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Sunday, November 16, 2014

Foie Gras and Hunks

Had a dream where I was working at that old, dark, basement, back ally, Back Bay pressroom — the place I worked for ten long, interesting years.

In Chimera World the shop was on the first floor, rocking floor to ceiling windows. All interior walls were glass too so sunshine penetrated every corner. The place was filled with glorious, bright, natural light AND all my old work buddies were there. This dream was off to a promising start!

The manager,  who I liked and respected, had just come back from new baby leave. He was different now. Instead of being a stoop postured, short, skinny, geeky type, sporting bow tie and tweed jacket, he was over six feet and built like a Hunk-o-Mania dancer. Fatherhood seemed to agree with him. Steve filled out his snug coverall somethin’ sweet. Joe Manganiello and Hugh Jackman come to mind — two men who, in waking life, Steve would never, EVAH be mistaken for.

Odd. Strange even for my surreal and whack sandman journeys.

Weirded out, I moved on and was talking with my pal Joe. We made dinner plans. Joe’s a down to earth, jeans and T kind of a guy — me too (but with lady bits). I showed up all casualed out as usual. Joe? He was sporting a crisp dark suit with a subtly colorful, skinny tie. ‘the hell? AH, we were going to L’Espalier — a joint that serves caviar, “flights” of cheese and foie gras. It’s the type of canteen with a special dessert chef whose “creations” are referred to as "artistic" and “whimsical.”

This is a place so posh there's a page on their website devoted to their wine “philosophy” (mind you, I like their philosophy. I agree with it but, doesn’t it sound just utterly pretentious? No? Y’all must be used to much tonier eateries than I).

Don’t let my myriad scare quotes fool you — I’d love to hit a joint like that sometime but I’d need to:
  1. emotionally prepare for stepping into such a very different universe.
  2. buy an outfit or risk not being allowed entry
  3. carefully read the menu beforehand. Do they serve anything vegetarian/vegan or is it all quail eggs, crab cylinders, Wellfleet oysters and Roasted Colorado rack of lamb with Merguez sausage?
So yeah, unlikely I’ll be dropping by their hamburger stand anytime soon.

By the by, I had to look up foie gras. I wasn’t sure what it was and //shudder// it’s not something I would’ve wanted to eat even when I was a meat nosher.

From PETA’s Foie Gras: Delicacy of Despair page:
To produce “foie gras” (which literally means “fatty liver”), workers ram pipes down male ducks’ or geese’s throats two or three times daily and pump as much as 4 pounds of grain and fat into the animals’ stomachs, causing their livers to swell to up to 10 times their normal size. Many birds have difficulty standing because of their engorged livers, and they may tear out their own feathers and cannibalize each other out of stress.
The site specifically mentions their investigation of Hudson Valley Foie Gras in New York. NOT pretty. Click the linkie and read more if you can stand it. And yes, this is where L'Espalier gets their fancy, fatted duck livers.

What the fuck was up with my subconscious last night?

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