Saturday, January 6, 2018
I was at the factory late yesterday. My building was empty when I left. It was the end of a brutal week, a week of feeling poorly, of sleeping poorly, of eating poorly, and of drinking without moderation. Ili picked me up, and without reservation, I said fuck the gym, let's get a drink. She had no objection, so we headed for a favorite spot and, miraculously for the hour, found the best seats at the bar, on the far corner facing the rest of the room. It was cold outside and I wanted an Old Fashioned. And fortune smiled upon us. Our two favorite bartenders were mixing.
We sat next to a fellow who looked like a Steve Buscemi clone. I'd seen him around town for years. He would often speak to me as if we knew one another, but that had never been the case. Something was wrong with him, I knew, but here he was in an upscale bar ordering dinner and chatting with the barman. When he stepped outside for a smoke, I asked about him.
"I don't know him, really. He's been coming here for a long time. I know he was in a car wreck and it left him a little goofy."
Good to know. So Ili sparked a conversation. That went well for about a minute.
But what he was eating looked fabulous. I had to have it. Duck cassoulet. It was perfect. I rarely have it, rarely see it on a menu, but it is truly one of my favorite dishes.
Old Fashioneds and some great red from Macedonia. Hellos to an old friend. A bar full of people excited by the cold. It seemed we were there a long time.
When we got home, it was seven-thirty. Jesus. Something has gone terribly wrong.
But that is the way it is now, and I am fine with it. Smooching, glasses of an old scotch, declarations of love, then the couch and episodes of "The Last Tycoon."
A warm bed on a cold night. The spiraling constellations beyond. A late rising on a cold morning. Good coffee and a clear sky. Classical Music for Readers in the background.
The work week begins to fall away. A beautiful evening. A wonderful morning.
I don't know how to improve upon this. Breakfast at the diner, perhaps. We agree. We shall see.