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small red square My "Safeway Club" card came up invalid today. They must've finally done some background check & discovered that nobody with the name I gave lives at that address. Last year, when these were new (and the eager shopper actually realized some measurable savings by using them) they were handing out these cards on the spot, based on whatever identity information the potential member stated. I checked out the enlistment process last month with their competition ("Lucky" <1>) - they wanted a driver's license to verify the address & etc - which is no wonder, what good is the demographic data they're gathering with this scheme if it's inaccurate? Too bad this happened before I reached that $500 purchase threshold, which wins you some big cash-off coupon - oh, well - such is the life of a renegade consumer.

small orange square In the midst of the daily carrot juice prep: I'm individually rinsing off a little over a pound of carrots, then cutting back each end a ¼ to a ½ inch (the pointy part because the Juiceman <2> says that's where fertilizers collect); any really fat ones are sliced diagonally. Carrots ready, I drop each one into my Braun juicer's top orifice, always reminded of the 2-by-4 at the end of "Fargo" as I shove it home with the little plastic pusher. Noisy juicing completed, I filter out any pulp, pouring the juice from the unit's special cup through a strainer-mesh into a glass. The opaque, orange liquid seems to glow with healthy energy - net yield: about a half-pint. Prior to consumption I disassemble the unit, adding the strained-out pulp to the rest in the used produce bag I'd previously lined the small ejecta-bucket with. After knotting the baggy & tossing it into the rubbish can under the sink I rinse off the machine's component parts - more in-depth cleaning (with bleach soaking) occurs monthly. After a couple years back east O's wife was quizzing my about any way-out-western behaviors I'd picked up in LA & not yet discarded; she latched on to my juicing when I revealed it was still a daily habit. I took along the appliance on my next visit to Charlotte so I could give her a taste of fresh carrot juice. Pre-workout I had also been grinding up a concoction of two apples, an orange and a chunk of ginger root, but I haven't been doing this for a year - too loud for that early hour.

small yellow square I got my first juicer in late 1991. Some of the stuff I was drinking then was kind of strange, like Bok Choy juice. You always want to cut green juice with some carrot; and mixing fruit and vegetable juices is a bad idea, as is trying to juice parsnips or rhubarb.

small white square So much for Winter - sporadic use of auto air conditioning this weekend.

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<1>A chain I avoided for years, and still don't favor, because I found their advertising jingle so annoying when I first moved to California. Since it has been retired you can no longer experience it, but old western hands may recall
"Here's the sale you been waiting for
 Grab the keys & get out the door
 Lucky... Lucky"

<2>Jay Kordich Back