Archive | July 2013

Do You Gluten-Free Rant?

Like asking if you Gluten-free is a cool thing. It’s kinda dorky and makes me sound like a doofus. I still said it anyway. No big deal.

I ask the question like it’s a big deal. I have to eat gluten-free so the question is moot. But yeah I do gluten-free. If you do gluten-free are you that one person in the crowd that goes on and on about how when a company replaces wheat flour with rice/quinoa/coconut flour they add in sugar and all sorts of stuff to the mix? I’m not going on to say that it’s a pet peeve, and I’m not going to launch into a tirade with naming names of bloggers and critics about manufactured gluten-free foods. You really have to get over it. It’s the way of the world with the hand that we are dealt. Maybe in the future we will come up with better alternatives, but really anything short of you just doing it yourself isn’t going to happen.

Looking back, a lot of my own Wednesday Celiac/Gluten-Free blogs come a cross as negative, or at least have the overshadowment of a dark tone (by the way, that’s an awesome word “overshadowment”). As a person diagnosed with Celiac we have wins and losses, and sadly we bitch more about our losses.

“Sweet Jennifer Esposito! Tim Hortons has a gluten-free macaroon now, oh but it’s filled with sugar., that’s to bad. IT’S A FUCKING MACAROON GET OVER IT!”

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click on the picture above I stole from glutendude.com to read his review of the macaroons  

I’m just happy that companies recognize the need for products like this. I want to snack at the coffee shop with a treat like this. All I get to do is look at the muffins and doughnuts like a schmuck. You know I’m that guy that wants to smell the gluten filled food just to remember what it was like. With our (mine) gluten-free lifestyle we make choices everyday with what we can and cannot eat. No, we don’t have to eat out at a restaurant or no we don’t have to buy snack for ourselves. Each food lifestyle is different, wether you’re eating for health or whatever, but just ease up. Sometimes it’s just overbearing.

 As a reminder: I’m a straight up blogger and like every other blogger out there I’m allowed to say my piece. Sometimes I think we get lost in this world of a faceless people. I’m an open book. i tell it like I see it, just like I know a lot of you do (if you’re a blogger), so I do need to stress that as a blogger I gotta keep it real and say what I feel. Not censor myself from what my thoughts are. But it does suck that to become a blogger I needed a catalyst like Celiac Disease to get the motor running.

Celiac Woes: Wild Wing

I’m a man. A dude man. Beard and All and while I like burgers and steak and putting up drywall and cutting down trees, I love chicken wings. And there are a whole list of places that I can get chicken wings from, but that’s not what having Celiac is about. That’s not what I do when it comes to Celiac Woes. I’m here this week to moan about not being able to have Wild Wing. Wild Wing chicken wings.

Here’s the first thing you need to know: cooked in the same oil as the breaded products. Plain and simple. Even the fries are off limits. All cooked with the deep fried pickles and the chicken strips. It’s a calamity.

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Look at that banner/image I took right off of their website. How can you not like that?

Wild Wing is an Ontario thing. If you’re an outsider, from say the USA then you’ll probably want to just skip this weeks column and go check out my instagram, but if you’ve had Wild Wing wings, you know what I’m talking about. Good stuff. Of course I can go to the store, buy my own flat of chicken wings and eat them, but who wants to do that? It’ll never taste as good as the restaurant.

When the franchise first opened in my town, it was the first wing joint. Serving wings as the main food and packing people into a small space. It was chicken loving’ heaven. I would get an order of twenty wings with a side of fries and just go to town. Of course my favourite was the Honey Teriyaki. And if you have Celiac you know teriyaki sauce is a no fly zone. And, well since 2008 I have not had an Wild Wing chicken wings. It’s sad I know. they were reasonably priced, and it was a great and fun atmosphere, but honestly, I’m not going to your restaurant to eat a salad. That ain’t right. It’s called Wild Wing, not Silly Salad.

Damn you Celiac Disease. DAMN YOU!

Also, as a joke, I googled silly salad, just to see what came up. Wanted to really know, and really hope that a restaurant named Silly Salad existed. It doesn’t, but this picture of salad made me laugh. So really, score one for me

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Alone With Our Bad Thoughts

There has always been the thing when it comes to parenting, new or old. That the things that we think or things that happen to us and we think we’re alone. Today’s post is a little along those lines. I’m going to spill beans about something that always gets me; bad thoughts.

In the last few weeks I’ve heard about a two year old left in a locked hot car and died of heat exhaustion. Then there was the other two year old who died at an unregistered child care centre. bad thoughts. What if it was my daughter? Another little person who is also two years old. In the last few months, I’ve also had more bad dreams than I’ve ever had, and two of them have been about my daughter. It’s parenting and it’s stresses that creep up and become nightmares. There was a time when I would have maybe, one nightmare a year. So infrequent that I could probably tell you what everyone of them was, now, I think as my child gets older, more curious, more worldy I feel I have to protect her more, and my dreams are reflecting what I hear about in this world of ours. Our sick and twisted world.

IMG_1262How do you stop putting your child in the same place of these bad things that happen? How do you stop switching places with the innocent people involved and apply it to your own child? Not wanting to make the same mistakes as the parents that make the world mistakes. It’s tough to not think about. Children being kidnapped and never seen again. These are thoughts I sometimes can’t shake from my head. What if it was my girl? And the thoughts get so bad, sometimes they keep me up at night. Am I a bad parent for thinking these things? My job is to protect my little girl from anything, and I will maintain that post for the rest of my life, but the unknown scares me. We all hear about what happens when you turn your head for one second. It’s that one second that scares me.

If life is about inches, then parenting is about seconds. The inches you take one way or another affect what happens in the future. We strive to take those inches further and further, but the seconds we keep and hold matter the most with raising our children. The second it takes to hold their hand as they descend the stairs. The second it takes to grab them as they trip on their own feet.

The second it takes to say ‘I love you’.

Parenting is about seconds. And every second counts.

Limited Choices of a Celiac

Heres what I know. I’m a beer drinker. I was never really a beer drinker as I grew into an adult and was able to drink at the age of 19, beer always had like a weird stale sorry of musky taste to it. So if someone asks if I’ma beer drinker now. I say Yes. Now it makes sense as to why I drink it. It’s good. It’s refreshing. You get drunk.

Celiac. 2008. My ability to drink ANY beer has been greatly reduced to nothing. Not cool dude.

Hard liquor is still good. I drink tequila. The way it’s supposed to be drank. Not in shot form, but in a glass, with ice. Sipped. Like a boss. And when people see you drink it and are like, oh gross how can you drink that? The best response. I’m a man. I drink like a champ. But enough about that, the theme, the subject: Beer. Gluten-free beer.

IMG_1646I can’t challenge you to find a good gluten-free beer, because, yes they do exist. Sometimes you trudge through crap to find it, but it’s out there. Like in 2008 when I was diagnosed with Celiac and had to find a beer to drink, there was one available close to me in my local liquor store. It was from Quebec. While it tasted like beer. It wasn’t that good, and it was my only option at the time. Since then, gluten-free beer has popped up everywhere. It’s a good time to be me. Okay, I’ll let you all have it too. It’s a good time to be gluten-free and be a beer drinker. My local liquor store no longer sells the Quebec beer, but two American beers, one is good, the other isn’t. Well, in contrast, one is good, the other isn’t as good.

On, hot summer weekend days. Saturday afternoon. Blazing sun. Scorching heat. pool time all day. The beer section has been ransacked, and my drive to the LCBO was been fruitless. The two selections of gluten-free beer have been cleaned out. You kidding me? As I walk away, defeated. Tucked in the back of the shelf, the lesser beer is there. Not my favourite, but the lesser of two evils. I get home and crack a cold one. I complained heavily to my wife that ‘this’ beer was the only one available, not my favourite, but available and when your choices are slim, you just have to accept fact.

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“Why didn’t you get a cider?” she says.

To sugary. I don’t want a sugar high.

“What about a cooler?”

What is this, the ’80’s? I’m not in high school.

“So why buy the beer if you don’t like it?” she questions.

I tell her like I tell you. When you just wanta beer on a warm summer day, and you have two options. The good beer and the less good beer. You have to make due with the hand you’re dealt. It comes with the territory of being 100% gluten-free and having Celiac.

Boil it all down. That is what it’s like sometimes when you have Celiac Disease. Making due with poor options. It’s a pain in the ass, but it’s our pain in the ass. The life we lead, the regulars just don’t get sometimes. It sucks to have to eat the alternative to Oreos when you really just want an Oreo.

Going the Distance

I’m not going to do a youtube video this week. A lot of reasons. Well, no, a few reasons. But yeah, there is a video made, but I’m not using this space to promote it because I feel a little shut down that my videos are getting low views. That’s no fault of yours my dear readers, it’s mine for not promoting it enough. The same goes for this website.

That’s my angle today.

KGFree(Yellow-4-600)Many years ago I wrote a list of 100 things to do before I died. Never in a million years would I have but blog on my list. I feel I’m a writer more than ever. Or maybe just the idea guy. I can come up with cool ideas and then just put them to paper, that’s why on my list of 100 things to do before I die, the top three things were full length movies. Making them, start to finish (i’m in the process of ding so). But to get the word out, to build my readership I’m going to get me out there. King Gluten Free needs to be read. I want people to see my Celiac Woes columns. I want people to agree/disagree with my gluten-free Wednesday blogs, even come at my for my Parenting blogs on Thursday.

I’m attending the Gluten-Free Expo in Toronto on September 14th 2013 only as a spectator. I was to late in starting the blog to get a booth to promote. But you’ll see me with a King Gluten Free shirt on. I was looking into combining vacation with blogging at the Food Allergy Blogger Conference in Las Vegas this year, but again, to late to be a presenter, and then tickets into the event are way WAY out of my price league. At least until my reach across the Celiac/Gluten-Free community is larger.

So, look for me in the future. Booths. Speeches. Everywhere. I have a list of things to do before I die and I’m 32 now, so I have some time to get it done.

Celiac Woes: Kit Kat

A Celiac Woe is a negative feeling I have towards something that I can no longer have. Why? I have Celiac Disease and I cannot eat gluten. And what is gluten? It’s a protein found in wheat, barley, rye and on the slight chance of contamination; oats.

Okay, you all know that.

And my Celiac Woes are in column form every week here, and if you follow me every Friday you’ll know that I mention Twix like like it’s going out of style. Like I crave Twix. But it’s crunchier cousin is slowly gunning for first place, Kit Kat. Oh yeah. Kit Kat. Chocolate and crunchy and you get four pieces, FOUR pieces. While it really is just one candy bar, the illusion of many candy bars is pretty awesome. But that doesn’t matter anyway, because I can’t eat Kit Kat.

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How about this. I don’t live in a strictly gluten-free home. I’m the only one with Celiac and therefor I fend for myself. So, as treats for my two year old daughter my wife and I buy her Kit Kats. And if she is good, after dinner, she gets a Kit Kat. Talk about your torture. How about when she offers me a bite? Jeez. There are things that my daughter knows make me sick. And with Kit Kats, she hasn’t clued in yet.

I’m that one Gluteneer that wants to smell food I can’t have. So on the regular occasion of ebverytime my kid has a Kit Kat, I like to smell it, just to remember what it smells like, and get those senses triggering my memory. Because I love me some Kit Kat.

Sidenote: I say Kit Kat a ton of times in this weeks Celiac Woes. Crap.

So. While I was searching for a good picture to use for this weeks column, I came across this picture. A Kit Kat in Japan made to taste like Kiwi? But seriously, you have to click this picture below and check out all the other wacky flavours. Like a smorgasbord of gross.

kit kat kiwi

What the Hell Japan? That’s messed up. Like is it chocolate modified to taste that way, or is it like a yogurt covering? Boggling my mind. And then it just comes back to me wanting it. Another flavour my mind says?

Damn you Celiac, you have bested me again.

Grandpa and The Kid

There was a time when I was young that my Mom would have another person come in and babysit my sister and me. And I don’t mean like an older cousin or aunt or uncle, I mean, like a real teenager. A person who was at a good age to come to our house and babysit us while my Mom went out for the evening. That was a thing back in the 80’s. There are at least two instances when this happened that I can remember.

I also remember myself going to a course where I learned proper babysitting techniques, basic life saving techniques and watching All Dogs Go to Heaven. Why did I have to watch that movie in a class my Mom paid for? No clue. Actually I don’t think I watched that specific movie. But there was a movie involved in the class.

So, now that I have a child, do I want some teenager to come to my place and tend to my child while I go out with my wife? There is a resounding NO streaming across my face. It comes to the point where I only trust family to watch my daughter. I would never feel comfortable with a stranger coming to my house to babysit. It seems creepy to me. There are trust issues abound, not just with my daughter but with my home. What are they doing in the house? Are they rifling through my shit? Stay away from my comic books. That sort of thing.

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Only recently, did my daughter spend an afternoon with her Grandpa, by himself. No Gramma to help out or nothing. They did normal family things. Went to lunch, visited me at my work and then went home. All simple things, but in the back of my mind I was a little worried about her Grandpa babysitting her. I shouldn’t have been. He’s an adult. He’s responsible. I guess it came down to the fact that I had never known him to watch her on his own. I don’t consider myself over protective, but as a Dad you just sometimes click into that mode. And why is it when she is with just her Grandpa?

Fear of the unknown. He has just never taken care of my daughter on his own for a longer period of time, like he did for the few hours that day. And he pulled it off like any Grandpa would do, perfect. I was just being an idiot and worrying to much.

But that’s what parents do, they worry.

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