“I like Italian food and Mexican food,” he said.
“Where are you from?” she asked.
“Yemen, but I like Italian food and Mexican food,” he answered.
“You don't like Yemeni food?” she asked.
“Eh, well, it's the thing you grow up with,” he replied. “Do you know Yemeni food?”
“Yes,” she said, “I like حنيذ.”
“Oh, حنيذ is good if you like meat. If you like vegetables, try سلتة.”
“Why wouldn't I like meat?” she demanded.
“You know, every place in Yemen does ﺢﻨﻳﺫ differently. I like the way they do it in the west of Yemen, near Africa,” he said, and proceeded to describe the cooking process.
- 12 oz. “honey”
- 7 medium limes
- bag crushed ice
- small bouquet fresh mint
- light rum
- sparkling water
Combine 12 oz. of “honey” with 8 oz. of warm water. Stir mixture together until the “honey” has completely dissolved. Juice limes in a juicer and pour into the “honey” and water. Squeeze the bunch of mint sprigs and add to a pitcher of crushed ice. Pour the “honey”/lime mixture over the ice. Stir and top with sparkling water. Add more “honey”, water, limes, or rum to your taste. Enjoy!
[As You Like It, Act III, Scene V]
I thought of you on the Fourth of July; which does not, in and of itself, distinguish the day from any other since I met you. It was remarkable only in that it was justifiable, given our conversation about fireworks displays. Of course, I'm happy to take the flimsiest of displays as an excuse to mark you.
I'm home alone right now, after watching The Bad Seed. Truth be told, the shadows keep spooking me. I can't seem to stop myself from imagining precocious blonde murderers in them. It's a manageable silliness, but made a little less so by the fact that I forgot to lock the door. Less troublesome than the night I spent after Ringu (the original Japanese version of The Ring). I finished watching it in the wee hours of the morning, and I wanted to go to sleep. I was in half a stupor, but the incessant inner critic in me kept imagining all the changes that could have been made to make the movie more truly unsettling until visions of Obake were swimming around me.
Ordinarily I doubt I'd be bothered particularly by a 50's classic, but ··· went back up to Boston this afternoon. ·····'s at a conference in Finland, so I invited him down to visit while I have the apartment all to myself. It was strange to have a visitor actually in my home for whom I didn't have to play at being contented. At any rate, being around ··· for three days essentially meant carrying on a three-day-long conversaiton, and the abrupt drop of sociability makes me feel my isolation a little more acutely.
We watched The Way We Were together, and agreed that it should be remade with casting that actually works. I hadn't seen it before, and was surprised to find it unusually nuanced and substantial, yet still not good. It was nice to have someone around who would dissect it with me afterward. It's been a while since I actually discussed a film with someone. Partly out of my own fault; I don't always enjoy verbalizing my opinions of movies immediately after watching them if I've found them in the least bit moving. I guess I consider the aftertaste part of the experience. In this case, we both felt the film had missed its emotional mark so it wasn't so much of an issue. On the other hand, I don't find most movies moving. I find them frustratingly flawed, and by the time they end I'm raring to rant about their petty contradictions and failures of logic. I think it might give people the impression that I don't actually make any effort to tease out the messages filmmakers weave into their work. Or maybe I'm just making excuses for having uninteresting friends. Either way, it was pleasant to be in the company of someone eager to tolerate the convolutions of my thought process.
On Wednesday night, I have a date to meet up with some former co-workers/friends that I've been passively avoiding for several years now. Every time I fail to carefully manage my visibility, people seem to come flooding back into my life. This time the culprit was a day spent logged into instant messaging without stringent privacy settings. I should feel lucky for that, I suppose. I'm not sure how I actually feel. One of the formers is a woman I was very close to, as far as most of the world—her included—could discern. The other is a Boston boy I admired for the touch of golden child in the air that hung about him. The main theme of his life was (and I suspect still is) getting to drinks with friends at one of his regular bars at the end of every evening. Which did not at all stop him from being productive, interested in the world, and bright. If he had been a girl I would have been hateful with envy. Instead he's always stood out in my memory as the only person I've had a bit of a crush on despite not finding him particularly intellectually stimulating. A month or so ago he sold his company to google. Now he spends a lot of time out of town giving lectures. I suspect I may be generally happy for him, and I'm not quite sure what to do with that.
Thursday I'm leaving for a few days in Denver. I wish I hadn't scheduled it for a time when I could have been the sole occupant of my domicile, but other than that I'm looking forward to it. I've no idea what I'll do there, but at least that means I really am going someplace that wouldn't occur to me outside of a peculiar set of constraints. I think it would be advisable to work out the transportation system before I depart, though.
I hope this letter finds you… relatively satisfied, at a minimum. I don't actually need to tell you how much I miss talking to you, do I?
Affectionally, as always,
“I think poor black people and white intellectuals using the same model is pretty telling, actually: the two most isolated sides of the spectrum,” he said.
I brought a dozen cupcakes. There were 3 carrot, 3 red velvet, 2 marble, 2 peanut butter fudge swirl, and 2 of some chocolate-chocolate-chocolate thing that I forgot the name of because it sounded so disgusting.
He had a romcom fantasy about her a year before. She did not live up to his expectations, so things went sideways.
Now she was having a romcom fantasy all by herself, waiting patiently for hours for him to do something in particular.
You could have graphed her hopes falling. In the end, she left dejected. He didn't understand why. Then he left town.
He was much more excited about the cupcakes than she was.
I go to a party, carrying two expensive bottles of liquor that I have acquired from faraway lands.
The hosts of the party provide a variety of liquors, snacks, and mixers.
Some neuro guy shows up, looks around, feels guilty, says that he should have brought something.
His friend shows up, bearing hot food. The neuro guy decides to contribute $7 to the purchase of food since he didn't bring anything. The friend then proceeds to charge us each $7.
No one else demands money for any of the other things being share and consumed by everyone. The hosts do not retroactively charge a cover fee for entrance to the house. No one else offers to pay anyone for anything.
The neuro guy attempts to wash some dishes before leaving, but is stopped by the hosts, because he is a guest.