A Good Burger in North Carolina?

There was this list online some place… that listed the BEST BURGERS in the NATION.  Every State had some entries…. And one of the ones for North Carolina was El’s Drive In in Morehead City.


Right off 70 in Morehead, right next to some big old hospital.  I’ve heard their advertisements on the Radio a bunch of times… and then this list shows up.  I decided I had to try it.


This is their Double El’s Special with Slaw and Chili Sauce.  Supposedly their best burger.  Ordered a Coke and some onion rings to go with it.  The onion rings were pretty good.  The Coke was in a freaking can… and that Special Burger… It was… Special.  The chili sauce and slaw – was on so thin as to only serve to make the bottom bun soggy as hell.  You couldn’t really taste it.   The bottom bun was like a wet napkin about the third bite.  The beef – there were two paddies, yes… But they were flavorless and dried out.  So I had a Dry and Soggy burger.  You know how you burn a paddy on a grill really bad and then slice off all the burned layers?  THAT is what these paddies tasted like.   Dry flavorless meat.   Quite seriously, this was one of the most disgusting burgers I’ve ever had in my life.  At least I had a 2 dollar can of Coke to wash it down with.

All is not lost at El’s though.  I did also have an Oyster Burger.  Maybe it was good?


Nope.  What you can’t see was that it was drowned in ketchup under that flaccid bun.  The oysters were fried waaayyy too long in the deep fat frier, and were about has tender as charcoal with bits of crust as hard as granite.  You could break your teeth on these things.  Oh, and if it being rocklike wasn’t enough… the oysters were filled with sand… and small chunks of gravel.

Overall, El’s Drive In was a most unpleasant place to eat.  Unpleasant meaning, flat out nasty.  The service was good though.  The lady was prompt to my vehicle and very nice.  But as nice as she was for a 50 year old Car Hop, I don’t think I’ll ever go back.   In fact – I really wish I didn’t go in the first place.


My favorite 1911 Configuration.

To me, saying “1911” is like saying “Pickup Truck”.  There are many Makes and Models out there, all different, all with different purposes. But they are all 1911’s so they are pretty good and should all pretty much run the same way.   But one configuration of 1911 that always makes me drool…
A Lightweight Commander.  Specifically a two tone LW Commander.  As far as pistols go – these are my Redheads.  My Kryponite.  My weakness.



This one is very nice… Subdued colors.  A big visible dot on the front sight… Very nice indeed.  I’m not a huge fan of the ramped rear sight, but I can deal with that.  On this gun the higher end red wood grips are a little dressy on the flat finished gun.

colt_04860txt_commander_eliteThis one is nice too… Subdued colors again, but with a set of black grip panels.  I like that a bit better due to the fact that it’s more in keeping with the motif.  The first one is like having White Wall tires on a Mustang GT.   I guess that would be fine if that’s your thing… it’s just not my thing.   And if it is your thing… and you like that… Well, “America”.   Bully for you!

kobra4Here’s one that’s very good.  Micarta grips, brushed stainless and a moderate polish on the slide… Not Subdued, but more natural.  I really like that.  I also like the Bobtail… a lot.  But it’s not necessary…  Just really really nice.  Like Navigation or a Back Up Camera, or XM Radio.

Yost_left_rearOh man… Here we go.  This is the higher end.  We have a high polish on that blued slide and burled walnut grips.  This one is so nice that it’s almost too nice.  We call guns like this “BBQ Guns”, but it’s what you wear to a BBQ at your friends place… your nicest gun in a nice leather holster.  Not something I’d EDC, but wear to special occasions.  It would be like having a date with a Super Model… You are not going to take her out on the rounds of your usual haunts, but to some place special.  (Unless she asked to go to the regular haunts mind you)   So for me, that last one there, the more natural one, that’s the one I’d pick.

What do all these Commanders have in common?  Two Tone Finishes, with Dark on top of Light.  The current Vogue due to the advent of stainless slides on polymer frames is to have a light colored slide on a dark frame.  This I don’t care for.  It makes all manner of sense though, sure.  It’s PRACTICAL.  A stainless slide will show less wear than a blued slide.  And frames will typically show less wear than slides… So putting a stainless slide on that black frame makes Reason and Logic smile.  But it doesn’t make me necessarily smile, no, just the opposite is true.  And let me tell you why.

Growing up reading every gun magazine I could get my hands on as a kid, I stared with wide eyes and great wonder at the custom 1911’s made by true master level gunsmiths… and all of them were two tones with stainless frames and high polished blued slides.   That LOOK defined “Custom” for me then and it does so now.  So the stainless slides on black frames just look “off” to me.   So my ultimate has to have a black slide on light frame.   That just visually tastes right to me.

Lawn Mower Rant

North Carolina is blessed with awesome growing weather.   You can grow a lawn on your roof here.  The perfect blend of Rain and Sun and optimal growing temperatures for like 10 months in the year.
This means a lot of lawn mowing.  For some, this is a source of great pride and satisfaction.

For me it’s a bloody curse.  For one, I’m allergic to cut grass.  I’m fine around grass, until it starts getting mowed and whatever the feck it is that comes out of it just about kills me.  Watery, red, puffy eyes, and nose that wont stop running.  So for me, when I start cutting grass, I want it done fast and thorough and none of that bagging crap.  I like a Mower and Mulcher in one.  Know what I mean?   This isn’t much to ask for, is it?  Evidently it is.  Because in the last 5 months I’ve gone through 3 mowers.  This last one, did only half the yard before it just went belly up.  Sure it’s used, but before it started on my lawn we had it serviced.  Cleaned out, fresh oil and filter and a new spark plug.  Tuned up.   Ran like a champ…. In the front yard.  And then the Mower must have looked in the back yard because it just said “Screw this” and shut down.   It will start… and it will run… for about 5 seconds max.  Just like the last two.  Even after getting them professionally serviced.  Even had a new carb on one of them.

All three had one thing in common.   MURRAY.

I’ve come to the conclusion that Murray Lawn Mowers really and truly suck.   They are the Phoenix Arms of Lawn Mowers.   Fine when brand new but a couple boxes of ammo through it and they fall apart.  I will never deal with another one for the rest of my life.   I’ll never deal with another Phoenix – or MURRAY ever again.  Life is TOO SHORT.