October 6, 2014 § Leave a comment
Back when I was partaking in awkward preadolescence by crushing on a boy I had just met during a soccer tournament in which our parents (seriously, what were they thinking?) signed us up to host a New York boys team which involved various meet-ups throughout the 10 day tournament, “hat trick” solidified itself in the annals of words that will forever be associated with that dramatic time in my life. The first meet-up, a welcome bbq in some rando park near the soccer complex, began the dance of who liked whom. I crushed on Patrick, a baby-faced, brown tidal-wave haired boy who happened to like me too. And so it was decided after that first bbq that Patrick and I would like each other.
Like all good preadolescent romances, for those ten days, he was mostly all I thought about. Before games, the girls would tease me “get a hat trick for Patrick”, and I did and I’m pretty sure I told him I did (omg omg). The tournament went fast and before I knew it Patrick and I were saying goodbye. He gave me a picture of himself to remember him by, and I think I gave him a hat of mine.
I’m pretty sure I cried when Patrick headed back to New York. We exchanged a few letters but it just wasn’t meant to be. Now, looking back the whole thing is kind of fuzzy and my adult self has a bit of trouble relating to my crying-ass self who knew a guy for 10 days, was too shy to kiss him, and yet was heartbroken when he left. Ah, the mysteries of being young and dumb and in-like.
But every time I hear the word hat trick I think of my giddy, naïve younger self and am reminded of how far I’ve come.
Randomly yesterday the words hat trick came bubbling up from the confines of the repressed memories compartment of my brain into the light of my Sunday food recap. I went to bed on Sunday wondering when the last time I ate so well was. Breakfast seemed as if it were going to be the pinnacle of the day – possibly even week. A stop into our new neighborhood restaurant resulted in me ordering a crepe that had me at “garnished with pickles”. Inside was smoky, fall-apart ham pieces and melty alpine cheese. Outside was painted with a Dijon mustard sauce that held those little pickle pieces in their evenly scattered positions. Together, it was the closest it comes to a perfect brunch.
Morning gave way to afternoon as our full bellies returned to empty and our kitchen went from empty to a flurry of activity. I whipped up sourdough beer pretzels and Mike chopped his little heart out and added umpteen ingredients to a pot that would turn into some of the best chili I’ve ever had.
It was, as I thought last night, a hat trick. Three amazing dishes, consumed with great fanfare by team Robards. Nothing dramatic about it, except when I knocked over a glass measuring cup that shattered on the floor as I was mixing up the ingredients for my pretzels and Mike breathed a heavy sigh which was totally appropriate based on my MO in the kitchen as a bull in a china shop, stumbling into cabinets and knocking over cups of liquid. But we swiftly team tackled the broken glass, nary a tear shed.