Thursday, December 1, 2011

Are the Gods Poking Fun at Me?

If the truth be known, the wry portrait of me over there --------->
is a bit out of date, and some excess avoirdupois has collected around my midsection and nether regions.  Quite a lot, in fact, since we're telling the stupid truth so religiously here.  Anyway, I have been living for the past few months on dried twigs and carrot juice, hoping that my belly goes away before my teeth fall out and I die from lack of chocolate and beer.  Especially beer.

So far so good - let's not descend into tawdry specifics - and I console my poor deprived palate with a weekly visit to my favorite restaurant.  The Cajun Cafe on the Bayou is located nearby in fact, but its heart and soul reside in N'awlins, where les bon temps roulent.  Invariably, I sit out on the quiet deck over the bayou, often alone while Judy plays bingo or some such.

So I'm sitting there tonight, brooding.  Brooding, I think, is one of life's true luxuries.  The temperature dips to the low 60s - cold enough if your blood is thin and hungry.  I order a cup of gumbo and a green salad with a little salsa instead of salad dressing.

I'm freezing to death in the dark, eating roughage and three tablespoons of soup.  Next thing I know, the Dalai Lama appears over the bayou, hovering in full regalia.  It's much colder in Tibet, I suppose, so His Holiness looks comfy here in homespun robes.  Not to mention scrawny, but I may be losing perspective.  He wants to award me the Laughing Buddha Award for Pious Virtue. 

I'm pondering my acceptance speech when Steve the Smartass Waiter interrupts: "Will there be anything else, or are you content to sit there sucking the stains out of your napkin?"  I used to tip Steve quite generously.

"Yeah.  Bring me a 20-ounce prime rib, medium rare, and a chocolate cake."

Steve snickers and drops my $9 tab on the table.  The Dalai Lama chuckles quietly, and I leave a $3 tip.



  1. A particularly good post, Newt. Funny!

    I like it there, too, but haven't been there in quite a while. Think I'll go back soon.

  2. You like it in Tibet? Long train ride.

  3. What kills me is the $9 for a cup of soup and a salad!

    I think your hallucinatory state is due to lack of real food. Soup and salad is great as long as it's accompanied by heartier fare.

    Walking gets rid of that over abundant mid-section. Try it, you'll like it. Then you can eat whatever you like...within reason.

  4. Great post Newt! Very, very funny, but as your writing often is, it was also a little deep. I must confess that I experienced a full range of emotions as I read of your celestial taunting. I experienced wonderment at the word avoirdupois, and astonishment that an online profile photo might not be quite “up to date.” I experienced delight as I remembered I still have some Cajun seasonings in the cupboard, and I cried as I realized I have only tofu to sprinkle it on. I rejoiced that I am still allowed beer, and sympathized that some poor souls are not. I marveled that a retired lawyer (especially one adept with a caulking gun) tips his waiter thirty percent, and felt shame that unless my waiter is a waitress whose cleavage spills like wine each time she fills my water glass, I usually don’t.

  5. Pam - Yes, I waddle around a nearby pond almost regularly. Yesterday, I actually got all the freight moving in the same direction at once and at a slightly better than leisurely pace.

    Randy - First comment I ever got that was longer than my post. Hmm - sexist and cheap, two qualities I have always admired. No wonder you're Moody.

  6. Also, in the Cajun's defense, the $9 tab was actually $8.50-something, including $6.50 for a nice twiggy salad and a cup of extraordinary gumbo, plus $1.50 for a bottomless iced tea, and tax. Poetic license. The tip was because I drank about 4 glasses of tea to extend my brooding session.

  7. Keep on truckin', Ev!

    Gumbo sounds great, bottomless tea better. After all that tea, I'm surprised you didn't float across the pond.

  8. POND??! Is Seneca Lake a creek? Are the fjords bays? Does the Pope celebrate Hanukka?

    Cross Bayou is an extraordinary example of that unique southern waterway that makes Louisiana Louisiana. It's tidal and isolated by thick mangrove forests on both sides. Mullet throw themselves out of the water and flop around like - well - fish out of water. Catfish swarm thick enough to boil the water, and migratory birds use the bayou as a main flight corridor.

    From my brooding perch, facing north, there is no sign of civilization as far as you can see. That's no mean feat in a land mass with a population density about the same as your average sardine can.

    The food, what I can eat of it, is superb. Here's a review I did a couple years back.

  9. Oh, one more thing, Randy. The clever use of "avoirdupois" as a euphemism for pork, much as I would like to claim it as my own, was a favorite of the late and much-lamented Roy Lindstrom, a co-worker back in the 70s and a fine friend, gone now these 13 years. So I have not so much a slick way with a phrase as a long memory.