On hypothermia

Dear Feastlings,
Apart from a brief and sorely underfunded attempt to live in Italy in my early twenties, I’ve lived in Arizona since I was five, and consequently, I have very little experience with hypothermia. Still, we hear stories, even desert boys like me: the chattering of teeth, the shaking, the blue lips, and then it happens (per my limited Arizona understanding-) as if a switch were flipped, the hypothermia victims suddenly feel completely fine and at ease. In a dreamlike state, they peel off their clothes and relax in a snowdrift and let death’s icy fingers close around them with gentle, gratified smiles on their faces.
Today feels mercifully like that day for me. Yes, I knew our hot water heater was leaking a slow, rusty drip, and I’d already started calling plumbers- thanks, those of you who sent plumber recommendations after my last plumbing nightmare. But I figured we’d have time to orchestrate something. Why our water heater is on the roof is a question to take up with either our architect or the plumber who originally plumbed our building, and for whom I still have ill will eleven years hence. But the first bid arrived today, along with the news that we’ll be using the stove to heat our water until either our solar water heater can be made to limp along or out gas water heater can be completely replaced. With a crane. Because it’s on the roof, where no hundred-gallon water heater belongs. For somewhere in the neighborhood of $8,000. While I continue to wait to hear from my bank whether we’ll get our second PPP loan, since all loan evaluations for companies with more than 20 employees are on hold for a minimum of two weeks.
But wait- this isn’t an email where I start in on my numerous woes as a restaurateur a year into the pandemic. Instead, it’s a story of that switch that’s flipped in your thyroid tells you to take off your clothes and walk peacefully into the snow, and into the light. Let me pause here to say that, despite my Arizona upbringing, I’m aware that that’s not how it works, so please don’t send me something like this:


I don’t have time to read it, and even if I did, I wouldn’t. What I’m trying to say is that upon reading the first bid for a new water heater, a strange calm settled on me, and I no longer cared. I’m walking into the light. After a year of being terrified most of each day, I’m ready to accept that this last piece that damaged my internal thermostat, and lay down in a cozy snowdrift and just let it happen. Maybe I’ll be found by a St. Bernard bearing a small cask of Zwack on his frosty collar, or maybe two years from now some hikers will happen upon my scavenger-picked bones, but today, it no longer matters to me. And it’s truly freeing to have ruptured the worry gland in my head. I recommend it to each of you, whatever you may be worrying about. Never have I had this skill before, and I’m grateful for its being gently placed into my lap.
And whatever you do, please know that this is for real- I’m not writing all this to ask for sympathy or pity, I’m writing it because this has become my journal and my therapy, so I’m just giving it my near-daily update.
My plan as of yesterday was to send you some links, and now that I’ve gotten it off my chest that I’ve for some reason learned to disengage from my fears, for the day, at least, I’m going to carry on with that task.
We’ll start with this: Today being the first Tuesday in March, the March menu has at last begun, so you can survey that here:


I’ll also give you a preview of the wine tasting that Megan and I are up to in Kevin’s absence this Saturday:

While the cat’s away…

Then I’ll mention two fundraisers we’re participating in, one for vaccine volunteers

The only mall people are going to

and one for children with feeding challenges (and restaurants with feeding challenges of their own:)

A fundraiser for Nourish AND your favorite restaurants, whichever ones they may be

And with that, I’m going to lie back in the snow, and see if that St. Bernard shows up.



Email List Signup

Be the first to know about new and holiday menus, upcoming events like our weekly wine tastings, and other Feast specific musings. Join our mailing list.
You can unsubscribe anytime.