Saturday, February 24, 2018


Sometimes I want more out of life. Yesterday shortly after one o'clock I had a meltdown. For a few minutes it seemed as if nothing was going right, ever, I would never have enough money, everything had turned sideways, no one loved me, my body was getting older and more bothersome, the climate was conspiring against me, and I could not find the tobacco I wished to smoke after lunch in Chinatown.

My coat pongs of cigars from work, my clothes are old and ratty, and I hate trudging up the hill to do laundry, I am old goldarnit.
Fudge it all, I shall stink.

Half an hour later I was sitting down to garlicky pork chops and rice, plus hot sauce, and damned glad no one had seen my tantrum. It is undignified for someone so close to sixty to act that way.

Yeah, I still feel that the love of a good woman would make everything else more bearable -- and I did find the tobacco I wanted to smoke -- but pork chops improve one's mood immeasurably too.
Especially when an arctic wind blows in off the ocean.
I just cannot hack this weather.

On the other hand, neither can anyone else in SF.

Normally we have neither extreme heat nor extreme cold. Most of the year our climate ranges between sweaters and shirtsleeves. We rely on a medium range, and things feel wrong when it is beyond that.

I should probably repair this coat and wash it. Four pockets, one of which conveniently holds two pipes and a pouch when I'm wandering around.
It looks like hell (and smells bad, because of the cigars at work), but other than the hyper-sensitive noses of old biddies on the bus, no one else seems to object. And realistically the chances of meeting a vibrant young thing half my age who thinks I'm hot stuff and just what the doctor ordered would not be improved one iota if I were to replace it with something more dashing and cleaner.

I am not social enough to want random strangers to be impressed with my appearance. Chances are they would say something unbalanced and loopy anyhow. And be offended by my pipe.

The folks at the places where I go regularly probably don't even notice.

I am just not remarkable.


Last Friday (Chinese New Year): grilled pork and garlic noodles (燒豬肉蒜麵 'siu jyu yiuk suen min'). Tuesday: Plum vegetable fatty pork over rice (梅菜扣肉,飯;'mui choi kau yiuk', 'faan'). Wednesday: Baked ham and chicken rice, with white sauce (焗火腿雞絲飯,白汁;'guk fo teui kai si faan', 'paak jap'). This Friday (yesterday): baked garlic sauce pork chops and rice (焗蒜茸豬扒飯 'guk suen yung jyu baa faan').
Note that 蒜茸 is a mis-spelling of 蒜蓉。

"Oh, I just LOVE the smell of a pipe. It reminds me of old farts and crusty European eccentrics. Old school, don't you know. So last century."

Yeah, that's gonna happen.

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Anonymous said...

Sehr geehrter Herr Van der Pervert,

Schluss mit dem Bellyaching.

You still have it very good.

Imagine you lived not in that glittering courtesan of a city called San Francisco but in East Jesus, Alabama. No Chinatown, no decent tobacconist, no fine tipple, tea or coffee, no bookshops and (occasionally) intelligent conversation but non-stop Trumpistas in trailer parks, NRA rallies, Captain Black in a corn cob, NASCAR races, whining Country and Western music, and weekly visits to the Reverend Billy Bob's Church of the Holy Happening for moral correction.

Need a woman to sort you? You'd be married to Honey Sue Carter Hawkins who would look like "a refrigerator with a head" and pop out for you dozens of dim witted children.



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