Monday, October 18, 2010
Sometimes the stars align. You know that feeling when you meet someone, and you're not gutted by how your hair looks, or what you're wearing, and the conversation flows and they're taller than you? And excitement builds, you feel on-form and ready, you're laughing, they're laughing, they tell you you look like Zooey Deschanel (possibly the single greatest compliment you've ever received?), you high-five over being the tallest people at the party, you swap business cards, and then his mate offers you a vodka. You can't really be bothered battling strangers through to the fridge; you think a vodka lemonade is a great idea! You drink it, and as the conversation continues, that familiar sweetness takes you back to 5th form and downing $10 bottles of gutter-vodka in Cornwall Park out of McDonald's cups with your big sister's friends.
You remember that after your morning gym session, you had beautifully home-cooked scrambled eggs and tomato with basil on some toasted baguette, but nothing else really to eat all day. You had a celebratory crate beer with your friend who's down from Auckland, to celebrate his birthday on your sunny deck, and you realise that at the barbecue, you've had the better part of a bottle of Rose. You also realise that that jager-shot at 5pm was a bad idea, and the lovely and enthusiastic vodka-jelly-shot wielding girl in the beautiful new season Kathryn Wilson heels, was evil in making you and the birthday girl finish all the pink jelly shots, leaving only yellow ones on the tray.
You then hit a wall. You are staring at what you hope is straight ahead, and you are absolutely devastated that you've let this happen. You must have excused yourself. You leave he-of-the-cute-smile and his friend, and the packed, fun, thriving party, and head upstairs. You have flashbacks to smashing half a sausage-in-bread, and it strikes you that you may have mustard on your face, or tomato sauce on your cute new cardigan. The birthday girl assists you in losing what little dinner you had, and then you decide a wee nap in her bed is absolutely in order. Her boyfriend, a good friend of yours, comes up and you have a heart-to-heart about life and love and doomed relationships (one in particular). You remember declaring, tourettes-style, 'we swapped business cards!' before they cajole you into getting up again. You are you! You are single! You are awesome! Things were going well! Get downstairs! You sit up, victorious, for your stomach appears to have settled. You fix your fringe, straighten out your top and try not to stumble down the stairs.
He's still there, you note, but - what's that? Oh, he's pashing someone else in the lounge.
The conversation can't have been going that well then, right? Timing is everything. Sometimes things work out, and sometimes we blow it. Sometimes the cute guy you meet at a party pashes up your mate in the corner. Sometimes things just aren't meant to be. Pfft, talk about feeling like you're in 5th form again, who pashes at parties these days anyway? Bitter? Maybe a little.
When Beyonce's 'All the single ladies' comes on during your Monday morning gym session, shame and alcohol seeping from your pores, you wonder if the universe is trying to tell you something.
The party was still lots and lots of fun. And earlier in the day, I made the birthday girl chocolate cookies sandwiched together with peppermint icing. They were delicious. Happy birthday Lu! And thanks for holding my hair back and letting me nap in your bed. I'll try and hold it together next time, I promise.
Chocolate peppermint delights (the basic biscuit recipe is from Edmond's, but these were inspired by my recent visit to Queen Sally's Diamond Deli in Lyall Bay)
125g butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla essence
2 cups plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
2 tblsp cocoa (use the best you can find, or next time I'd try melting some dark chocolate into the mix instead)
Cream butter, sugar, and vanilla together until light and fluffy. Add egg, beating well. Sift flour and baking powder and cocoa together and mix into creamed mixture. Roll heaped teaspoonfuls of mixture into balls and flatten with a fork. Or, roll out some of the dough and use a cookie cutter to make some shapes. Place carefully on an oven tray. Bake at 190*C or until pale golden. Cool on a wire rack.
For the peppermint filling, I put about a cup of icing sugar, some butter, a teaspoon of peppermint essence and some boiling water together in a bowl, and mixed it really well. Spread on the cookies when they're cool and sandwich together.
The weekend wasn't a total loss. In fact, I still had a really fun Saturday night. I also enjoyed getting laughed at by my good friend and my flatmate over coffee on a rainy hungover Sunday afternoon. I'm just lucky I gave the cookies away, because as we all know nothing cures the shame and embarrassment of over-indulging like more over-indulging.