Thursday, April 27, 2023


Sometimes you feel younger and more vibrant than you really are. Which happens to me a lot. But I rarely let it fool me. Indeed, a pretty woman or a nice plate of cheese will excite me, but I know better than to stumble towards the shiny things. The last time a very sweet young lady spoke to me she called me 'uncle' (阿叔) which brought me crashing down to reality, and I've learned that cheese plates should be approached with caution; too much of a good thing and I'll feel quite a bit older later.

And fortunately I know that my usual caffeine high is deceiving. At some point I'll want a nice nap. Perhaps even right after that last cup of coffee in the evening.

[NOTE: the day starts with one or two cups of reasonably strong coffee, continues with multiple cups of tea throughout the day, and finishes usually with a final cup of coffee in the evening. Which I forgo on ratwatching evenings because by that time I will have had two extra cups of tea and won't get home till around midnight.]

Being in 100% touch with reality is always slightly at odds with my caffeine-influenced mental condition. Which is, more or less, what keeps me sane.

[Plus occasionally indulging in nicotine.]

Civilization didn't get kickstarted till caffeine became common. In China that happened during the Tang Dynasty over a millenium ago, in Europe it had to wait till after the Ottoman armies withdrew from the siege of Vienna and the Dutch introduced tea to high society in Northern Europe during the golden age.
In the Americas it had to wait untill the seventies and eighties when Peets, Starbucks, and the Caffè Trieste in North Beach finally persuaded folks to wake up a bit.
The evidence shows that it still hasn't hit the interior.
It's been a bumpy road so far.

According to a test/survey on the internet, which I took after the second cup of coffee this morning, I am thirty two years old. Quote: "You're only just into your thirties and a badder bitch than ever!" End quote. Spot on!

[Autmated Amber spam-calling me about new healthcare benefits should take note of that! Contrary to what she believes (in several phone calls) I do not yet have Medicare Part A and B, am not living on a fixed income, and am not drawing social security. I am younger than you, bitch. Do NOT connect me to a licensed agent.]

It was based on food preferences. Which are always deceptive. Not only because I sneer at boomer cuisine, but also because I am gustatorily very liberal, and like to indulge in dishes which sane attention to diet and healthy eating would strongly discourage.

I am never-the-less well within my ideal weight.
Remarkable, that.
Fatty chunks of pork (五花肉) red-stewed with soysauce and sherry.

Perhaps I need to eat at home more often. It's been ages since I made this, and when I'm in Chinatown I will usually choose something more sensible for lunch, seeing as there is only one of me at the table, and nowhere to nap afterwards.

What I'm also thinking of cooking is claypot ginger chicken (砂鍋薑絲雞 'saa wo keung si gai', also called 煲仔雞 'pou jai gai'), which, with the addition of some black mushroom and a few slices of sausage, is a very satisfying dish too.

[To be eaten with rice and sambal.]

One of the main reasons to have a dining companion is so that there is a splendid excuse to also order a vegetable dish in addition to the meat. Plus good conversation afterwards will keep one alert, seeing as the cup of strong HK milk tea one had often won't do it.
Might even go to the Caffè Trieste afterwards for a cappucino.

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