Wednesday, August 12, 2009

North Alabama BBQ

I never knew North Alabama was known for their BBQ!* Yet, I walked into the local Blue Rock BBQ here in San Jose, CA and read on the menu that this is "North Alabama" bar-b-que. Is this a special style of BBQ? Does it taste different from, say, Memphis or Kansas City BBQ? I was born and raised in Georgia, have family in Alabama, went to school in Tennessee, just a stone's throw from North Alabama, but never heard about the famous BBQ from this region until I visit the San Jose, CA restaurant that advertises such a delicacy.

It was good BBQ. You could get a pulled pork sandwich, ribs or chicken, and they came with slaw, beans and bread. Yummy. I'd go back. But I'm still puzzled about the North Alabama reference.

Wikipedia has a bit about North Alabama, and even that page doesn't refer to the famous BBQ.

Well, it remains a mystery to me, but the food was pretty good. I'd be happy to go back again. Sho' nuff.

* to clarify, in the South, and other states in the US, "BBQ" is a specific food -- usually pulled pork, slow cooked on a grill, slathered with sauce and served on a bun. In California, "BBQ" is an activity, where you get together with friends, fire up a grill, and cook hamburgers and hotdogs. Californians are missing out, I think.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Signage at the gym

My neighborhood gym is a great place. It is family-owned, and I see many familiar faces while I'm there. Their signage could use some professional help, however. Words without images don't serve their entire clientele, IMHO.

Each locker room has 2 containers: 1 for trash and 1 for towels (notice both words begin with a "t"). They've tried various signs to note the difference, and have finally settled on these.

Even with the notation, I still see people picking towels out of the trash (or vice versa). It seems the problem could be easily solved by adding a trash icon or a simple image of a towel. No?

Another example: locker room signs. Evidently it takes more brain power to grok "Women's Locker Room" than a simple picture of a female. Who knew! I wonder how many people who weren't paying attention walked into the wrong room. I'm sure I never have (ahem). More and more I see the value of those little make/female icons on restrooms.

Maybe it's not that big a deal, for me. After 8 years, I'm learning the local gym customs. And, on a positive note, they always have pretty flower arrangements to brighten up the place.