Not all “bulger” is created equal.

I’ve mentioned the app Gluten Free Food Finder before. It is super useful when you’re grocery shopping its really useful, but we have one really weird experience with it, namely yogurt. Yup, yogurt, one of those things that should be normally be naturally gluten free (ya’ know as long as they don’t drop pretzels or malted milk balls into the mix) so when it came back with a “contains gluten” warning, it make us really re-think if the app was working.

It is a crowd sourced app, so it’s only as good as the people who use it, so there is always going to be some yahoo who decides to troll the rest. It’s kind of the nature of crowdsourcing or being a part of the digital world. I might be a little obsessed with the Pokemon Go phenomenon, but it’s a new emerging community (and it gets me out to take some Pokewalks so I’m not going to really complain.) If you look at the news stories about the community there are a lot of people doing good things. There’s people who are dropping lures at children’s hospitals so that the kids there can play the game. There’s even one Children’s hospital in Michigan who is using it as a way to get children social while their inpatient. There’s also stories about thieves setting lures to get people’s smartphones or the guy who shot up a couple of player who were driving through a neighborhood catching ‘em all. Honestly, the DDOS crash that the hacker group that happened on Saturday with Pokemon go is the biggest example of this. For all of the people who are doing good and having innocent fun interacting with each other and enjoying the game, there are a few people out there ruining it for everyone. Of course those are the stories that the news actually reports, but that’s because they’re way more interesting. Still, there’s very few cell phone games that can boast that they’re helping the law enforcement community, and I’m kind of proud to be a part of it.

Anyway, that’s a digression in regards to the discussion of this post. So, we were using this crowd sourced app to scan Chiboni greek yogurt and got back “this contains gluten.” According to Chiboni their normal, not flip, yogurt is gluten free. The thing that I like most about this app is it let you know WHAT contains gluten in the item. In this instance is showed L bulgaricus, or Lactobacillus bulgaricus. If anyone of you knows anything about probiotics, this is a bacteria that has nothing to do with bulgur wheat. Absolutely nothing. But because the word had “bulgar” (sic) in it, the app shoed it as a false positive. I’m pretty sure that this wasn’t malicious, but misinformed.

There’s a lot of misinformation in the gluten free community, but that partly because large portions of it live online, and there is a lot of misinformation online. Before this age of the internet, information was being shared through magazine and academic publications. This means that everything needed to be vetted and researched. This means that everything that was shared got rigorously fact checked. The internet as no fact checking, You pretty much have to be your own fact checker (see my GIGO post for more information on that) the same thing goes for all of the crowd sourced apps out there.

We can know that things like Lactobacillus bulgaricus or Monosodium Glutamate don’t really have gluten in them, but they have words where part of them that include the verboten. And people who don’t know or don’t do the research (or even a google search really) get over cautious and get us all into a panic. I was watching Master of Nothing yesterday (because Netflix) and there is a scene about halfway into the series where a Aziz Ansari’s character is given a gluten free cake because “gluten causes lupus.” If they hadn’t set up the character who made that statement to voice all of the crazy stuff that you hear in the internet, I would have been offended, instead that turned this trend that I’ve been discussing into a quick easy joke, and I laughed. We know that we can look online and disprove the “gluten causes lupus” thing. Just like we can quickly google L bulgaricus and msg and see that it doesn’t contain gluten. Can we, sure. Will we, well I would hope so after all of this. Otherwise I have been ranting at you all for a couple of months to no avail.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m waiting for a Snorlax to show up in my neighborhood. I want to name it after my husband.

 

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You Can’t Always Eat What You Want…

…but if you try sometimes, you just might find, you eat what you need…pokemon-go-draft-33-photos-34

So like the rest of the world I have gotten into Pokemon Go. Unlike the rest of the world. I am not sore today because I was traipsing all round the world and back trying to catch ’em all. I spent all weekend cleaning my house to put in into the housing market. The housing market in Seattle is pretty booming right  now, and we want to get on the right side of it for once. So I’m totally sore from cleaning my house and making it literally picture perfect. Didn’t keep me from catching this little guy today at Ghostfish.

Gluten Free Pokemon

Gluten Free I choose you!

If anyone remembers my double post a while back about gluten free beer, Ghostfish is my favorite. My sister in law is in town for a long weekend and we invited her out for a beer and some pizza while she was here. She’s a total beer person and we wanted to share Ghostfish with her. As we sat down they mentioned that, in the month since we had last been there, they now have a full kitchen. Now they serve more than just pizza and sandwiches now there’s a full menu including fried foods.

Anyone who has ever tried to order gluten free in a restaurant knows the danger of fried foods. If your french fries go in the same fryer as the chicken nuggets, well you’re SOL and should probably just stick with the salad. It’s kind of part and parcel of the life. The best part of someone who is part of the Celitariat starting a business to fill a void in our lives (like the guys at Ghostfish) they thing about the things that we miss. You don’t see a lot of dedicated gluten free pho places, mostly because pho is naturally gluten free (and if it’s not you’re doing it wrong) but there’s a lot of gluten free bakeries. The bakeries fill the void in the community, because someone has to bake the bread. Ghostfish has filled yet another void in my life, and that is the void of fried food! Beer and fried food, gawd a gluten free gastro pub is amazing.

So tonight, for the first time in more than a year, I had tempura. I can make teriyaki and katsu and even ramen at home. But I love Japanese food, and one of my favorite thing is tempura. That light fluffy better over sweet potatoes  or broccoli or onions…oh I can’t really thing of those things without want to eat it all. And that batter is full of gluten. Even if it wasn’t, tempura is fried in the same oil at the panko breaded katsu or the goyza. Gluten, gluten, and more gluten. So no tempura for me. Well until tonight.

It was kind of amazing. It literally could have been the worst tempura ever (and it wasn’t) and I would still think it was amazing just because I could eat it. I might have mentioned before that I really want someone to fry food to me and bring it to my table, and tonight I had that moment, but it was more that that. This was something that I haven’t had and had been craving, and there’s really no substitute for it.

For a lot of food, I can find a substitution, but there’s some that you really can’t substitute. For me, it was tempura (until tonight.) Well, tempura and couscous and eggs benedict. So one out of 3 solved isn’t half bad. Before tonight I thought that I could survive without these food because, well, it’s just nothing is work feeling sick,  but now I feel like we just need patients and people in the community with ingenuity.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to clean up some cat fur and catch some more pokemon. I can’t let the other trainers get ahead of me!

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A good husband will wash his hands before going to the bathroom

My husband, like a lot of gluticrats that are married to celitariats, doesn’t always eat gluten free. We were out to dinner at Chipotle (I love these people because they have amazing allergy protocols) and he excused himself to go to the restroom while I was still noshing on my burrito bowl. He comes out of the bathroom with a really amused/pleased look on his face.

Oh get your mind out of the gutter. It’s public restroom!washed hands

No, this is the face that he has when he’s come up with a great (and amusing) world observation. He does this often. I honestly married a philosopher comic. But he gives me his little boy grin, like he does before he’s about to tell me a joke, and says, “I got really smart and washed my hands before I used to urinal.”

 

Yup. That’s the kind of thing that you share in public.

His reasoning was pretty sound.  Just in case our marriage when to that adult marriage place, he wanted to make certain that ALL of him would be safe for his wife.

Yup, he went there too.

Okay, lets this about this logically for a moment. He had eaten his ginormous Chipotle burrito with his hands. So there was gluten all over those hands. The same gluten that we make the servers behind the counter wash their hands and change their gloves before they made out food. Why would he touch parts that might be touched by me later without taking the same precautions? It makes so much sense. And how can’t I be happy that he thought of it, since he was so proud of himself.

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We had the opposite of this happen last week. Last Monday I was on day 2 of a glutening. For me, day 2 is the foggy brain, body aches, and the least functioning I could possibly be. I am totally useless. Actually I’m kind of proud that I got something out that was coherent-ish for the blog last Monday. So, did I eat anything with gluten in it? Of course not. I try and be really careful. Did my husband? You better believe it. And what did I do? Well I kissed him, because we’re one of those sickening couples that do that. After I done with a little peck of the lips he looks at me with horror and said, “I just had a granola bar.”

Bippity-boppity-boo and I’m sick!

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Well a couple of hours later I was sick. And then sick for the next couple of days.

So, washing hand before going to the bathroom with hopes that you might get lucky…well it’s not that out of the question. It’s not even an unrealistic expectation. Not everyone is THAT sensitive, but honestly, I think that it’s one of those better safe than sorry kind of things, because you never know, it sucks to be sick. And when you have someone who really thinks about your needs (along with their own) well, you should keep them around because it’s awesome.