Aphrodisiacs


My New Year’s resolution is to really focus on my health. Specifically, eating better. So regardless of the weight that I won’t lose, at least I’ll know I am eating healthier. And that’s sexy. Taking a stand for my body is sexy. Preparing food is sexy. I’ve slowed down and am taking pleasure in cooking for myself. I make better food choices when I go out. And even when I’ve been out late and didn’t have dinner, I think about what I’m stuffing in my mouth when I get home. Normally, I’d grab too much of some moderate to unhealthy snack. Last night, I came home at 10pm, pretty hungry, and stopped. I didn’t want to eat too much before bed or feel gross in the morning.

Enter the hemp bagel. I know! What was I thinking?

Hemp bagels are super high in protein and fiber. They are a new food choice for me. They are healthy, filling and ‘green.’ Eating one would keep me sated and, though I’m not sure why, make me feel like I’ve done something for the environment. I guess because these are what all those ‘green people’ eat. I toasted it, put on some butter, and headed upstairs to eat it in bed while I read.

It was like eating a bird’s nest. I could literally feel bits of twig and feathers as I chewed. I could taste every piece of compost that had contributed to each and every ingredient. I persevered, thinking I just had to get used to it. The offending bagel then proceeded to suck all hydration out of my mouth. Desperate gulps of water only left a party of wet sewage in its wake. Worse, eating this in bed was like an affront to my sensuality. Seeds all over. The foul taste a far cry from paint-on chocolate and whipped cream. It was horrible.

Let’s take a look at how exactly unsexy a product this is:

It’s poo brown with pea green understones.

It’s been covered in seeds to make it “look” like an Everything Bagel.

You could place a couple of robin’s eggs in the center and a bird would fly out of nowhere and start incubating them.

You can taste the compost from which it originated, including the horse manure, just from the photo.

It doesn’t even sound good: Hemp Bagel. Blech.

Now I’m all for healthy, organic food choices. But there is no one that will ever convince me that the hemp bagel is an appetizing and/or appealing bite of deliciousness. It is really, hands down, the unsexiest food product I have ever eaten. It left me yearning for the bready,  slightly-chewy, processed-flour, New York bagel – topped with 1/2″ of cream cheese on each half. Some lox and red onion. And not a seed to be found the next morning under my covers.

I don’t care how good hemp bagels are for me. You tree-hugging, unwashed, hippie folk can have every last one of them. Not only are they gross, they’ve turned my green-0-meter back 25 years. So go ahead, start a petition for the hemp bagel. Send me recipes ad finitum on how to make this bit of fencepost a succulent morsel of sexy. Just know that I won’t be serving one to my lover as an aphrodisiac any time soon.

The challenge: Mistletoe. Everywhere. Starting now.

Mistletoe is Santa’s way of giving you permission to makeout at the drop of a hat. Okay, not with your mother-in-law, but with your partner. Every second of every day you have permission for blatant and unapologetic public displays of affection all because of a little green shrub cutting.

If this sets you into an anxiety ridden panic, then guess what, this challenge is for you. Because mistletoe is Kris Kringle’s little marriage booster. This is a stressful time of year. Kids. Parties. Too much eggnog. It can be a nightmare. And it’s also the time when you lose total connection to what the holidays are all about. Family. Love. And peace on earth, or at least your household.

So what if all this were challenged with mistletoe. Because mistletoe can handle a multitude of holiday problems.

  • Exhausted? Mistletoe. Kissing generates endorphins to wake you up.
  • About to get in a fight? Mistletoe. Carry it in your pocket and hold it over his head to shut him up with a kiss. He’ll forget what he was mad about if done correctly.
  • Kids driving you crazy? Mistletoe. It makes excellent child repellent. They’ll run screaming to the other room.
  • Need privacy? Mistletoe. A chain around the bedroom door. Double strand. No child will dare enter, and there’s no way you can enter without thinking about kissing and what comes after.
  • Hint for extra loving later? Mistletoe. Put it as a garnish on the dessert plate. Eat that.

Mistletoe is more than a useless piece of shrub that some clever arborist figured out how to sell. It’s a message. It’s a lot of messages. And it’s a way of making holiday memories that will have you smiling and checking in with the local flower shop daily come December. Think of it as Father Christmas’ gift to all lovers. Think his cheeks are red because he’s been on his sleigh nipping too much brandy to stay warm? No, it’s because he can’t stop thinking about Mrs. Claus under the mistletoe.

I’m here, hanging at the shop, getting ready for a first date. I love first dates. They’re bursting with possibility…. like spring. And, well, it’s far from spring-like out. Or what I like to think of as spring. You know, the days like yesterday where it’s so beautiful you can taste summer. But not today.

  • It’s a cold — 50 degrees.
  • It’s rainy. Nasty Spring rain. Wet. Cold. Drizzly. (My hair doesn’t stand a chance for this date, let me tell you.)
  • It’s dark and gloomy. Not inviting. Not warm. Just dreary.
  • However…. pansies are the flower box. Crocuses are flooding front lawns all over Fairfield County. Daffodils are bursting themselves with the first early bloomers — big and bright. Robins are afield, looking for food.

But I did think about, given the circumstances, what would a perfect date look like on a night like tonight? Not my date tonight — mine will be one of those slightly uncomfortable ones, sitting at the bar, hoping we get along as well as we did on email and phone. But if I flashed forward to a year from now — providing things went well (no pressure) — what would my date tonight look like then. It looks like this:

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It’s Spring. April is the month of possibilities. Everything has potential in April. Everything is new and fresh and bright and filled with the urge to be bigger, more beautiful. Even on this cold dark day, I’ve only to walk to the front of the boutique, catch a glimpse of my purple and yellow pansies and I’m a happy girl. It’s a sensual month to be sure. And a month were everything, despite itself, continues to grow. Through the cold, the wet and the dark.

So I can think the date above, but I can’t quite have it yet. So I’m giving it to you.

Build the fire. Dim the lights. Put on J’ai Deux Amours by Madeleine Peroux. Pour some Fourplay wine (it’s all in the name). Listen to the rain. Savor your partner. And see what blossoms.