REVIEW: Peanut Butter M-Azing & Crunchy M-Azing

Peanut Butter M-Azing & Crunchy M-Azing

Usually here at The Impulsive Buy we try to have reviews done a week in advanced, but last week we let our Labor Day vacation start really early, like around Tuesday.

So on the real Labor Day, The Impulsive Buy staff had to scramble for a review.

Okay, let me rephrase that. I had to scramble for a review, since I’m the only one who came into The Impulsive Buy Laboratory on Labor Day. Those bastards!

I checked The Official Impulsive Buy Cabinet, where we keep the stuff we’re going to eventually review and our lunches, but the only items in there were a container of one-year-old Tang, a can of refried beans, and four three-year-old cans of cream of mushroom soup.

Thank goodness for the national convenience store chain down the street. Open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and 365 days a year.

With only a dollar and some change, I felt like I was Rachael Ray on the Food Network. She has this show called $40 A Day, where she spends a day in some town and only has a $40 budget to eat breakfast, lunch, dinner, and a snack. Some of us at The Impulsive Buy watch the show religiously, because she’s a little dorky and really hot. Grrrowl!

Someone, who I won’t name, even has a shrine dedicated to her that consists of several 8 x 10 photos, her cookbooks, and a television/DVD combo that plays a continuous loop of her shows.

With very little money, I couldn’t buy much. Fortunately, I came upon something M-Azing in the candy aisle, Peanut Butter M-Azing and Crunchy M-Azing. Okay, I didn’t know if they were M-Azing or not because I did try them yet, but the price for them was M-Azing. They were on sale for 59 cents each, so I bought both.

M-Azing is basically M&M’s Minis in a chocolate bar. Not just any M&M’s Minis though, crunchy and peanut butter M&M’s. I was wondering if there was a plain and a peanut version, but then I realized how silly it would be to put plain chocolate M&M’s Minis in a chocolate bar and how hard it must be to make peanut M&M’s Minis.

After eating both in one sitting, because I was so bored and lonely in The Impulsive Buy Laboratory, I think M-Azing isn’t that M-Azing. Maybe it’s because I’ve been mixing M&M’s for years with other things like, putting them in chocolate pudding, in a peanut butter sandwich, on top of ice cream, mixing them with Yoo-Hoo, in trail mix, stuffing them into Twinkies, etc.

Don’t get me wrong, they are good, but like I said before, it just isn’t that M-Azing.

Item: Crunchy M-Azing & Peanut Butter M-Azing
Purchase Price: $0.59 each (on sale)
Rating: 6 out of 10
Pros: Cheap price. Good.
Cons: Not that M-Azing. If you’re going to call something M-Azing, it should be amazing.

Jack in the Box Natural Cut Fries

Natural Cut Fries

“Bigger and thicker” is how Jack in the Box is promoting their new Natural Cut Fries. I’m sure the same phrase has been used to promote other things. I won’t list them here, but I’ll let you use your imaginations…your dirty imaginations.

These new Natural Cut Fries replaces Jack in the Box’s previous fries, which honestly made me think, “This REALLY was a potato at some point?”

Jack in the Box is also promoting their Natural Cut Fries by saying they leave on the skin of the potato.

In case you didn’t know, the most nutrient part of a potato is the skin. However, when you cut up a potato with the skin and deep-fry it in extremely hot oil, the most nutrient part becomes the paper French Fry sleeve they come in.

After watching the Jack in the Box commercial on television, I was so looking forward to trying these fries.

I was thinking it was going to be like In-N-Out Burger fries, where they have some dude chopping up the potatoes in the kitchen, but then I remembered that this is crappy fast food and that the fries were probably chopped in some big factory, then flash frozen, then dumped into large brown bags, shipped across the United States in a 16-wheeler, and poured frozen out of the large brown bags into a waiting basket that will be dipped into a tub of boiling oil.

The Natural Cut Fries are bigger and thicker than Jack in the Box’s original fries and after trying them; I have to say they’re definitely better. However, their taste doesn’t stack up against the 800-pound gorilla of the French Fry world, McDonald’s French Fries.

I guess sometimes “bigger and thicker” doesn’t mean better.

Also, “average and I know how to use it,” always means better.

Right, ladies?

Item: Jack in the Box Natural Cut Fries
Purchase Price: $2.29
Rating: 2 out of 5
Pros: Potato skin!!! Bigger and thicker than Jack in the Box’s original fries.
Cons: Still doesn’t beat out McDonald’s fries in taste. Bigger and thicker, doesn’t mean better.

REVIEW: Burger King Angus Bacon & Cheese Steak Burger

Burger King Angus Bacon & Cheese Steak Burger

Honestly, there’s something slightly wrong with eating a burger whose name is a dropped letter “g” away from being called something that’s a part of my own ass.

I actually tried the original Angus Steak Burger when it first came out and I really didn’t think much of it. However, due to the influx of annoying Angus Diet advertisements I felt compelled to try it again, hoping it would please the Advertising Gods and make those commercials go away. Unfortunately, my theory didn’t work.

I think if I ate a heart attack’s worth of Angus Steak Burgers, only then would I be able to get away from those damn commercials, unless heaven has basic cable.

So what exactly is Anus…I mean Angus beef? What makes it so special?

Apparently, only 8 percent of the beef in the United States can be considered Angus beef. It’s known for it outstanding juiciness, tenderness, and flavor. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find out if the Angus beef comes from the ass of a cow, since I think that’s how Angus got its name.

Enough with the slaughterhouse lesson, let’s talk about the rest of the burger which consists of fire-grilled onions, cap leaf lettuce, red ripe tomatoes, freshly toasted corn-dusted buns, signature steak sauce, juicy bacon, and slightly melted cheese.

I don’t know whose signature is on the steak sauce, but they should definitely erase their signature, because this peppery sauce isn’t very good. Not as peppery as the Salt and Pepper Pringles Potato Chips, but it doesn’t add much to the burger. Besides, if the Angus beef is so damn good, why add some weak sauce to cover it?

Despite the sauce, the Angus Bacon and Cheese Steak Burger isn’t a bad burger. It’s big and thick, like all burgers should be and the Angus beef is actually pretty tasty, when the sauce doesn’t get in the way. The burger is kind of pricey, but I guess if you’re getting beef that consists of only 8 percent of all the beef in the U.S., there should be a premium on it.

Then again, should there really be a premium on a burger that I might accidentally (or purposely) order as the Anus Steak Burger.

Item: Burger King Angus Bacon and Cheese Steak Burger
Purchase Price: $5.39 (Value Meal)
Rating: 6 out of 10
Pros: Big, thick burger. Angus beef.
Cons: Signature steak sauce isn’t very good. A little expensive. I wish they would change the name, because I don’t like the images of shaking cow butts in my head.

REVIEW: Mountain Dew Pitch Black

pitchblack

Sometimes it sucks having The Impulsive Buy Laboratory on an island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean.

Why?

(1) Can’t jump into The Impulsive Buy Mobile and take a long road trip, unless we want to circle the island a few times. (2) We sometimes get new products slightly later than everyone else.

This was the case with the new Limited Edition Mountain Dew Pitch Black.

Kelly, an occasional Impulsive Buy reader, asked us if we had a chance to try the new variation of Mountain Dew. We told her no and she immediately started rubbing that fact into our face.

The taunting started with emails that contained lines like, “Nanny, nanny. Boo, boo. No Pitch Black for you.” Later she started emailing us pictures of her drinking Pitch Black. Then she sent us a picture of her standing in front of a refrigerated case stocked with Pitch Black and giving us the finger. That was the last straw and we frantically attempted to find some, but we couldn’t find any.

This taunting went on for a week. Finally, the national convenience store chain down the street got their stock of Pitch Black.

After trying it, it was time for our revenge on Kelly, which involved rolls of toilet paper and rotten raw eggs. Unfortunately, she lives in the state of Washington. So we can add one more reason why it sometimes sucks having The Impulsive Buy Laboratory in the middle of the Pacific Ocean.

(3) Can’t get revenge on those who live in the Continental United States.

As for the Mountain Dew Pitch Black, it’s pretty good, now that we finally got to try it.

What makes it black is the blast of black grape, which also makes it grapey. (Holy crap! “Grapey” is an actual word! We thought we were making up a new word.) It was good to drink a grape soda again, because it’s been awhile since anyone of us drank one. (Does anyone even make grape sodas?)

We feel Pitch Black is just as good as the other Mountain Dew flavors, like LiveWire, Code Red, and the original Mountain Dew. Or maybe that’s the caffeine talking.

There are two disappointing things about the soda. One, is the fact that Pitch Black really isn’t black. If you look at it in the light, you will see it really is purple or plum-colored, if you will. And, two, Mountain Dew Pitch Black will only be around until Halloween. So get yours now.

Item: Limited Edition Mountain Dew Pitch Black
Purchase Price: $0.99
Rating: 8 out of 10
Pros: Good grape taste. Same amount of caffeine goodness as regular Mountain Dew.
Cons: Not really pitch black, more like purple. Wish it wasn’t limited edition. Wasted a good carton of eggs. At least we can still use the toilet paper.

REVIEW: A Grammar Book For You And I…Oops, Me!

Grammar Book

Despite my English degree, which I got from an accredited four-year university located in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, my grammar sucks.

However, when people hear I have an English degree they automatically think I’m a grammar guru and spelling bee champion and they would journey from offices as far away as down the hall to get access to my supposedly vast knowledge of English grammar.

Unfortunately, I’m not a grammar guru or a spelling bee champion, but I feel it’s my obligation as a holder of an English degree to fake it. However, I don’t know if I can fake it much longer, because the questions they ask are getting harder.

So I decided to buy A Grammar Book For You And I…Oops, Me! by Edward Good from the number one online superstore, because it looked like a book that will help me gain vast amounts of English grammar in a portable package. Okay, a 430-page paperback book isn’t the most portable thing, but it sure beats the 921-page hardcover Chicago Manual of Style.

One of the things I like about A Grammar Book For You And I…Oops, Me! is that it’s a book that can be read from cover to cover or used as a reference book.

This is unlike the Chicago Manual of Style, which is definitely a reference book. Anyone who reads the Chicago Manual of Style from cover to cover has too much time on their hands, is a full blown grammar geek, needs to get a life, is not getting enough television, and will never get laid.

Grammar is not the most interesting subject to read about.

It’s definitely below Snaps books. (Yo mamma is so fat that when they gotta catch people out of a burning building the fire fighters grab her arms and legs and use her to catch them. Oh, snap!)

However, the author’s style of writing and his humor made it easier to go through each chapter filled with complex words, like transitive, predicate, conjugated, adverbial, interjections, participal, antecedents, and etc.

It took me six months to finish the book and I feel like I’ve learned a lot.

Actually, I read the first four chapters five months ago and then finished the book recently. I forgot what I learned in the first four chapters, which were kind of important to understand the rest of the book, but like knowing nouns, adjectives, and verbs are really important in grammar.

Like I said before, A Grammar Book For You An I…Oops, Me! is also a great reference book, so instead of rereading the whole book, I’ll just look through the table of contents to find what I’m looking for.

Just like in college, when I used Cliff Notes to study Shakespeare’s Hamlet, because I didn’t read an iota of it.

Item: A Grammar Book For You And I…Oops, Me!
Purchase Price: $17.95
Rating: 8 out of 10
Pros: Author’s style and humor made it a fun read. Also makes a great reference book.
Cons: Would confuse a certain President of the United States because of the book’s use of three-syllable words.

REVIEW: Ice Breakers Liquid Ice

Liquid Ice

Erin, a loyal Impulsive Buy reader / stalker / groupie, sent me an email asking if I was going to do a review on the Ice Breakers Liquid Ice. I told her that I would, but I wasn’t able to find any. I didn’t find it at the national grocery store chain or at the national convenience store chain I shop at. I emailed her back and told her about my dilemma.

She sent me another email and told me she would send some from Seattle.

Wow! Who would have thought running a quasi-review website would actually land me free stuff?

So the package with the Ice Breakers Liquid Ice came to The Impulsive Buy Laboratories the other day and the first thing I noticed was how small the Liquid Ice were. They were these tiny blue balls and when you suck on them, they eventually burst and all the liquid minty goodness comes out.

The problem with the blue balls is that if you suck on them it takes awhile for the goodness to come out and that can be damn frustrating. However, if you lightly bite the blue balls, things happen much quicker.

When the blue balls finally burst, it was pretty disappointing, despite all the pent up blue balls excitement I had. In my opinion, sucking on something else will get you better results, perhaps an Altoids or a breath strip.

You know how Altoids and breath strips seem to clear your nasal passages when you suck on them, I didn’t get this feeling with the Liquid Ice.

Also, the minty flavor from the Liquid Ice doesn’t seem to last very long in my mouth compared to its competitors.

Now some of you may be wondering, if the blue balls melt in your mouth, does it melt in your hand? Well I decided to figure that out with help from The Impulsive Buy Intern.

So I put two blue balls in the intern’s hand, so the intern could just hold them and get a feel for them. After a couple of minutes, nothing happened. I then told the intern to gently roll around the two blue balls with both hands. For a while nothing happened, so I told the intern to roll the blue balls a little faster and seconds later they burst, spraying its goodness into the intern’s hands and some on the intern’s blue lab coat.

I think the Ice Breakers Liquid Ice is a clever idea. It is definitely something different than the usual mints and breath strips. However, if you want fresh breath that lasts, mints and breath strips will do a much better job.

I guess the tiny blue balls left me a little frustrated.


Item: Ice Breakers Liquid Ice
Purchase Price: $1.77
Rating: 6 out of 10
Pros: Compact packaging. Clever concept. Tiny blue balls.
Cons: Not much of a minty punch compared to mints and breath strips.