Happy New Year + me + free grapefruit

It’s half past two and I’ve only just gotten home from grocery shopping. What a day.

Here’s some traditional German New Year’s Eve music for you that reflects how I feel.

I had an extremely convincing dream around 2 a.m. that Richard Armitage had started a blog and the first post was about how horrible 2016 had been and how he was going to blog every day until things got better. I know, totally ridiculous, but I was really convinced, in the dream, and it even woke me up. I went to the bathroom and thought, should I turn on the computer? Nah. But sooo realistic. Then I woke up itching to write — finishing my post from yesterday, getting my second NYC impressions down, two new post ideas, and it’s New Year so my “review of last year” post and my theme for 2017 … but it is New Year’s Eve.

Dad and Flower were at a party last night, the annual wildly drunken party where they met the first time. When he wasn’t home at 1 a.m. I actually called him (for historical reasons, I NEVER do this) and it turned out my brother was at the party and said he would make sure he didn’t drive. Anyway, all signs this morning suggested that Dad was not up for a reprise tonight. So I guess it’ll be me and dad — which is fine, I’m not looking for any excitement.

As always, lately, dad wanted shrimp. So I went to the grocery store, braved the tumult, and came out with shrimp, ingredients for steak tartare (which I love — remember when Armitage ate that during an interview with Coke and espresso?), a wedge of Stilton (also Armitage-relevant), a jar of olives, a tray of slightly gooey brownies, and some Chicken in a Biskit crackers (I know, I know). I guess the theme is “strong and salty” this year. I finished up with a five pound bag of grapefruit because I love grapefruit and it seems like an appropriate thing to be eating on the first day of what is likely to be a stressful year. I was looking at the checkout lines and realized that the ones in the liquor section would be much shorter, so I went there, found a bottle of Avery’s The Reverend, and put it in the cart.

So, I’m standing in the check-out line, and the woman in front of me says to the checker, “Can you look and see if you have a particular brand of beer here?” (I’m eavesdropping, as I always do, lately, and thinking she said “a particular kind of pear.”)

“Om, I guess so,” says the checker. “What kind is it?”

“Dragon’s Milk,” the woman says.

“Oh, I don’t know,” the checker says, “I normally work in produce. You should probably ask a buyer.”

“The line to talk to the buyer is five deep,” the woman says.

So I’m thinking, huh, wouldn’t someone from produce know if they had a particular kind of pear? And then it clicks. Yeah, of course. Not a pear, a beer. Dragon’s Milk is a New Holland product. A beer I like myself. Heavy alcohol, a little sweet. They definitely have it.

“Excuse me,” I say. “Did you say Dragon’s Milk?”

“Yeah,” says the woman.

“They definitely have it. I’ll show you.”

I walk the woman over to the display and she gives her little girl two bottles to carry and takes another four herself. Gosh, I guess she really wanted it. Of course, she’s halfway through checkout, so the line is building and people are buzzing impatiently.

“Thank you,” she says.

“No problem,” I say. “The brewery just announced a deal with Pabst to distribute like a week ago, so it should be easier to find now.”

The woman looks at me a little strangely. I think I’ve just outed myself as too interested in beer.

“Thank you!” the checker says to me, as I line my stuff up to be checked out.

She starts on my items when a woman comes up to us. “Do you know a good dry red wine?” she says.

“I’m sorry,” the checker says. “I normally work in produce. You should ask a buyer.”

We look over toward the buyer and the line is now seven deep.

“What do you want it for?” I say. “Cooking or to take to a party? Do you even like red wine?” (I’m thinking, most people who like red wine don’t need to be advised about it.)

“My sister wanted it,” she says.

“If you’re just cooking with it, or making a punch, you can get a bottle of Barefoot Cab Sav for $6 that should do the trick. If you’re drinking it straight with dinner, you could get Yellowtail, Turning Leaf or the Mondavi, they’re all respectable. Or Menage a Trois, if they sell a Cab Sav. I’m not sure. If you’re giving it to people who know a lot about wine, though, you should ask a buyer.”

“Cabsav?” she says.

“Cabernet Sauvignon,” I say.

“Barefoot?” she says, probably grabbing the word she recognizes. “Can you write that down for me?” She hands me a pen and a crumbled bit of paper.

“It’s on the bottom shelf,” I say. “The cheapest one.”

The checker is done. As I’m sticking my card in the reader, another woman else comes up to her and asks her what kind of whiskey is really good. By now, the checker and I are both glancing reflexively at the buyer. There are nine people in line now. The checker looks at me helplessly.

“Christian Brothers?” she says.

“That’s a brandy,” I say. “Don’t ask me. Single malt is all I know. I only remember the name of the one I don’t like.”

“Which one is that?” the checker asks, laughing.

“Lagavulin,” I say, “but I doubt you have it here.”

“You’ll have to ask the buyer,” we say at the same time to the woman, who sighs deeply and turns away.

“Thanks for being so helpful,” she says to me. “I’d love to give you something, but I don’t think I’m allowed to give customers free alcohol. I normally work in produce, though. I know I can give you the grapefruit. How about that?”

“Thanks!” I say.

“Happy New Year!” she says. “Stay warm.”


How about that?

Hopefully I’ll get more written today, but if not: I wish all readers, friends, and fans of Richard Armitage, as well as Richard Armitage himself, a “guten Rutsch” and Happy New Year 2017.

~ by Servetus on December 31, 2016.

52 Responses to “Happy New Year + me + free grapefruit”

  1. Wow…staffing fail on New Years Eve to have no one who knows liquor present in the liquor department. I suppose that is a small benefit of not selling liquor at the grocery store….the liquor store staff always knows liquor. 🙂

    Mini me is heading to a New Year’s sleepover, so once I drop her off, I ready to let 2016 slip away quietly. Not without shrimp though…those were on my shopping list too!!


    • I’m telling you, I was worried for my life. That place was insane. While I was looking at the deli offering, two women were arguing over the last two pieces of prime rib before the counter person told them they had more in back. When I saw the parking lot I thought, I should go to that seafood / alcohol distributor on the south side, but I was too lazy to drive that far.

      re: shrimp — when dad was a boy they always had it on NYE, I guess. The only time, so he still thinks of it as a big treat.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Do Siego Roku!🍷


  3. Happy New Year, Servitus!
    I’ve enjoyed reading your blog posts this year and look forward to your 2017 posts.
    Enjoy your steak tartare (never had it) and the grapefruits. I have to work tonight (trust the dollar store to be open New Year’s Eve), so Im just hoping my boys save me a couple of meatballs & a few pigs-in-a-blanket.


    • It was good, but you won’t like it if you don’t like raw meat, obviously. Just wanted to say — if I didn’t have dad’s housekeeping budget, we’d have been having lentils. I hope you got off work in time get at least a meatball in.


  4. Happy New Year to you and your family, Servetus.


  5. Happy New Year dear Serv! Best wishes to you for 2017!

    I wish your dream is a prophetic one. That would be a great experience for Richard and for us I think😊 Things would get better sooner maybe.


  6. Love this! You definitely earned your grapefruit prize =). I spent my formative years in NM where the traditional New Year’s fare is posole, so and that’s what’s simmering here. Smells so good! Enjoy your feast!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Lol, totally outed yourself! That was too funny, I understand that moment when the look on somebody’s face tells you your interest in a subject as just taken a step past what one considers obviously appropriate. So perfect you got your grapefruit free. Happy New Year! This one will be filled with surprises and laughter and friends, woot!


  8. Great story. Enjoy the grapefruit.


  9. Frohes Neujahr! And yummy meal. We do Ny with a sip of champagne which i don’t much like and panettone which i do and them 1h later grapes with the Spanish ny and this year clementines at London ny after which finally off to bed. It’s less and lighter food each year. We stuck wisely to cold meats and salads this year. Tomorrow yet more pork roast with my carrots a d quince . Enjoy your meal!


    • I wish my stomach were as big as my eyes used to be, too. Hope you had a great day and Nappy new year!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Thanks i was glad whatever i cooked went down well. I’m not unhappy about less meat in my life 😊 if only i could fix things the way i can fix food


        • When I was dissertating, whenever I didn’t know what to write next I’d plan a six course meal from Marcella Hazan’s big compendium on Italian cooking. It was so comforting to always know what to do next.

          Liked by 1 person

  10. We’re like the lady you kept helping with the wine (I’ll keep your list in mind). Happy New Year and thanks for all the help you give.


    • Thanks for all your supportive comments and participation, and happy new year. I may or may not have a pathological need to share information …


  11. I hope you have a good 2017. I just wing it at the liquor store when I am not sure. What great help you where and grapefruit to enjoy too. I hope your dad and you enjoyed the shrimp. We also had shrimp tonight and I always seem to make it on New Years Eve. Look forward to reading your blog in 2017.


    • I think the issue is that one spends a lot of money so we don’t want to get it wrong. Hope you enjoyed your shrimp. We did. Happy New Year to you, too!


  12. Do you prefer red or white? Grapefruit. Great story, my husband says the best grapefruit comes from Costco.He buys it by the bag, twice a week. You may find this weird, but I had a dream with Richard and you in it. Two nights ago. I didn’t mention it because it was OT of anything. We were chatting him up, and I was slightly disgruntled because he was really into you (verbally engaged) and ignoring me. I wasn’t angry, just slightly frustrated that he was fascinated by your conversation and wasn’t interested in mine. I was happy we were in his beauteous presence. He was leaning towards you and I imagined a kiss coming your way. Then I woke up.


    • Kathy…we get grapefruit there too!!! Always awesome!


      • It is, right? We love Coscto’s grapefruit. Other things too, but husband has made the Coscto run just for the grapefruit, many times. 🙂 Lucky for us it’s close by.


      • ok, obviously I’ll have to go. We don’t have a membership b/c it seems like buying in bulk for two is kind of silly.


    • Pink / red, probably because I got into the habit when I lived in TX and they were cheap. Are the white ones better? Costco, huh? I could eat two or three a day. But I eat them in kind of a laborious way — I peel them by hand, and then I pull them apart segment by segment and I only eat the juicy part, I discard not just the peel and rind but also the segment boundaries — essentially I just eat the supremes. Decadent.

      Somehow I suspect that if you and I were both in the presence of Richard Armitage and he was deciding who to kiss, it would be you. You have such a great sense of humor!

      Happy new Year!


      • Same to you, Serv! Happy New Year. Go for the Costco grapefruit, there are only two of us eating them and it’s no problem. They never hang around long enough to go bad. As for the dream kissing, I had the impression it was you girl, all the way. I was probably boring in my own dream.


  13. Happy New Year, Servetus!


  14. Great story, happy new year!


  15. Happy New Year, Servetus, and thank you very much for blogging.


  16. Happy New Year!


  17. Happy New Year, Servetus! (Szczęśliwego Nowego Roku!)


  18. Love the story!!! I too wind up outing myself on store lines and starting conversations…we are very similar in some things!!!😉 Wishing you a FABULOUS New Year…may 2017 hold what each of us needs. And may we often connect in joy over our thoughts about our muse 😊


    • LOL, what else there is to do? There’s this odd sort of impatience that emerges if one doesn’t distract oneself. I hope that 2017 is a much better year for you and yours.


  19. Happy new year! My Mom told me between Christmas and Twelfth Day there are the holy nights representing the 12 month of the year. What you are dreaming in such a night will be come true. So wait and see if our sunnyboy will start to write everyday in summer 2017
    Great story, enjoy your well deserved grapefruit,


    • Wow, I did not know that. I’m in trouble now. Hopefully I’ll dream that Armitage is kissing me or something (haven’t had that dream yet, only the fantasy).

      Happy New Year!


  20. That Ode to Joy rendition is so funny!
    Glad your good turns at the store were rewarded!
    Hope you have a really happy 2017!


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