Thursday, April 25, 2013

The First Item on My 'Do Not Do' List

A few months back, a cousin from North Carolina visited San Francisco on business. Nick and I had dinner with him and his business associates at an upscale restaurant in the city's North Beach neighborhood.

That evening led me to start a "Do Not Do" list.

I ordered duck, which I love but don't often eat, from the menu. So did at least two others at the table. When my dish arrived, I gazed upon the entree with alarm. It was the color of eggplant, looking like it had been barely introduced to a flame. The others who had ordered this foul fowl dug in and seemed to be enjoying it. I showed it to Nick, who curled up his nose and suggested I send it back to the kitchen immediately.

I decided to be brave and plunge ahead. The duck was sliced into medallions. I ate one and a half medallions before I accepted the fact I was simply enduring my meal, not enjoying it. I sent the duck back for additional cooking. But the gastrointestinal damage had already been done. I'll spare you the details of the unpleasant aftermath, except to say that the dish should have been named Daffy's Revenge.

The next day, once I had sufficiently recovered, I decided I'd reached a point in life when it was time to be clear about what I would not be doing again, ever. "Eat rare duck" became my "Do Not Do" list's first item.

That incident occurred back in January. To my surprise, I've only added four items to the list since, and they're rather half-hearted items that I probably will do again, such as "Going out more than once during the workweek."

As it turns out, I feel old enough to not want to waste time and effort, but not old enough to shut the door forever on a list of things. For example, I was tempted to add "Eat anything rare that is usually cooked" to my "Do Not Do" list. But then, about a month ago, I (hesitantly) tasted a friend's tuna tartare appetizer and loved it.

So for now, I'm living each day with a seemingly endless "To Do" list and a really short "Do Not Do" list. Somehow, the imbalance between the two feels right.



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10 comments:

  1. I'm totally with you on the rare duck thang. Of course, I've only had duck once, and that was in Portugal. Honestly, I'm not even sure how and if that was cooked. (I was on the WINE tour, if ya know what I mean)

    I think your ratio is the proper one. I find it a lot more interesting to say YES more often than NO.

    That being said, this gal will NOT eat walnuts.

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    1. You're right Judi; yes is often the right answer, except when asked for money.

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  2. I'm with you, but we do have to be careful about the do's and don'ts ingested. We might feel wonderful, youthful and keep active, but a bad food experience makes us realize we may not bounce back so quickly anymore!

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  3. Even without the details, this was pretty vivid, Jim. My heart goes out to you and your gastric system. ;)

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  4. Even without the details, this was pretty vivid to me, Jim. My heart goes out to you and your gastric system. ;)

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    1. My gastric system and I have fully recovered, Chris; thanks for your concern! :)

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  5. My friend as I sit in Disney I am sure Donald was the culpert. On maybe just maybe it was those ducks we chased at county park. DY ducks we will get you back.

    Tim

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    1. Those were the meanest ducks EVER! Will never forget that, Tim! One of our many, many wacky adventures together. (I still love to tell people about our foiled record album heist at Sears).

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