Archive for November, 2010


makin’ meat.

I’m just the clean-up crew, but I am here to post some photos of Fred’s weekend sausage-making extravaganza.

Supplies: slabs of meat and fat, spices, stand mixer and accessories.

Essential helper: Spencer the chocolate lab.

Not sure which flavor: either hot Italian or maple.

Cajun sausage - unusual because its contents are cooked. "This one smells best," says Spencer.

More makin' of the Cajun sausage.

All ready for sampling on Saturday morning.


iowa got smoked.

About a week ago, I was trying to figure out where Mrs. Crappy and I were going to watch the Iowa game.

And then Matlock and the Coochie Doctor said they were going to fire up the smoker for the game. And we found ourselves driving to Columbus to watch an Ohio State game on television.

Oh, and eat huge piles of freshly smoked pulled pork. Here’s the CD explaining the sauces and Matlock — with the help of Mrs. Crappy and Juan — picking the meat he just brought inside:


best week of the year.

As of 6:49 p.m. Saturday, it’s Michigan week.

And while I’d rather look ahead than look back, I’m calling this right now: DeVier Posey will catch two touchdowns against the Team Up North a week from today.


not working for me.

Iowa’s visitors locker room is supposed to make you feel docile.

I think all it would actually do is piss me off. Like it kind of is right now.


hang those chads.

A quick reminder: I’ll close the voting on our Michigan meats of choice tonight, so if you have a strong preference, get your votes in now.


ode to cheese.

I know I made a big deal when we started KNT about the fact that we’d post recipes here; I know that some of us *coughmrscrappyahem* haven’t really gotten around to posting about what they’ve cooked.

I have a recipe, used just last Saturday. I’m not sure it qualifies as cooking — and in the interest of full disclosure, I should say that Mrs. Crappy actually made this while I was loading the truck Saturday morning — but it was everything I was hoping for and more.

Ladies and gentlemen — the Official Queso Dip of the Big Ten Network:

You take two cans of this:

Dice 32 ounces of this:

And put them all in a bowl in the microwave until it’s all melty. Kind of like this:

Not a picture of our presentation, which involved a crock pot and an open bag of Fritos Scoops sitting next to it.

I wanted to try this for the cheesiness factor alone — not the cheese factor, because, let’s face it, no actual cheese is involved here — and I would have happy with just about any result. But, uh, I can happily report that this was actually good. We broke out the bowl with a bag of Fritos Scoops and the KNTers killed the whole thing in about an hour. The Ro*Tel tomatoes and chilies have a pretty good amount of spice by themselves; unless you really wanted to go big, you don’t have to adjust for that kind of heat.

There is a variation I will likely try for the Michigan game. When I tweeted last week about making this, my friend Jennifer mentioned her standard additions to the standard recipe — a pound of cooked ground sausage and a brick of cream cheese. Dude — there’s no way I’m not going to give that a shot.

Best part? We’ve finally come around to supporting the advertiser that single-handedly kept the Big Ten Network afloat for its first year of existence. And I have a feeling we’ll be doing that again and again and again.



It’s a tradition with a history nearly as long and illustrious as the Killer Nuts Tailgate parties themselves: Fred makes sausage for the Michigan game.

This tradition has its roots way back when Fred, then a vegetarian, ate a sample of prosciutto while on a flight to Italy. He didn’t just fall of the vegetarian wagon — he jumped off, slashed the wagon’s tires, set the whole thing ablaze and used the flames to  sear a rare 32-ounce porterhouse.

Oh, and he also started making his own sausage. I don’t remember which Michigan game it was when the sausage first appeared, but I know it was a win, and I remember declaring that Fred had to make sausage for the the Michigan tailgate from that point forward until the end of time.

Time has not yet ended, and we’re just a couple weeks away from the Michigan game, so Fred is about ready to make this year’s batch — and that’s where he needs our help. He’s set on making two varieties — a maple breakfast sausage, which has become something of a staple, and a hot Italian sausage, using some of the chilies Mrs. Crappy and I grew this summer. He wants to make two more varieties, but he is unsure which to choose.

And that means it’s time for a poll.

Let’s pretend we live in Florida — vote twice, once for each of these choices that sounds the best for you. We’ll close the poll at midnight Thursday so Fred can have his list ready for a visit to the butcher on Friday.

I asked Fred for brief descriptions of our choices. Here’s what he came up with:

  • Vienna – the little wiener sausages that you can eat by the handful; includes all the major meat groups (beef, pork, veal – yes, veal)
  • Mustardy Beef – this would be our basic beef link.  Would it be a classic or would it be boring?
  • Swedish Potato – beef,  pork butt, pork fat, potatoes.  I will cook these in low-fat chicken broth and they should taste great with any diet soft drink.
  • Cajun Boudin Blanc – considered a “religion” in SW Louisiana.  Pork + pork + pork fat + SPICES + rice + accordion & fiddle music while cooking.
  • Turkey/Cranberry/Nut – what you will have eaten the 2 previous days, but in tubular form.

I can’t see how we can go wrong. Make yer choices people, and Fred will work his magic.


luckeyes prevail.

Dane is about to get lucky.

Not many people outside of the state of Ohio like Ohio State.

Actually, that’s an understatement — “hate” is probably a better word.

I get it. And I don’t mind.

What does bother me is the dumb stuff I have to put up with because of my college football allegiance. I’ve been made to feel like I should be ashamed of Ohio State’s appearances in the national championship games. I’ve heard over and over — from fans of teams that routinely play D1-AA opponents — that Ohio State plays soft schedules. And then there’s this one, which pisses me off to no end: the Luckeyes.

When I opened up Twitter after the game on Saturday, I came across several conversations about how Ohio State had lucked into yet another win. Frankly, I was stunned by that reaction; I asked, and I never did get a satisfactory response as to how scoring 35 unanswered points or winning by 24 could be considered lucky.

Yeah, there was one lucky play, when Pryor’s pass caromed off Posey and into the hands of Sanzenbacher, just as he was crossing the goal line. And if that were the game’s deciding score, I would be happy to admit that Ohio State was lucky as hell.

(Actually, I have a little difficulty writing off that play as well, especially after years of living in Pittsburgh and hearing the constant celebrations of the Immaculate Reception, which might be the luckiest play in the history of football.)

But that touchdown and extra point put Ohio State up by 10 and there would be two more scores before we were done for the night. What about the 96-yard drive midway through the third quarter? Where were the lucky plays on that one? Were the two interception returns for touchdowns lucky? No, they were mistakes by Penn State’s young quarterback. The seven-play, 78-yard drive in the fourth quarter? Maybe someone could explain to me how that one was lucky as well.

Oh, and we certainly got lucky as hell on the way to holding the Lions to 60 total yards in the second half. Whew.

I try not to be an asshole about this stuff in general, and in the case of the Penn State rivalry, I’m especially sensitive about my behavior. I have a lot of good friends who are cheering for the team on the other sideline and they deserve better than having to listen to me spout off about the game that just ended.

I also don’t make excuses. The 2001 and 2005 games? Ohio State got beat, period. The 2008 game was one of the best games I’ve ever seen in the stadium, and Penn State made the plays it needed to to win on the road. Even during the first half of Saturday’s game, it was easy to see which team wanted the win more, and it wasn’t the guys I was cheering for.

But there are those who apparently think what happened in the second half was an anomaly. And here I am again, trying to find something to appreciate about another win by the Luckeyes.

Guess what folks? I’ll happily put this one up alongside the national championship, two other title-game appearances, six straight wins over Michigan and five straight outright or shared conference titles — you know, all those other games and championships Ohio State fans aren’t supposed to enjoy.


hey, it’s the crappys!


Dispatch photographer Doral Chenoweth took a panoramic shot of the stadium during the second quarter of Saturday’s game.

I found Mrs. Crappy and me with no trouble. Can you find your seats as well?



For god's sake, don't drop him -- he might break!

When Joe Paterno won his 400th game last weekend, he took away one of the things that was concerning me about this week’s game — that an extra-motivated Nittany Lion team would show up in Columbus and do what they did to Ohio State in 2001, when Paterno had the chance to pass Bear Bryant as the all-time leader in D1 coaching wins.

That is not to say I don’t have other concerns.

Penn State’s defense is starting to play like a Penn State defense. I know, I know — giving up 423 total yards and 31 points against Michigan two weeks ago isn’t an all-world effort, but if they played that game in September, I think Michigan probably would have won.

Penn State has apparently found a quarterback in Matt McGloin. I thought Rob Bolden looked pretty good for a true freshman earlier in the season, but this could be a case of the offense having more confidence in McGloin; since his first start, against Michigan, Penn State is scoring and Evan Royster is rolling up rushing yards again after looking like he was sleepwalking through game after game.

There are some other things to remember, though. Penn State’s offense has rolled up those big numbers against Northwestern and Michigan, which might have the worst offense in school history. Michigan is 104th in scoring defense so far this season. Ohio State is third. So there’s that.


2017 schedule

Aug. 31: vs. at Indiana, 8 p.m.
Sept. 9: Oklahoma, 7:30 p.m.
Sept. 16: Army, 4:30 p.m.
Sept. 23: UNLV
Sept. 30: at Rutgers
Oct. 4: at Maryland
Oct. 7: Maryland
Oct. 14: at Nebraska
Oct. 28: Penn State, 3:30 p.m.
Nov. 4: at Iowa
Nov. 11: Michigan State
Nov. 18: Illinois
Nov. 22: Indiana
Nov. 25: at Team Up North, noon
Dec. 2: B1G Championship, 8 p.m.

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