Privilege Blog

Saturday Nights, Or, Saturday Morning At 7:13am

Photo by Lauren’s friend George who has a Flickr page here. He takes beautiful pictures.

Lauren, at kidchamp, put up this photo of her Rapture soiree. I found it so evocative of all the good dinner parties I’ve been to, or thrown, over the years. Granted my horizon was suburban, but I think the captured moment with friends as night falls may be universal. Everyone’s well fed, under the influence of a little alcohol, and the conversation pauses, comfortably. There’s a vista, of one sort or another, perhaps only of your children’s heads bowed over a computer in the corner.

I remember a Sidecar phase. The instigator used a vintage measure, printed in 1950s script with the proportions of Cointreau to cognac. Never hurts, when seeking festivity, to follow the squeal of a juicer.

Sometimes everyone crowded into the kitchen, smelling of lemon and sugar. The cook would have to push us out of her way as she checked ovens and stovetop pots. Some dish or other often took longer than expected but I can’t remember that we minded very much. One can always eat olives, waiting, and lick the salt from one’s fingers.

Here’s to festivities. Enjoy your friends and have a wonderful weekend.

Image: George, who has a Flickr page here.

22 Responses

  1. I love olives and I like to bring them, assorted ones,to any little get together. They provide a great balance to Cointreau and cognac.
    Lisa this post brought back a flood of ‘sweet rememberances’…thanks.

  2. “Never hurts, when seeking festivity, to follow the squeal of a juicer.” could/should be the title of either an elegant anecdotal cookbook or a short story. Your writing skills never cease to amaze me Miss Privilege.

    Sending wishes for a wonderful weekend,

  3. I love your varied and so non-cliche expressions. It’s truly a treat to read your posts. As a teacher, I always saved the best essays for last; yours would’ve been in that “coterie”. I know I’ve said this before, but I bet your English teachers LOVED your work.

    I find that no matter what the occasion, all my friends and family always end up in my kitchen/dining area. The warmth is magnetic! Apparently this is universal and not just southern. {maybe it’s just the juicer ;-0} Xoxo

  4. There are 15 people inside my house as we speak, ranging from age 3 to age 90. I came in here to hide for a few minutes. Breathe. This is the annual clan gathering of my husband’s family, he and I are only recently married, scandalous at this age, I know. The only food served that these hands did not personally make was a pan of Stouffer’s Party Size Macaroni & Cheese and it was the only thing they dove into with ears laid back until the bottom of the pan was practically licked clean. Breathe. As Lisa would say: “I listened.” I am listening. Breathe. Two pans next year.

  5. Oh yes! Such an evocative post. Especially when the weather gets warmer (we’re still crossing our fingers here) and we can take advantages of the longer days (light ’til nearly 10), eating and drinking and talking happily in the lowering dusk. . . . post-dinner scotches with those who linger to stretch the night out . . . it’s all good.

  6. If only everyone could smell like lemon & sugar everyday, how lovely that would be!
    Wishing you a fabulously festive weekend Lisa…I think I will use my extra time (finally) to catch up with you!
    xo J~

  7. I have a meyer lemon tree so I go through a sidecar phase quite (perhaps too) often. I like them fine with good brandy rather than strict cognac.

    Tonight we had an unexpected guest and we had gin martinis for the guys and vodka martini for me. The olives are essential. I like best the bright green kind that are un-pitted and taste briny. So beautiful in the glass too.

    (What I have learned, recently, is to use good vermouth, then the martini does not need to be ‘bone dry’ to be good. I like the local liquor store Ledgers, the guy who owns it is so knowledgeable and helpful.)

    We ate jambalaya and cornbread and salad but it’s the martinis that will be remembered.

  8. Lemon and sugar… For me it’s lime… or mint and lime Gimlets, Mojitos… crisp, refreshing. Oh so perfect for long summer evenings outdoors.

    And yes, juicers do squeal!

  9. I enjoy dinner parties and have posted with my customary asperity about people who love them too, but think it’s “so much work” so do not reciprocate.

    When a wide circle of friends takes occasional, non-competitive turns, there’s a free-floating delight and goodwill that builds on itself. You’ve written some great posts about entertaining!

  10. I love sidecars. Are you planning to revisit your guides to entertaining at some point? The ones you’ve written in the past have made me feel like I was a guest at a gracious party of yours, and I would love another invitation.

  11. I love the photo and post – both are so evocative. You have totally captured a moment with your words. Beautifully done.

  12. Susan T. – Thank you:).

    deb-u-naunt – My pleasure. And guests bringing olives is a lovely turn of events.

    TPP – Your supportiveness never ceases to warm my heart.

    Preppy 101 – It’s not just southern:). And thank you for the nice words about my posts. My English teachers liked my writing, and oddly, they were much happier about how much I spoke up in class than were my history teachers. Hmm. I just realized that and must now consider, why?

    K-Line – Retro-moderne! I love that.

    Flo – Breathe. And how can one ever know what another family will eat? Congratulations on your new marriage. A little scandal is good for the soul.

    Susan – Thank you very much. I think I’ll change out my computer wallpaper and use that photo instead, now you mention it.

  13. mater – I would be surprised were you not familiar with this phenomenon. I hope I can manage to scoot up there and hang out in the late light with you all this summer.

    firstmilk – the best things are often indeed.

    Jessica – Thank you! It would be lovely – especially if we could throw a little lavender into the mix:).

    rb – Well, one cannot let a good Meyer lemon go to waste now, can one? A good martini is another thing of joy.

    SSG – Lovely. Suburban horizons – you have made me think.

    Jessica – Lime and mint! I have so much mint growing. If it ever gets hot around here I might experiment with mojitos.

  14. The Mrs. – Aw. Thank you!

    Duchesse – It is a free-floating delight, exactly, and the goodwill builds. It’s something you create together and always remember. Thank you for suspending your customary asperity for this comment:).

    Julia – Thank you. OK. Yes, I can do that. They were so organic, my days of entertaining. Came from children and families and friends and loving to cook and talk. So I will go see what I can harvest from the memories. What a nice question.

    Stephanie – Thank you very much. And thank you to George and Lauren for letting me use the photo. Much appreciated.

  15. I have just discovered your blog and am savouring every minute of reading it! I am wondering if you have ever been served ( or done so yourself ) cognac, whisky or brandy with prunes on the side ( not overdried, but rather according to the principle “the jucier, the better” ). My elderly relatives, who bear a mark of belonging to a once-upon-a-time respected and glorified russian blue blood family tree, have been saying that hard liquor was served exclusively this way in Imperial Russia, and after trying out this combination, I must say it is the best side treat, hands down. Very qurious, if this tradition has ever been transported into the WASP circles of USA …

    1. Interesting. No, I haven’t run across this way to served a drink. We eat do dates with cheese – along with almonds and honey – here in California. I suppose I shall have to try the alcohol method. Thank you! And thank you also for reading:).

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