Thursday, February 12, 2009

This time - with Gusto!


Happy Friday my friends, my followers. This was the week that was. We are at the winding down of it. Here we have the week end. It's time to celebrate and to prepare for the coming week. Once in awhile you come across something that lets you realize how much time has passed. Mostly we are intent on our duties, and what projects we are trying to accomplish and we seem to forget that as we move along - we are indeed passed over by time.

I remember feeling such a thing - when I was just becoming a teenager. The weird part is, it was an episode of Laverne and Shirley on TBS that caused me to reflect.

It was nineteen eighty-eight. The summer before I started the 8th grade, and in Alaska the sun is up nearly all the time. I remember distinctly that it was between the hours of two and three in the morning. The sky was still orange, as the sun was barely under the vast tundra horizon. I had gotten up to get a drink from the fridge, and the Laverne and Shirley show started with that damn catchy theme song.

I walked to the window in the breakfast nook, and was looking at the pale blue hue reflection of the semi-shadows on the neighbors houses. Just as Laverne and Shirley were doing it their own way - and the glove was on its way down the bottling track. I went on my way to reflect that twelve years had gone by in my life. It had been at least seven or eight years since L&S were showing regularly.

Such a feeling of antiquity and nostalgia were welling up - I thought to myself; why am I even thinking this way? I'm twelve years old, soon to be thirteen - but I remembered laying in my parents bed as a four or five year old, nestling against my mother and just feeling safe, loved, and loving. Realizing that I would not be able to do that anymore - at least no self-respecting teenager I knew would. So I would not either. The feeling soon passed as I changed the channel to Star Gazers on PBS and was cursing the fact that we lived in a place were we could not see all the cool star phenomena during the summer months. Oh well Jack Horkheimer you will have to do the looking up for me this time round.
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When Pasta Was Spaghetti
Michael Savage

The hairy forearms of New York serve you your coffee with a turning gesture.
An offering that says: "Drink. Eat. Enjoy."

The wiry Italian in Vincent's Clam Bar,
The one behind the greased over register.
The young kid, connected,
who receives his deference from the Spaghetti Cook
older than his gangster father.

The Spaghetti Cook,
who looks like an old fashioned doctor from the Bronx,
with clipped mustache.
He actually pulls some noodles out of the pot,
and eats them as they cook.
Looking to the grimy ceiling
for his tender answer.
Well.
They used to call it Spaghetti.
Now it's Pasta at ten bucks a plate.

The smokey windows of Romeo's Spaghetti.
Now offers radios and knik-knacks.
It was fifty-cents a plate then.
In neon letters that you couldn't miss;
Even through a fogged-over window
on a cold winters eve.
There was life.

Marinara sauce that smacked of the sea.
Noodles as long as your young arm.
Meatballs as fluffy as your dream of them.
Bread on the table, you'd eat
against your parents admonitions that:
"The meal was coming. The meal was coming."

And men.
Some burly with black hairy forearms
whose smile scared you.
And little skinny guys
with the look of murder on their faces.
And people - who slurped their spaghetti
straight to their mouths
from the plate;
One motion
like Chinese shoveling rice at mouth
with clicking sticks.

That was gusto - before it became a beer ad.
That was taste - before it became a synonym for fashion.
That was spaghetti - before it became PASTA.
Excerpt from Psychological Nudity by Michael Savage

4 comments:

Steven M. Adami said...

Well, I'm sure you were happy when you got to college and you had a roommate who wanted to snuggle in bed with you during his night terrors and call you "mommy".

Eskimo Bob said...

It was reassuring, but lacked the homey feel. There is no substitution or going back again.

Sweet Cheeks said...

Bob...I loved that post. I remember sleeping with my mom during summers when I was about that same age. Very comforting. I'm proud of you...you family game night basher! ;-)

Hope your weekend is great!

Eskimo Bob said...

Thanks Sweet Cheeks (yes, I am hitting on you).

Weekend is so far so good. I reciprocate the wish.