Friday, April 22, 2005

Puttanesca

If life gives you lemons, make lemonade. If someone calls you a whore, make whore sauce. That's what Shani and I are doing tonight with our girlfriends. Making a beautiful puttanesca.

Last night I was walking to yoga in Primrose Hill. I got a phone call. It seems that I am homeless, jobless, and that most of my belongings are now irretrievable. I remember a repetitive hissing of "whore" and "cunt" and something about ruining my career, and I heard something drop onto the sidewalk. It was the phone. Something else dropped. It was me.

Shani picked me up. I was shaking and slumped. I thought she couldn't be serious, but she insisted that we still go to yoga.

She was right.

The yoga teacher is writing a book about bad boyfriends, and boy-have-I-got-something-for-you. He wants to use my story.

In class, he said to "let go."

"Whatever it is, let go of it." I let go of "whore" and "cunt." I let go of my career. I let go of my home. My beautiful things. My laptop. I am only me now.

Me.

This morning over coffee Shani made me swear that I would not answer my phone, as she thinks that he will call again to get some sort of closure. "But why would he call me again? He got to call me every name in the book,..."

"No, only two!" Shani said.

So we came up with a plan to "celebrate," and that is to make whore sauce, or puttanesca. So I did my thing on Portabello Road today. I bought the usual suspects for the puttanesca: some lovely anchovies, plum tomatoes, capers, Italian parsley, some beautiful black olives from Spain I've never seen before. And then some antipasti too from the man with all those big gorgeous brown ceramic pots full of delicacies: marinated mushrooms, gorgeous fresh slabs of feta, and some fennel to slice and roast.

Do I have bad karma? Is this a punishment? It could be. So I will not return poison with poison. My path is to be even kinder and more generous to the people around me. The food that I bought is not just for my girlfriends-- it's my offering to the world. I am letting go. I found myself grinning broadly. I bought grapes from a man who called me "darling" forty times, and I laughed and called him "darling" back. I joked with the man in the Spanish food store about the difficulty of switching amongst languages. I found a little booth where two women were having a sale on cheap frothy floral silk things from India. As I need clothes now, and I cannot afford to replace my beautiful things, I'll be doing the gypsy chic thing this season. I bought a dress, a blouse, and a tunic for 40 quid. But then why did I feel happier rummaging in the 10 quid pile than I have in a couture boutique? Maybe because I am light now. I have let go. The further I went, the more I smiled, the happier I was.

It's only me now.

6 Comments:

At 2:58 AM, Blogger SilverMythago said...

It's you now, and you are an incredible, compassionate, wise, beautiful, genius human being who from what I can see walks with her eyes open seeking the good in life, bringing the joy. And it's not only you, for you have friends who love you, and if you ever need anything, you have to only ask.

 
At 10:57 AM, Blogger Indeterminacy said...

No words. Just a hug. If anything like synchronicity truly exists you can feel it in your thoughts this moment.

 
At 10:37 AM, Blogger Vándorló said...

The news you've posted has set off an emotional dervish that's impossible to unpick - my mind doing tiny arabeques and eddies around the vacuum.

I haven't the words, so I'll use some of A.J's:

"They can tap all my telephone calls
(when, why, to whom.)
They have a file on my dreams and plans
and on those who read them.
And who knows when they'll find
sufficient reason to dig up their files
that violate my rights."

(from 'A Breath of Air!' by Attila Jozsef, 1936, trans. by John Batki. It was partly based on his psychoanalytic treatment and not published in Hungary until 1990s)

Not entirely hopeful or cheerful, but it's the best I can do. The one that came to mind first was "Nem en kialtok".

 
At 2:32 PM, Blogger Irma Vep said...

Jody, thank you. That is so sweet and makes me feel so wonderful.
Indeterminacy: Thank you for the hug. I felt it.
Vandorlo: Good news! One of the few things that I still have in my possession is my book of Attila Joszef poems!

 
At 2:24 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Eres como un sueño que no recordamos, pero que nos hace despertar alegres".
Agrégame al Messenger: jfrancisco70@hotmail.com
francisco

 
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