I usually have to be forced to go to parties, and always try to back out at the last minute and then have a moment of panic before going in...BUT this weekend I was persuaded to go to one of those Scene parties where you know and almost know a lot of people. I had fun, not least because Slim enjoys everything so wholeheartedly. What's more, we had a new friend - whom Slim met in a vintage shop - who proved to be one of those social creatures who relishes meeting people and dances with no self-consciousness whatsoever. He was darling and at the end of the day lots of other people are, too. Or was I in a benevolent mood? Certainly feeling philosophically inclined, having just come from a sherry with a friend who impressed upon me the importance of aesthetics - sensibility-wise, that is.
What a contrast was the next evening! We had a few of Slim's friends over for birthday drinks. I must say, it's very rewarding to cook for gluttons: they really relished the two casseroles of mac & cheese, roast tomatoes, salad, pumpkin pie and cake I made. (Later on, Slim and Frank made a concoction of pumpkin piue filling, brandied whipped cream and cake crumbs; they also fried some of the leftover mac and cheese in bacon fat.) The cake was, of course, a wine cake, which is the official birthday cake in my mother's family. It's so good that I'll tell you how to make it:
-Mix 1 box yellow cake mix with a large instant vanilla pudding (or a regular box plus a few T), a cup of oil, 5 eggs, and 3/4 cup of sherry. Bake it in a bundt pan at 375 for about 45 minutes. Then, while still in the pan, poke the cake's bottom all over with a skewer. Make a glaze from about 1 C powdered sugar and enough sherry to thin it and pour this over. Let it sit about 15 minutes. Then turn it out, poke the cake all over, and pour on more glaze. Sounds vile, is the best thing ever.
Sunday we slept late, then had brunch at the new market-driven hipster spot in the area. It was pretty good: a pleasant vibe, Heart etc. on the box, of course a few too many familiar faces. I had the eggs, which came with a choice of 2 sides (I had baked tomatoes and bacon.) My poached eggs, while organic etc., were too hard, and the home fries are the french fry type I don't like. Also, they only have espresso drinks rather than coffee. However, Slim liked his gravlax a lot and the whole experience was pleasant. We took a long walk and it was a nice Sunday...and then.
I had a movie date to see Twilight with two friends, semi-ironically. I headed to Carroll Gardens, stopped by the store with some pumpkin whoopie pies from One Girl, and met my friends. The setup couldn't have been better: we were surrounded by young teens who were almost overcome with excitement. I didn't know much about the movie and have no interest in vampires, but I was quickly riveted: I can't remember being more satisfied by a viewing experience! And oh my gosh the chemistry! Unfortunately, then there was a scene with a lot of bleeding and in what I think may have been a humiliating incident of hyper-empathy for Bella, the teenage heroine, I got very woozy, stumbled out of the theatre and promptly fainted on the floor outside the bathroom. I came to to find a bunch of people yelling at me; someone - I think not an employee - was saying that I'd had a heart attack. I tried to explain that I hadn't and not to call an ambulance, but it's hard to recover at first from the nausea and wooziness and it took a few moments to get me settled against the wall with some flat coke - when all I wanted was to get back into the theatre to see the PROM SCENE! They wouldn't let me. What's worse, someone insisted on pulling my friends out of the movie, which was the last thing I wanted. Ignominious doesn't begin to describe it. But yeah, Twilight is incredibly good.