Saturday, September 16, 2006

Prix fixe

Tonight's menu at Chez Poker Jones:

Wedge salad with crumpled goat cheese and white balsamic vinagrette.
Scallops the size of Frisbees sauteed in garlic butter.
The prettiest NY Strips this side of the West Side Scores in Manhattan.
Blanched green beans.
Crisp-skinned baked potatoes smothered in sour cream and fresh chives.

Yes, this was a dinner likely dreamed up by researchers at Merck running assays for the next generation of billion dollar statins, but damn, it was good. The occasion? None, save Mrs. Jones and the Jonesette being out of town on girly business, leaving your author and Jones Jr. to scavenge for themselves.

Shit, we had reason to celebrate ... sorta. Our fall ball team got run-ruled in both ends of a doubleheader (we at least made it to the sixth inning in both games). The Poker Jones Traveling All-Stars are playing solid but were no match for our opponents, a team of oversized 13-year-olds that mashed everything we threw at them. But it had been a beautiful late summer afternoon on the North Coast and we had the distinct privilege of playing baseball. No reason to be results-oriented on this day.

Jones Jr. and I made satisfied noises as we tucked into a meal that almost didn't happen. We were done with baseball in time for me to make the weekly Saturday tournament at TK's, which I was eager to play. When I asked Jones Jr. on the way home what he wanted for supper, he insta-called: steak. I knew immediately it would be a boys' night in to indulge carnivorous appetites, taking poker completely out of the equation. It proved to be the best tournament I've ever missed.

Fathers and teen-age sons are tricky business, especially when Dad can be demanding and a bit of a hard-ass and the son is a smart kid who has, for better or worse, inherited many of Dad's traits. It hasn't made for many Walton's Mountain moments at Casa de Poker Jones, but let's say our relationship has found a peaceful equilibrium in recent months. While the food was terrific, the company for the night was immeasurably better.

After dinner, a Kill Bill marathon running on TNT, our bellies full and the kitchen looking like the aftermath of Iron Chefs Gone Wild, I allowed myself a satisfied smile. Life is good.


Blogger Iakaris aka I.A.K. said...

Yup - that sounds much bettah than playin' pokah.

Having been a hellacious pain in father's ass from 13-22, I got in coming in spades, so I'm in no hurry to meet my teenage son.

9:22 AM  
Blogger slb159 said...

I had no idea you were in the pharma sector too. Nice.
See you at the tables.
Best of luck.

6:14 PM  
Blogger surflexus said... succeeded..i'm starving now. :) surf

7:08 PM  
Blogger Matt said...

Wow, you must be as good a chef as you are a writer. I find myself reading and rereading that menu and daydreaming of my forthcoming trip to San Francisco and my already booked reservations at Michael Mina.

How's Cleveland?

6:37 AM  

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