CHEAP EATS On my birthday I saw a lot of water. I took a bath. I drove over the longest continuous bridge over water in the world. It was 90 degrees on the North Shore. I drank a lot of water, used water to wash the fish sauce out of my skirt, and bought a new car.
The Honda Fit! It’s not only the best kind of car to have if you live in a city, it’s the best kind of car. Period. It’s such a good car, I have now bought one twice! And I’ve only ever bought two new cars in my life.
This time it’s a different kind of blue. Less subtle, less sexy, but intensely fun, and even more lickable — in a cotton-candy-y way — than my last Honda Fit.
I left our rental car behind and drove this very shade of blue back onto the Causeway, and back over Lake Pontchartrain. Nothing to look at. Nothing but water, and the road seems to just float on it for 25 miles. It’s like the Salt Flats: terrifyingly boring. And beautiful in its relentlessness, drive drive drive drive drive.
For my birthday, Hedgehog went to wd-50 without me. What the hell, she was in New York, spotting sessions or sessioning spots or some such, and she and her co-writer have to eat, too, don’t they? So while I was eating leftover bad North Shore Vietnamese for dinner, she was sending along pictures of plate after plate after plate of fancy high-falutin’ dishes. I never felt more like a chicken farmer than I did on my 49th birthday.
After dinner I made some popcorn and found Chelsea vs. Bayern Munich on TV. Mother fucking molecular tom-chef-ery, who needs it you got popcorn? Hot dogs …
Oh, hey, this reminds me about Blue Fig, on Valencia Street. Well, technically it was my li’l friend Hoolibloo who reminded me. She and her even li’l’er sis are holding down our Mission digs while Hedgehog and me crash bang boom our way through the home stretch here in New Orleans.
Before I left this last time, Hooli and me dropped onto Blue Fig for lunch or some such. I don’t remember anything. I remember the coffee was good.
I remember we talked about Life, and Careers, how Hooli hoped to produce the theater one day, and I’m pretty sure I encouraged her in this. I’m pretty sure I said, Do what is in your heart, at all costs. Never mind rent.
She wasn’t asking for advice, but — for the record — people do. These days. Me being 49 and all. Maybe this is just the chicken shit talking, but I think I might even have an air of wisdom about me, when there isn’t hay in my hair.
But after the accident, all my memories got erased — except how to make frittatas, oddly enough, since I didn’t know I knew how to make them before the accident. Also worth noting: I didn’t hit my head. At all. So apparently my memories were being stored in my left arm.
Anyway, when wind got back to SF that we were hurting down here, and how, Hooli wrote and said, “Can I help?”
“You can write my review!” I said. “Remember that meal?”
“Blue Fig?” she said.
I said tell me.
“You got the egg sandwich,” she said.
She wrote: I like Blue Fig because the food is very fresh and flavorful. I’ve always been greeted by a smile, she wrote.
She wrote: they cook the food right there in the tiny kitchen behind the counter. It’s all open. It’s fun to watch them. They make the eggs for the egg sandwich on the little burner right behind the cash register.
The first time we went there, she wrote, they were sugaring the pecans for one of the salads, which made the whole restaurant smell so —
Thank you, I wrote. That’ll be enough. I have me a new favorite restaurant. *
Mon-Fri 7am-7pm; Sat-Sun 7:30am-7pm
990 Valencia St., SF