• Bridge Ladies

    Bridge Ladies When I set out to learn about my mother's bridge club, the Jewish octogenarians behind the matching outfits and accessories, I never expected to fall in love with them. This is the story of the ladies, their game, their gen, and the ragged path that led me back to my mother.
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The Sky Was Yellow and The Sun Was Blue

I had a really nice lunch date today. What constitutes a good lunch?

1)  your date is wearing a lovely summer frock

2)  your date has a lovely accent

3)  your date has kindly offered to come to your neighborhood

4)  your date likes the sound of your projects (or pretends to)

5)  your date quickly decides on an entree when the waiter asks if you’re ready even though she isn’t

6)  your date dishes, but not so much that you distrust her

7)  your date doesn’t gasp in horror when you allow that your publishing career began in 1985

8 ) she subtly signals that you have some spinach on your cheek, and she looks away while you claw it off.

9)  she doesn’t check her iphone or blackberry during the meal

What did you have for lunch?

52 Responses

  1. My appetizer was a wrap-up of a second reading of Barnett-Hart’s “The Story of the CDO Market Meltdown: An Empirical Analysis,” which was very chewy and somewhat tart and astringent.

    My entree was Schulz’s “The Street of Crocodiles,” a rich and decadent many-layered torte with hints of tobacco, cinnamon, and lust.

    For dessert I had a 127-second nap, then it was back to the law mines to hew out another sixteen tons of statute and precedent.

  2. That sounds lovely and civilized. I LOVE people who tell you about the spinach. For lunch today, I choked down a sunbutter and jelly sandwich (peanut allergy) in my steaming hot car on the way home from the neighborhood splash pad, which is basically a water park for toddlers.

  3. I had a chicken club salad, with red onion, grape tomatoes, cucumber, cheese and bacon. It was gorgeous.

    But the best part was that I’d brought it with me to work and didn’t have to leave the safety of my artificial, air-conditioned habitat to forage.

    Going outside bfore dusk around here is like stepping into an overheated dog’s mouth . . .

  4. A small repast with
    the cross word puzzle;
    several moments outside
    with the dog;

    A dash to the car
    quick! turn on the AC!
    Lunch, in few minutes
    was gone.

  5. I had an open-faced sandwich: melted taleggio on half a ciabatta (someone brought a toaster oven to the office last week), topped with a salad of spinach, grapes and red onions in a wine vinaigrette. For dessert I had an orange.

    I read your blog while I ate it. Sorry about the splatters.

  6. Tuna.

  7. Lunch today was unusually great. I ate cold tortellini with pesto and garlic, and a mini Mounds bar. I also had a very smug moment with myself, having spent the morning writing, not my usual fare. In addition, I had a weird email from a guy who reads my blog and told me what I should do with it instead of what I do. My current blog post is my response but first I wrote him a very gracious letter saying, no thanks. Good company, good food. Unusual.

  8. I dared to eat a peach.

  9. Fabulous business meals today for me as well.

    Chickpea dressing on flatbread for lunch and some equally vegan-sounding, yet surprisingly delicious, dinnertime fare culminating in a trip to a dessert place called http://www.pixpatisserie.com/.

    My date was the one with the food on her cheek, but she realized it before I had to point it out.

  10. Pizza in the Embassy basement cafeteria with a guy from the mailroom (Moroccan-French) and a secretary from the Public Affairs section (island French)! They mocked me about something or ‘nother, which was good.

  11. I’m in wine country.. Wine, with girlfriends who laugh, makes a fine lunch, I must say…

  12. Does she know Dylan? Has she read Heart of Darkness? Ever heard of Hazel Motes? Travis Bickle? Can she end the sentence “Forget it Jake–“? Does she know whence comes, historically, the phrase “Peace with honor”? Does she know where (on the planet, not the body) Malcom X was shot? Does she know what day World War II began in Europe? Can she name at least 5 of the democratically elected regimes we’ve helped overthrow since the end of that war? Can she state in one brief sentence why we were attacked on 9/11 and “they hate our freedom” doesn’t count. Does she think Sex in the City was a good show? (This is not the same question as whether one enjoyed watching it.) Frocks, schmocks you can’t trust the young. PS People who can order that way — and granted, it is socially graceful to the max — don’t actually care about food. Which is good, but alien.

    • ….And can he draw me into these conversations because I find him interesting and listen to what I’m saying and not just sit across from me thinking about strategies to ‘try’ and blow my theories to hell?

      Btw, I bought Conrad because of you, Vince.

  13. PPS Do you ever just want to thank the little people, even though a.) they haven’t done much for you and b.) you haven’t won anything? Hmm? That bird hasn’t. Wouldn’t even occur to her.

  14. Yeah but was said lunch in the French countryside? Come over here for lunch Betsy and I promise to tell you if you’ve got brie on your face.

  15. I think I need to get out more. Either that or find a new grocery store.

    Toasted bagel with cheese and tomato,but a supermarket bagel – only kind I can get out here in the sticks.

    (PS – Betsy, I’m working on the accent)

  16. Lunch is too civilized for the likes of me. I did manage a few scraps of matzoh with hummus as I was reloading the dishwasher. Don’t roll your eyes. This was a good day. Usually I just throw a handful of cheddar fish crackers in my mouth and call it a meal.

  17. My date is always dressed immaculately and the breeze ruffles our umbrella.

  18. Leftover pasta. But then for dinner, I had friends come to my neighborhood and eat with me. We ate outside and it was lovely. What is this foreign feeling of satisfaction?

  19. Beef chow fun, read One Story.

  20. A California chicken salad then played Mah Jongg with a group of funny old retired teachers. We laugh more than we play. Nobody remembers whose turn it is and nobody cares who wins.

  21. My lunch was a really good sub sandwich which I didn’t have to pay for and my date ( a rather good looking writer) had actually bought and read my novel. That he had bother to read it was more exciting than the fact that he like my work and that the sandwich was good.

  22. The rare times we go out, I am astounded by the amount of people eating and instead of making small talk, intimate talk or silence, they are checking their phones.

    The art of silence is being lost in a culture who would rather be checking Facebook than listening after they’ve asked you, “How’s your day?”

    I’m happy for you that you got someone’s full attention, and that they loved your project. Well deserved.

    • We were at Fenway Park on the 4th and the couple next to us texted the entire game. The only noise from them was his aggravated sigh when we and the people on our other side stopped the water guy and he had to pass our bottles down the line.

  23. Cous cous with raisins, sauteed onions, red peppers and tomatoes, lightly spiced with saffron and some cumin, some very sweet mint tea and a goat milk custard for dessert. Shavings of hashish in an old wooden pipe…

  24. A soupçon of humility served on a bed of hubris and washed down with a fine whine.

  25. After reading all these comments describing delicious food, I can’t remember and my food tracking thingy is no help because I’ve developed the bad habit of lying to it.

    • Lying to your food tracking thingy is the first misstep on the slippery slope. Before you know it, you’ll be writing fiction.

    • Oh my god, I started doing that on myfitnesspal and I was loath to report my alcohol consumption. It’s like lying to your therapist, right? Like, do I really want the frowny face opining on my two martinis?

  26. I gobbled a whale
    I swallowed a rock
    I ate a poem
    I’m focked. So focked.

  27. To paraphrase Mr. Elliott in “Persuasion,” that is not good company; that is the best.

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