It’s always great to receive recommendations about pick-ups and purchases I may enjoy, but I think that equally as important are the flashing red light warnings about those I should steer clear of.

And so, in that spirit, and in a desire to save you all the headache, here are some recent investments I have NOT enjoyed:

1Xylitol lime mint gum

Akemi picked up this gum in Japan.  She offered me a piece yesterday and, when I popped it into my mouth and started to chew, two thoughts ran through my mind: 1. I’ve been punked!  2. Am in any danger eating this?

Seriously.  It tasted so bad that I actually wondered if it was toxic.  If Lysol disinfectant came in a chewable mint flavor, this would be pretty close to it.

1Colgate optic white

Like brushing your teeth with Crisco brand shortening.

1Vega One nutritional shake

It tastes really REALLY good for you.

1Dymatize Nutrition elite casein

If you’re looking to put on muscle mass, you need to work out and consume more protein.  During the day, you can boost your protein intake with a delicious Pro Line Is-Advance vanilla post-workout shake.  And, at night, top yourself off with some Dymatize Nutrition elite casein, chocolate flavor in name only, that tastes like the devil’s rectum.  In powdered form.

1Case Keenum, QB Houston Texans

Projected to torch the weak Jags D for well over 20 points, I decided to pick up Case Keenum off waivers and play him over both Carson Palmer and Philip Rivers.  The result?  A lackluster 4.96 points and a premature end to my Snow Monkeys fantasy football season.

If you’ve got any questions you’ve dying to ask, now is the time to post them to the comments section.  I’ll be answering all your queries (burning or otherwise) in the coming days, so don’t be shy!

35 thoughts on “November 27, 2013: Buyer’s remorse!

  1. Dude, how have you learned what the devil’s rectum in powdered form is much less how it tastes?

    Sorry bout the monkeys…

  2. Here’s a timely question: What do you give the guy who has everything?

  3. I hear you on the Vega stuff, absolutely disgusting! Yuck
    And just FYI in case you aren’t aware, xylitol is highly toxic to dogs.

  4. It was probably just the flavour. Xylitol is actually quite GOOD for you! Prevents throat infections — they give it to babies now to prevent ear infections. – Try the cinnamon flavour gum, that’s the only one I use. And if Akemi has a hankering for it, most health food shops have it.

    Besides, as much as I like mint & lime, I prefer it as my shower gel. Or, with rum!

  5. I’ll be answering all your queries (burning or otherwise)

    Really? Okay…here goes…

    I have this burning rash…any idea what it could be?



  6. Woohoo (my Homer Simpson impression)! Yes, I have questions.Lots and lots of questions…

    1) Many actors that I know are going the “Independent Film” route, doing You Tube short films and looking for funding through Kickstarter. Have you and Paul ever considered doing an indy?

    2)If you ever decided to go the independent route, would you use crowd funding, or are there better ways to fund a project?

    3) Now that you’ve been a writer, a producer and a show runner, which job was the toughest and why?

    4)If a studio picks up your show, how much control over it do you retain?

    5)How did you find your agent?

    6) When you were given the reigns to Star Gate Atlantis, were you also given the final say on the actors chosen for the various parts?

    Thanks for doing a mailbag.

    I found this bit of interesting information about Montreal. I lived in St, Hubert on the South Shore for 8 years when I was a teenager – who knew:


    P.S @JeffW – I have never been to Savannah. I really wanted to go tho. I’ve been to Atlanta and a place called Stone Mountain. Both are beautiful.

  7. Questions

    1) When filming Stargate scenes that arent done at the studios, i know you did some filming at locations, but did you ever go to other TV or Film studios sets and use them to save money since they were already in place? Did any other shows or films use Stargates sets? If this happened any interesting stories?

    2) Who wrote the scene between Tealc and Tomin in the mess hall of the ship in Ark of Truth? I thought it was one of the best scenes in Stargate history. It isnt particularly uplifting or a bonding moment. But it is so powerful and also reminds the fans that Tealc is responsible for extreme atrocities that one shouldn’t forget. Great scene. I watch it twice every time i play the movie.

    3) In SGU we learned that the ship has some interesting secrets like being able to manipulate the mind of Young. Where there any more secrets the Destiny was going to reveal in its future?

    4) Of all the people you worked with on Stargate, who do you think walked off with the best prop from the show(s) and what was it?

    5) Not a question, but a comment. I thought Mitchell and Vala were a fantastic boost to SG1. I especially enjoyed Mitchell. He brought a nice feeling of grit and intensity when needed. Sad they didnt have a longer run in Stargate.

    6) I loved SGU! We were robbed of so many interesting stories that could have been… Sigh.

  8. Hey Joe,

    Maybe a couple of questions (feel free to take your pick):

    1. Is Akemi making any special outfits for the furry kids this Christmas? (Barb thought Bubba’s last Santa outfit was cute).
    2. How is your back doing? Is the pain fully gone?


    Thanks for the advice; I am being careful with the Vicodin. I’m only taking enough to take the edge off the pain (which is about half of the recommended dose), and then only when the pain is getting in the way of resting or sleep. The interval between doses is getting longer, so that’s good.

    Happy Thanksgiving to all the U.S. readers! I hope it is a special one for everyone!

  9. Ok, that’s funny because I remember my first experience with Vega and didn’t like it all that much, but I love it now. It’s 20x better than whey protein.

  10. Thank you Joe for the heads up on those products. Strike those from my Christmas lists. Wish I did have some great questions, burning or otherwise but the only real question I have at the moment is about eggnog. I am searching for a good recipe for custard eggnog, you wouldn’t happen to know of any would you?

  11. Hey, Joe!

    Has Cookie seen any good movies lately?

    ..bonus question…

    Have you seen any episodes of “The No.1 Ladies’ Detective Agency” by Richard Curtis (of Black Adder, Mr. Bean, & Vicar fame)? Idris Elba is in it.. along with David Oyelowo (MI-5/Spooks).

  12. I had a confirmed cavity close up while I was using xylitol to brush my teeth. Confirmed as in it was in the dentist’s report and I’d used a pin to confirm it had depth.

    I’m guessing the problem is creative Japanese gum. We used to get some called Black Black that had nicotine and caffeine in it.

    It’s totally worth it to go out of your way to find a xylitol gum you like. Mentos has a nice one that’s easily accessible.

    I actually didn’t know that it’s known to prevent throat infections, but from the description of why it helps teeth, I have been hoping it does. It’s good to know I have another weapon in my arsenal.

    I bought some roast beef for sandwiches the other day that I thought was a step above the usual stuff I buy. It tasted fine, but there was something off about the texture. We concluded meat glue was a major part of it. Is cooked beef supposed to bounce if you dry it off and fling it at a silicon baking sheet? We didn’t do a control group for our experiment.

    How did it feel to see Akemi’s sister getting married?

  13. I really enjoyed going to Tokyo with you. I thought it was one of the best with the wedding and all (Robot Restaurant). Which trip to Tokyo has been your favorite so far? Top 3…?

    So why haven’t you, Paul, Rob, Brad, Carl, Martin, Ivon formed a company and made your own TV shows, productions and/or movies? Is everyone doing their own thing?

    Do you have any pictures of Andria with the dogs while she was babysitting?

    How is your Mom?

  14. It has been a long time since I commented. I have been reading your entries with interest and I have a few questions, though I wouldn’t necessarily call them timely. I just sort of wonder them to myself and go “I should ask Joe about this” and then I write them down but forget to post them. I apologize in advance if you have already answered them or other similar questions. Feel free to send me back to previous entries if you have already answered them:

    1) In any of the Stargate series, did you ever have one-shot enemies/civilizations of the week that you would have wanted to have revisited at a later time (like what was done with the Rand Protectorate and the Langarans) or otherwise explore further?

    2) Has there been any word yet on whether Brad Wright will publicly announce his intended ending for SGU?

    3) What do you think of this article ( as someone who works in television?

    Personally, I like Netflix and I agree that it is difficult to justify to myself watching a series on there that you know does not end or give closure. Why get invested if you know there is no payoff? Siderant: I really got into Firefly on Netflix and I started watching it because Serenity was also on there, so I knew I would have some closure. However, the day I finished the series, Serenity had been removed because the licensing deal had expired and it was very frustrating.

    Do you think that the Netflix/Digital Distribution model will make networks more reluctant to cancel a series without giving it a chance to wrap up? Do you think that it will make writers and producers of shows more likely to want to have cliffhangers at the end of seasons to try and squeeze those last few wrap-up episodes out of the network? What are your overall thoughts?

    4) What ever happened to Transporter: The Series? I remember watching the first three episodes and then it went on break or something and I never saw it again. Is it still on?


  15. about the xylitol lime mint gum: that reaction reminds me of the last time i got gum from one of those machines where you put in a quarter & get like a dozen little pieces of gum of different coating colors. just one chew was enough for me to spit it out in the nearest garbage can. i spit again & the spit was green! i had to expectorate a few times before that wasn’t the case anymore.

  16. Will you be starting the Superhero Movie of the Week Club up again soon?

    Two movies I’m still really hoping you will review are:

    Dr. Horrible’s Sing Along Blog (completely a superhero film, and a darn good one, if a little short at under an hour long. You won’t be disappointed)

    The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen (I still think it’s pretty superhero…y)

  17. Okay, I do have a question (based on a conversation that came up elsewhere):

    Television series – what do you prefer (to watch, or to write): one-and-done episodic shows, or serialized shows?

    (I tend to prefer one-and-dones, but that’s probably because I’m old and nothing in my head will be as good as stuff like Columbo.)

    Also, I’d like to here your opinion[s] on this:

    in case the linkage doesn’t work:

    In a surprising turn of events, the FCC announced early this month it would consider hearing arguments for changing current broadcast television decency standards.

    Currently, broadcast television networks are banned from using explicit profanity and “non-sexual” nudity between the hours of 6 a.m. and 10 p.m. If the networks don’t comply, the FCC is permitted to impose fines of up to $325,000 per incident.

    This is in contrast to cable networks (FX, Comedy Central, AMC, etc.) who don’t face these same restrictions.

    And while many may see this change in stance by the FCC as a mere reflection ofAmerican society, the FCC’s ultimate goals here are protecting the market for television, which is a cause for concern seeing as it isn’t often, if ever, considered a division within the government that has any economic interest or authority.

    Since the spring season of television began this year, broadcast television ratings have declined, while cable ratings increased.

    According to Nielsen, a company dedicated to gathering statistics on what Americans watch, read, play, browse and buy, the American people are beginning to switch what they watch on television.

    The Nielsen data shows that cable television programs like “Sons of Anarchy,” “Duck Dynasty” and “The Walking Dead” are consistently beating broadcast programs like “Dancing With the Stars,” “Castle,” “30 Rock” and “Parenthood” in terms of ratings and overall viewership, and many broadcast ratings are currently experiencing record-low ratings numbers.

    While some of the ratings drop can be attributed to the rise in streaming services like Hulu and Netflix, the decline in overall show quality certainly isn’t helping.

    Furthermore, the data suggests Americans choose to watch shows that contain more violence and/or inappropriate humor over shows that have to be “watered down” in order to be on broadcast television.

    And while it doesn’t take sex and violence to make a good show, the fact that the creative team is limited in its direction reduces a show’s potential.

    Instead of providing protection to the American public, the FCC ban really prohibits the type of shows the broadcast networks can produce, which limits many financial opportunities for broadcast networks.

    And that’s what it comes down to: money.

    Broadcast networks are starting to lose money to cable networks and they don’t want to give cable networks any more market share and have used their power to influence Washington.

    Broadcast networks’ main source of revenue is advertising, while cable networks rely on advertising and the money they get from licensing their content to cable providers.

    Since cable networks have now begun to push the envelope with violent/sexual/crude humor series like “American Horror Story,” and “The League,” they have begun to see increased ratings in accordance with the Nielsen data.

    With an increase in ratings, advertisers would want to advertise on cable networks more than broadcast networks — contract-specifications withstanding — giving less money to broadcast networks.

    Current television decency standards are behind the times and need to change.

    The ban should be repealed, but not because broadcast network lobbyists are paving the way with money, but because we deserve the highest quality television possible.

    With an equal playing field and broadcast network money, television might improve.


    One of the things driving me away from television is the grittier, more explicit content of shows, even those on network television. Sometimes it’s because it reminds me too much of real life (how can I see a school full of kids shot up by a lunatic on the news, then watch – for ‘entertainment’ – the same thing in a tv show?), and sometimes it’s because I can just see the enveloped being pushed right in my face – ‘you’re gonna like this, or else!’ – and I resent it. But I’m old and probably old-fashioned, as well. Still, I don’t see why I need to change my moral standards just because a network wants to attract more viewers. Yet so many will just because they want to keep up with the latest shows and trends out there, and the more who do, then the worst tv becomes (in my humble – or not so humble – opinion.

    And forgive me – I’m in some sort of a mood tonight. I feel very disorganized and all ‘loose-endy’ the last couple of days – as if I’ve forgotten to do something very important. I just can’t focus properly and it gets me very down. It happens this time of year without my willing it (especially since autumn is my favorite time of year!). I think it may be related to seasonal depression, and not a deeper sort of thing.

    Anyway, my prob, not yours. Have a good night, sir!


  18. Ugh!! “I’d like to HEAR…” – and I can’t blame my typos on Vicodin. 😛


  19. How did your Sis like her Vacouver vacation?

    Is you back feeling better?

    Like Ponytail, I loved your Japanese vacation. You included so many fascinating details. So a big Thank You!

    I’m getting ready for a Mom Thanksgiving. When I called my mom last night she was already stressed out. My brothers left their kids for her to babysit. They don’t seem to “get” that’s she’s nearly 80. I’ll take some of the load off her today. Wish me luck!

    Happy Thanksgiving y’all (from Mississippi/Tennessee).

  20. On SG-1 there seemed to be a lot of characters over the years (okay, several characters) named Jona/Jonah or Jonas or some variation. Probably not done on purpose, I’m guessing, but is there a reason for the similarities? lot of writers liked the name? A favourite uncle of someone’s? A fondness for guys who get swallowed by whales? 😉

    Btw, I recently tried a pouch of that Vega One crap. “Tastes really REALLY good for you” is about the best description for something that could otherwise be said to taste like chalk.

  21. Lime mint gum? Those two tastes shouldn’t really go together. Ever.

    At least the Colgate tastes like Crisco and not some cheap brand of lard.

    And well, shoot. I was going to get Das a professional football player for Christmas, but so much for that. 🙂

    Question: I can’t remember if this was asked before, or even if I may have asked before. Or if it’s been answered. Anyway, I forget. In the first episode of SGU, as people came through the gate, they were thrown forcefully out on arrival. I remember you saying at one time there was a reason for it and it would be revealed as the show went on. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen of course, and I always wondered what the explanation was. It didn’t happen when they gated from more nearby gates, so I always wondered if it was strictly a matter of distance or whether there was some other explanation.

    And yeah, did you ever get any info back from the x-rays? I hope everything is all right!

  22. Oh! Oh! Got another one. *g* SG-1 related again. The regular actors and guest stars didn’t always pronounce Jaffa and Go’al’ud (and I forget how to spell the latter!) the same way. Did anyone care or did it become a thing with the cast and crew and done deliberately wrong, if that makes any sense? Not criticizing. I think it’s funny. 😀

  23. Burning Question…. I;m looking at planning my 2015 spring vacation and Vancouver is an option. So, is April or May a decent time to visit? We visited Vermont one spring and it was closed. Whole darn state.

    I do not like xylitol, makes me feel ill. I used to get a gum called “Brain Shower”. Yep, the Lysol explosion experience. Still miss Black Black. That is some kickass gum.

  24. @das – I’m old-fashioned too. It takes much more creativity to make a good show without the crutch of gratuitous nudity, sex, and violence. Writers who put out a good STORY will always win, hands down, with me. That’s one of the reasons I always loved Joe’s writing – stories that are compelling and not reliant on the superfluous.

  25. Are you allergic to anything? If so, how do you handle it at restaurants?

    Do you get paid for all of these projects you’re working on? I see you writing lots and nothing’s been picked up so far…

  26. Happy Thanksgiving, everybone! Hubby had to work, so it’s my daughter, Anakin and 4 dogs for the traditional Boston Market dinner here today. 🙂 Tomorrow will be busy, though, as it is my daughter’s birthday and everybody’s coming over. Oy.

    Joe, I had a question about Moebius but I can’t remember what it was. GUUUUUH.

  27. First: Were there ever actually plans to go more in depth into the Athosian culture or the Void where the Ascended go? I’m just curious since my current story on my blog for Atlantis’ Season Six is currently going into these subject matters.

    Second: Was there ever a plan to delve into the people behind the scenes of Atlantis i.e. not the major or minor characters but the truly background people that help make everything happen too, like the “Below Decks” episode of Star Trek TNG or like the series The West Wing? I’d think that’d be interesting considering that one of the purposed episodes you writers came up with for the Sixth Season (a story that I’m going to post as Episode Six of my Atlantis Season Six) was based on one of those unfortunate ‘Red Shirt’ marines of the series.

  28. I’ll add some questions

    1. What were some highs and lows from your Japan trip?
    2. Most interesting location(To you) that you visited?
    3. What was the most enjoyable thing you did in Japan?
    4. As an anime fan, how did you find the whole experience?
    5. Were there any places you wanted to visit but couldn’t due to time?
    6. Looking back at the wedding stuff, did you feel nervous before you arrived? And how was the whole thing to you?

  29. @Brent
    @6) I loved SGU! We were robbed of so many interesting stories that could have been… Sigh.

    I agree, I wanted to see 5 seasons of Stargate Universe, 100 episodes is such a perfect number and there was so much room to do this, the universe is a very big place with so many stories to be told. It truly sucks things didn’t work out.

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