New Year 2013: Guess Who's Coming For Dinner?


This guy.   And he's not leaving.

Last night, JC and I spend New Year's Eve, having dinner with friends at their new house.    We had a great time, gathered in the kitchen, drinking, and scarfing down snacks, while our hostess worked on a seafood paella dish.

Now, I am traditionally a picky eater - somewhat legitimately, as I have a number of food allergies.    The wrong food can trigger any number of reactions, from an epic breakout where my face looks like something the Mars Rover photographed, to having my face and throat swell up and go numb.    Though I have never eaten lobster in my life, it showed up on an allergen test in such a manner as to indicate that I should probably wear a hazmat suit if I am at the table with it.     Fine by me, because when I look at it, I cannot help be reminded of palmetto bugs.    My hand just itches to get a big shoe, or the can of Raid.   My apologies if that puts you off your surf-and-turf.

And while I greatly enjoy most fish, and shrimp, if it has tentacles, or requires an unreasonable amount of chewing in order to get it down the hatch, I will take a pass on it.

As it happened, the paella smelled amazing - rich and fishy and full of tomato-y goodness.    As she lifted the lid to add more seasoning, I asked what was in it.

"Let me see...", she said, "... Tilapia".

Mmm, thinks I, I totally dig tilapia.


Never had 'em.   But I'm willing to go with a new experience.   Hopefully they aren't chewy.


Oh.   Octopus has tentacles AND I am pretty sure it is chewy.    I mean, our host waxed rhapsodic not a quarter of an hour earlier, about some sushi documentary he watched - where the chef has to massage the octopus for 45 minutes, to make it tender enough to be palatable.    Hmm.   Oh well, thinks I, I can just eat around that.


Wait - that's not the same as octopus??!    Apparently not.    So I resolve to eat around that as well.

There was a long pause, as she tried to recall what else was in there.   It was a long enough pause, that I began to worry a little, trying to guess.   Kraken?   Whale?  McDonald's Filet-o-fish?


Yes!   We're back on track, with 'normal' seafood that I recognize, and that doesn't require an extended period of chewing.

"And clams".     Hrrrrrmm.    I seem to think that I tried clams, once, in 1995.    I cannot recall the precise details, only that it was a never-to-be-repeated experience.    Or maybe that was oysters.    Same diff.    Okay.   Looks like I am going to have to skillfully wield my dodging skills as I negotiate this dinner.

It was a tasty, tasty meal, although by the end, I had amassed a goodly pile of tentacles, one or two 'bodies', and some things that resembled suction cups, lying in the bottom of the bowl.

JC lucked out, and got an entire octopus.   It was later fished out of the sink, rinsed, and used to adorn his wineglass when he wasn't looking.    Strangely enough, not by me, even though I had entertained the idea no less than seven times between dinner and dessert.

Sadly, I did not get a picture.    But suffice to say, it looked something like this...

And it left a kind of slime trail on the glass.
Homemade flan was the dessert.    For my part, there is a mental shift that always occurs with egg-desserts.   That first bite, there is always a moment of horror, before my palate adjusts itself.     By the second bite of this honeyed confection, I was totally hooked.   (How's that for a fishing metaphor?)

We arrived home in the wee hours of the morning, overstuffed, and collapsed happily in bed, for the next ten or so hours, until we finally got our lazy selves up and moving... 

Less than twelve hours into 2013, and already, I have broken my resolution.   No.... not the "No More Charitable Impulses"... but the one where I don't buy anymore clothes or shoes for awhile.

All right, so that wasn't really a resolution, so much as a general guideline.   And these aren't merely shoes.   They are Louboutins - Ron Ron pumps, in pony hair and lizard.    I have been stalking them on eBay for nearly two months...

When I looked at my eBay watched items list this morning, I saw that the seller had reduced the price by a significant amount.     So I bought them. 

There is really no excuse I can throw out there, about 'rewarding myself', or 'needing these'.    Simply... I wanted them, and I bought them.    So now I have another pair of gorgeous shoes that I am going to have to make myself wear.    Because, oddly enough, while I have a lot of beautiful and unique clothing items, I tend to 'save' them.

So that is my next resolution:  to wear every pair of shoes in my closet at least once in 2013. 

Oh, and no more charitable impulses.


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