You can't believe your eyes. Everything is not what it seems. I don't know if this image has anything to do with today's post yet. I just cooked it up from old files--and I liked it. I've come to doubt my own "likes," though, as I have all my abilities. The world is shrinking for everybody. Don't think you are alone in this. You are just alone. There are plenty of critics. Everything is contentious. Society is fractionalized to the nth degree. The part that agrees with you is shrinking no matter who you are or what you think. The Covid years put us all in a shell. Now, like turtles, we take a chance whenever we stick our heads out. It seems much safer to sit still inside our protective covering and not bring notice to ourselves. Everything is dangerous and your tribe is shrinking.
There. I guess I made the image relevant. Maybe. Whatever that means.
I did change my routine a little bit yesterday. Just a smidge, but I'm hoping it resounds through the coming days. I had interesting dreams that somehow cheered me the night before, so in the morning, I was ready to go. No need for you to hear about it, but I felt good. I did that, whatever that was, and then I showered and went shopping for the ingredients of what would be my terrific seafood stew. For the first time, I made it in my InstaPot. I can't believe that company went bankrupt. That thing is the greatest invention. . . o.k., maybe not, but it is pretty damn good. The wonderful thing about it is, here in the hottest days of the year, it doesn't heat up the kitchen. I even sautéed the vegetables in it. Potatoes, carrots, celery, and onions. Then clam juice, half a bottle of cheap white wine, chicken stock, crushed tomatoes, seasoning. . . and then pressure cook for ten minutes. Ten was really too much. Next time. Then add the shrimp, scallops, and cod. Bingo! I took the entire pot to my mother's house with a sourdough baguette and a cold bottle of Vouvray. My gosh, people, I'm a good cook. . . and a helluva son! Mom and I had a swell time. We ate, we drank, we laughed, and when I left, she had enough stew left for another couple meals.
Coming home, just as I was approaching my drive, I saw Tennessee and his wife on their Vespa. I rolled down the window and shouted out, and they turned around and into my drive. I hadn't met his wife before, for like all the gymroids, they are a bit nervous for them to meet "the boys." She was quite nice if a bit demure, but they hung out a bit and we laughed and had fun. I stood there looking at the Vespa.
"That's about the most fun you can have," I said. "Whenever things got a little stale at home, my girl and I would jump on the Vespa and suddenly everything was wonderful. We would just cruise around and eventually end up at some little cafe getting a pop."
They grinned. Exactly.
"I don't know. Maybe I should get another one."
I think I might ask Tennessee to let me take his for a ride one day just to see how it feels.
"You just need to keep it off the big roads," they said. That is what I said, too, but eventually you get bold. Maybe not this time. But I'd like to ride it just to see.
When they left for their own little cafe, I poured a cocktail and lit a Cuban cigar. I fed the cat and sat outside until the drink was gone. I let the cigar go out and went inside.
That is the sound my phone makes when I have a text. The phone had been quiet all day. I had texted my old pal who had written to tell me she had wiped out on her ebike the day before scraping and bruising herself all to hell. . . and she thought of me. So I sent her a message to see how she was feeling knowing that it hurt more the second day than it did the first. You can get hurt just as bad on a bike as you can on a Vespa, no?
The message, however, was from the girl who will not ask me out. I hadn't heard from her for a couple days and figured I had pissed her off which seems to be one of my magical abilities. She was out of town at a conference, she said, and wanted to know why I hadn't sent her any photos of my food and drink.
The day, it seemed, had gone swimmingly.
A change of routine, a lovely, healthy seafood stew, a visit and a text. I went to the library to pour a scotch. The bottle was nearly empty. Good God. . . I was even going to be drinking less. The seafood stew being my only food of the entire day, the new exercise routine that had me outside. . . I was feeling absolutely lithe!
And maybe a Vespa? The wind in my face, bugs in my teeth. . . I don't know. I might even be happy again someday.
But you know. . . turtles and all. . . .
Maybe I should leave town for a couple days, just stick my head out of the shell and try to cross the road without getting run over. Maybe I should damn the torpedoes and make the photos I want to make. It's not like other people know shit. They don't. They aren't even funny. I'm funny. And I'm smart.
Yea. . . maybe I'll just go ahead and try to cross the road.
Pretty good, I think. . . making the photo relevant and all! For my next trick. . . .