immediately start jogging. At the first continental congress, there were delegates from the Philadelphia Eagles, the New York Giants, the New England Patriots, and other fledging murder-ball organizations. They banded together to create a murder-ball league–changing the name to football both for PR purposes and as an ironic snub to the British game–and worked together to repel their soccer-playing occupiers. Still, once-bitter rivals had a hard time agreeing during this trying time, and many concession had to be made. One example was the joint Maryland/Virginia team, who demanded to be allowed to retain their name, despite the fact that it was a slur and offensive to almost everyone else at the meeting. This tradition is still alive today, never mind the protestations of decent football fans everywhere. In the end however, good triumphed over evil, and soccer was expelled from our lands, never to return.
Anyway, this week we're making guacamole. The Philadelphia Eagles take on the Atlanta Falcons on Thursday September 6th. Make it for the game and get stoned. Watch Doug Pederson's goofy head bounce up and down as he goes for it on 4th and 9 on his own 40 yard line. It's important to remember your roots. The start of football season is an American holiday, and if you're a patriot, you'll celebrate.
We're keeping it simple this week. Recipe adapted from Alton Brown's.
3 Haas avocados, halved, seeded and peeled
1 lime, juiced
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
1/2 medium onion, diced
1/2 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
2 Roma tomatoes, seeded and diced
1 tablespoon chopped cilantro
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tablespoon of canna-oil
Put avocados into a bowl and coat with lime juice. Drain excess lime juice and save for later.
Add salt, cumin, pepper, canna-oil, and cayenne to the avocados and mash them together. Next add onions, tomatoes, cilantro garlic and jalepeños and mix thoroughly.
Finally, add the lime juice back into the mix and mix one final time. Let sit for an hour in the fridge (covered) and then serve.