Monday, December 27, 2010

A Flaubertian Christmas

Christmas on the ranch was one of the livelier events in recent memory.

Stew donned a kilt with matching tartan tie. This is after a few champagnes and a shower. He wore a buttoned-up shirt from a clothing line produced by country singer George strait. He mentioned this when his rancher neighbor Jason said he got one of his CDs for Christmas. I said they've been giving them away with a minimum purchase of western wear at boot barn, according to an ad I saw. They asked if I got a job there because at Thanksgiving I said I was going to try after I saw a sign on their window that said seasonal help needed, but I never followed it up and that was the end of them inquiring about me getting them discount boots at the Boot Barn, which they had already done previously.

Drinking a wide array of specialty drinks at the ranch added to the fun. Egg nog and kahlua was a good one. Next was a delicious red and white wine concoction with diced apple and orange zest, a sangria kind of doodah. Annah brought a chardonnay from LA in route to Philly that I liked a lot. "It's a good cupcake," she said. I took it as some curious LA parlance when that's the actual name of the winery: Cupcake. Look out for it, if you like a buttery chard.

Jen and Stew's daughters wore matching outfits outshining their Dad. They had a good time on the alligator seesaw that Jen's Mother brought for them.

We listened to the life-changing Orange Juice box set that Stew got for his birthday recently. A jalapeno goat's cheese pre-funk with Jameson's whisky, a Jen party staple - that was good too.

Christmas goose for dinner was tubular. Purple cabbage with garlic and anchovies, how did Stewart do it, we all wondered. Couldn't get the gravy to work, we all had a hand in trying. I, for one, found the flour. I turned to the beautiful Hollywood actress who kindly dished me up and said how historical this meal seemed to be. Like Christmas dinner at the Flaubert's circa 1875. I then looked at her plate and couldn't help but notice how artfully arranged her yams, cabbage, candied walnuts, foie gras and homegrown ham was compared to the chaos she made of my plate. Still I appreciated the dishing up effort even if it was slightly less inspired.

A day of mainly cloud cover for a solar house meant that by six we were lighting candles and losing power. By 6.15 the CD player stopped right before it got to the last song on the XMAS mix I brought over of songs that have nothing to do with Christmas, Corn Chips by the Cannanes, which is too bad. I forgot to mention the orgasmic bread and butter pudding. Make up for it next year.

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