Clueless

3 May 2007

[Full disclosure: I started this post on Thursday (hence the edited timestamp) but it’s taken me a while to get it right…]

I got home from a rehearsal last night at about 10:30 and did my typical winding-down things: checking e-mail, petting the cats, asking C. how his day went. With that last item I’m never sure what I’m going to get – C. can be monosyllabic or talkative depending on his mood (as can I; we’re both basically introverts). Last night he was pretty chatty, almost unusually so. He told me what had gone on at his rehearsals and lessons in the evening and then kind of circled back around to tell me that his school had been on a field trip that day, and so he had most of the day off since he wasn’t on chaperone duty.

In the same rather roundabout way he got to mentioning that he’d taken the time to wash his car (the sexy red 1988 BMW 325i convertible that he loves to distraction*) in the late morning, and as he was working on it his upper back started seizing up – since October he’s been having repetitive stress problems in his right shoulder from conducting, of all things – so he decided to call around and see if he could get seen by a licensed massage therapist on short notice. He said he found one place that could take him at noon, or more precisely, that he could just walk into at any time, and that was cheaper than the place that couldn’t take him till 1 p.m.

At this point in the story it occurred to me to wonder out loud whether the place was any good if they weren’t booked up, and to wonder silently whether C. had thought to ask himself the same question at the time. Apparently… not. As he finally came out and admitted after a little embarrassed hemming and hawing and nervous giggling:

“Dear… I think I had a massage at a brothel.”

My first reaction was disbelief – he had to be having me on, right? But he went on to describe how he got to the place (called Crystal Massage, which should have been his first clue) and was greeted by a woman in a nightie, then escorted to room 3 and told that his masseuse was named Lucy. Or Luci, or Lucie, or however a “massage parlor” “masseuse” would spell it. His escort, as she was putting new linens on the “massage table” (OK, fine, apparently it was an actual massage table) asked him, in heavily accented English, “Is your first time here?” C. answered that it was, and she gave a conspiratorial laugh. Should have been his second clue, yes? But no… he suspected nothing.

He kept his pants on, so he tells me, since he was just wanting his shoulders worked on. Lucy/i/ie (also in a nightie, as it turns out) walked in, saw that he was half-naked (OK, half-clothed, fine), and asked, also in heavily accented English, “You no want down there?” C. answered in the negative, and Lucy/i/ie – wait for it – walked out of the room and walked back in wearing a jacket over her nightie. What should have been his third clue was actually his first. Finally!

Why did he continue instead of leaving, you might ask? Well, he’d already paid for a half-hour, of course! He went on to get pretty much the worst massage of his life for 20 minutes (“I thought you had been trolling the Internet for a licensed massage therapist,” I teased him). But upon hearing him complain that he’d paid for 30 minutes, Lucy/i/ie apparently got mad enough to start really digging in, so the last 10 minutes were actually useful.

By that point I was laughing my head off. And of course I’ve been busting his chops about it since then, which he has graciously taken in the spirit in which it is intended: all in good fun. Turns out I’m the one getting the *ahem* happy ending here, ’cause oh, am I going to get some mileage out of this one. Any crap I get for anything from now on, and I’m going to be all “well, at least I didn’t accidentally get a massage at a brothel!”

*For those of you who actually read this far, and because I’m feeling guilty about the edited timestamp, I have a special treat:

BMW

Meet C.’s pride and joy, parked in front of the house I grew up in, in Brooklyn, NY, right after he purchased it from a guy in Queens, and before he drove it back to CA. On I-80. In the dead of winter. He’s crazy, but I love him.


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I’m not sure where we picked up this bottle, but it was probably at Whole Foods. I think we decided to try it because we’re enamored of a Syrah rosé that I think is also by Chateau d’Aussières, though I cannot for the life of me find a link. Or maybe we’re completely wrong about that and there is no connection.

Anyway, we opened it tonight to go with a humble meal of leftovers, just the two of us at home with the cats, the type of night on which we’re usually reluctant to open “the good stuff”, or something we’re sentimentally attached to. It’s a Syrah-Grenache-Mourvedre-Carignane blend from the Languedoc-Roussillon region, and deep garnet in color with medium body. My (undereducated) nose is not detecting much in the way of complexity or invitation. The first sip is spicy, tannic and earthy, which I like, but this gives way to a rather unpleasant and overpowering rose-petal potpourri note (I wish I were joking) on the back of the tongue. C. says he gets a yeasty flavor from this, kind of like a Beaujolais Nouveau.

In short, though this wine is far from undrinkable, we probably wouldn’t buy it again. But since someone doesn’t have to be at work until 10 a.m. tomorrow, the lucky SOB, I have a hunch the bottle will get finished.

EDIT: Actually, the bottle didn’t get finished until I finished it the next night. The potpourri-ness was toned down after several hours in a vacuum-stoppered bottle, but I still wouldn’t go out of my way to drink this wine again.


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Clutter

21 April 2007

Yesterday, 4/20, was my birthday. I opened a couple of great gifts from C. at midnight: the first two books in A Song of Ice and Fire, a series that I want to re-read in its entirety while waiting for the fifth book to be published (come on already, GRRM!), and some pot.

I took the day off work and meant to spend it in dolce far niente. At one point I needed to find a stamp to send a friend a card, but I had no idea where C. had put them during his latest … well, you can’t call them cleaning sprees; they’re more like shoving-stuff-around-before-people-come-over sprees. Not that I blame him – I do the same thing. Clutter in and of itself is OK with me, as long as the stuff is useful and I know where everything is. That was not the case with the stamps, however. I went through the piles I thought they would most likely be in, but no dice.

Frustrated, I was seized with the impulse to do some real cleaning. I attacked the piles and after 2 hours of work ended up throwing out a couple of big kitchen bags’ worth of junk, putting other less junky stuff in the Goodwill stash and some in the Secret Santa regift stash, and re-organizing other items to more appropriate places in the apartment. I also got rid of two bags of styrofoam packing peanuts, otherwise known in this household as devil spawn, and flattened and recycled some empty cardboard boxes. And I still felt like I hadn’t even made a dent.

I spent the rest of the day reacting rather disproportionately to the actual problem – mostly angry and sad that we have accumulated so much useless crap (a subject for another post), and beating up on myself for various things, like not being a better housekeeper, letting this make me sad on my birthday, being so self-critical (no, really), etc.

Several people phoned and I had some lovely catching-up conversations, and then I had a gig in the evening and C. took me out for a great dinner between the warmup and the concert. And I have to say I felt a lot better after that dinner and after singing Handel for 3 hours. But the funky weird depression stuff, even though some can be chalked up to monthly hormonal swings, scares me a little. And it’s just another in a relatively long list of things I complain about and never seem to actually get around to dealing with. Kind of like the useless crap.


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About

19 April 2007

Me: Singing, knitting, enjoying wine, messing with tiny feline minds and embracing my inner nerd in Northern California.

C.: Husband, choral conductor, music teacher, and blog-fodder-provider extraordinaire. I feel extremely lucky for, among other things, the fact that we have a great marriage and a great working relationship as musicians.

This blog: A work in progress (well, almost by definition, yes?). The title – a private C. & me joke, if you were wondering – seems to suggest that it will primarily be a wine journal, a place for me to chronicle my thoughts about different bottles, wineries and varietals, and thus learn more about wine and about my own preferences. But there will be knitting content (still need to get into the habit of taking pictures), cat content (ditto), music content and other stories.

Thanks for stopping by!