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My Big Red Couch

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Tuesday Night Entertainment

I got a cryptic e-mail from Jamie today. Actually, several cryptic e-mail from Jamie today. Most of her e-mails to me are cryptic. That being said, the cryptic e-mail in question goes:

Subject: Two Bottles


I want to try both of these.

Ok. So I stop at the "on the way home" liquor store and pick up one of each. $26 for Ouzo and $6 for Sambuca (although in it's defense the Sambuca bottle is half the size of the Ouzo).

I walk in the door and hand the brown paper bags to Jamie. "You got these?" "When haven't I ever gotten what you wanted?" End of conversation.

She goes out and I mess with the kids (for some reason I can't ever think of myself as "taking care of" the kids; mostly I mess with them and they mess with me back) and she comes back and I uncap the Ouzo. Well no, it happens a little different.

She sits down at the dining table with me (you've got to love the convenience of a laptop and wireless internet; I do) and asks me to look up Ouzo. So I do. Lesvos: A Guide to Ouzo comes up. Here are the two paragraphs that strike me the most from this site:

I can almost remember my first ouzo 'experience'. I was a sophomore in high school attending the American school in Athens. My friends and I were at a neighborhood cafeneon, loosening up for the big dance by drinking Ouzo 12, a popular Athenian brand. Though we had all sampled ouzo before this was the first time we had come to a cafeneon with the intent of using it as our primary source of entertainment, (not counting the dance itself.) At 7:30 I knew I had enough and began walking the quarter of a mile to the school gym. I arrived there just as the buses were taking the kids home at 11:30. What happened to those four hours I will probably never know though I have always suspected that I was picked up by aliens and experimented upon before having some kind of chip implanted in me that made me unable to take school very seriously and rendered me useless for any kind of job besides being a musician and giving unsolicited advice about Greece. The purpose of this and what the aliens have in store for me I can only guess at.


Occasionally on a Sunday I will drive over to Xidera, the most remote village in Lesvos, where my wife is from, and visit with my friends who live there. Most of them are old men though there are a few my age like Thanasis the Australian. He owns the cafeneon directly across the small street from Andrea's aunt Aglaia who is the finest one burner cook in all of Lesvos and makes grand feasts for us to be washed down with ouzo. Her husband Panayotis (riding the donkey on the front page of this guide) is the village butcher so one of the staple mezes are the fried organs of whatever he has killed recently, usually a sheep or goat. I think it's the staple. Maybe she only serves them to me to get rid of them or because I told her I liked them when she served them to me once many years ago. Regardless, whenever I sit down with Uncle Panayotis and he offers me an ouzo, I know there is a spleen not far behind.

So, there's your Tuesday Night Entertainment. Jamie seems to think that it's too strong so she's reserving her portion of the bottle for the weekend. I'll see what damage I can do before dawn.

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