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McDonald’s Takes on Starbucks

McDonald’s will soon be going toe-to-toe with cofee giant Starbucks. The fast food king plans on rolling out high-end bars in all of its restaurants starting in 2009. AP
NEW YORK (CBS) ― Now that we’re all used to paying $3 for a cup of coffee, one of the biggest names in fast food is jumping on the chuck wagon.
I recall my first truly great cup of coffee. Jerry and I were in New York City, and were walking either to the Metropolitan Museum of Art or returning from it, when we turned into the plush coffee shop of a small, but elegant hotel. It was a fine moment, for I had never tasted such coffee. It was hot, bold and smooth. The ambience was perfect.
A very good cup of coffee is important to me. One of the things I quite enjoyed about the Radisson in Tucson was the coffee they served at breakfast. It was so tasty, I commented to the waitress.
“It’s Starbucks,” she said. “Starbuck’s Special Blend.” It was excellent.
Now here comes McDonald’s promising us a fine cup at 60 to 80 cents cheaper than Starbucks. Bring it on!
EDIT Wednesday January 7: In response to Von De Leigh’s comment, I am creating a link to an article I wrote in 2006 concerning the ambience in one Starbuck’s place.
My devotional blog is here.
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A Golden Spoon, Mice and Cockroaches

Housewives across the country are gearing up for next Thursday’s big feast, in which calorie consciousness is blatantly ignored while the finest of dishes are prepared for the Thanksgiving dinner. The desserts are always the crown of the table, and in many homes traditional family recipes reign–spicy pumpkin pie slathered with perfectly whipped cream and fudgey stacked-high chocolate cake, black and rich. Other kitchen queens (or kings) attracted by appealing pictures in glossy magazine pages set aside the traditional and aim for the creative, the haute and the neowe.

Such persons may be attracted to a dessert I read about a few days ago. This “cutting-edge” and oh, so charming, my dear, creation–not to mention its elaborate cost–has skipped its way into the Guinness World Book of Records. Your American Express card will show a paltry charge of $25,000 once the dessert has been ordered and eaten at the Serendipity 3 in New York City. Not to worry–eaters of this concoction do so with a golden spoon which may be taken as a souvenir.


NEW YORK — This is one rich cup of haute chocolate: A New York eatery is offering a $25,000 dessert bulging with top-grade cocoa, edible gold and shavings of a luxury truffle.

The Frrrozen Haute Chocolate was declared the most expensive dessert in the world on Wednesday by Guinness World Records.

The dessert is a frozen, slushy mix of cocoas from 14 countries, milk and 5 grams of 24-carat gold topped with whip cream and shavings from a La Madeline au Truffle.

It is served in a goblet with a band of gold decorated with 1 carat of diamonds and served with a golden spoon diners can take home

According to the Associated Press

People stand in line for hours outside the Manhattan restaurant. The eatery also offers a $1,000 sundae named Golden Opulence requiring 48-hour advance notice.

Now, the “kicker,” for I suspect a new Guinness record has been set. On Wednesday, the restaurant, the Serrendipity 3, was officially closed down by inspectors who “spotted a live mouse and mouse droppings, fruit flies, houseflies and more than 100 live cockroaches.

This was the second failed inspection in a short period of time.

“…inspections revealed rodent and fly infestation and conditions conducive to pest infestation, including stagnant water in the basement,” the department said.

Oh, well, I guess we’re back to Mom’s apple pie.


My devotional blog is here.

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Empire State Building Is Lighted Muslim Green

Today, the Empire State Building is lighted green!


Tell me why I should not be outraged! The very group–Muslims— who blazed these buildings into oblivion a mere 6 years ago, taking 3000 human souls with them, are being honored this weekend.

Where? In our foremost metropolis–New York City, itself.

Where? Take a look. Gaze into that place there…there…that hole, that void, the spot where before rose the stately Twin Towers. That’s where. And tonight, a stone’s throw away, our American Empire State Building has gone green in honor of Ramadan. from Jon Zucker

When I first read this story, I perceived my brain as having a lapse, thinking such a tale could in no way be true. I blinked, took a breath, and sadly knew it was so.
Think about it. During the Second World War, would there have been any city–name one if you can–who would have remotely considered the raising of Swastika riddled flag in any United States parade–in observation of any holiday–at any time? No, of course not. The thought is preposterous.

Six years ago we watched in agonized horror as those blazing buildings melted and imploded. Indelibly etched in a dark corner of our brains are images of human bodies as, to escape the licking flames, they hurled themselves hundreds of feet to their ghastly deaths. We’ve heard the screams of trapped men as they made final 911 calls. Think about it. On that dreadful day as we watched and listened, could we possibly have thought that today, six years later, we would light the Empire State Building so as to honor Ramadan? It’s unthinkable.

Who are we America? Are we now a nation of cowards? Is there no one who can stop this nonsense?

Do I hear something? Could that be a faint clanking of bonds? The light sound of chains as they slip gently but surely around our complacent, weak necks?


My devotional blog is here.