Friday, June 26, 2009

Michael Jackson... Approved!

Fat Boy HQ is in mourning. Michael Jackson, while certifiably crazy, was also crazy talented and crazy influential.

Fat Boy Head Quarters with all the power vested in it by Fat Boys everywhere here by bestows an honorary APPROVED on Michael Jackson. For all that he has given us and for what his music and talent will give to future generations. Thanks Michael, may you rest in peace.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

The Ruger SR 9 Pistol...

While we at Fat Boy love Ruger and consider them a consistent brand you can rely on, we don't particularly love the SR 9.

Usefulness... 1... Because the SR 9 only comes in 9mm (hence the "9") and 9mm is a great target round but a poor personal defense round we have to mark off two points. The SR 9 is not a target gun. It is a personal defense gun. It also has a poor trigger pull and rough action. The action is not terrible but it could be better.

Satisfaction... 3... The weapon fires well. There is ample "gear" to go with the SR 9 like holsters, mag pouches, etc. It is not too heavy and will conceal reasonably well enough in the Winter months. Fat Boy HQ was impressed with the smooth cycling between shots and a reasonable muzzle climb. Very satisfying!

Durability... 4... This is a Ruger quality gun with all the fit and polish you would expect from Ruger. We take off one point because the SR 9 did suffer from a recall in the past. In another year Fat Boy will be willing to give back that one point when we are satisfied there are no more recall issues.

Overall... 2... Comparing this gun with the Smith and Wesson "sigma" series I have to award the trophy to S&W. The Ruger costs more but delivers the same performance. It also only comes in the 9mm caliber. (Bullet speed coupled with low bullet weight make it a poor defense round.) While this is a quality firearm it is not a great value comparatively. And Fat Boys want a heavier round, 180 grains minimum. I think the saying goes, "never show up to a gun fight with anything that doesn't start in '4' ". (44 mag, 45 acp, 40 S&W)

Fat Boy HQ searched for ways to give this Ruger product the nod. We just could not. It came down to the S&W "sigma" series being generally $50 cheaper and having strikingly similar performance. Denied!

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Bacon... Was there every any question?

It is with all appropriate reverence that we consider the most versatile of foods... BACON.

"The most universally useful food ever invented, certain to forever be a Fat Boy mainstay.
It works for breakfast, it works on a lunchtime cheeseburger, it works on a dinner salad.
Even it's remnants, the grease, has an endless list of uses..." - Borrowed from our Lowcountry HQ.

We were tempted to list some of our favorite Bacon recipes like bacon-wrapped-bacon or bacon-wrapped-cheese or our personal favorite here at Fat Boy HQ... a stick of butter, wrapped in cheese, wrapped in bacon. This is a great dish for those of us who suffer from an overly regular heart rate and extra wide arteries.

The numbers...

Usefulness... 3... There is no more useful food or eatable item. Water comes close.

Satisfaction... 3... Have you ever heard someone say "there was too much bacon on that sandwich..?" Bacon satisfies but leaves you asking for more... Perfection!

Durability... 5... Bacon is timeless. As long as there is air in a Fat Boy's lungs there will be bacon on his plate! As for practical durability, the salty greasy nature of the product makes Bacon the poster child for durable foods! Salted pork was in fact for all times coveted for its durability!!!

Overall... 3... Overall Bacon does not disappoint. It enhances every meal. It comes in all kinds of shapes and sizes and flavors. Hurray Bacon!!!

Perfect Marks... Approved!!!


Friday, June 19, 2009

Copper Face Jack's... Dublin, Ireland

...Or Coppers for those in the know. Copper Face Jack's is Dublin' premier meat market. For those in the mood to "hook up" for a good schnoggin' it is your spot if you are visiting the Emerald Isle. Drink prices are high. The place smells of piss and booze and despair. So, like we said... premier!

Usefulness...3... If you go in knowing that you are only in Copper's for a few drinks and some craic (fun) you can't go wrong! If you want a quiet night out among friends... yeah. Not your spot. People go to Copper's for one thing... to meet other people of the opposite sex and hook up. For that purpose Copper's remains famous!

Satisfaction...2... We at Fat Boy HQ don't care how much fun your bar is or what ratio of girls/guys you have. There is never a reason to charge Euro 6 for any drink! Ever. One point off.

Durability...5... For as long as a man will want to meet a drunk woman and woman will want to meet a drunk man there will be Coppers. The Fat Boy hath spoken.

Overall...2... You can't charge 6 Euros (almost $10!) for a drink even if every other bar does. Also, do something about the smell.

Copper Face Jacks, international hook up bar, you are approved!

Red's Ice House... Mega Approved!

Fat Boy's get thirsty. And when Fat Boy's are thirsty we go to Red's! (Assuming we are in Charleston, SC.) Red's is a converted Ice House where fishing boats would fill up with ice to chill their catch. Now, Red's is Bar where patrons fill up on beverages. Adult beverages. Frosty Cold adult beverages. Red's is located on picturesque Shem Creek in Mt. Pleasant, SC just over the harbor from Charleston. Red's atmosphere is normally rather casual. Some nights it is REALLY casual. If you want white table clothes there are plenty of those places in the area.(This description was stolen from local LJ Wallace of "Water Log" fame.) Red's is about fun and relaxation.

So how does this watering hole fair?

Usefulness... 3 Fat Boy's want two things from a bar, comfort and cold beverages. Red's is both. In the winter they have heaters and in the hot sticky summer they have lots of fans to keep you cool and keep the no-c-um's from biting you and their cooler is turned way down to make sure each beverage choice is cold and delicious. They are of course governed by the laws of physics and if Red's could serve a colder beverage... they would.

Satisfaction... 3 Compared to other outdoor oriented watering holes Red's is the standard barer. Sure they don't have wet t-shirt contests or water slides into the creek, but they don't need it. Red's is Red's. It has great staff and good food and great vistas. And... every April when the tank-tops are in bloom, they have lots of people coming together for a good time.

Durability... 5 It hasn't always been easy for Red's there have been issues. But Red's remains and Red's will remain as long as it sticks to its core concept. Comfort and cold adult beverages!!! We at Fat Boy don't want to imagine a future that doesn't have Red's Ice House in it!

Overall... 3 While in the Lowcountry, Red's is the wellspring from which I flow.

Max Points all around. Red's has achieved Fat Boy transcendence! Red's is Approved!

Toshiba Laptops

Hey Kids! Are you in the market for a laptop computer? Well you are in luck. Toshiba is APPROVED at Fat Boy and not just because Toshiba also makes a miniature Nuke Reactor that fits in your garage or back yard!

Usefulness... 2 Like all laptops the Toshiba is useful. Toshiba is usually a little heavier and slightly larger than some competitors. For that they loose one point.

Satisfaction... 3 HQ has tried two different machines and start ups on both were always quick. Photoshop ran smoothly even with other programs running in the back ground and YouTube/Hulu loads and plays with no problems. Having used other PC laptops and Mac notebooks Toshiba exceeds expectations.

Durability... 4 HQ is on its second Toshiba in 5 years. As any techy will tell you average life span of a Laptop that travels is about 3 years, 4 if the laptop sits as a desktop replacement. HQ's first Toshiba traveled well for 4 years! Then we bought an HP. It lasted 1.5 years traveling. Now we are on Toshiba number two. We are reserving the 5th point for those laptops built to be rugged. But so far as your normal PC or Mac is concerned Toshiba gets full credit!

Overall... 3 Of all the porn surfing devices... uh sorry, of all the computing devices we have encountered here at Fat Boy HQ the Toshiba is by far our favorite. Toshiba embodies Fat Boy-ness and receives full marks overall!

12 out of 14 possible points! Approved!!!

Hardee's Thickburgers... APPROVED

Fat Boy HQ employees prefer the homemade taste of "The Watermelon Patch's" burgers, but a close second could be the Hardee's thick burger. In a world where everyone is trying to feminize the culture by eating salads, twigs and grass... it is great to see one restaurant willing to satiate a manly FAT BOY apatite.

Hardee's introduced the Six Dollar Burger a few years ago. Since then they discovered something remarkable. (GM, take notice.) You give the customer what they want, rather than what you think they need... and they will reward you with their business!

Thanks Hardee's!

Usefulness... 2 How useful is a food? How do you judge that. I think we judge it on convenience and nutrition. Yes, even fat boy's know about nutrition. Hardee's obviously isn't marketing to the urban hot mommy crowd so they can't be marked off for that. And a burger isn't made to be low fat. To do that you would have to have something like turkey bacon on it. BTW turkey bacon is a crime against nature and represents all that is unholy and wrong. Having said that the crazy fat calories from Hardee's Thickburgers can't be ignored. If you eat here everyday you will die in about 6 months. But, who wants to eat at one place everyday.

Also, the burgers do not transport well. If you are an on-the-go eater you would rather have something other than a pound of beef. One point off.

Satisfaction... 3 The burgers are just plain tasty. And you don't want (or need) another in 5 minutes after you have had one. Max points.

Durability... 4 When Carl's Jr. bought Hardee's they took the good from hardee's, the breakfast, and added the good from Carl's Jr, everything else. Fat Boy HQ at one time was based in Las Vegas and had the pleasure of dining with Carl on several occasions. Jr was never around. Anyway, the chain impressed us at Fat Boy and continues to do so today. Very durable brand.

Overall... 3 Overall the Thickburger idea is at the heart of what Fat Boy loves. It represents almost the pinnacle of Fat Boy-ness. So max points!

Hardee's Thickburgers are Approved!!!!


Fat Boy employees at HQ spend all of their time online. And, supposedly they are doing research. I am not sure how many times Curve Ball needs to be researched! But, I digress. Our employees at one time used PayPal all the time. We no longer do. As "the numbers" will explain PayPal told us to go take a hike!!!

As you all know PayPal offers online payment and pseudo-merchant services. They have credit cards and other banking products. Their bread and butter though is Ebay payments.

Usefulness... 3 PayPal is a very useful service. Whether buying a nick-nack at ebay or moving money around the world, PayPal gets max points for Usefulness.

Satisfaction... 0 Because PayPal can hold your funds virtually indefinitely and doesn't have to conform to normal bank standards we found PayPal to be deeply dissatisfying. Not to mention they can and do hand out life-time bans from using their services because of accidental EULA infractions. Quick, quote me the PayPal user agreement! Exactly. Too extreme. (We know this from personal experience!)

Durability... 2 PayPal exhibits longevity. But, because of the successes of alternatives like' s pay service, better than PayPal's, I don't see it being tops for long. As well, Google is still fixed on toppling PayPal. I don't want Google intent on my destruction!

Overall... 1 PayPal is a useful tool but shows all the signs of a company that is or was at near monopoly status. Now with Amazon as a peer and Google on the hunt, I think PayPal is going to fall far and hard from it comfy perch.

A pitiful performance... DENIED!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Old Olin Mills Photos... Approved!


Immediately, stop what you are doing and visit this BLOG.

Here at Fat Boy HQ we work hard. And sometimes we just need a little humor to get us through the 3 hour work day.

To the numbers...

Usefulness... 3 How could one not use a laugh. "Olin Mills" has provided us with generations of laughs. Max points!

Satisfaction... 2 The lack of ghetto fabulous prom photos means the reduction of one point.

Durability... 5 This kind of humor never gets old. Max Points!

Overall... 3 Schadenfreude!!! Max Points!

Old Olin Mills Photos... Approved!!!

Madonna... Who?

Most of us here at HQ are products of the 80s. Yes, we know who Adam Ant was and might have even have had a DEVO hat on our shelves. So Madonna no matter what you think of her now was an 80s goddess. But... what about now?

Let's consult the numbers...

Usefulness... 1 Fat Boy finds very little use for has been celebs. Even ones that at one time were consider Kings and Queens of celebrity. Sorry.

Satisfaction... 1 The occasional song does have a nice hook. And, as a former devotee I must admit to a certain comfort in hearing her voice.

Durability... 4 Though at the end of her useful life as a celeb Madonna has been around for quite sometime. I reserve the final point for future use.

Overall... 2 Here is where her past serves her well. Yes, Madonna once was the "Material Girl" and forever will haunt our dreams here at Fat Boy HQ (Think Lucky Star Video).

Sorry Madonna, you fail to meet Fat Boy standards for approval. Nuttin' but luv for ya though!

Natural Light Beer (Natty Light)

Beer is serious business. We here at Fat Boy HQ prefer two flavors of beer, cold and free. But, short of those two qualities we will drink other beer.

You know how some folks are beer SNOBS? Well, here at the secret HQ we are BEER SLUTS!

So we give you one of the all time best beers known to man! Natural Light! Natural Light has been accused of being a bit "common". I must disagree. We here at Fat Boy consider it to be quite a complex beverage, perfect for almost every occasion. Let's put it through the paces.

Usefulness... 3 Natty Light maxes out the usefulness points because it is one of the most drinkable beers on the market. Whether you are wanting to have a beer-or-2 or a beer-or-12 this is your drink. Hey you can sometimes find it for $10 a case!

Satisfaction... 2 Natty loses a point because it is a light beer. Only full bodied beers can have 3 points! The Fat Boy hath spoken.

Durability... 5 This brand has been around forever. 5 points!

Overall... 2 Natural Light satisfies every time. Perfect? Almost.

Natural Light... Approved!

Jessica Biel... APPROVED!!!

What! Jessica Biel is de facto approved! But we will go through the paces.

Usefulness... 2 Jessica declined our offer to show up at the Fat Boy Secret HQ so her exact "usefulness" is still undetermined. Having said that, we have extrapolated that it would be no less than 2 pointer.

Satisfaction... 3 Obviously she is a 3. I dare anyone to suggest other wise.

Durability... 4 She has come a long way since 7th Heaven... so we give her a 4. Lets hope she sticks around and gets that 5 spot.

Overall... 3 Jess is a near perfect girl. Short of her ducking a visit to the HQ she generally rocks.

Jessica Biel is Approved!

Bond Arms Texas Defender!

Here ya go Kids (Older Kids Only). The Bond Arms Texas Defender. It's a derringer that is well made and fun to shoot. This firearm also is s good personal defense gun.

Usefulness... 2 We have to take away a point for accuracy!

Satisfaction... 3 Firing this weapon is the very definition of "satisfaction".

Durability... 5 This is not a cheap gun. It is a well made gun!

Overall... 3 Other than accuracy and number of rounds... it's almost a perfect gun.

This firearm almost maxed out our scale 13 out of a possible 14 points. Fat Boy HQ highly recommends the Bond Arms brand.

Intex Easy Set 15 x 48 Above Ground Pool

We love these pools. The "Intex" brand is great. It comes with a good DVD about set up and one of us here at Fat Boy HQ was able to set up the whole thing in one day. That includes about 90% fill up as well. Our model was the 15x48. Now, the top inflatable ring is actually only 12 feet, so keep that in mind. Wasn't pleased that that was not communicated in any description. Fat Boy found a cheap one on Amazon. Under $300 after shipping.

Usefulness... 2 You can't jump into it. Fat Boys defiantly can't jump into it. The seems will bust. Splash and swim and wade all you want.

Satisfaction... 3 We got more than we expected in the box and ease of set up. The box has a vacuum, a pump and ladder.

Durability... 3 It's vinyl. It can't be too durable. The lack of hard sides do keep the hell raising to a minimum.

Overall... 3 While not perfect, and not for cannonballs, it is damn fun. I suggest you get one.

The Intex brand is, Approved!

Blackberry 8830, Approved!

Hey kids... is you cell phone crap? Drops calls, can't take normal wear and tear?

Go Blackberry. We tested the 8830 series and love it. Include a stylish protective case and you have a durable phone that works when you need it. You can also go on line as needed with no additional charges with most carriers and plans. We enjoy chatting with friends all over the world when we are bored to tears here at Fat Boy HQ.

Usefulness... 3 Off the charts usefulness. The phone does it all.

Satisfaction... 2 We really expected more from the GPS capabilities. Maybe that's because the tech isn't available... but the commercials make it seem like you can get quick accurate turn by turn directions. Not quite.

Durability... 4 It would be a 5 but the cool cell phone holder will sometimes open when you run in quick from the rain... dumping your durable cell phone on the ground.

Overall... 3 Best phone ever.

This product is Fat Boy Tested and APPROVED. Good job! 12 points!

How We Test at Fat Boy!

Usefulness 1-3

Is the subject actually useful? If you come out with a new version of 8 track cassette you might not score high in this category.

Satisfaction 1-3

Does the subject perform as advertised and expected? Does it leave you wanting more, in a good way? Or more in a bad way?

Durability 1-5

Is this dime-store lawn furniture that Fat Boys can't sit in or is this quality stuff? Is there built in obsolescence that makes you buy another in less than a year or two? Or can you count on this subject like a trusted friend?

Over All Impression 1-3

Here is where presentation, look, feel and warm fuzzy makes an appearance. If there is just something about the subject that a makes a Fat Boy happy... you receive more points.

In order to receive the coveted "SEAL OF APPROVAL" the subject must receive over 10 points. That's 11 and up, for the math challenged!

Hello World...

What is "Fat Boy Tested and Approved?"

If a product or service or person is Fat Boy Tested and Approved, that means we at "Fat Boy" find the subject to be hearty, useful, satisfying and above all durable. Rare is it that you will find "made in china" on our list. Not saying you will not. But it has to be a quality product to receive the Fat Boy Tested and Approved Seal of Approval!

Over the months and years to come you will be able to find quality products that represent value and durability on our website. Thanks for dropping by! Tell your friends!