Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Even More Ed!

An interview with Ed from Atlanta Magazine.

[Andy's] more of the Connecticut blue-blood douche bag, if you will. And I relish playing that character because as a Southerner I just like to make fun of that guy. He’s just kind of a contemptuous guy, and yet I also sort of adore him because he’s insecure and vulnerable at times, so I try to give him a heart. There are certain archetypes that are not region-specific that apply to frat boys or a cappella nerds or whatever, and I think that’s something that everyone just gets. And Andy is part frat boy, part a cappella nerd, and I think it doesn’t matter where you’re from, where you went to college, if you went to college—you kind of just get that.


I’m actually primarily a guitar player. And I’ve played piano my whole life but never really got great at it, but I can noodle around. And then as a huge bluegrass fan my whole life, I’ve been playing banjo kind of all along as well. It’s funny, actually, in the last couple of years, banjo’s kind of taken the front seat, I’ve been really working on that more. I just love it so much, I don’t know what it is!
(Can we just change that second to last "it" to Iko?)

Here's a picture from "The Hangover" premiere in London, it looks like they each still have their correct jackets, no? Guess the switch happened later. Also, I love Ed's Harry Potter-style glasses!

Ed at the "Bruno" premiere in L.A.:


And, just so everyone realizes how popular Ed's becoming, here's a paparazzi picture of Ed at the airport - just like Lauren Conrad!!

He's so cute - carrying his banjo around with him!

Monday, July 13, 2009

A Little Ed for Your Monday Morning

Here's an article on Ed from GQ, it's short, but it comes with this picture:

And, also, because I'm so far behind in posting relevant Ed info., here's his appearance on TDS, which was both hilarious and adorable - him and Bradley switching jackets in London? What WERE they doing?
The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Ed Helms
Daily Show
Full Episodes
Political HumorJoke of the Day

The montage at the end was priceless.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

ZOMG! Best TV News EVER!

Click here and look at the top left corner.

Friday, June 12, 2009

"Top Chef: Masters" Episode 1 - Teaching the Masters how to Shop and Microwave

So, how did we all feel about the first episode? I was really looking forward to it, but was a little concerned about famous chefs having hissy fits and ego-offs, thereby ruining the entire show for me, but I'm pleased to say, I really enjoyed it! Maybe it was just a result of the four chefs they happened to get for the first show, or maybe it was the challenges themselves, but each of the chefs really put out some effort and hid their attitudes away. They were all so gracious and supportive of each other, with some mild banter thrown in. I found myself smiling and laughing right along with them at the ridiculousness that was none of them knowing how to use the microwave and the Girl Scouts reaming the desserts. I can only hope the other batches of chefs are as classy and grateful to be there, competing for charity, as Keller, Love, Lee, and Schlow.

I was pulling for Hubert Keller from the moment he walked into the kitchen - you could just tell he was happy to be there, competing for his charity, ready for whatever they threw at him. He also really impressed me with his line about being on the "other side" of the competition, as he had judges the "Top Chef" contestants before. It made me like him even more to know he thought it was only fair to take it if he was going to dish it out. Just a great chef, classy guy, and a DJ to boot! Tim Love was my second favorite, as I had watched his cooking while travel across the country on horseback on TV and really enjoyed his laid back approach to cooking and life. I hadn't really heard of Lee or Schlow before, but they both seemed ready to go - Lee came across as kind of pissy sometimes (at least to me, let me know if I'm far off base here) and Schlow, I felt so badly for him, his dessert probably would have been amazing if it wasn't for the GE ovens crapping out on him - strong advertisement for your product, GE!!

The Quickfire was great, in my opinion. It's true - none of these chefs probably make dessert, like, ever in their restaurants, but it's fair that they should have a few desserts up their sleeves, especially one that would impress some kids. To be fair, kids are very critical and definitely will not eat bad food, but probably don't want extremely complex flavor profiles and odd combination. I think they all did well (minus the obvious Schlow-issues), but Keller was clearly head and shoulders above the rest. Shamelessly playing to his customers with the swan and mouse, all the while making a delicious, simple dessert, recognizable to the girls, but also showing his beautiful French technique and culinary skill. Lee probably made a misstep with the caramelization on the French toast, that lightly charred flavor is great for adults, not so good for kids, while Love's chocolate covered strawberry was right on the mark, but I'm with the scouts - chicken-fried strawberry does NOT sound appetizing at all.

It was great to see the reactions of the chefs to the Girl Scouts - they were right, the girls were tough on them. That one definitely should be a food critic, she was having none of the, shall we say, less well-made desserts. Not that I expected the chefs to start bad-mouthing kids on TV, but I liked how they took it all in stride and laughed along with one another.

The Elimination Challenge, for me, was interesting in concept, but kind of lacked in execution. I mean, it certainly is a challenge to cook using only a toaster oven, microwave, and a hot plate in a dorm room, but it's also kind of gross, no? I mean, did they clean the rooms before having people prepare food in them? When Keller rinsed the pasta in the shower, had it recently been used? Was it the men's bathroom? Was the shower sanitized directly before he stuck the shower head into the pasta? These are all questions I would have liked answered before I dug into his (admittedly delicious-looking) mac and cheese. That said, I was wholly impressed with what the chefs were able to turn out using such limited space and equipment. Especially for poor Tim Love, having to defrost everything before cooking it - he really stepped it up, for a while I thought he had it in the bag.

My favorite dishes were the mac and cheese (even with the shower rinse), Schlow's salmon crudo, and Lee's pork chop (I don't know how he managed to sear a piece of meat using a hot plate). That's not to say the rest of the dishes weren't impressive, these were just my personal favorites. Although, I do agree with Jay Rayner (pirate guy), it is a bit of a cop out with limited cooking equipment to just not cook anything. That said, I would have just cut up some sashimi and called it a day for all three courses.

As for "Critic's Table," what to say? I guess it's fine - clearly none of the critics are going to go all Colicchio-style and rip these famous, well-established chefs a new one. The criticism was pretty mild, as it should be, unless there's a huge debacle. These guys know what they're doing so criticizing them is like splitting hairs - it's more an issue of personal taste, rather than an objective issue of whether the food is good or not. I guess they're going to have a revolving door of critics for each initial round, but I wonder if they'll have a set group of critics who review the final six chefs, down to the final two? Or maybe a few permanent critics and one rotating one, more in the "Top Chef" vein?

A couple of observations:
1. I LOVE how the masters get a Lexus to chauffeur them around town, rather than the Old Navy of Lexus - a Toyota, like the regular old "Top Chef" contestants do. When the camera zoomed in on the "L" I nearly spit my wine across the room in amusement.

2. Kelly Choi has less personality than Padma (if that's possible) and seems to be completely out of her league. They couldn't find someone to host, who can also speak intelligently about food? Maybe it was just the first episode, so I'll give her a slight pass, but, seriously?

3. The mini-segment of them all trying to figure out the microwaves, then giving up, was comedy gold. I would have watched an entire hour of Hubert Keller cursing in french, trying to make the thing heat up his mustard sauce.

4. Hubert Keller being confused by Whole Foods was simultaneously hysterical and sad. Does he not go shopping for himself? Like for the food he has at home in his fridge?

5. Jay Rayner, seriously, is one puffy shirt away from being a pirate.

All in all, it was a great opening for the show and definitely makes me want to tune in again for next week. I do like how the chefs are in groups of four, so even if one is really irritating, chances are you'll never have to see him/her again, or at least not for another few weeks if they win. I'm thrilled with the Keller win and can't wait to cheer him on five weeks from now. Unless John Besh gets in, too, then it's on like the prawn who yawns at dawn!!

Friday, June 5, 2009


Ahem. That is all.

Actually, also - go see "The Hangover," opens today.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

I Stalked Spike in DC and So Can You!!

So, I went to DC last weekend for a brief vacation. Clearly, for me, the main reasons to go were to find Stephen Colbert's portrait (it's been moved from the National Portrait Gallery where I saw it last time) and to eat a lot of good food. Both were accomplished:

Stephen is now in the American History Museum on the Mall, on third floor just outside the entertainment exhibit. It was pretty awesome to see the portrait some prominently displayed in the museum, rather than in the inglorious location next to the bathrooms, above the water fountains:

although this space looks pretty lonely without Stephen's stern face looking down upon the masses.

Aside from going to a bunch of the museums, we wanted to eat at a few new places, too. Clearly, Jaleo was a no brainer, due to the assortment of delicious meats available:

(that's hanger steak with piquillo peppers, the unparalleled Jamon Iberico, and garlic shrimp with sauteed snow peas with romesco sauce in the background - from top to bottom).

Also on the dining menu were Cafe Mozart, a lovely German restaurant in the back of a small German market on H Street, near 13th and Potenza, an Italian place also on H by 15th. Both were good (Potenza was a little trendy, but delicious) and good additions to the restaurants we will frequent often on future trips to DC. For lunch we went to Potbelly's for sandwiches one day, always good, and Good Stuff Eatery the other.

Yes, that's right. Good Stuff Eatery. Like Spike Mendelsohn from "Top Chef" season 4's restaurant. Like douche-hat's restaurant. Spike, the one chef mercilessly hounded by everyone on the interwebs for his douchey attitude and general ridiculous/cocky behavior. And his poor choice of head wear. Repeatedly bashed by yours truly. That Spike. And you know what? I'm sorry I said anything bad about him.

When we got there, the place was packed. We got online and immediately saw Spike behind the counter, working hard expediting, right alongside all the other people working there. I wanted to say something to him but he was so busy, I felt badly interrupting him while he was working, espeically since they were so busy, so we just placed our order and I went to find a table upstairs while BMG waited for the food. If you look really hard in the background, you can see Spike with his hat on the line:

We had to wait a while for our food, since it was so busy and everything is cooked to order, but we finally got our food:

Bacon Cheeseburger

Turkeyburger and fries

Chocolate shake

All were delicious. The turkeyburger (mine) was so well seasoned and all the toppings (I got everything on it - avocado, munster, "good stuff" sauce) worked so well together. The fries were a bit on the non-crispy side for my liking, but the flavor was awesome. The chocolate shake was fabulous and I'm guessing the bacon cheeseburger was good, since BMG polished that bad boy off without any problems. And, one would think that was the end of the story - see Spike, eat his food, leave Spike's restaurant and go see the Capitol.

Oh no, it gets so much better. While we were eating, Spike came upstairs to sit with business partner (?) - I only think this because she came out of a secret room upstairs and started talking to two people, who turned out to be Food Network (!!) producers. Right at the next table. I started to silently freak out and tried to figure out how I could get a picture with him, without rudely interrupting his conversation. Why would you want to take a picture with him, Iko? After all the bashing? Because of BW and this text conversation:

Iko: I'm at Good Stuff Eatery = douche hat Spike's burger place!! Douche hat is here!!
BW: No way!!! Pics please! OMG! You need a pic for your blog!
(then a bunch of useless conversation happened)...
BW: Is douche hat Anderw there? (Aside 1: HAHAHAHA, nice memory, BW!)
Iko: Ha! N, I wish! But, Spike is wearing his douchey hat!
(10 minutes later)
Iko: He's sitting right next to me talking to some Food Network producers about challenging Michael Symon on Iron Chef!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (Aside 2: OK, I was really freaking out here)
BW: I'm jealous of your hobnobbing with douchey Food Network stars! (Aside 3: strong use of hobnobbing)

At this point, Spike had left to go downstairs and make some burgers for the two producers, the Obama burger and the Smokehouse burger. I was clearly upset as I had missed my chance at a picture while he was leaving to go downstairs, due to my shyness/inability to talk to people when they appear to be busy. But, just as we were about to leave, Spike returned with the burgers for the producers. He deposited them on their table and talked with them for a minute, then turned to leave - so I jumped up and cornered him! And asked if I could take a picture with him, but only if he wasn't too busy. And you know what? He was awesome. He joked about being too busy to take the picture, then totally posed with me. And, he even went on to make sure we liked the food, asked what we had, and talked with us a bit about where we were from and how we were liking DC. Seriously, I take back my comments about his douchiness from my "Top Chef" recaps. All of them. I still agree that he was extremely not-right in the highly edited show Bravo showed up, but will posit that this is perhaps not what his actual personality is like. Maybe he's mellowed in his douchiness or maybe he was just in a good mood because he's going to be on "Iron Chef," but I believe he's quite charming and pleasant. And I'm happy his business is doing so well.

Success! I have now sunk to a new low - stalking sub-moderately famous people from Bravo Reality TV. For my next trick, I'll find some of those "Real Housewives of NJ" ladies and go for cocktails with them.

More Ed

Lots and lots of Ed interviews about "The Hangover" this week:

From Blast Magazine, from NY Daily News, and an article about the movie from the NY Times.

Also, apparently Ed, Bradley Cooper, and Justin Bartha were dragged to the increasingly ridiculous MTV Movie Awards to introduce someone. However awful the awards must have been, Ed clearly made it somewhat better:

I'm liking that his staunch support of argyle continues...also, is it just me, or does Bradley Copper's jacket look two sizes too small? I feel like that's as far as he can lift his arms without exposing his abs.

ETA: There's another interview here, too.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Ed Helms Quote of the Day

Lots of Ed probably this week and next - "The Hangover" is soon!! I heart his use of the words "azure" and "oasis."

Ed Helms, also known as Andy Bernard on "The Office," was at the Ritz in Boston yesterday to promote his new buddy comedy, "The Hangover," which hits theaters June 5. We were the last of about 200 interviews Helms (left) did to hype the film, so he challenged us to ask him something he'd never been asked before. Our question? "When shooting 'The Hangover,' did you ever get lost in costar Bradley Cooper's eyes?' Helms, who was admittedly surprised by the question, quickly answered yes. "His eyes are crazy. It's like a little azure oasis in a desert of beautiful skin tone." Helms added, "To be clear, I'm straight." Helms also took a moment to make it clear that he's not a professional banjo player. He's read some biographies of himself that imply he's a "world-class" banjoist - but really, it's just a hobby. "I can hold my own, but I have friends who are insane banjo players." Helms went on to say that he's a big fan of the Boston bluegrass scene. When he visited his sister in Brookline last Christmas, he spent an evening at the Cantab Lounge to check out a jam session. He's also a devoted follower of the local act Crooked Still. "Those guys are . . . insane." Helms knows plenty about music and life in these parts. Not only is his sister a local, most of his "Office" castmates (including Mindy Kaling, B.J. Novak, and Steve Carell) have Boston roots. Helms said they bring a nice "Yankee smugness" to "The Office" set. That said, Helms was quick to make it clear that his favorite Bay-State-bred pal is Rob Corddry. The two worked together when Helms was a correspondent on "The Daily Show."

Friday, May 22, 2009

Ed Helms Post of the Day - "The Hangover" Update 2

Oh, so much goodness - many videos of Ed promoting "The Hangover." So, so many. Also good new - Bradley Cooper's there, too, BW, a little something just for you!

Ed Helms interview here.

Ed, Zach, and Bradley interview here and here.

Mike Tyson (and Ed) here:

I'm so excited to go see this when it come out in two weeks, it's not even funny.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Things I'm Excited About: "Top Chef Masters"

So, without weekly recaps of the happenings at Bravo's "Top Chef," there's very little for me to write about on AbS these days, since I haven't been on any exciting adventures recently, or cooked anything extraordinary recently. I promise I will soon - I'm headed to DC over Memorial Day weekend Boston the weekend after that, so I'm sure I'll have some fascinating things for the two people who follow my blog to read! Hopefully dinner at Jaleo and a trip to the National Portrait Gallery are in store for DC, and we're definitely headed to Fenway for a game in Boston, which I am incredibly excited about, having never been to a game at Fenway (I have been to Fenway before, though, which is a whole different story, one involving Bernie Williams and a very flammable VW Jetta). Luckily, mostly for you guys, Bravo knew I had a dearth of things to rant about and developed a fantastic show about which I will subject you to weekly musings: "Top Chef Masters." It premiers Wednesday, June 10 at 10 pm on Bravo and will clearly be the fourth best thing to watch over the summer (behind 1. "Burn Notice," 2. "Psych," and 3. "Leverage") and probably the best thing on Wednesday nights (aside from Yankees games).

The show is basically "Top Chef," but with already established, arguably very famous, chefs. One difference, I'm assuming due to the logistics of using chefs with restaurants and other obligations, is that the competition is set up in stages, with six sets of four chefs competing, each group on one day for six weeks. The six winners will then compete over the remaining four weeks, I assume with one chef eliminated over the first three weeks, then a three-way finale showdown. This is clearly necessary with this group of people, but it seems some chefs could be really screwed over, based on the group in which they are placed. We'll see.

The format otherwise is the same, with the exception of the Quickfire challenge being judged BLINDLY (interesting) and focusing on testing the basic skills of these master chefs. I like the blind judgment, honestly, so the judges will not be influenced by whose food they're tasting, since, with this group of chefs, bias is a huge factor. I'm also a huge, huge fan of testing the basic skills of the chefs, as many of them have probably not shopped an onion in a restaurant for YEARS, yet how can you be a great chef if you're missing, or have lost, that basic skill set? A test of these skills is a great way to see which chefs are both fundamentally sound and also creatively gifted, which are, in my opinion, the two most important qualities in a master chef. As far as the Elimination Challenge goes, it seems to be similar to regular Top Chef, per the Bravo website:

The second challenge is a more involved elimination challenge designed to test the versatility and invention of the chefs as they take on unique culinary trials such as working with unusual and exotic foods or catering for demanding clients.

Right? That's basically old school Top Chef. I cannot wait to see what these guys come up with - I imagine we'll be in for a treat, getting to see what all these great chefs come up with on the fly. Additionally, they're each competing for a charity of their choosing, which is fantastic, but, clearly, the drama with that many egos in one room will be the star of the show.

Speaking of the chefs, who are they? Well, the list is here, but I'll give you a few highlights:

Anita Lo - Her restaurant, Annisa, is on my list of places to go in NYC and any recipes I've seen of hers have been amazing. Oh, and also, Rickshaw Dumpling Bar. How can that be bad?

Wylie Dufresne - arguably the most well known Top Chef Masters contestant, with the increased interest on molecular gastronomy over the past few years, Wylie and his restaurant, WD-50 have become more popular. I'm kind of torn about actually visiting his restaurant (another long story, one not involving Bernie Williams or a flammable Jetta), but I'm leaning more towards going for the experience. I do, however, really like Wylie, and his previous work as a judge on "Top Chef" has led me to regard him as thoughtful and fair, plus, I'm so interested to see what kind of stuff he comes up with for the challenges, more so than any other chef.

Rick Bayless - yes, there was some drama surrounding Rick Bayless involving the sponsorship of a certain Burger King sandwich. Yes, that made him lose some of his foodie street cred. Did it make a worse chef? No. Is his restaurant, Frontera Grill, awesome? Oh, yes it is. I ate there in Chicago a few years ago and it was fantastic. Also fantastic? The fact that I saw Rick Bayless, in the kitchen and in the dining room, wearing chef whites. Was he actually cooking? I don't know, but he was in his restaurant, which is more than I can say for most chefs the general public is familiar with.

Michael Chiarello - maybe he's the most well known chef, because of his show on Food Network a few years ago? I like Michael Chiarello a lot. I liked his show on FN and his style of cooking. It's very similar to mine, simple, good ingredients, lots of wine. I'm probably going to root for him to win, although maybe seeing him on TV will change my mind, we'll see. Regardless, I'm very interested to see what he makes when the producers make the chefs cook a four star meal from a vending machine (come in, you KNOW that's going to be one of the first challenges!).

As far as the judges go, I don't know what to say. I haven't heard of any of them, except Gael Greene, of whom I'm not a fan. There's also this guy (Jay Rayner):

who, as BW put it, kind of looks like a pirate, which should make blogging about him interesting (be prepared for a lot of "arrrrrrrs" thrown in after any quotes by him.

There are some videos posted on Bravo's website, if you want to get to know the chefs before the show starts, you know, while you're bored at work or whatever. Also, expect witty and biting commentary from me, every Thursday after the show airs. Or you know, a recap with me drooling over the food.

"Top Chef Masters" Wednesday nights at 10 pm on Bravo, starting June 10.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Ed Helms Post of the Day

From Office Tally:

The writers of "The Office" really need to find more ways to work the cast's musical talents into the show. Especially Ed and his awesome banjo! And Ed singing. And Ed dancing. And Ed playing the sitar. And Creed, just being Creed.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Braised Pork Tacos

(This is really old. I've been hanging onto these pictures for a few months now, and I finally figured it was time to write a post about them. Also, I really want this book, which just came out, and seeing it reminded me to post about tacos.)

After reading a bunch of posts on Serious Eats on a Saturday morning a few months ago, I had a craving for pulled pork tacos, so, it was off to Wegman's to get the ingredients:

Pork Shoulder
Canned tomatoes with green chilis
Assorted spices and herbs
Chicken stock
Corn tortillas
Assorted toppings and sides (you'll see them, but the sides are another whole post in themselves).

Once back home, I immediately marinated the pork shoulder:

It was a while back, but I think I see lime juice, lime zest, whole hunks of lime (I like limes), cilantro, chili powder (a secret blend), cumin, olive oil, and black pepper. I probably threw some chopped garlic in there, too. If I liked things spicy, I'd put in a few fresh chilis, but I don't really like the heat, so I left them out. You guys can add them, though.

After the pork marinated for a bit (I think like 3 or 4 hours, you could definitely marinate it for longer though, but I'd cut back on the acid if you're marinating overnight), I took the pork out of the fridge and brought it up to room temperature. Then, I browned it in my awesome 5 1/2 quart Le Creuset french Oven:

After shot:

First, please ignore my filthy stove, I've since cleaned it. Second, as you can see, there was some burning of the spices at the bottom of the oven - no worries, just take the pork out, rinse out your pot, and start browning your onions (you do NOT want that burned chili powder taste in your tacos, believe me):

Notice the pork resting patiently before it's bath on the side.

Once the onions were browned, I added a few cracked cloves of garlic and some tomato paste and cooked that for about 1 minute. Then I added the pork back in, along with some chicken stock and a 14-oz can of tomatoes with green chilis, enough liquid to come about 2/3 of the way up the side of the pork.

Next, I brought the whole mixture up to a simmer on the stove, skimmed off the excess fat and foamy stuff that came to the surface, turned the heat way, way down and covered the pot. I braised it until the pork was falling apart (I have no idea how long, as I no longer remember what size pork shoulder I bought, but it was probably in the neighborhood of 3 -4 hours). I periodically skimmed the braising liquid and kept the liquid at a very low simmer. Once the pork was done, I shredded it up and placed it neatly on a plate along with some other taco toppings, cheese, cilantro, and a chimichurri-like sauce:

I guess it's hard to be neat with a big mass of shredded pork.

Then, I made up a nice plate for myself, two tacos, some black beans, and some corn:

DE-lish. I think I had some wine, but this would be even better with some freshly made margaritas. You can get a head start on the drinking while the pork is braising. It makes the 4 hours go by even more quickly.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Happy Birthday to Stephen Colbert!

Happy Birthday, Stephen! For more Stephen, visit the delightful nofactzone.net or Colbert Nation. In honor of Stephen's day, please watch this amazing clip of his dancing ability:

The Colbert ReportMon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Rain Dance-Off
Colbert Report Full EpisodesPolitical HumorGay Marriage

It's almost as good as the Andrew Bernard clip from last week's episode of "The Office."

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Pizza: Before and After




After After:
I didn't' take a picture, but imagine and empty cutting board, with only the faintest traces of pizza having been there - a few crumbs, a bit of cheese...

Basic Margarita Pizza:
1 ball of Whole Wheat Pizza Dough (from Whole Foods, I'm sorry - I hate making my own pizza dough, or anything made with flour, in general. I hate the way flour feels against your hands as you knead dough and I especially HATE how it gets everywhere in your kitchen. Seriously, I make one batch of cookies and I have to clean flour off my counters and from behind random crevices for like a week. It sucks).
About 5 Campari Tomatoes, thinly sliced
1 large ball of Fresh Mozzerella
Freshly Grated Parmesan Cheese to taste
About 5 large Basil Leaves
Salt and Pepper
Olive Oil

Preheat oven to 450 F.

Press the dough out to a large rectangle on a lightly greased cookie sheet (I used PAM to grease it, mostly because I had some left over from making these delicious cookies for Christmas).

Top dough with slices of mozzarella, tomato, and basil.

Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Grate Parmesan cheese over the top.

Drizzle a little bit of olive oil over the top and bake for around 15 minutes.

Take out of oven, place on cutting board and cut into squares.

Take plates and silverware out of cabinet and open a bottle of wine.

Ignore plates, silverware, and wine and eat the entire pizza while standing over the cutting board.

Have the bottle of wine for dessert.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Ed Helms Post of the Day - "The Hangover" Update

Have I mentioned how excited I am to see this? I don't think I have...it's like, "Dude, Where's My Car," only infinitely better because it contains Ed Helms, Mike Tyson punching bitches, and a tiger. Oh, and Bradley Cooper, even though he looks like a sleaze-bag in this movie.

Trailer 1:

Here's an interview with Ed about the movie. Some highlights:

No, I'm not tight with Nick Cannon the way Zach is. Zach and Nick go way back. I think Nick is one of Zach's biggest comedy influences. Plus. there's a lot of tension. I had a really rough breakup with Mariah Carey. Awkward.


You know what? Yeah. I think I'm pretty nerdy in real life. I've had glasses since second grade.

Trailer 2:

I'm trying so, so hard to find the trailer on You Tube with Ed singing, but I can't find it anywhere!! If someone else sees it, please let me know so I can post it. Hilarious!

Also, here's another interview with Ed, for the penultimate episode of "The Office" this season:

Essentially Michael has another terrible idea on how to let off some steam in the office and the concept of a café disco emerges, which is a dancing situation that involves coffee. I'm not a good dancer, but I try really, really hard, and I'm not talking about Andy Bernard, I'm talking about Ed Helms.

I think he's being far too modest. Judge for yourself (because it needs to be shown over and over and over again):

Pure brilliance. Is there anything Ed can't do?

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Things That Are Real, Definitely NOT Unfortunately

Yes, that is Jeffrey Donovan doing push-ups. On his fingers. Holy hotness.

Unfortunately, it looks like our boy Michael Westin gets arrested in the beginning of the new season of "Burn Notice" (new episodes in June), but at least he uses it as an opportunity to sell some tickets to the gun show:

Monday, April 6, 2009

Ed Helms Post of the Day

Ed's in the new movie, "The Hangover," coming out on June 5th (I will clearly be first in line to see the earliest showing possible). Here's the fantastic trailer:

And, in even better news, the WB has already made a deal for a sequel to the movie! I will also be first in line to see it, when it comes out in 2010/2011, or whenever...I can't wait!

In related news, here is a picture of Ed arriving at the "Inside the Office" event a few weeks ago:

I like his fancy corduroy blazer!

And another one from the Independent Spirit Awards:

Notice the patented "Ed Pose," one hand in pocket, body slightly askew, fantastic grin...

And now, for even more Ed, here is his appearance on the show, "Free Radio:"

How awesome is ed for going along with this degeneracy? I think his time at TDS really paid off, if only for this one clip! It's awesome when he says they really sell paper during the show.

There are more clips at edhelms.org.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Signs I'm Getting Old - Part One of...Many

In the inaugural post of a new segment here at AbS, I will now write about one of the many ways I know I'm getting old: the mall.

It used to be that I loved going to the mall. In high school, it was a cool place to hang out and be seen. I could go an try on all these clothes my parents would never be able to afford and dream about being incredibly wealthy one day and buying the entire stock of clothes at Wet Seal (this is true). PW and I would go all the way to Bridgewater Mall, even though the fabulously fancy and ridiculously overpriced Short Hills Mall was mere steps away from our town, because there was a Dippin' Dots cart in the center of the mall, at one of those mini-kiosk things. Being 17, driving to a far off mall, and eating freeze-dried ice cream was one of the best things ever.

In college, I even WORKED at the mall for a bit, at Abercrombie ("pretty good folder" - thanks Andy Bernard!), in fact, which is even more troubling than it sounds. Working there was seriously the most degenerate job ever - the sole job requirements were that you a) looked good in Abercrombie clothes and b) could stand around doing nothing for 8 hours, then power-through cleaning up the store once the mall closed. I'd spend my days either window shopping when I wasn't at work or cleaning up after all the degenerate shoppers when I was. I had no problem spending whole DAYS at the mall, hanging out, cleaning, shopping, window shopping, whatever.

Even after I graduated, me and my roommate liked nothing more on a Saturday, then to get up late, have a delicious diner breakfast, then hit up the mall for some unnecessary shopping. Being that I worked in a lab at the time (well, I still do, but a different lab), I bought mostly t-shirts and jeans, probably from Delia's or American Eagle, but would still spend hours at the mall.

How it took me HOURS to pick out three t-shirts with Hello Kitty on them, I have no idea.

But, ever since, well, I don't really know when, but within the past year or so, going to the mall has become a chore. No, worse. A punishment. It F-ing sucks. No, F that - IT FUCKING SUCKS!!!! No matter what store I go to, the clothes don't fit properly. Everyone's getting fat and the clothes are getting bigger, yet, inexplicably, the sizes are getting smaller. What the hell? I used to be able to go to regular stores and buy clothes, but now, everything sags off of me inappropriately and makes it look like I'm a twelve year-old girl playing dress-up in her mom's closet. It's pathetic. I'm almost 30. Where in the hell am I supposed to buy legitimate work clothes (you know, for when I have a legitimate job, one where I'm not allowed to wear jeans and a "I Heart Nerds" t-shirt everyday).

But, beyond the exhausting and frustrating lack of well-fitting clothing options, I'm disturbed by the people at the mall. Like the little, old women who would curse at us teenagers when we were young, hanging out at the mall, I too, curse at teenagers in the hallways and in stores. Why must they yell so loudly and run around in a Red Bull-fueled, ADD-fit? Why must the guys wear hats with flat brims, cocked jauntily to the left? Why must the girls all wear next-to-nothing, then complain about it being too cold? In the afternoon, why are there only young moms in sweatpants with strollers full of kids? Why do these same young moms buy clothing for themselves ad also for their children at the same ridiculously expensive store? Does an eight year-old really need an LV bag? Why do I even care? Why is this taking up space in my mind? Why do I even know the difference between Coach and Prada? Why do I care what degeneracies other people engage in? Why am I so angry that I'm ending my sentences with prepositions? WHAT IS HAPPENING TO ME?!?

Ahem. Sorry. Moving on - this whole rant was brought on by a trip to the mall today to buy new glasses. I went to LensCrafters, which will make your glasses in an hour, so I figured I could easily kill an hour in the mall. I mean, it's an hour, there are a bunch of stores...how hard could that be? Apparently very hard (TWSS), because seriously, 20 minutes later, I wanted to kill myself. How I spent the next 40 minutes, I have no idea, but it involved mistakenly buying Hi-C from Wendy's and buying some tea from Teavana. I also tried to look at bathing suits, but got annoyed by the puce color that seems to be so popular these days (which, if worn by me, would make me appear to have advanced liver disease) so I abandoned that search and chose to leer angrily at the kiosk people who were trying to get me to a) curl my hair, b) buy some stuff to shrink the giant zit on my forehead, and c) buy a Dell (little do they know I already own one, and will never buy one again). The last 15 or so minutes were definitely spent checking Drudge on my Blackberry and reading an article about how "The Office" sucks now. I need to start carrying a book with me at all times.

Bottom line, malls are made for teenagers, moms, people who fit into normal-sized clothing, and the elderly, who get up early and power-walk around the mall before it opens. Apparently the next time I can go to the mall will be after I retire. Until then, I'm only shopping online.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Ed Helms Post of the Day: Ed, I'll Be Your Valentine

OK, I need for you all to head over to http://www.edhelms.org, and look at all the awesome stuff JP has posted. Including, this video:

which I shamelessly jacked. It's also kind of NSFW, lots of Ed dropping the F-bomb, which I find oddly attractive...

Seriously, the trailer for "The Hangover?" Pictures of Ed from various appearances? It's a veritable cornucopia of delicious Ed. And we need it now more than ever...TWO, count them, TWO episodes in a row with NO Andrew Bernard? Only a throw away line about him being on his honeymoon alone? And a bunch of random pictures of Ed's head photoshopped onto various bodies, doing honeymoon-like things? Totally unacceptable. Andy better feature prominently this week, or Iko's gonna have to choke a bitch.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Things I've Bought That I Love: Wii Fit

Remember how my brother got me a Wii for my birthday last year? Well, I finally got a Wii Fit Board to go with it. Yes, I realize it's like a year later, but whatever, I've been busy and had lots of other important things to but first, give me a break, guys! Anyway, it's mostly M-D's fault, she had one at her apartment, I went over there to hang out and drink martinis, then got distracted playing Wii Fit while drinking my martini...a fantastic combination, I know. But, seriously, it's super fun. Really.

When I was at M-D's, I did the Wii Fit Body Test, to which the Wii responded that I was underweight and had the body of a 42-year old. Awesome. So, that image of my weakening, sickly, decrepit body in my head, I vowed to get my own Wii Fit, so I could mold my body into the shape it should be at my rapidly advancing age. Unfortunately, Best Buy was all out of Wii Fits when I went the next day, so I had to order it online from Amazon and wait a few days for it to be delivered. I also ordered the Wii 5-in-1 Fitness Bundle, because I'm very wealthy and buy whatever I want, no matter how useless. The real reason was that I wanted a bright green yoga mat.

Since I had a few days off before being forced to exercise daily, I made the most of it by mainlining cheese and crackers and eating as much dark chocolate as I could get my hands on. Once the Wii Fit arrived, I immediately hooked it up and set up my account. Upon doing my first body test, the Wii again told me I was underweight (and shrunk my Mii down to a minuscule size) and gave me a Wii fit age that may have been 46, I can't remember. Whatever it was, it's clearly well beyond my years. So, with my even more aged body in my minds-eye, I set to work on unlocking various fitness items on my Wii Fit.

Now, I do yoga on a fairly regular basis - I take two classes a week after work and do at least two, maybe even three days of yoga at home, so I figured I'd start with the yoga poses the Wii teaches you how to do (there are four sections to the Wii Fit: yoga, strength training, aerobics, and balance games). I chose my trainer (the male one, I'm not looking at some jacked up female trainer for an hour, especially in my allegedly sickly state, besides, I could refer to the male trainer as Ed without getting as many weird looks) and opened up the yoga menu. Here he is doign some sort of single leg extension:

Most of the initial poses are based solely on balance, not really flexibility, like tree pose and half-moon. However, it's really tough to keep your balance while standing on the board and while leering at the tiny red dot, flitting across the screen, showing you how ridiculous your center of balance is.

The first days were tough, but I think I got a little more used to it aver time, my average ratings have definitely increased since the start. Once you unlock more yoga poses, you still focus on balance, but also on strength and flexibility, which is the point of yoga, after all, and what makes it a good set of exercises to do. I just wish there were more yoga poses available, as of now, I do the Wii Fit poses, then do a few more on my own.

The strength training exercises are actually pretty good. They mostly focus on your core muscles and are mostly rated by how well you keep your center of balance and how much pressure you put on the Wii Board. I'm particularly fond of the "challenge" exercises, where I get to try to beat Ed by holding plank pose longer than him, or doing more jackknifes. He gets all out-of-breath and when I beat him, which is kind of funny. Plus, I get to yell, "In your face, Ed Helms," when I beat his ass, which is something I'd never yell at the real Ed. It'd be awesome if I could work out with Ed one day.

I haven't done many of the aerobic workouts on the Wii, but the ones I have done do get your heart pumping. There's a step one, a boxing one, and a hula hoop one that almost made me collapse on the ground in a panting heap. I clearly need to incorporate more cardio into my daily life. The balance games are pretty fun, too, although I'm not very good at them. I like the table tilt, where you lean while standing on the Balance Board and the "table" on the screen tilts around, as you try to get a series of colored ball (TWSS) into various holes on the table (TWSS). There's a ski jump, which I'm the reigning champion of, and ski slalom and snow boarding game, which I SUCK at and some other balance games which I haven't played so much, but I'm sure they're fun - you get to dress up your Mii as a penguin for one of them!

Full disclosure: that's not my Mii, I got that picture from Flickr, via Google Images, so apologies if it's yours...I'm at work, or else I'd take a picture of my own Mii in that ridiculous get-up.

Bottom line, I think the Wii Fit is a good complement to other exercise, or, if it's your only exercise, it's definitely better than nothing. It seems to be better at strength building and helping train you to have better posture, rather than weight loss, but I guess that's kind of the nature of the program. I think it's very useful for tracking your exercise progress, as you can just sign in once a day to do a quick body test, which checks you BMI and calculates your Wii Fit age. As long as your BMI goes in the direction you want it to go and your age decreases, you must be doing something right, with or without the Wii Fit Board. You can also add in other exercise you do, outside of Wii Fit, in your exercise log, so it's a good way to keep track of how many hours you spend exercising. It does yell at you if you don't do a body test everyday, so don't skip them. Or, skip them if you want, I feel bad for the little cartoon Wii Fit Board, so I try to do a body test everyday. If I kepp it up, maybe I'll gain the 1/8 lbs I need in order to be within the healthy weight range!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Things That Are Real, Unfortunately

So, BMG has an unhealthy obsession with dessert. He'll eat just about anything sweet, pretty much anytime during the day or night, especially the cake-y/cookie kind of sweet: brownies, cupcakes, cookies, cookies, cookies. The problem (aside from a future of diabetes) is that I have the anti-sweet tooth. And I hate to bake. I hate getting flour everywhere and I especially HATE the way flour feels when you get it on your hands. It gives me chills, really.

My weird phobias aside, BMG has been asking, nay, HARASSING me to make a dessert treat for him for the past, let's say 3 years. What is this mystery dessert you ask? I'll tell you, but only read on if you think you can handle it. Ready? Cannoli Nachos. No, not like a savory nacho, made with ricotta cheese, but a dessert nacho: cannoli shells in the shape of tortilla chips, dipped into a giant vat of sweetened ricotta. Yes, this is real. And, yes, I made it:

First I made the cannoli shell dough (I used this recipe) and let it rest for an hour, then rolled it out, cut it into triangles, and deep-fried those bitches in canola oil, using my fabulous blue, Le Creuset 4.5 qt. French Oven, until they were golden and crispy. Here's an action shot of some of the dough headed into the pool:

Then, I let them drain on some paper towels while I fashioned the cannoli filling:

I followed this recipe for the cannoli filling, although I had a few additions of my own and took out the pistachios and raisins (BMG didn't want anything remotely healthy in the cannoli). First I lightly beat the ricotta cheese to make folding in the whipped cream a little easier.

Next I folded in the whipped cream (I used my KitchenAid mixer to whip the cream) and the mini chocolate chips. I also added some lemon zest and some Amaretto, because all dessert benefits from added alcohol and not just TablesKapes are helped by the addition of llllllllemons.

Then, it was time to eat:

BMG liked it, I didn't. Which is not to say that it was bad, I just really dislike cannoli. I think if you like cannoli, this is probably a good dessert for you, if you can easily dispose of a giant pot of oil once you're done deep-frying and you don't mind mainlining Lipitor (TM) at the age of 32.

In other news, who's excited about the "Top Chef" reunion tonight? Andy sucks, and will make the entire show horrible, but at least we'll get to see Jeff again and watch Carla win fan favorite. I plan to block out any and all references to HO-sea winning and any hook-up info. he and Ho-Leah wish to share on TV. Yuck.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

In Which I Live Blog the Finale and Hope it Ends with a "Hootie Hoo!"

9:58 - ready to go. So excited to watch Carla kick some ass!

9:59 - montage of Stefan winning...

10:00 - ugh, Fabio goes home...so sad.

10:01 - Stefan brushes his teeth rather violently, doesn't he? Hosea rambles on about pressure and being a man-Ho.

10:03 - Does anyone really thing HO-sea is going to win this? I just realized there are two caterers in the final 3...interesting.

10:04 - Serve the best three course meal of your life, I'm with Stefan - "F*** what am I going to make now?" I think it's easier when you have some idea of what the judges want, right?

Ugh, Marcel...why are you such a D-bag? But, yay for Casey and Richard!! Heart! Speaking of heart!! I really like Padma's dress!

10:06 - Ha! "A bit of a twat!" "Where are the proteins?"

Foie Gras drama. Fight. Fight. Fight!!!

10:08 - M.D. and I talk about how much we love Richard!

Carla is sous vide-ing, Stefan is cooking straight-up ghetto-Finland-style!! HO-sea has no plan and wants to make some crap now, then sleep on it - um, yeah, go home now. He should clearly have had an idea of the three courses he wanted to make BEFORE coming to NO, right?

During this commercial break, I will now shorthand my thoughts on "The Last Supper" episode: ZOMG! Eggs! I love Eggs! Whyle Dufresne loves eggs! We should get together and talk about food science and eat eggs benedict! OMG! Jacques Pepin! I would literally DIE if I had to cook dinner for him. There's no way I could ever make something good enough for him. Carla's so lucky! Why is Leah still there? Tom and Padma are so luck to get to eat with all of these fantastic chefs. This might actually be my dream. ZOMG! Fabio's injured! Is he OK? Of course he's still going to cook. He's going to rock out with his co** out! OK, he can't chop or peel to good...maybe he'll go home? No!!! It's an editing - he's clearly going to win! Why is Leah still here? Awesome! Carla and Fabio rockin!! Stefan sucking...is he going to go home? No, it will clearly be Leah, there's no way Stefan won't make it to the finale. HOORAY!!! Ho-Leah goes home! Hootie Hoo! Carla does good! Fabio for the win, "It's Top Chef, not top pus**!!!"

10:14 - God, Stefan's still hung up on Jamie? That Tarot lady was amazing - let's go to NOLA and have our fortunes told.

10:17 - Do they have to make a mystery fourth course?

10:17 - Ha, I'm right! They do!! Make an app.! I'd be the best "Top Chef" editor ever! ZOMG!!! KN and I were just talking about the baby Jesus in the King Cake on Sunday!

10:18 - HO-sea D-bags out, gets the Jebus, and screws over Stefan. Awse.

HO-sea: griddled corn cake with red fish remoulade.
Stefan: Alligator soup
Carla: was attacked by her crab?! And is freaking out about her app. Oh no, not good.

10:23 -
HO-sea finally has a menu: 1. Sashimi, 2. Foie Gras and Scallops, 3. Venison.

Stefan: 1. Halibut-Salmon carpaccio, 2. Squab, Braised Cabbage (my favorite dish of the night), 3. Dessert

Carla: 1. Seared Red Snapper, 2. Meat and Potatoes (my second favorite), 3. Cheese Tart!!! Oh no, souffle? NOO!! TART!!! CHEESE + TART = GOLD!

10:28 - was that Rocco DiSpirito? OK, I take it back, I want this Padma dress.

10:29 - I scare everyone around me by screeching, "I LOVE JOHN BESH!!!!!" at the top of my lungs.

10:30 - FABIO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Wait, why is he the only contestant still there? Stefan rocks the alligator. Carla's dish was good, so was HO-sea's.

10:32 - First Courses:
I'm sad that HO-sea's dish is the one that sounds the best to me. Yes! Carla's dish is getting good marks!

10:34 - Second Courses:
I am also confused about Carla and sous vide. I want to roll around in a big plate of squab and cabbage. That Hosea dish sounds awful to me, I'm sorry.

10:36 - Carla boils her souffle. Oh NOOOOOOOO.

10:37 - Third Course:
I want to roll around in a plate of Stefan's dessert. I feel so badly for Carla.

10:39 - I'm distracted by Fabio's faux hawk.

10:40 - the chefs ramble on about winning, losing, sucking, not sucking...and they plug some crappy wine.

And now, my shorthand thoughts on "Finale Part 1" - Why does Stefan look bloated? I'm really excited for Carla! ZOMG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Jeff's back! Oh no, WTF??? Ho-Leah's back? NOOOOOO!!!! Jeff better win this bitch. Actually, all their food looks good. Emeril even seems normal on this show. YEAH! Jeff FTW! OMG, holy crap, he has to win it all? Why is Stefan such an asshole? Why isn't he even trying? I like their Elimination Challenge, hooray for New Orleans challenge - cajun and Creole food? What's not to like? God, Stefan really is a D-bag, isn't he? Jeff's cocktail looks amazing...so does his food. Carla FTW with the oysters! You go girl - shucking all those little bastards could NOT have been fun. I hope Jeff wins. I still can't get over Stefan's bloated head. I think Stefan's going home. No, maybe Fabio is. No, it's totally going to be Stefan. Yeah for Carla! Yeah for...well...no one else. I can't believe Fabio AND Jeff got sent home. Who will make witty, one-line remarks and look pretty during the finale now? I hope Carla kicks some serious ass.

10:45 - Carla started off strong, then kind of petered out at the end...ugh that souffle totally killed her. Carla totally let Casey run the show...why? Why Carla, why?

10:46 - Stefan smirks at Stefan's advantage.

10:47 - It looks like someone spit on the top of HO-sea's scallops.

I can't believe Hosea will win this bitch.

10:48 - Ha! I wonder what Tom would say when he hears he agrees with Marcel about freezing fish. "I really enjoyed Stefan's squab." That's what she said!

I hate when they make them beg for the title of "Top Chef." And, Stefan is surprisingly not-cocky during his speech. And he comforts Carla, maybe he's not the biggest D-Bag there.

Beth - I'm so sad our pick FTW isn't going to. :(

"I thought Stefan's squab was the best thing I had all night." That's what she said.

10:53 - Tom's pissed!

10:58 - HO-sea wins....

yeah, I guess...

He kinds of is acting like a D-bag. Stefan rambling about being bitter is hysterical!!! Don't cry Carla! Jeff's standing right next to you! Let his hotness cheer you up!

Well, that's all for me, HOOTIE HOO!!!! in honor of Carla, even though she didn't win. She's still awesome.

And Jeff is hot.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

ZOMG!! Does Anyone Want to Road Trip to Atlanta Next Weekend?

Ed Helms will be playing the banjo at an Atlanta fundraiser on the 28th. Fortunately for you, the info also came with an interview:

Q: Is it hard to play the banjo?

A: The banjo is a (pain). That’s part of why it’s so rewarding. You work really hard. When I saw Tom Key in ‘Cotton Patch Gospel,’ I was already into bluegrass. It’s a really extraordinary production. My high school did a production. No one could play the banjo, so I picked it up, learned the songs and that was the beginning of my long, torrid love affair with the banjo.

Q: Most guys play the guitar in high school to pick up girls. How’d the banjo work for you?

A: I just completely misread girls in high school. This is just one example of how. I’ve been trying to press X-box to make “Banjo Hero.”

Q: What do you enjoy most about coming back to Atlanta to visit family or participate in events like ATLexis?

A: I love being able to feel attached to the creative community in Atlanta. That’s a real privilege for me. A year or two ago, I did a benefit for the Horizon Theatre. I feel like Atlanta has such a vibrant creative community. Any chance I get to reconnect is exciting for me.

Q: What do you miss when you’re in L.A.?

A: You don’t really know until you leave the South how beautiful it is from an aesthetic standpoint. Atlanta has changed immeasurably since I moved around, not necessarily in ways I’m thrilled about. But it’s lush. I love the organic smells in springtime. L.A. is not lush. It’s an irrigated desert.

Q: What would you be doing right now if you weren’t acting?

A: I have no idea. I don’t know what else to do. I never even saw an alternative. I think I would just be miserable. This is a very tough career. It’s hard on your constitution. It’s hard on your ego. It’s not stable. But it is sort of the only thing I could do.

Q: Your character works for a nutty boss in a fairly monotonous job. What’s the worst job you ever had in Atlanta?

A: I didn’t work in Atlanta much except summer jobs. I was a lifeguard at Brookwood Hills community pool. I loved that job. It was awesome. When I became assistant manager there, the responsibilities took some of the fun out. The lack of bodily function control that children have in swimming pools is far more than what you would imagine. The clean up duty falls on the lifeguards.

Q: Did you ever wish someone would get into trouble so you could perform a daring rescue?

A: I never wished anyone would start to drown or anything, but I did sort of wish a beautiful woman would get into the deep end over her head. I could give her a hand and then she would become completely smitten with me. Until she learned I played the banjo.

Perhaps I can go, find a pool with Ed standing nearby, jump in, and pretend to not know how to swim...

And, ZOMG!!! I found some Ed pictures (taken by Jason Odell) who also took some adorable pictures of John Krasinski a while back:

Did you get your tickets to the gun show?

Monday, February 16, 2009

I'm Still Here, I Promise

OK, sorry guys, I'm running a study at work (again) and it's taking up a ton of time. I'm hoping to do a double post about the "Top Chef" episode from last week and this week on Friday, once the study is finished. In the meantime, enjoy this eye candy:

Hopefully it makes up for the total lack of Ed in last week's episode - WTF Mindy? Why even bother to write an episode that contains no Andrew Bernard?