Reshuffling the Deck with Loretta

Tomorrow, I’ll be flying to Chicago and then on to Barcelona, for 12 days submerged in a Flavors of Spain experience, a custom-designed trip developed by some very fine folks at KJZZ Radio in Phoenix.

From moment to moment, I’m very excited and slightly terrified.  Mostly because flying alone makes me crazy and unusually religious.  But really because I know this is a life-changing trip. Continue reading

We Got a Little Carried Away – Diary Entry from a Couple of Food Whores

It all began innocently enough.

A friend of ours recently underwent a grueling 10-hour back surgery, when it was expected to only be 6 hours; only by comparison does a 6-hour surgery seem like “not so much.”  You can imagine the mental and physical state of the surgeon at the end of it all.  And the anaesthesiologist.  And her husband, Jim.  And, last but certainly not least, our friend, Stella.

We thought to ourselves, “We should take them a meal or something.”  Continue reading

“At the table, no one gets old.” (old Italian proverb)

Every time someone sends us a Christmas/Holiday card, I’m amazed and pleased.  I’m shocked that people still buy cards, fill them out, pay for stamps, and navigate the icy roads to stick them in the mail.  Cutesy cards, holiday greetings, animal cards, family photo cards, what’s not to love about them all.  And what’s even better Continue reading

Note to Self: Drinking Chianti Does Not Help You Learn Italian

make-wine-disappear

I probably minimize Christmas more than anyone you know.  I like to decorate the house a little bit, but I do that anyway.  I love the seasons and generally seize on any opportunity to add twinkle lights to the inevitable holiday darkness.  I have one glass Christmas tree pin that sits on the lapel of my grey pea coat for a few weeks.  I buy a handful of gifts.  That’s it.  Continue reading

Memories of a Bar Fly

Tucked away, behind a tall stand of trees, a mortuary, and another restaurant called the Figg Tree, was a rustic bar in Phoenix called the Monastery.  I’m not sure when it opened, probably in the late 60s, but I spent a ridiculous amount of time there from the mid-70s through the mid-80s.  Whoever was tending bar always wore a monk’s robe while Continue reading