Aging Gen Xers Having Fun

As semi-lockdown, not quite normal, is still the way of the world, it can sometimes escape me that working from home (staying safe and employed) can be damn stressful. Yes, I am lucky to have that kind of stress. I am very aware of those who have been impacted by Covid in much more pressing ways. But all experience is relative, and sometimes I don’t know how stressed out I am.

It was against this backdrop that we recently had friends in town to stay for a long weekend. They are friends of mine from grad school who have, happily, also become good friends with John over the past 19 years. There was a time when they lived here in DC, about six blocks from us, and we would get together one or two times a week for dinner. Having them here for three days was like Christmas in November. All of the day-to-day crud just sloughed off my body. I could literally feel my blood pressure diminish.

So what did we do? We did go out and about on Saturday, but then on Sunday, rather than head off to the National Gallery like planned. We stayed home and did nothing. Well, not really nothing. We did taste tests. What? you say. Yes, we did taste tests. At some point as she emerged from lockdown, Jennifer decided she liked doing taste tests. And who are we to say no to something that includes food?

Jennifer is an ace amateur mixologist and kept us plied with fancy cocktails throughout the proceedings. I forget what this one is called, and we didn’t really rate them since we didn’t drink them side by side like we did with other items. In addition to cheese and pate (also not rated) you can see a whole lot of cornichon in the middle of the table. That was the first of our blind taste tests.
Everyone but me ended up choosing the cornichon from the Whole Foods Olive Bar as their favorite. And we all thought the oversized ones at the bottom were not good at all.
Jennifer adding the final touch to The Aviators she made for us. (That’s Crème de Violette she’s adding.)
I’m actually not a huge cocktail fan unless they have umbrellas. But everything she made was amazing.
Round Two in the blind taste tests consisted of six kinds of potato chips. John and I put all six of them in the same exact order of preference. Like he always says, we are MFEO (made for each other).
The score sheet became very confusing since we were putting numbered chips in numbered order of preference. More then once we got our axes mixed up.
I was responsible for this heat. I had numbered them in a way that even I didn’t know which was which once they were on the table. It was fun to do the reveal. There was definitely dissent around the table, but John and I easily settled on Cape Cod kettle style as our favorites.
General tasting mayhem.
The bar snack tasting. Everyone but me chose the corn nut mix at the bottom. I chose the spicy pistachios at left (and refused to even try the peanuts, which I will only eat on SE Asian food).
We were quite surprised by the results of the club soda test. John and I both put Navy Hill at number one and Fever Tree at number four. Among the cheaper brands we preferred the 365 over Canada Dry.

And then three hours later I was making tuna puttanesca over pasta. Fabulous way to spend a Sunday.

One thought on “Aging Gen Xers Having Fun

  1. Aileen November 18, 2021 / 9:08 am

    That sounds like a lot of fun!
    Also, I agree with you that working 100% remote can be very stressful. I think the ideal work situation is hybrid, perhaps 2/3 mix of in-office and home work.


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