That Late-Night Craving: Pt. I

We have all found ourselves in that late night position. Dinner was eaten and digested hours ago, we should probably be in bed but aren’t, and there’s a rumbly in our tumbly. Whether drunk, stoned, or God-forbid sober, we need a snack. We cannot help ourselves, it’s just our metabolisms, right? These are the nights that we find ourselves in a not-uncommon position for people of our age group- unprepared. “Oh, what’s that, Mr. Cupboard, you only have TOP RAMEN? Is that a joke? What happened to all that bread I stocked you with last Wednesday night? I mean, it’s [insert alliterative day/drink reference here]!! I should have thought ahead for the late-nite calorie intake! Oh well, dry ramen and hot sauce is a meal, right? They would probably kill to eat that in Africa, I can only imagine.”

Disgraceful! Outrageous! Unforgivable! It is for this reason that we, The Junk Males, are here to give you a not too-far-fetched list of some of the things we have crammed down our oft-intoxicated throats in the weeeeee hours of the morning. Whether they be found-object meals, hurried change- scrounging vending machine transactions, or even stumbling supermarket walks, that late night meal can be the difference between passing out mildly hungry and passing out anyways, after some comfort food that will be regretted the next day. But for real, what are we here for if not to talk about things you’ll regret the next day? It would be downright irresponsible of us to leave you with “healthknowledge.” Presented in front of a live studio audience, for the first time, are a few of the “recipes” that The Junk Males have stumbled upon, late at night. Book deal, here we come!

“RECIPES”!

1. Skittles Fruit Salad- Ahhh, the fabled Skittles fruit salad. You are finally making your long-awaited breakthrough debut! This author may not be entirely sure of the state of vending machines at the disposal of all our fine readers, but it is a rare occasion to visit these dispensaries of salty-sweet treats and find not one, not two, but all three flavors of Skittles (for this post, the three types are original, wild berry, and tropical varieties)! Wow! This trifecta is so rare in fact, that it makes Skittles Fruit Salad a truly seasonal salad. Which makes it all the sweeter. Now for the nitty-gritty stuff. First, you must open the packages, which can be harder than it sounds, especially at 3:27 in the am, and empty their contents into some kind of container, whether it be large mug or small bowl. Then, well, that actually completes the laborious preparations. Afterward all that’s left is eating the delicious snack! Diabetes never felt so healthy. PS- The Junk Males’ Skittles Fruit Salad is a vegan treat!

2. Mexican Funyun Dip- This one is a little more complicated than simply mixing three varieties of a candy together, but not much. One must be on a mission. A drunk mission. All you really need is a bag of Funyuns and some sour cream. Whether homemade or store-bought, the sour cream is essential. Without it, this “recipe” would be even lamer than it already is. But I guarantee you, it is a delicious snack. Or at least I remember it being pretty good….. PS- The Junk Males’ Mexican Funyun Dip isn’t a vegan treat!

3. Frozen Chicken Nugget Pizza- Along with this tasty “recipe” you will also get a short anecdote! Lucky you! (For those of you who are not lucky please stop reading now). To start this one off right you first need to imbibe moderate to heavy amounts of alcohol, preferably girly cocktails, and boogie your little hearts out on a seedy dance floor until you’re ready to drop. Then you must sniff out the location of the nearest 24 hour grocery store which you will proceed to wander noisily through in high spirits but with a gnawing belly. Frozen pizza sounds like the logical choice, and as we all know Freschetta is betta, but it just isn’t enough, which is why you decide to garnish your 1-2 pizzas with some breaded chicken nuggets that are, and this next point is crucial, cut into the shapes of dinosaurs. The cooking process now should be pretty straight forward assuming you actually manage to get to a working stove and further assuming you can figure out how to turn the mono-directional thermostat knob to “on”. After not eating for what seems like decades the results of your efforts will be nothing short of delightful, especially if you are daring enough to douse the concoction in barbeque sauce. And if you’re paying attention through all this you might just be fortunate enough to see something that will cause you to snort pepperoni through your nose. While I was helping pioneer this late-night treat one of my friends fell asleep in the middle of our meal. The rest of us carried on eating and talking for at least another 20 minutes before we decided to rouse him and shuffle him off to bed, and as we shook him awake from his reclined position against the kitchen table the front half of a Brontosaurus shaped nugget came spilling out of his confused and weary mouth, causing the rest of us to erupt in drunken laughter. I think someone finished eating it later. PS- The Junk Males’ Frozen Chicken Nugget Pizza isn’t a vegan treat!

 

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Bacon: Greased-Up Gateway to the Gods

Want some extra fun this week? Play the JunkMalesDrinkingGame! Every time you see the word “bacon” take a drink! It’s more or less how we wrote this post anyway.

On the cusp of modern technological bacon advancements.

Welcome to our bacon post! If you haven’t guessed, this week’s theme is bacon, and boy are you guys in for a salty treat! With the exception of our vegetarian or religiously inclined “friends”, nearly every true American holds in their heart a special place for bacon (their valves). We eat it in our sandwiches, we grind it up on our salads, we half-jokingly adorn our maple bars with meaty, bacony crowns. Whether you like it crispy, chewy, or turkey, bacon seems to be the next big thing in junkfood flavoring. Dare we even say, that

BACON IS THE NEW RANCH?

Daren’t we? Let’s take a look at bacon’s recent transformation from breakfast staple to toothpick flavor and we can decide for ourselves. Don’t think we’re gonna share the answer with you, though.

A Pause For Brevity

In deference to the length of our last post, I have decided to briefly sum up the main points we are trying to touch on this time for those of you in a hurry to get back to watching reruns of 90210 and eating marginally rancid mayonnaise with your fingers.

  • Bacon is good.
  • We like junkfood.
  • In 1952 Albert Einstein was offered the Presidency of Israel, which he declined, and the 99th element of the Periodic Table, Einsteinium, was discovered and named in his honor. He probably also liked bacon.

Satisfied? Good. Now let’s get down to business.

And He Said, Let There Be Bacon

Crispity, chocolatey Pig Candy.

Although it would appear that creating innovative bacon delectables has in recent years become fashionable and trendy, please trust us when we say that 1: we are certainly not fashionable, nor are we trendy* and 2: our love of bacon is pure. We may enjoy what this media dubbed “Bacon Mania” has done for our taste buds, but that is not why we nightly rub bacon grease all over our bodies and wrestle in children’s swimming pools, and it is not why we are writing this brilliant article now. We were eating bacon long before the fad began and will continue eating bacon long after it has gone the way of Crystal Pepsi and Ring Pops. While the fad is still alive and well, however, we will take advantage of it every chance we get. From snacking on some of New York’s famous Pig Candy, chocolate dipped bacon, to feasting on a slice of a Bacon Explosion, over four pounds of bacon barbecue goodness, any opportunity is a good opportunity to stuff our mouths full of fried pork belly.

Much like salmonella and rat droppings, bacon can still be found in its more traditional stomping grounds of breakfast and brunch type establishments. One of my favorite discoveries of late has been a breakfast sandwich called the Hostile Hangover Takeover that I stumbled across at a local cafe. Besides having a long-winded moniker, this breakfast king among breakfast men boasts a drippingly delicious array of ingredients. Starting on a garlic bagel, Mr. Takeover contains several strips of, you guessed it, bacon, as well as a sausage patty, home fries, cheddar cheese, ketchup and Tabasco sauce. It’s enough to make any junkfood man blush, but is it advertised accurately? Can it really takeover a hostile hangover or takeover a hangover hostilely? As a man of science with no agenda other than the expansion of my own scientific mind, I set out recently, by a strange coincidence right around Saint Patrick’s Day, to test whether or not this sandwich truly lived up to its name.

(Not enough drinking yet? Bacon bacon bacon bacon bacon!)

Fun Fact! Did you know that the phrase "bringing home the bacon" comes from 12th century England where a church in the town of Dunmow gave men a side of bacon if they swore they had not fought with their wives for a year and a day? Learning is fun!

The preparation was of course the hardest and most grueling aspect of the experiment but so strong was my desire to earn respect in the scientific junkfood community that I poured everything I had into fully readying myself. Over a roughly 12 our period and in the presence of a small army of fellow green-clad scientists, drink after drink found its way through my tightly grimaced visage. The task was indeed arduous and I have no wish to relive all the gruesome details here, but in the end it was worth it and my reward was paid to me tenfold when I awoke the next day. I was no pretty picture as I dragged myself from bed, but after drinking some water and stumbling around confusedly for a while I was able to make my way to the aforementioned cafe and purchase this supposed cure-all for hangovers. It. Was. Awesome. The bacon was crispy, the cheese was melty, the bagel was bagely, and it all came together in a symphony of reduced nausea and lessened head pains. Maybe it was the sleep, maybe the water, or maybe I just didn’t get as drunk as I thought I did but I like to think that it was the Hostile Hangover Takeover, aided by my good friend bacon, that got me through my Act Of Science in style.

Honey, you smell DELICIOUS!BACON: FAD, OR RAD?

I’m sure that all of our devoted readers live in some kind of town, or city, or city-state (I’m looking at you, Singapore!). It is fairly safe to assume that, within these larger cities, there is some kind of “gag” gift shop or purveyor of notably silly whosits and gizmotrons. The second one walks into such an establishment, one wouldn’t be too far mistaken to believe that they have entered some sort of bacon shrine or shangri-la. These stores are filled with items that shouldn’t be related to bacon, but are! If you’ve never experienced this for yourself it’s almost worth getting off the couch for, almost. An abridged list of some of these purchasable and personable baconproducts will come… right now: bacon flavored floss, bacon jelly beans, and a bacon version of Candyland. Even though it stings, a thought runs into your head, “Where is all this shit coming from? And who buys it?!” The ‘who’ should be obvious to even the most numbskullish of neurosurgeons: everyone, duh. As to the ‘where’, a simple scan of the label will reveal this darkest of secrets to you.

Accoutrements USA, located in the backwoods of these esteemed author’s hometown, designs, constructs, and distributes an estimated 40% of all bacon related products within the US. These goliaths of the gag-gift industry have tapped into America’s love affair with bacon, and seem to be turning a pretty good profit from it. Some may ask the question “Is this wrong? Are they just pimping out the good name of bacon to turn a quick buck?” I mean, it’s a pretty good question, and I don’t say that just because I wrote it. I say it because I love bacon, just as much if not more than the next red-blooded, cholesterol-encrusted American. As we all know, blogs are absolutely no place for opinions, but I, we, must dare to be different and take a firm stand on this slippery issue. For, late as it may be to do anything about it, we do not want bacon to get lost in the history books as just another “hip” fad, like finger mustache tattoos or Ed Hardy t-shirts.

We are fine with those who strive to make a little money off bacon’s delicious taste as long as it’s done in a classy manner. Restaurants do it all the time, and who are we to argue with TGI Friday’s BBQ Bacon Shrimp? What we are opposed to, however, is the mindless over-commercialization of the meaty lifeblood of a people, nay, a nation. But let’s be honest, despite our strong moral fiber we still like the products; they are hilarious. I mean, look at the ingredients list for the bacon soap- “bacon fragrance”. Genius! You have to actually call the company for the ingredients list of the mints, and we can only imagine they are filled with the lost and forgotten trash can scrapings that we are better off not knowing about. If they are anything like Baconaisse, which ironically enough, also hails from Seattle, they are most likely vegan and kosher, somehow. Is that possible? I don’t know, but they seem to have found a way.

In summation, we, The Junk Males, would like to state our love for bacon, for the hundredth time this post. It has seen us through some rough times, it has been scientifically proven to cure hangovers, and it lines the shelves of our favorite shops.  We stand by it through thick and thin (slicing). It’s a given that the next time The Junk Males get together for a “business meeting,” we will be snacking on a few strips of our favorite salted meat. So go ahead, take a bite out of life, ignore all of your doctor’s warnings and fry up some bacon. And don’t forget to drink the grease, for good luck!

*Unfortunately you have to be logged into Facebook to see these two links but trust me, it’s worth it.

Easter Madness

Behold us now as we emerge, crawling naked and covered in the afterbirth of our own creation, into the dawn of a new era! Release the white doves so that they might take wing and blot out the sun! In the intermittent gaps between the now freed avian clouds coursing through the morning air, light winks mischievously off golden trumpets as they unleash a thunderous blast calculated such that our coming be announced to the heavens and beyond. For it is here, the first official post… of the Junk Males.

Luckily for us the timing of this first post finds us of the junk food community, and you of the “world”, currently in limbo between two of the greatest candy holidays of the year. Valentine’s Day is nothing more than a sweet, chocolatey memory, bitten into and half forgotten on our bedside tables, and Easter, ripe with scandalous tales and parody, is just around the corner. Rather than take a look back at a holiday past we have chosen to continue the march forward, boldly, to what lies ahead. We would rather excite you about what your future holds than make you pine for a past you can never get back. Never ever. No matter how hard you try.

As with most great holidays now dedicated almost solely to gluttonous food consumption, Easter was precipitated by another event that happened long ago, in a land far, far away. Thankfully nothing brings to mind delicious, sugary treats more readily than the gruesome murder of a young man in the small, occupied nation of Israel. Wait a tick; that copious blood, gore, and violence doesn’t do anything for my sweet tooth! Let us give a moment of silence               (shhh… silenter)                so that we can completely forget about “him” and instead focus on things that aren’t disgusting or religious. Let’s just get straight to the sugar, bunnies, and eggs.

A surprisingly fun, vibrant, and modernist approach to one of the most brutal forms of torture and public humiliation to ever be accepted as a standard execution

Moving forward, we will examine the history of the rabbits and the eggs. If you guys behave, you might get a treat that we “promise” will not be hidden. First though we will answer that age-old question that has been plaguing stand-up comedians, philosophers, and other pseudo-intellectuals for millenia: “Which came first, the bunny or the egg?”

Bringing us to our smoothest transition ever.

WHICH CAME FIRST, THE BUNNY OR THE EGG?

Now, I don’t want to enter into a long-winded history lesson about The Easter Bunny because, come on, it’s like super common knowledge. Everybody knows that The Easter Bunny, or Easter Bilby depending on your national preference, first originated in the 1600’s in Alsace, Germany. And everybody knows that the reason Easter Eggs first entered the picture was likely because the hairy German hares, too fluff-a-licious to fit in normal sized rabbit burrows, built nest-like “forms” above ground which were easily confused with plover nests, causing the local bumpkins to believe that hares were actually laying the plover eggs! Boring. What I’ve got up my sleeve is much jucier. It’s much more, let’s say, “imaginative” and definitely much more likely to get me sued by a large multi-national corporation. You know the one.

For years now, as long as this worldly and embittered author can remember, every Easter has come packaged with the same cleverly constructed and beautifully manicured lie that has been forced down the throats of men, women and children through criminally masterful television ad campaigning. Every year this heinous deceit is readily accepted as gospel by the huddled masses who are too terrified to ask the hard questions and put their necks on the chopping block. Well I say no more! Enough is enough! I can no longer stand idly by while another generation is brought up celebrating Easter in a world gone wrong. It is only now that I have irrefutable evidence to back me up that I can finally go public and proclaim for all to hear that…

THE CADBURY BUNNY IS A FAKER!

Yes ladies and gentlemen, believe it or not those delightfully creamy-milk chocolate on the outside-sugary egg yolk on the inside-delicious Easter treats known as Cadbury Eggs were never in fact laid by a bunny at all! Thanks to new technologies only recently at my disposal I’ve at last been able to discover the truth behind what is perhaps the biggest bunny caper of all time.

I first realized that something was awry during the airing of one of Cadbury’s very own commercials. This cunning bunny-facsimile, while an admitted master of disguise, apparently never gained the same masterful control over the language of the creature it was trying to replicate. Observe.

Pay especially close attention to the first six seconds of the video, before the corporate brainwashing begins. Pretty astonishing, isn’t it ? No bunny ever uttured those sounds, of this I was certain even before my years of research began. How Cadbury ever could have been careless enough to let this slip onto public airways is beyond me but after seeing it first (second) hand I knew immediately what had to be done. It was time for this simple country boy to bust open a hoax as dark and wide as the starry night sky over a wind swept prarie. Get along, little doggie.

The road to discovery was long and dusty, not unlike a ride along the borderlands of Texas in the middle of a summer drought- that’s my last cowboy metaphor, I swear. There were times when what seemed like a brilliant and promising theory would fizzle out to nothing but physiological impossibility. I knew that I had to keep fighting my way through but the going was tough and hope was dwindling. Until one day it came to me. It was so obvious I don’t know why it hadn’t occurred to me before, but you know what they say… don’t you? Well you should. Anyway, the answer was x-rays! Using state of the art thermonuclear x-ray technology I was able to see into the truth of the matter once and for all.

Pre-super fancy x-rayfication.

This first picture was taken using a stadard digital camera with no x-ray bunny filters whatsoever. But look what happens in the second picture.

Post-super fancy x-rayification.

Tah dah! Mystery revealed! Thanks to the boys down at the lab and the use of a high speed x-ray camera we can see, proven beyond a shadow of a doubt, that this “Cadbury Bunny” is in fact nothing more than a good old fashioned chocolate-egg laying chicken running a high tech bunny suit! If you look closely you can even see the chicken hard at work squeezing eggs out of her cloacal vent and preparing to pass them out of the suit, presumably so they can be collected and processed, eventually finding their way to a store near you. Bear in mind that I in no way intend for any of this to sour the public’s opinion of Cadbury Eggs. They are a gooey, delicious treat that I hope will be enjoyed by many for years to come, but in the quest for truth, we of the Junk Food Kingdom never tread softly. The brave and handsome Knights of the Rotund Table know that if you’re gonna make a chocolate omelet you’ve gotta break a few Cadbury eggs.

THIS GOES OUT TO ALL MY EASTER PEEPS

Son of God? Or maybe a NEWBORN INC creation? Both?

Has it ever happened to you that, while spending 20 or 30 minutes deciding which chip flavor should accompany your latest soda purchase, a small child waddles up and asks, “Hey, guy, can you buy me some candy?” Of course. This kind of thing happens all the time. After asking where the kid’s parents are and quickly rubbing away the new sharp pain in your left shin you say yeah, you’d love to buy him some candy. You calmly ask, from a safe distance, which type is preferable. This apparently unsupervised, thoroughly entitled child tells you, “Ummmm, I don’t know, but it should contain the following:  Sugar, Corn Syrup, and Gelatin. It should also contain 0.5% of the following ingredients: Potassium Sorbate, Yellow #6, Natural Flavors, Yellow #5 (Tartrazine), Red #40, Blue #1, and Carnauba Wax! Beyond that, I am not very picky.” Well kid, this is your lucky day, because do we have the treat for you! It’s called the Marshmallow Peep! They’re…..pretty good, I guess.

Now, the very first thing that comes to mind, besides when bratty little ankle biters got so much better at chemistry then me, is whether there is Peep-related research that has been done within the scientific community? Also, will I want to eat them a lot less after learning more about them, like that time we went to my uncle’s hot dog factory? The answers are parallel “yes’s”. While maintaining one of the most chemically simple ingredients lists we are sure to ever pretend to consult prior to chowing down, these little marshmallow wonders create some very heady research opportunities. In fact, an entire web site centers around just that, peepsresearch. Presented here are so many reasons not to eat Peeps that it hurts us. Physically.

Peeps are nearly indestructible. Personally, I hope that most of the things that I unceremoniously insert into my mouth-hole would be soluble in materials such as: water, sulfuric acid, acetone, and a number of other dangerous chemicals. Peeps, however, are not. More disturbing still, the eyes of Peeps are even harder to disintegrate than their marshmallow torsos. This image alone should get you off the stuff, if nothing else does. When all else is gone the judging, nearly symmetrical candied eyes of a soulless confection remain, seated deep within you, forever staring into your soul. This is truly the Easter of your own discontent.

And this is the sugary morsel that catapulted Easter into the candied-holiday hall of fame, where it remains to this day.

Smoked meat and peep sandwich

Peeps have found their way into the hearts and souls of (almost exclusively) Americans from every corner of this great nation. They have also found their way into some kinda strange photographic and artistic subcultures. Countless contests exist in which Peeps are photographed doing silly things, or merely posing in front of the world’s landmarks and monuments. Just because they are completely incapable of emoting and are, as a matter of fact, inanimate objects, they are not without emotion. They marry. They protest.  They have also found their way into our grilled cheese sandwiches. Recently, a branded flagship Peeps store opened up just outside our great nation‘s capital city. It opened with just enough distance from the Easter holiday season to remind us that Peeps are “Always in Season,” while still remaining conveniently close enough to cash in on the sweet Q1 earnings of the pre-Easter market. It is a literal testament to marshmallow consumerism.

Despite that persistent nagging feeling from deep within the reasoning lobe of the brain telling us we shouldn’t, humans and certain small rodents still eat peeps by the ton. The authors of this blog know the 63 cents that are burning holes in our respectable pockets are going to get spent purchasing an individually packaged Easter-themed bunny. Of course, it’s not the real bunny, for, similar to the belief that no Muslim can create an image that imitates life, the giants of the candy industry agree that the one true Easter Bunny can only be cast into likeness in the form of a solid chocolate statuette, meant to be looked at but never eaten. And should any of you troublemakers out there be eyeing these refined cocoa gods hungrily just remember, there are eyes everywhere, never sleeping, always watching.

Welcome!

Hell hath no fury like that of a wind-up plastic nun.

Every story must have a beginning, every living legend must at some point seize opportunity, rise up from the darkness and pull back the veils of obscurity, ideally with some gusto. And even more ideally while remembering to wear pants, because there is nothing more embarrassing than getting up of a morning, dragging yourself to your window and pulling open your curtains or “veils”- whether they’re made of obscurity or some sort of tangible fabric- to allow the light of new day and/or destiny to extend its fingers into the musty corners of your life, only to realize too late that in the exhausting journey from darkness to light you neglected to put on any pants! And lo! What have we here? It’s a gaggle of small Sunday School children admiring the late 18th century architecture of your building! Hello there, children! Lovely day, isn’t it? At this point you might as well just smile and wave and hope they don’t call the police, the damage is done.

Wait, where was I? Oh yes, obscurity and pants, right. Well, to return to the point, for us that time is now.* My esteemed partner and I have chosen this exact moment to reveal ourselves to the world (no, not like that, you pervert; we can’t afford two indecency lawsuits in one month). It is time that we started giving back to a community from which we have taken so much, and what better way to give back than by starting a junk food blog! This is destined to be an outlet for all of our most perverted junk food fantasies. My arteries are clogging just thinking about it… clogging with excitement!

You may have noticed by now the use of such words as “I” intermingling lewdly amongst other words such as “we” and “us” in ways that baffle and confuse you. Allow me (us) to clarify something for you (yous). There are in fact two writers to this one blog. Aghhh, the math! It burns! It’s unclear at this point whether we will ever write entirely separate posts or whether we shall just allow our creative juices to flow together in a delightful cocktail, one post at a time. The answer is hazy and unclear, not unlike your prom date after you spiked the punch. For now just assume that what you see is a tasty combination of our respective talents.

There may be a few of you out there, most likely the ones with yesterdays arts and crafts glue still finding residence between your molars, who will ask, “Why a junk food blog? That’s stupid, I’m going to go watch ‘Steven Seagal: Lawman’ on A&E.” It’s as simple an answer as can be- because we can. “But wait, aren’t there already a slew of decently written, corporate sponsored junkfoodblogs out there,” you reply, slack-jawed and stupefied? Yes, we reply in a long, world-weary sigh. But is there only one political blog in existence? Only one literary blog? Only one blog devoted entirely to the ancient art form of mime? No. There are many, and they all work together towards their own particular (utterly less interesting) goals. We are here, on the exclusive club we have come to know as the “Internet,” to add our own distinct flavor. So take a bite, you just might like it! Yeah, get in there, don’t be afraid. Uhhh, yeah, just like that. That’s it…

Sylvester Stallone, eat your heart out.

Ahem. Though we have yet to be tempted with a dump truck full of cold hard cash, for the time being I can say to a relative certainty that we are “not” doing this for the money. Which is to say, unlike some of the “other” junk food blogs out there you will not find our’s to be an overburdening influx of product placement and advertisement. We will certainly review different foods and beverages that we love and hate but I think what will set us apart is that we are really doing this primarily to amuse ourselves, not to “inundate” you with “knowledge”. “We” don’t even really “know” “why” we’re doing “this”.

But we love it already, and hope you will too.

So sit back, relax, pop open some of your favorite mouth rotters and prepare for your brain to slowly dissolve into a gelatinous ooze. We’re already there.

*It may be interesting to note that during the writing of that segment, while I was “pulling back the veils” of my own obscurity, I was in fact sitting in a darkened room not wearing any pants.


We did it

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Have a question? Comment? Phan foto? Or just need a delicious suggestion for that big date? Email us at: thejunkmales@gmail.com