It had been cold in the office on Tuesday–but my “office” in this sense is a corner of a very large multi-purpose parish center with 16-foot-high ceilings, so it’s hard to control the heating. If I could move my desk onto a 10-foot-tall platform, I might benefit from the rising of warm air, but that seems more trouble than it would be worth, since the “desk” I use most often is a grand piano. But the “office” was quiet, and I got plenty of work done, albeit done while wearing a scarf and wishing I’d brought my fingerless gloves.
I thought about dinner on my drive home. She’d had a ham-and-swiss sandwich with caramelized onions for lunch. I had planned to have one, too, but ended up in a lunch meeting with a collaborator–rotisserie chicken over salad greens. The sandwich seemed like a great idea, and I’d be at home to eat it which meant I could toast the kaiser roll, heat the ham, and melt the cheese.
What would go great with that, I thought, is a nice glass of red wine.
I arrived home, picked up the mail, found her for a kiss hello, petted the cats, and set about gathering sandwich fixings.
A nice glass of red wine.
I trimmed some green beans and tossed them in a sauté pan with a few carrot coins and a couple slices of potato from the pot roast. I toasted the roll. I set the vegetables on a plate to keep warm in the oven while I finished making the sandwich. I went back to the fridge for a little mayo, still thinking, a nice glass of red wine would go great with this.
And then I saw a half-full bottle of Vitamin Water.
…or that would be just as good.
I poured half the bottle into a glass, topped it with tap water, put the glass and my dinner on a tray, and carried it up to join her.
Richard Rodgers was, from many reports, a heavy drinker. Alan Jay Lerner was addicted to amphetamines. Stephen Sondheim smoked a lot of pot.
And for me?
A glass of watered-down Vitamin Water. Zero. Not even the full-sugar stuff! Half a glass of nutrient-enhanced kool-aid, watered down because it’s too sweet when I drink it straight.
I’m no Rodgers. No Lerner. No Sondheim. No Eugene O’Neill. No Tennessee Williams.
I ate a sandwich with a plate of vegetables, I drank a theoretically healthy beverage. I carried the tray back to the kitchen and put the plate and glass in the dishwasher. Apparently I’m no good at the whole tortured-artist thing.
No Tonys, no Emmys, no Grammys, no Oscars. No rehab. No cirrhosis. Such is my semi-debauched life.
I guess I can live with that.
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