Coast to Coast (and back?) with an Italian Supermodel

Discussion in 'Epic Rides' started by AntiHero, Jul 13, 2012.

  1. Dooga

    Dooga Adventure Tourer

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    So bummed to have caught up with your story-telling. Now I must wait.
  2. AntiHero

    AntiHero Long timer

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    New Orleans is a bit of a 7-Sin sort of place, with one sin glorified perhaps more than any other: gluttony (of which sloth is merely a byproduct). There are very few ‘big’ cities in the world that offer more culinary pleasure than NOLA. And unlike the compartmentalized and varied cuisine found in places like SF, NY or LA, New Orleans is all about Cajun and Creole cookin’, which tend to blend together seamlessly in most of the restaurants here.

    Cajun cooking is more of the ‘everyman’s’ cuisine of the two. Whereas Creole cooking is heavily influenced by traditional French food that had been adapted to the local ingredients of Southern Louisiana, Cajun cooking is more of a “if it growls, flies, swims or grows, it goes in the pot” kind of food.

    Most New Orleans restaurants offer dishes that fuse the two, resulting in cuisine that’s both rustic and refined, rich and fresh, savory, sweet and—did I mentio--rich? Cayenne, black pepper, bay leaf, parsley are the dominant spices, with very finely diced onion, celery and carrot forming the base of the sauces (along with roux (flour browned in fat). Seafood is the dominant meat (it is on the Coast), but pig and beef make strong appearances. Unless you make it at home, you’re not going to get the tastes of Southern Louisiana unless you come here.
    Enough of the intro….on with the tasting menu.

    Cafe Amelie's Shrimp and Grits:
    [​IMG]

    Turtle Soup and BBQ'd Prawns (which aren't BBQ'd at all--if you've never had this dish you will not die happy):
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    The second best fried chicken I've had, along with Redfish Meuniere and Jambalaya Richard Sullivan (slomo510) and I had at Coop's Place:
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    Fried Pork Skin at SoBou:
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    Crispy chicken confit, glazed with a crystal hot sauce and sweet soy glaze:
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    Errr, forgot what this is:
    [​IMG]

    BBQ Prawns (again) at Emeril's NOLA:
    [​IMG]
  3. AntiHero

    AntiHero Long timer

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    Pecan crusted Redfish at I Forgot Where:
    [​IMG]

    Stuffed Chicken Wings (a Vietnamese Influence) at NOLA:
    [​IMG]

    Jambalaya at K-Paul's (Chef Paul Prudhomme invented the Blackened technique):
    [​IMG]

    Turducken (chicken and duck stuffed into a turkey, with dressing and gravy):
    [​IMG]

    Filets with Debrib beef at K-Paul's:
    [​IMG]

    Glazed Salmon with Prawns at K-Pauls:
    [​IMG]
  4. AntiHero

    AntiHero Long timer

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    I was recently asked a question about focus by a member of the motorcycling community who invited me into his home. The question was whether or not I thought someone should focus on the present or the future. While answering the question I realized I think quite differently about the two, so I thought I’d share. I think of both the present and the future as one. Oh I understand how they appear different in everyday life, but that’s an illusion, a nice way to mentally compartmentalize two expressions of the same thing and thinking about the future is the deception. It’s the future is happening right now all around us: today is the future of us a year ago or 5 or 30 years ago; (and more importantly) tomorrow is the future that’s forming based on what we’re doing right now.

    In a lot of ways, separating the two makes the present more pleasurable. The prison population is filled with the results of this sort of ‘immune to the consequences of the future’ type of thought. But the greater population also suffers from separating the two. Think about all of the food pics above and what would happen to my budget for pants on this trip if I ate like that all the time!

    Part of the problem is that the future is so far away and the mechanisms, requirements, efforts and actions required to arrive at a future that’s better than the present is difficult, challenging and unpleasant. Losing weight is a great example of why people continue to add pounds every year: exercise is tedious and difficult, but good food and laziness pays off right now.

    But there are very few things worthwhile that don’t involve effort. I’ll admit that I’m more tolerant of suffering than the average person, but I think a lot of my own discipline is a result of what I’ll conveniently call my general technique of accomplishing everything.

    The first step involves eliminating aversion from the mental thought process involved in deciding upon goals. I hate to sound evangelical, but if you’re serious about changing your life in a positive way stop reading this right now. Go and grab a pencil and paper (Microsoft Word won’t do—has to be a writing instrument and paper). When you’ve done that, come back.

    Now imagine you have $5 and can spend it any way you want on accomplishments. These can be occupational/financial, social (girlfriend, kids, husband, etc.), educational, artistic/musical or physical. I recommend spending one dollar per category, but you don’t have to. Write down as many things you want (GET YOUR LAZY ASS UP AND GO GET A PEN!) and narrow it down to the five most bad ass things you would wish for yourself. Black Belt? Rock Star in a band? Become a millionaire? Run a marathon? Have giant muscles? Find someone who loves you? Know how to draw comic book figures? Race motorcycles? Be an Actor? Take some time on this exercise. It’s $1 per item and you can only pick 5. Don’t let any disabilities or bad past experiences get in the way. The idea behind this exercise is that we’re talking a perfect ‘wishes-come-true-world’.

    Once those $5 are spent the wish-fulfillment continues. Now you get to pick 2 experiences you’d like to have. This could be a cross country trip on a Ducati—or a 2 week trip to Egypt or Africa or Hawaii—(or it could be as simple as doing two chicks at the same time, Lawrence). Perhaps you’d like to know what it feels like to catch a snake or survive in the wild for a week alone. Write these two things down, too.

    Alright I’m going to stop here. Work on those seven items above. I’ll be back.
  5. KiloBravo

    KiloBravo Armchair Adventurer

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    The AntiHero Law of Attraction? I'm in.
  6. SGrider

    SGrider 376 miles to Chicago

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    No fresh Catfish? I have to have catfish whenever I go to Louisiana.
  7. DestinationUnknown

    DestinationUnknown Been here awhile

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    Finally managed to make it through the entire thread. So much interesting stuff to see and take in. Thanks for all the pics, and reading material. Looks like a blast.
  8. AntiHero

    AntiHero Long timer

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    Next step is to work backwards. Again, one of the most difficult things about a long-term goal is that, without a Drill Sargent, a professor or a supervisor busting your balls, it's easier to settle into leisure 35 minutes (or whatever your commute is) after sliding down the dinosaur's back. 5 years later the future becomes the present and dreams remain unfulfilled.

    Connecting the future with the present is quite easy, though, if you break each goal down into components and work backwards. For instance--to run a marathon next year seems like an impossibility to someone who can't run 1/2 mile today. And a week or two struggling with 14 or 13 minute miles will discourage all but the most dedicated. But set it up to look like this and it doesn't seem so bad:

    Marathon - Dec. 2013
    20 Miles - Nov. 2013
    17 Miles - Oct. 2013
    15 Miles - Sept. 2013
    .
    .
    .
    6 miles April 2013
    4 miles Feb. 2013
    2 miles Jan. 2013
    1 mile Dec. 2013
    Go out for walk today!

    If you have your 7 (or 2 or 9) goals, write out how to get there (for each one, drop down style) and spend 90% of your free time in the next year working towards them. The result of 'working backwards'?: in an instant the present becomes the future; depression and anxiety become joy; every moment takes on a significance that previously was absent. A direct relation between what you do and who you are becomes tangible--an everyday, every-hour, every-second occurrence. Be confrontational with yourself now, enjoy the rewards soon enough. New-found confidence begets audacity.

    I say this ~22 years into mindlessly practicing all of the above, crossing off a list of the things I wanted to do and experience in the world. Just be forewarned: 1) desires increase with possessions and 2) the hairy hands of fate are pugilistic and will try to pummel you as much as they can.

    Restless? I know I am. My next goal? After Austin I'm doing 1000 miles (in one day). On the Panigale. Muhuhaahaaa.

    HAH! As I typed that a piece of a molar glaciered off in my mouth. Impending doom? Bring it on, hairy hands.

    [​IMG]


    Had Catfish, btw, SGrider. Along with one too many Sazeracs. Forigive me if no pics are forthcoming. :)
  9. oalvarez

    oalvarez Resident Raggamuffin

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    Anti, loving your stop in NOLA, we were there visiting my sis/brother in-law this summer, past two actually. Don't forget to visit the Preservation Jazz Hall, it was a moving experience for me. Additionally, Cochon and "The Butcher" (same location) are two restaurants/eateries that are a must.

    Glad you're enjoying New Orleans, it really is a special place.

    Thanks for sharing,
  10. AntiHero

    AntiHero Long timer

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    Hit up Cochon for lunch with my Pa. Though I was looking forward to it with great anticipation, Couchon was a disappointment. Ribs were blah. Fried alligator was good, but thick cotton balls could have been substituted for meat and it would have been just the same (fried anything with a sweet, succulent sauce is a recipe for ok-ness). Sat at the bar, which gave us a great vantage point for what we missed out on which might have tasted better--but what we were served was slightly disappointing. Loved seeing the drugged out, white-lipped motherfucker on the corner firing bullets into the surrounding buildings with his fingers, though.
  11. GP1152

    GP1152 Been here awhile

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    Anti, not sure if you ever saw our ride report from a few months ago. We also "tour" on our Ducati's. Me on a Streetfighter S, the wife on a Monster 696. Our trip, as is the case for most not-so-lucky people, was limited to 15 days (something about work and other responsibilities).
    Anyway, really glad to have been able to catch up on your trip. Keep it coming my friend. This RR should bridge the gap and get us through to our next journey, which will hopefully be sometime in January.

    Stay safe......
  12. rico2072

    rico2072 Been here awhile

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    I'm going to try your advice on weight loss.
    Need to loose more than a few pounds before my trip next year.
    6'2" and 243, just isn't cutting it on an R1.
    Years of work and stress, I guess I just kept pushing stuff back.
    If it works, I'm trying in for a million dollars! BWahahahaha (evil laugh)

    Thanks for the advise/plan and the great RR.
    I can't wait for mine next year, so I will be doing a weekend one, ones a month until then.
  13. 65bmwr50

    65bmwr50 Been here awhile

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    I just read your thoughts about running a marathon. Up until this year I had never run further than a mile. And that was a slow mile. June of this year I decided I would run the Richmond (VA) half marathon. Started training where a mile would about wipe me out and finished the half in 2 hours. Might not have been fast, but it was 10 minutes faster than my goal!

    Loving the ride report. BTW, the pictures of the food had me drooling. That looked awesome.
  14. 3B43

    3B43 Adventurer

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    Goals: in my experience, way too many people get 'goal' orientated and forget about the 'journey' to the goal! If you get fixated on your 'goal', you will, in all likelyhood, become disappointed. I realize people function differently in achieving goals, but many folks I know have quickly become disillusioned when their goals were not attained, or they realized that achieving them was much more difficult then they realized. IMHO, if they set a goal, then said, 'Im gonna have a shit load of fun on the way to my goal', they're already 50% there. In my experience, achieving the goal was anti-climatic. What I learned, felt and experienced on the way to my goal are permanently embedded in my memory banks!
  15. bk brkr baker

    bk brkr baker Long timer

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    [​IMG]


    If you'd like to have that repaired inexpensively I can give the name of a good dentist in Neuvo Progresso , Mx. Just accross the border, no need to take the Panigale out of the US.
    I went twice last year, implants and follow up.
    Progresso is in the Brownsville area.
  16. AntiHero

    AntiHero Long timer

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    Agreed. Destination always equals a death, even if it is a muffled, quiet one. But if someone is moving towards a goal and isn't experiencing a profound happiness (at least some of the time) while doing so, they need to pick something else to do (or change the way they perceive what they're doing). The latter was my method to connect the future with the present--and in doing so also connects the journey to the goal, infusing each step of the way with the grand magnificence we at least believe the end-result to contain. Too many people go through school, for instance, never realizing that it's not the degree they're after. Instead, they see homework and sitting through lectures as an obstacle to their goal when it's, in fact, the goal itself (or at least tiny fragments available for immediate consumption)!

    The male spider might be killed when he succeeds in courtship--and achievements might be anti-climactic--but if we pay enough attention there's a moment the end when we reach the height of our capabilities and are able to peer beyond the limits of our own mortality, if only just for a moment.

    (And then the rock rolls back down and Sisyphus begins again.)
  17. slide

    slide A nation in despair

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    Duh. Gimme a break - of course he did.
  18. Blader54

    Blader54 Long timer

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    So true, AH, about school. Too often these days I encounter students who are only interested in the degree, many of whom openly show their utter disregard for learning. Most of those just see a degree as a sort of entrance pass to a high-paying job, which, they assume, will not require any of the education they so assiduously avoid. I do not know if this has always been the case and I'm only just seeing it, or whether this is a new phenomenon. It may be in part at least, the result of our national education system's emphasis on testing. To some of the students it almost seems as though it is just a game to be played - how to get the highest grade with the least work. Efficiency is wonderful but when "least work" = "least learning" I get worried. Seems to me that once upon a time one went to school, particularly college, to "get an education" and that now students go to "get a credential."
  19. rico2072

    rico2072 Been here awhile

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    I think a lot of them also to get into the right Alma Mater. Just being in there can open the right doors to a richer future.....Sad that most of those spots go to the well connected.
  20. OldBoldPilot

    OldBoldPilot Adventurer

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    Yes, but what if our friend meant exactly what he typed (as he invariably does)? Opens up an entirely new vista to contemplate. :wink: