Mountain Views News     Logo: MVNews     Saturday, April 9, 2011

MVNews this week:  Page 9



 Mountain Views News Saturday, April 9, 2011 

WHAT SHOULD WE BELIEVE.Coffee, Chocolate, or Brocolli? 
by Rev. James L. Snyder


Have you ever had serious second 
thoughts about something? 
Of course, I usually have severe 
trouble with establishing first 
thoughts. But once I have finished 
a serious thought I like 
put it behind me and go on with 

 For example. For years, people 
have been telling me how harmful 
drinking coffee is. Something 
to do, so they tell me, 
with being addicted to caffeine. 
Then, if I cannot give up coffee, 
I am to limit the number of cups 
of coffee I drink per day.

 This has always caused me great 
concern because I can never remember 
how many cups of coffee 
I have had in any given day. I 
suppose I could keep a tally and 
mark down every cup I drink. 
This in itself poses a serious 
problem for me.

 When I am in a restaurant and 
drinking coffee and my cup is 
half-empty and the waitress tops 
off my coffee, is that considered 
one or two cups of coffee?

 What about my coffee mug at 
home? Does it hold one or two 
cups of coffee?

 By the time I have had my 
thoughts thoroughly stirred 
about the consumption of caffeine 
I read a health report informing 
us that caffeine helps 
prevent heart attack.

 If that is true, and I have no reason 
not to believe it, there will 
be no heart attacks in my family 
for the next ten generations.

 All that guilt I felt for years 
about drinking too much coffee 
has really been for nothing. 
Therefore, in a show of good 
faith, I plan to drink as 
much coffee as I jolly well 

 Then there was the episode 
about chocolate. According 
to those people 
who hate other people enjoying 
themselves, chocolate 
is supposed to be bad 
for you. Or so they opined.

 For years, I have been 
secretly eating chocolate 
behind the back of 
the Gracious Mistress of 
the Parsonage. She is one 
who takes these warnings 
rather seriously. Rather, 
I should say, she takes 
them out on me. For years 
chocolate was a forbidden 
substance in our otherwise 
merry domicile.

 Then I read a report revealing 
the health benefits 
associated with eating 
chocolate. No wonder I am 
such a healthy rascal these 
days. The only exercise I 
have had for years is exercising 
caution in smuggling 
chocolate into our 

 The good news is, chocolate 
is good for your health 
along with a steaming 
hot cup of coffee. I do not 
know what I enjoy more in 

 With these two things in mind, 
I have had some cause to re-
think my position on broccoli.

My reasoning goes something 
like this. For years, people have 
been telling us that coffee and 
chocolate is bad for your health. 
Then, somebody discovers that 
these two things benefit our 

 Now, for years, starting with 
my dear old mother, people 
have been extolling the virtues 
of broccoli. I cannot tell how 
many lectures I have heard explaining 
to me how wonderful 
and beneficial broccoli is for 
human consumption. I cannot 
remember the number of vitamins 
and minerals allegedly associated 
with this vegetable.

 When I was a young lad in 
short pants, I took one look at 
broccoli and determined it was 
not for me at all. Even I, at that 
point, understood the maliciousness 
of what some people 
called a vegetable.

 "Eat all your vegetables and 
then you can have your dessert." 
Which, to my mind, was second 
only to waterboarding. In fact, 
I think there was a period in 
my life when I would have preferred 
the waterboarding.

"It's good for you," people kept 
telling me. What I want to know 
is how can something that looks 
like a miniature tree-wanna-be be 
good for a person?

 The first and last broccoli I 
have ever eaten took me three 
days to chew. Then, I had to brush 
my teeth for a week to get it all out 
from between my teeth.

 Now that I have become older, 
I have begun to rethink certain 
things in life. One has to do with 
the functional aspect of wearing 
suspenders. One unfortunate 
episode in the public mall was 
enough for me.

 And the other has to do with 
broccoli. Maybe, just maybe, I 
have been too harsh concerning 
what some people call a wonderful 
vegetable. Maybe, if I give it 
some further thought, I might 
discover that broccoli is not half 
as bad as I thought it was.

 It just could be that all these 
years those people bragging on 
the marvelous benefits of broccoli 
were right.

 Just as I was polishing up this 
second thought about broccoli to 
present it to my wife, I saw a newspaper 
article that said, "Tainted 
broccoli spurs big recall in West."

 I knew it! I knew that broccoli; 
in whatever form you want to 
cook it, is tainted.

 Second thoughts can certainly 
be dangerous. I took this second 
thought about broccoli, threw it 
away and enthusiastically embraced 
my first thought and now 
broccoli is history with me.

 The Bible warns us to be careful 
about what we think. "Finally, 
brethren, whatsoever things are 
true, whatsoever things are honest, 
whatsoever things are just, 
whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever 
things are lovely, whatsoever 
things are of good report; if 
there be any virtue, and if there be 
any praise, think on these things" 
(Philippians 4:8 KJV). 


With that said, I think I have 
more important things to think 
about than broccoli.

There is an old adage if it ain’t broke why fix it? So I was in a curious mood and not to mention hungry 
this past week. So I called my friend Gregg Smith and invited him out to lunch, oddly enough I 
invited him to one of his own restaurants, Café 140 South, you remember this as the Crocodile Café, 
a very reliable go-to restaurant for thousands of

Diners through out the years. Gregg, agreed to meet me for lunch, we picked a spot on the street 
side patio, al fresco it’s called, so after the how are you’s and other pleasantries, as any good reporter 
I asked Gregg, so why the change? Gregg, answered without blinking, “we wanted to reward our customers 
with an updated and better choice of entrees”, better choice? Gregg replied expanded choices, 
including smaller plates, expanded wine list and a cleaner look. We are offering a wine by the glass 
program that will rival anyone in the area. I glanced at the sign and sure enough Opus One for $18 
for a glass, Gregg made sure that I was aware that where else can you get that Opus One by the glass 
for that price, ok, but what about the menu. I literally have grown up eating pizza from the Crocodile 
and the OOOHHH sooo good Oakwood grilled cheeseburger ($10.95) is a staple in many local 
businessmen’s weekly lunch visit. Gregg assured me that the best of the original Crocodile menu 
was still in place, but his bother and partner Bob and him wanted to improve on already successful 
formula, the handcrafted pizzas ($12.50 range) have been best sellers for years, butmaybe just maybe 
we can improve on the dough, so I ordered the 
Margherita pizza and was indeed blown away by 
the flavor and true to his word the dough made the 
difference, I even ate the crust. My host pointed out that the Vine ripened tomatoes were just cut 
minutes ago.

 Ah but just one great pizza won’t sway this reporters pen, so it 
was my turn to order, our server Jasmine came by and with out 
looking down at her notes once rattled off seven or eight specials. 
Wow, now that’s impressive, I have to repeat to myself ten times 
my own addres at times. At the top of the menu are Artichokes 
($4.95), these to like the burgers are oakwood grilled I know a 
thing or two about Artichokes and they looked the part of being 
grilled and were fantastic, I cheated just a bit and cut right into 
the sweet spot, hey but more food was on the way. Up next the 
Thai Salad ($13.50) easily enough for two and Gregg said Bravo 
Peter that is our Number 1 seller. Plenty of chicken and just the 
right amount of thaidressing. I felt the stomach starting to raise 
the white flag so I ordered the entrée quickly. It would be a newcomber 
to the menu Stout Braised Short Rib ($16.95) the stout 
here is Samuel Smith beer and another winner. Somehow after 
all this we shared a butter scotch pudding ($6.95), that didn’t last 
too long. Something for everyone here at the “updated” Café 140 
South, yes there are veggie dishes, plus salads, pastas, pizzas and 
the expanded Wine list. Tell me what you think? Thechefknows@

Fast Facts: Full Bar, valet parking at Smitty’s lunch and dinner. 
Patio dining, wines by the glass or bottle.

Café 140 South. Same address (626) 449-9900 please check out their website for 
hours and updates.

TABLE FOR TWO by Peter Dills

Happy EasterCelebrate Easter in the perfect cup of tea. 
75 N. Baldwin Ave., Sierra Madre, CA 91024 | RSVP (626) 355-0045 
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