Roman Forum 2006

Roman Forum 2006
Foro Romano, from the Palatine Hill - a favorite photo from one of my favorite cities

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Bloggo Confessi-ohno! On the Harmfulness of Drinking Vodka

You will laugh, but without stopping vodka consumption I have made an effort to cut it down. As some of you know, I buy in 1.5 liter size, and one of those bottles used to last me only a week. I have managed to make a bottle last for ten or 11 days in this fashion. My cocktail hour is a ridiculously regimented ritual - I prepare a small plate consisting of about 3 inches of cucumber sliced into six segment, six pieces of carrots, about 15 small nibbles of cauliflower, 8 of broccoli, and a radish or two sliced, a green, red or yellow pepper (one slice) if I have it on hand. On a folded paper towel which I set on the same bamboo tray I use for the veggies, to the right and above them, I place 4 crackers - a Carr's wafer, one (which snaps into two) stoned wheat thin (low salt) and one half, as close as I can get it of a Finn crisp multigrain. On the last I place a slice of cheddar, on the two parts of the stoned wheat thin a daring variety, that one night will include a slice of gouda on one, emmental on the other - with variations (you see, I'm not ALL order-obsessed), and on the Carrs (or, cheaper and as good, TJ brand) a soft cheese, usually goat, but sometimes port salut - a bargain from TJ's - and on rare occasions a brie (also TJ's imported from France and more like a brie than any American brand - or some others claiming to be made in France. To the right above the cheese plate I place "una coppetta d'olive" a tiny cup of olives, whole, not pitted (usually kalamata, cerignola, picholine (courtesy TJs) and others - maybe 6 or 7 in all. 

With me so far? Or have you stopped reading and started laughing by now. I sit down, precisely at 6 when the PBS News Hour begins, start with a sip of vodka, followed by one nibble (imagine a squirrel nibbling away at a nut, but in slo-mo) of an olive. Before I go farther, I USED to follow that nibble with another sip of vodka, before having a bit of one of the crackers, followed by a bite of a cucumber, then of carrot, then of cauliflower, then of broccoli, then of radish and/or peppers. And after a sip of water I started the process all over again. As of about two or three months ago I tried an experiment: Instead of the second sip of vodka (after the olive nibble) I sip water, which cleans the palate - TNEN go on to the olive and the rest of the cycle. 

So basically I have trimmed my vodka consumption to nearly half of what it used to be. As a result, fewer calories, less tipsiness, a better night's sleep (most nights at least), and a small savings of money!

You may think I'm joking, but I fear I'm as anal as that. After that of course, the main dish of the evening, accompanied by the white or red. I know I am sleeping better now, though I have a suspicion I might be drinking a wee bit more wine than before heh heh - seriously I try not to.

Anything for order - and moderation - in a disordered immoderate world

So there! You now know all about one of my daily rituals, more than you ever wanted to (?), whether you like it or not, unless you stopped reading somewhere in paragraph one. Just wanted to put it down on paper, get it off my chest. Ciao tutti! 

With sincere apologies to William Shakespeare and Anton Chekhov