I had a delightful afternoon yesterday. About three I got a call from a former colleague with whom I’ve got closer and closer. Sue had taken a medical leave from work (carpal tunnel) and is now facing her return even though her recovery has been only marginal. She lives only three blocks from me, but we somehow never got around to getting together during her leave until its approaching end spurred her call.

Her timing was excellent, as I was feeling OK and had nothing planned. So she walked over and we drove down to the Zuni, catching it at its ebb, which is the only time you can get in nowadays without a reservation. It was just as wonderful as ever. We got a tiny table in the little nibbling corner by the main door. Had bloody marys and split orders of their wonderful shoestring potatoes and Caesar salad and talked until the place got jammed with pre-opera/symphony/ballet diners.

In addition to careers as software whores, what we share is long-term chronic illness, in her case diabetes, in both cases complicated now with increasing age although mine is much greater than hers. The other difference is that I’m worn down from fighting only fifteen years, whileshe has been dealing with it since she was a child. I’m such a wimp.

We also share a great love of The City and its food scene. We moved here only two years apart in the mid-seventies, so we were able to sit there recalling the opening of the Zuni, now a national landmark, twenty-two years ago in a tiny sliver of its current space. We also compared notes on a host of other places, now mostly long departed.

Enormous fun.

Now I’m about to make a New World version of the Gorgonzola-Marscapone Torte to take as a dessert over to Marin County for dinner with Bob, my Great Failed Love and now dear friend. When he called me this morning, he let me know that his lover would also be present, a point which had not come up in previous discussions of the dinner.

When I asked what I could bring, he waffled and then admitted that he had not planned a dessert and that while one would not be at all necessary, it would be the thing to bring. I am trying not to admit to myself that my choice of dessert is perhaps ever so slightly influenced by the fact that, unlike Bob, the lover is, besides a number of other undesirable characteristics, a finicky eater.

Surely, I say to myself, he’ll like a torte made of Roquefort, Marscapone, and Pecans. And if not, well……….

could stop by Just Desserts on the way, but I’m enjoying too much the idea of taking a dish I’ve painstakingly crafted myself.

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