Look, I don’t have any title ideas. I should be taking more notes, because I’m positive someone said something funny during the past three days but I sure as shit can’t remember anything except copious food, and time running through my hands like water.
Since last we spoke, the weekend happened. Also, I need to break the habit of double-spacing after a period but it’s so hard to remember. But it makes for ugly formatting, and I heard that people judge you for doubling up, and it’s one of the ways people can tell you’re secretly elderly. But the way people are, that probably means that soon hipsters will adopt it and double-spacing will be like riding a fixie or drinking pour-over coffee.
Zach got home before me on Friday night, which is one of my favorite things on the planet after the fact that he exists, dogs, and food. He texted me while I was at work and asked, “Cheesy pasta for dinner?” because he knew I’d had a rough week. Cheesy pasta is my number one food love of all time, and the way to my happiness is through my gullet. I ended up asking for linguine with sausage and peppers, because it’s one of my mom’s favorite meals and I’ve been so whiny about missing my family. In the 90s there was this restaurant near our house called The Italian Oven, and we went there once a week for years and years. The restaurant had many excellent qualities including:
- a floor-to-ceiling transparent plastic tube filled with dried noodles of varying shapes with a placard indicating it was the “Leaning Tower of Pasta”
- a window in front of the wood-fired oven which you could decorate with your choice of Crayola marker, so you could write “HEY OVEN GUY” backwards or draw your name in bubble letters
- the best garlic bread ever invented, which was really just a cheesy garlic pizza
- a tablecloth made of paper, along with plentiful crayons so you could draw on the freakin’ table
- waitstaff who could all write their names upside down in crayon
- packets containing string and pasta so that you could make a pasta necklace
- bucatini straws (which always ended up mushy but you didn’t care because it was awesome)
- gorgonzola salad dressing, which made salad actually taste good
- pasta with sausage and peppers, with thinly-sliced spicy Italian sausage that was so goddamn good my mom once bought a TEN POUND box of it because that was the smallest size the distributor sold. We never did eat all of it and eventually our freezer broke so we even got to claim that expensive-ass sausage on our insurance and get reimbursed for it.
Jax (my mom) got that pasta nearly every time we ate there, so it always reminds me of her. Zach has never had the original dish, but he is a kitchen prodigy and has mastered this dish (and everything else, ever). It was late as hell when we ate so my lighting was not great, but the pasta was delicious and I haven’t cried since I had it so I think it was also magical.
Saturday after work, our friends Ashleigh and Jim were having a housewarming-and-graduation party. They even invited the littlest member of the family, Skeeter Scootee, because Ashleigh may or may not have plans to dognap him. We have two dogs, but Skeeter is the only one who isn’t an asshole to other dogs, so he gets to go places sometimes. He isn’t great at riding in the car, but this time I made it to the party with minimal scratches, so I think he’s improving. Jim and Ashleigh have a little bald dachshund named Leia, and she is one of my favorite dogs who isn’t related to me. So if Ashleigh does somehow sneak off with Skeet, I have a plan to liberate Leia. (YOU HEAR ME, ASHLEIGH???) Skeeter had an excellent time because everyone loves him, and one dude in particular was being really generous with the tortilla chips.
After the party Zach made one of my favorite dinners that is not mostly butter; salmon and Brussels with sriracha cream sauce, atop some brown rice. It sounds healthy (doesn’t it? I can’t really tell anymore. I’m like, “Burger without bacon? And deprive myself?) but the textures and flavors are all winners, and you get to tell the whole internet that you ate Brussels sprouts for dinner.
As far as Saturday clothing, this is the outfit I’d been planning to wear last week but it seemed too short for work. As evidenced by my face, I was still unsure about wearing it in public but now that I’m looking at these, it looks pretty damn regular and not ass-revealingly short.
Yesterday we had some folks come over for brunch, and I would like very much to go back in time and do that again. Y’all know I can’t lie to you, so to be fully honest I took this picture after I ate, of food that I did not actually eat, because I got all wrapped up in the excitement of mealtime and friends that bloggery was not at the forefront of my mind. Guests contributed the quiche and the cinnamon rolls, Zach made bacon, sausage, and Crash Hot Potatoes (which disappeared completely), and I whipped some coconut cream to go on top of fruit. I had an iced latte with Bailey’s, and everyone else had mimosas and bloody Marys. After everyone left, the hosts ended up asleep on the couch. Since we napped so hard, we didn’t think about dinner until it was so late that going out was no longer an option. Also things in the greater Decatur area don’t stay open past 9 on Sundays, which limits the late-night choices. Zach had a hankering for a dish they used to make at Parker’s, which is our go-to “fancy” place. It’s not like, tie-required fancy, but it’s a nice place to go to celebrate. We like to sit at the bar and order a couple apps and split an entree, which has traditionally been the flatiron steak with lobster mac & cheese and asparagus. Since we couldn’t get the OG, Zach improvised. We skipped the lobster and added a baked potato (with some bacon left over from breakfast!).
Today we have kept with the theme of the weekend and eaten things. I’m so glad eating is required to be alive, because I really enjoy it a lot. I heard that Sublime finally had their act together and was serving Cloud Coffee at the new location. We wanted to get there earlier, but sleep is cool and fun so we did that for a while instead of leaving the house. We finally showed up around 1:30 and I was relieved to see that the ice cream and doughnut cases were both full. I got my beloved Reese’s doughnut (sadly not very photogenic), and ordered a Swizzle Cloud (featuring the flavors of caramel, chocolate, AND vanilla. Yes, I do want to die young.) I think they call it that just to make you feel like a dick for ordering it. I don’t care, I WANT IT. The cashier said that they were out of cold coffee. I’m sorry, but I don’t understand how you can be out of a thing that is easily stored cold for a long time. Just…make more. It lasts like a week! I know, it’s popular, blah blah. But I feel like by now they should know that people like it a lot, considering they’ve been open a while now. I also was under the impression that this was an espresso drink, which is quickly made cold with the addition of ice. Here is a problem with me: I know how to make an iced latte exactly the way I like it, and I keep hoping that paying someone else to do it will result in me ending up with a drink I like. But it never does! I should just make the damn thing myself. I know this in my heart of hearts, but I keep hoping.
Zach wanted a nitro cold coffee, but that was the thing they were out of so he couldn’t have one of those. I watched the lady making my coffee and she seemed pretty irritated because the process looked to be a lot more complicated than necessary. It involved a French press, multiple Lexans, a bar spoon, and did not appear to ever require the addition of cold coffee or even hot espresso. I realized too late that I didn’t specify I wanted a large (I know, I’m what’s wrong with America. I really am sorry.), but when I looked back at the menu it didn’t list multiple sizes for any of the cloud-based beverages. When she handed over the drink, I was so glad to own it that I slurped it down happily. But on subsequent sips, it didn’t taste like it contained coffee or was even coffee-adjacent. Since I only had it once at the Westside location, I don’t know which one I had was made correctly, or if either of them even were. The Westside one was delicious but the dudes working there seemed to be struggling to make it, too, so it could be different every single time!
After doughnuts we needed real food so we kept going down North Druid Hills and turned left at Buford Highway to pay Havana a visit. I hadn’t been there before, so I can’t tell you how the new version compares to their pre-fire sandwich, but I really enjoyed it. The bread was crusty, the meats were tender, and the total for two sandwiches and a soda was under $20. The staff wasn’t friendly and the bathroom smelled terrible (not like bathroom stuff but maybe deeper plumbing issues) but a couple sandwiches to go would be a great lunch or dinner option if you’re in the area.
Before I let you go, here are some old outfits that came up over the weekend. Aww, look at baby Alison in that blue dress. She knows nothing about anything.