Time for some fresh content not related to photography. I’m going to detour for a few minutes to answer the burning question on everybody’s mind lately, “why are you eating MRE rations?!?!” So here’s the skinny.MRE - Kid Ready to Eat

What brought this all on…

Youtube is a helluva drug. I watch it at night to unwind, and sometimes the odd suggestions it makes are actually interesting. A month or so ago, I caught an episode of MRE Info by Steve1989. This guy is a blast! He takes MREs from different military branches, countries, and eras and tries them out. He’s really entertaining. His trademark “Let’s get this out on a tray…nice!” is now common trope around the Etzel household. So I started watching his show and wow is it interesting. I think he makes it so interesting because he’s so passionate about it.Detour - Meals Ready to EatSo I ordered a case of MREs from SoPakCo. They make civilian and military MREs. I got 6 different main entree combos with various sides/snacks/drinks. The coffee in them is horrible in the worst way, ever, but other stuff is pretty decent. The Chicken Pesto Pasta is friggin’ amazing. I tried to get dad to try it, but he said “Hell no, it’s green.” Ahem, pesto. Also, a side story… one Thanksgiving I got sick of my dad bitching that the gravy was not dark brown, so I dropped a few drops of blue food coloring in it, turning it lime green. He ate it, begrudgingly, but I think now he has a weird aversion to green foods. Detour! Zapplesauce. yummy

A Brief Introduction to MREs

So among the cooler foods you’ll find are a blueberry/cherry cobbler, a surprisingly good carrot cake, and the strangest-yet-tasty hashbrowns and bacon. It’s basically unfried, somehow precooked in bacon grease and bacon bits, and then therom-stabilized. I like to think of it as hash brown porridge. And then  there’s Zapplesauce. Yeah, it’s applesauce on steroids that comes in a squeeze-pack. It’s good enough I could buy a case of just Zapplesauce to keep at my desk.…burpOf course, I’ve now had 7 year expired Australian cheese, a tube of 7 year expired Vegemite (yeast extract) , and some powdered tomato soup. None of them were very tasty, so I let the kids eat them. Those kids will eat anything as long as you tell them it’s not for dinner. The Sure-Paks from SoPakCo are fairly basic, but they’re good for bugout bags, long power outages, or camping. They come with flameless ration heaters, just add a couple tablespoons of water to the bag and boy does the food get hot!Detour! Lifeboat RationBut if that’s not strange enough, how about a lifeboat ration ? I even got to try one of these the other day. It’s not quite ‘food’ as much as it’s eat it and hope to not die at sea comfort munchables… If you do ever have to eat one, don’t smell it first. I said in a post on Facebook, and I back it up here again: It smells like sweaty socks, tastes like a lemon bar, and has the texture of finely packed magic sand, or highly-compressed cornmeal.

…but…but Why ???

“Why” is a good question. Curiosity is really my only excuse. The kids found them magical at first, wife is still apprehensive, and I’ve come to consider them a midnight snack during reruns of Futurama. And I am not military. I think it’s interesting experiencing the food some of our men and women on patrol have to suffer through. Most of it’s not too bad, but I know some of my friends who do serve swear never to eat them again, and others find it hilarious that I’m eating them. So yeah. MREs. Good stuff. Now to go find a Russian on on eBay, since we all know how much I <3 Russian stuff.