Friday, August 15, 2003

Yesterday afternoon around four o' clock I finally put the much-marinated pork loin into the oven to roast and went back to struggling with the introduction to my Stein-Lawrence paper (I've foolishly chosen to introduce my topic with a discussion of Shakespeare's Sonnet 54, "O how much more doth beauty beauteous seem" which has made the whole thing unnecessarily complicated). Taking a break at the NY Times site I read the breaking news of power outages. Oh well, I still have power. Doo-da-doo.... Half an hour later the screen zaps out (I'd saved everything, thanks) and that accursed pork loin is sitting in a cooling oven (I'm convinced the power outage was the result of God's wrath at my serving trayf). And is the Finnegans Wake group still coming to my house?

It all worked out. I finished cooking the pork on the grill and it was delicious; we have a gas stove so I was able to whip up the potatoes and asparagus; everyone came over and we sat around the table and ate by candlelight, with what was perhaps an entire gallon of French vanilla ice cream and blueberries afterwards. No Wake discussion, but it was fun anyway—at one point we got onto the discussion of what the venereal term for bats is (as in a flock of seagulls, a murder of crows, etc.) and Sam got my copy of James Lipton's (yes, the incredibly irritating guy from Inside the Actor's Studio) book An Exaltation of Larks and entertained us with some of the entries. We especially liked
A plenitude of freshmen
A platitude of sophomores
A gratitude of juniors
An attitude of seniors
A fortitude of graduate students
An avunculus of alumni
A clamber of assistant professors
A tenure of associate professors
An entrenchment of full professors
An ex cathedra of professors emeriti
Never did find the bats, though. A little before ten the power came back on, which makes us a good deal luckier than most of the people in New York City. The most important thing is that damn pork loin is out of our lives. The next time we entertain I'm serving corned beef.

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