At the back of the hill

Warning: May contain traces of soy, wheat, lecithin and tree nuts. That you are here
strongly suggests that you are either omnivorous, or a glutton.
And that you might like cheese-doodles.
Please form a caseophilic line to the right. Thank you.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011


What I actually wanted for lunch was grilled lamb with tzatziki, black olives, tomato, and lemon.
That's not what I had.
Krivaar, which was on Pine Street between Belden Alley and Kearney, closed several months ago. The financial district is bereft.

Lamb got mentioned in many contexts today. Darn that power of suggestion!

While I was having non-lamb that I got somewhere else, I noticed that Vera Pui Chi Ng is, right now, as I write, passionately craving jook to eat.
She wonders if someone can come bring her some.

I feel very deeply for her. We can't always get what we want.

I would bring it, except she's in Holland, I am in San Francisco.

[Jook = 粥. Rice porridge, with varieties such as: 鮑魚滑雞粥 (bao yu kwat kai juk) abalone and chicken jook, 火鴨粥 (fo ngaap juk) jook with roast duck, 生滾蝦球粥 (sang gwan ha kau juk) shrimp curls in jook, 生滾肉片粥 (sang gwan yiuk pien juk) sliced pork jook, 香菇牛崧粥 (heung gu ngau song juk) fragrant mushrooms and pork floss jook, etcetera.
Note: 生滾 (sang gwan), meaning ' fresh boiled', indicating that the shrimp or pork is poached in the heat of the porridge when it is placed in the bowl.
皮蛋: Often jook (粥) will have a preserved egg (pei dan 皮蛋) cut into it, especially if it is made with very lean pork (sau yiuk 瘦肉). Or, more common at home, dried oysters (ho si 蠔豉). The first is called 皮蛋瘦肉粥 (pei dan sau yiuk juk), the latter 蠔豉瘦肉粥 (ho si sau yiuk juk). This is absolutely comfort food. 真好食!]


On an entirely unrelated note, I am the happy recipient of a love letter.
From someone I have never met.
Nor ever will. No intention of.
Especially as I do not know what to call her.

What is 'spam' in Russian?
Is it a surname?


She wrote:

I am someone's perfect girl.
I hoard books.
I read news all the time.
I subscribe to several magazines and newspapers, not because I have time to read all of them, but because I like to think I do.
I'm a self-described coffee and cupcake addict.
I'm not an alcoholic, but I do love good beer, good wine and a good time.
I go to plays and musicals because I love them.
I dance because it's fun.
I sing because that's just what I do.
I kind of hate modern art (something my friends like to poke at when they bring me to various museums).

I overanalyze Lost. I sing along to Glee. I wish I worked at the Buy More.
I'm a nerd, in the "Star Wars is awesome, Star Trek is too, and I think I'd like Battlestar Galactica if I ever got around to watching it" way.
I Love Harry Potter. No, seriously. Love. Capital "L."
I'm probably the biggest sap you'll ever meet.
I find kids and babies adorable. I don't want my own any time soon, but I do want them.
I like pretty things. Shoes. Photographs. Pieces of furniture.
I don't like cats because I'm allergic, but I can't wait for the day that I can get a puppy.

I'm living the dream when it comes to my career, but even I know that there's something more I need to strive for. I just have to figure out what that is.
I love baseball and college football, but fair warning, I'm didn't grow up on the East Coast, so I probably don't like your team(s).
I'm not hot. Pretty, sure. Cute, yes. Hot, not so much. And I'm OK with that.

Wow. But for the puppy thing it sounds absolutely charming. I'm serious!


Her e-mail address is somewhere in France, the "dating is easy" profile link in her missive is hosted in Russia.

So just colour me doubtful.

Now, if she was a petite Cantonese American miss living on Larkin Street or Hyde Street, with a marked fondness for pipes, pipe tobacco, and pipe-smoking men, I might just drop everything and rush to her side.
I would bring extra pipes, in case she wanted to experiment, and extra tobacco.
Everything from blonde Virginia flake and dark VaPers to medium English mixtures and Balkan blends.
Plus extra pipe cleaners.
O yes.

As well as jook.

NOTE: Readers may contact me directly:
All correspondence will be kept in confidence.

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