Flavor tripping with miracle fruit (and Snuff)

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Miracle fruit berries Interested in flavor tripping? Try the miracle fruit. It’s a cranberry-sized West African berry (Synsepalum dulcificum) that numbs your sour and bitter tastebuds for a couple of hours after eating it, making certain foods taste weirdly sweet. Flavor-tripping parties are being held in New York City and San Francisco. The New York Times reports on the tiny red berry: “A Tiny Fruit That Tricks the Tongue.” A protein called miraculin binds with the tastebuds and acts as a sweetness inducer. After eating a single berry, beer will taste like a chocolate shake, cheeses will taste like frosting, and you’ll be eating radishes and lemons like candy.

(Note: Miracle fruit has a controversial history with the FDA that involves the sugar industry sabotaging and burgling research. On a similar note, a woman I work with uses stevia as a sugar substitute.)

Snuff by Chuck Palahniuk My friend Warren sent this to me about Chuck Palahniuk’s new book: “Watch the three trailers. Don’t read anything about the book. All you need to know is: the book is called Snuff, it’s about a porn star, and the three trailers are fake porno trailers to promote the book.” Being Palahniuk fans, we were both amazed that we had never heard of the book. Perhaps because we had been watching hours of movie mash-ups and cute cat videos on YouTube?

Speaking of movie mash-ups . . . try this: Star Trek Meets The Matrix. Captain Kirk is Neo. They even did a nice job of matching up The Matrix characters dialogue to the mouth movements of the Star Trek cast. I’d say this is now my second favorite Star Trek mash-up, after the brilliant “Closer” by Nine Inch Nails video starring Spock and Kirk.

This gravity-based Flash game from Weebl’s Stuff is evil: Spin The Black Circle. There are 24 levels. When you beat the last level, it says: “You just finished one of the hardest Flash games on the Internet. And killed many hours of work in the process. Way to go!” Maybe not many hours, but at least three or four.

Lastly, don’t let your kids eat lead paint and stuff: “Lead Exposure Linked to Violent Crime, Brain Changes.”

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