Monday, October 5, 2009

We are fish killers

Ok, so I've been a little lax on the posts lately. I have lots to report. NYC, the death of Momo, and the bubonic plague.

I don't think I mentioned it, but about a month ago, probably on a Michigan Football Saturday, Jack and I were bored out of our minds. I'm sure this is how many first pets are acquired. We drove over to Petco, bought a tank, some fish food, and two goldfish. Momo and Red. Awesome. Jack thought they were pretty cool, but we soon realized that they looked sad and desperate in their little glass box. So back to Petco for some fake plants, some fake rocks,  and water conditioner. Fantastic fake fish habitat. Happy fish, happy baby, happy mom.

Around this time we were getting ready to leave for NYC. My mom was going to fly down to watch Jack. I think I mentioned this whole dealie, right? Ok, so I didn't mention the fish, nor the fact that every house cat my mother has ever owned weighs at least 25lbs. Including me (but in people pounds, not cat pounds) when I graduated from high school. I was a fatty. It's true. She just likes to feed things.

So we leave for NY, and I cry, and then I get there, and I stop crying, and have the best time. I got in at midnight. Nipper, who had flown in earlier in the week, ordered me room service, when I was in the cab on the way from the airport. We stayed up late, and slept in late. We ate scallops and mashed potatoes with brown butter with mache, the first night I was there, and I was like Jack who? Well, not really, but it did feel amazing to have a few days not bracketed my nap time, or meal time, or dirty diaper time.

While Nipper was in meetings I walked through the Museum of Natural History. I confronted my fear of the whale exhibit. I have a fear of looming objects. I'm not sure if this is named phobia, but I've got it. Things like cruise ships, hot air balloons, dirigibles, children's rafts floating above me in a pool if I'm under water. Get it? LOOMING things. Not like skyscrapers or tall people. I guess they have to be somewhat unstable thing. The mother of all of these things in the whale exhibit. I'm pretty sure we went there when I was a kid, and it might be where it all started. The thing is just ridiculously large. I mean why does anything that big need to be suspended from a glass ceiling. And why does it's eye unnerve me so? But I did it. Sort of. I didn't go underneath it. I'm not crazy, but I did walk along the side of it, on the upper tier and I looked it in the eye. If it had fallen, crushing all those people underneath, I would have swooned and then I would have had a very hard time not shouting from the balcony "TOLD YOU!" I was even able to snap this iphone picture. Take that whale!

My good friend Misao, who I've known since I was 8 years old was in town for a wedding. Our good friend Paige and her family moved back to NYC from London last year, and so we were all able to meet for brunch on Saturday, and then walk the High Line.

I can't say enough good stuff about this park. Check out the website, and then the next time you are in NY, go there, eat lunch, or take a cup of coffee and walk it. Or sit on a bench and play penuchle, or people watch, or building watch. But seriously, go there. Awesome. Kind of gave me a few hours where I didn't feel like the world was being taken over by dumb dumbs. Hope in a NYC park. Who knew.

After our huge brunch, and walk, I did a little shopping. I did not go in here,  Because I knew it would only cause misery and suffering all around:

By our hotel in Soho, I spotted Comptoir Des Cottoniers. I was so excited to see this boutique. I bought a dress by them in Paris before Jack was born, and they've only just recently opened this store here in the states. So, hooray for me. I tried on 7000 little French wool things that I would NEVER wear in LA, and settled on just a few little things for just in case it drops below 73 degrees, and I want to feel like Jean Seberg.

Ok, so what else did I eat? Oh right, everything. It's not like we don't have good food here in LA. We have great food. It's just different. And you have to drive to get it. If I could walk to Mozza, I'm guessing I would eat there more often. As I was walking back to the hotel, I was a little hungry, so ran into the Cupping Room for an H&H bagel. I know New Yorkers have their favorite bagels, and some of you probably think H&H's are the worst. But I don't think you understand what we are dealing with out here in LA. Soft, doughy, bland, bloated monstrosities. Terrible. Plus to be able to determine that I was hungry at 5:30, but not for dinner, and it didn't matter what anyone else wanted, so I could eat a bagel, was very liberating.

Later that night we went to Mary's Fish Camp. There was some debate about wether to go there or Pearl Oyster Bar, or Ed's Lobster Bar.  Mary's won, because it was almost midnight, and I was starving, and we had been there before, and I wasn't feeling adventurous. I made them kill a lobster. I saw them do it. Then they grilled it, and I dipped it in butter and ate it, and I have absolutely no remorse. That dude had it coming. We got the last strawberry shortcake, and it was ridiculous. I think I've thought about that shortcake every day since then. It wasn't one of those spongey syrupy deals. It was a sweet biscuit with fresh whipping cream, and perfect strawberries. I might need to try to replicate that for dessert tonight.

On Sunday, after brunch at Bubby's, we needed a walk. Nipper had eaten his pancakes, and then (poor baby) had to finish my lobster omelette, because I was full. He was a man filled with regrets. I had told my mother that if I could make it to Babycakes in Nolita, I would get her a cupcake. She had gotten me their cookbook a few months back, and I wanted to see what it was all about before I invested in agave nectar and spelt. SO we walked, and walked, and walked. And at one point, I thought there is no way that this place is in THIS neighborhood. We were in some kind of rotting cabbage tin garbage can hell. Then on the very next block there was an Earnest Sewn boutique on the corner, and there it was was Babycakes!

It's hard to describe my surprise at how good their sweets are. Nipper and I aren't food snobs. But I think we both have an aversion to anything that is supposed to be yummy, but is in fact "good for you". There's always a sad aftertaste, and you KNOW that it's not really chocolate. But this, is really chocoloate. Their chocolate brownies, and chocolate brownie cupcakes were SO chocolatey, that we sat there stunned, chewing and looking at eachother. Really? This is what gluten free tastes like? The shop is tiny, and adorable, and one of the girls wears a pink waitress outfit, like the kind Flo wore on Alice. ADORABLE. When we ordered a few things to go, they put it in a pale pink box, that is right up there with the Laduree packaging, and made me want to take dozens and dozens home on the plane with me. Needless to say I'll be stocking up on my agave, spelt, and cane juice. Oh, and the best part. I checked their website, and they are opening up a shop in downtown LA!!! Wahoooo!

Ok, so that brings me to our homecoming. This is getting kind of long, so I'll try to make it brief. Because the eating we did in NY, is way more interesting than the red death that fell over our house upon return.

When we were at Mary's Fish Camp on Saturday night, we got a text, a phone, call, and an email from my mother. She and Jack were both sick, and she thought she should have our hotel's phone number, in case she couldn't get ahold of us on our cellphones. Uhm, merde. I sent her the info, checked to make sure she was ok, and tried to will myself not to think about it. Is this the kind of thing I was worried about when I got on the plane? NO. I knew she could handle most anything. I was more worried about stuff like freak subway accident that kills both of us, and Jack is raised by the Avenues gang. You know, run of the mill mom conerns.

Their illness was yucky, but brief, and by the time we got home Monday afternoon, everyone was fine. Everyone but Momo the goldfish. In fairness to my mother, he was acting strange before we left. Hiding behind his rock, floating listlessly around the tank. But when we returned the tank was super cloudy, and Momo was decidedly not well. I assume there was some serious fish feeding going on while we were gone. But I think what did Momo in, was "dropsy". This is a real thing! I thought it was an early 20th century euphemism for a lady being a drinker. Momo passed late Tuesday night, or early Wednesday morning. Not that I'd know, because I was too busy puking my guts out. That's right. I said it.

I don't think there is anything worse than throwing up, except maybe throwing up in the middle of the night. This went on until about noon the next day. Nipper started around 6 am. Did I mention my mom was supposed to fly home at 3 that day. Nipper and I were laying in bed half conscious when she sent me a text from downstairs. "Maybe I should stay a few days?" THANK YOU!!!

My mom is in many ways like a Terminator. She had polio when she was a kid. I think that and perhaps her dad being Popeye, (see exhibit a below) combined to make her a really strong person. She doesn't get novocaine when she gets her teeth drilled. Me, I want to be knocked out when I arrive at the dentist for a cleaning. So I don't know how she got through Saturday alone, sick, with a sick toddler. I could not leave my bed for a full day.

My mom's dad Popeye. I mean grandpa...

It took two days for us to clear poor dead Momo out of the tank. By which time, Red was hiding up by the filter, pointing with his fin "DEAD FISH! DEAD FISH!!!" Sorry Red. On Friday, I went back to Petco for a fish net, a tank cleaning siphon, a bucket, and a new fish. Momo 2 Electric Bugaloo. We're about $200 in for these $3 fish at this point. If another one dies, I'm tempted to tell Jack that the fish tank fairy came and took them away. When I brought them home, I was all "I feel like such a parent!". Now I just feel like a bad example.

New York was great. Jack was great for my mom, even with the barfing. Nipper and I were not disappeared like some crazy liberal dreamers under Pinochet. I told Nipper we should do something like that every year. A few days for he and I to sleep, and eat, and look at stuff. You know grown up time. We missed Jack like crazy, but in a good way. Of course, I'm sure I'll cry my eyes out the next time we go away, but maybe just a little bit less.

No comments:

Post a Comment