Colder than it looks

Odin eats the generic Oreos for lunch with the gusto of a starving man who had been sucking bark post-apocalypse and had just found a box of generic Oreos in the back pocket of a mail carrier slaughtered by a rampaging mob back before the zombies killed all the mobs.

Walking is a little complicated. He has to pin a box of Greek salad (getting in the mood for a pre-Easter week in Crete) under one arm, hold the box of cookies in one hand and simultaneously twist cookies apart, eat the halves without frosting, press the frosting-halves together to make whole cookies with double frosting and eat them, without getting hit by a car or spotted by a crow. If his mobile phone rang he’d fall apart.

The day is beautiful, beautiful, beautiful. Colder than it looks, sunny, and Friday before a week of vacation. Family doing well, hobbies doing okay, sort of a general feeling of… despairlessness that is really delicious, in contrast to the cookies which are, seriously, how did our society evolve to such a point, where a grown man eats something like this? And not just any man: Odin, god of the North?


But Odin is without despair. At this very moment, he can feel a new universe pressing in on this one, like a pig at a trough, like a pervert in a subway, like a deaf man in a mosh pit, like a ray of light reflected from a hospital window, like wind on an otherwise still day like those bugs that hop around on the beach like a bird high up like


I barbecued various meats and vegetables this weekend, including various peppers that I bought at the store, and a couple of my own. Mine were spicy red ones that I grew this summer, turned out great, I can barely eat them. The box from the store had a diagram explaining the relative hotness levels of the ones that came in said box. On a scale of 0-10, the ones like the ones from my garden were a 5. The little orange ones were a 0. The slightly bigger orange ones, jalapenos apparently, were 10s.

So of course when a relative came out to our place on his bike, a cousin who is spending the summer in Vienna with an enigmatic organization (not my enigmatic organization, another one) I offered him one. I didn’t even have to insist, he cut off a piece and ate it up.

Him: Wow!

Him: Hyyrrp!

Me: Heh, that’s what everyone does on the youtube videos of people eating jalapenos! The jalapeno hiccup!

Him: Hyyrp!

Me: [Eat a piece] Hyyrp!

Him: Hyyrp! Hyyrp!

Me: Hyyrp! Hyyrp! Hyyrp!

It was like listening to a conversation from Cormac McCarthy’s “The Road” machine-translated into Icelandic.

Jalapenos are hot!

Apparently ghost peppers are much hotter, but I won’t be eating one of those anytime soon, not on purpose.

I gave the left over jalapenos to my daughter for her boyfriend.

Beta. She brought me some extra-hot sambal from Indonesia. When I cut my pork cutlet with the knife I had used to cut the jalapeno, the meat was spicier than when I put the sambal on it.

We don’t eat a lot of spicy food around our house, but I think now that the kids are bigger, it wouldn’t hurt to up the piquancy a little.

Coincidentally, it was the 20th anniversary of Twin Peaks

What is this all over my bag? [tastetaste]

Hm. Pizza sauce. The miniature pizzas I packed for lunch a few days ago were insufficiently wrapped, it seems. Packaging is important. Life reminds us of this occasionally.

So anyway there we were at our friend’s place. Being terrible guests. Late. Lost. But finally there. I was exhausted and could barely stay awake. My wife was making up for it. I felt terrible, though, our friend was running back and forth between the dining table and the kitchen and we just sat there watching.

She brought in food. The musician said something about the spinach when she brought that in, because he didn’t like spinach.

Then she brought in the main course. It looked interesting. It looked like a little alien, skinned and roasted amidst root vegetables. They conversed about it. Apparently it was rabbit, and our hostess was surprised that none of us were into rabbit. Except as pets.

I stared it down. If it moves, I thought, the night will be perfect. If it moves, it will be Eraserhead, I thought.

Come on, move.

But it didn’t move, as far as I could see. We ate it. One friend pleaded vegetarian and just ate vegetables and spinach. Her husband the musician took some rabbit, but just had a taste. He may have had some vegetables. No spinach, though.

Alpha had spinach and vegetables. She took some bunny rabbit, but ate none, not even a taste, maybe because I mentioned that her piece was ear-shaped. I had rabbit and spinach. The spinach was great. I neglected to take other vegetables because I was busy waiting for the pieces of rabbit in the pan to move. A roast rabbit puppet, I thought, would be awesome. You could really have fun with guests. “Here, have some rabbit!” and they stick their fork in, and the rabbit goes “Squeeeee!”

Rabbit is kind of chewy. I suppose because it is a wild animal. If you imagine you are starving in a post-apocalyptic scenario, like The Road, for example, it’s mouth-wateringly delicious. If you imagine you’re sitting around a dining table with friends trying to stay awake, it’s okay, except that it’s rabbit.

If it’s beef, you think the cow doesn’t die so you can eat it? So what’s the difference? Logic, I regret, does not change the fact that it’s rabbit.

Anyway. Staying awake was so hard. The cats had gotten me up at 3:30 that morning, I kept looking at the sofa and wondering if it would be weird if I lay down for a brief nap.

No one else was helping carry dishes back into the kitchen so I helped a little, but I got a late start and it didn’t help much, it sort of just emphasized that no one else had been helping.

Panna cotta. Panna cotta was dessert. One of the guests made a joke about how it resembled raw tofu, but I found it tasty. Is panna cotta complicated to make? I bet it is.

“Would you like coffee?” our hostess asked me, as I sat at the table, eyes narrowed to slits, having a particularly vivid dream while still endeavouring to follow the conversation around me.

“Yes, please,” I said.