Bon Appétit – Part 1, The Monologue

In honor of the Julie Child Supper Club (JCSC), Portland Chapter, I am posting a monologue, a long monologue, I wrote about a gourmet club that collapsed, disbanded, and was, at the point when the monologue opens, trying to regroup. The speaker is the Club President of the former Gourmet Club, and she’s, well, she’s not very nice, to put it simply. To put it more poetically, she’s on the cutting edge of shallow. The JCSC in Portland bears no resemblance to the club discussed in the monologue and, in fact, is still going strong. I’m pleased to say the JCSC will be celebrating its 10th anniversary with a special Julia Child-inspired French meal on Saturday, November 15. My wife and I, as JCSC charter members, miss our very dear friends in Portland and all the wonderful, delicious meals we shared with them over the years. Bon Appétit.

THE GOURMET CLUB

AT RISE: The CLUB PRESIDENT sits at the head of a table in a high-end coffee shop. A cappuccino and a croissant in front of her. She occasionally sips from the coffee cup and picks at the croissant.

CLUB PRESIDENT

I want to thank you all for showing up this morning. I wasn’t sure how many of you would actually make it, especially since the unfortunate and tragic events that occurred at the Lobster Palace during our last Gourmet Club meal, which was what, ten, almost eleven months ago? It still pains me to think about that night but who could have predicted it? I wasn’t sure we wanted to get together again but with Sher’s insistence I sent out a trial balloon email and, well, here you all are.   Good morning.

Let me just say, it’s nice to see so many familiar faces again, especially since so much has happened since our last get-together and we’ve been through so much. How times change and how it changes us all.

As co-founder and current president of the Gourmet Club, albeit a club in hiatus, I initially wanted to test the waters and see if you’re interested in picking up where we left off. You may not know this but Jerry and I started the Gourmet Club, along with Sher and Tommy, by simply cooking gourmet meals in our own homes. And you may not know but at its peak the club had twenty members and, of course, by then we were not dining in anyone’s home but in restaurants.

If you don’t mind, I’d like to go around the table and bring everyone up to date, since I believe some of you have not kept in touch and I seem to be the keeper of the details. I’d like to start with my favorite Gourmet Club couple: Walt and Maxine. What an amazing pair. A dynamic duo, if you don’t mind the comparison to superheroes. Little known fact: they met in Nevada, one summer at the Burning Man Festival. One pales at the thought of what passed for dinner at that hippiefest in the middle of a flea-bit desert. That’s not for me. I prefer my meals without sand, thank you.

I hope I’m not embarrassing you two, but, as I recall, you were buck naked, both of you, when you met. No surprises from that point on, eh? Whatever. It worked, because you’re still together, after all those years and affairs, whereas Jerry and I — did you ever realize how our lives become clichés? I mean Jerry ran off with my pilates instructor. Hello!  Pilates!!! I hope the skinny bitch wears him out by Christmas.

And Sher, my dear? Everyone knew Jeff was gay. He dressed better than you, cooked better, even shopped better. He had that sine qua non of taste that so many of us lack, myself included. Let’s face it, honey, he had his own fondue set and twice as many shoes as you. Maybe that’s why clichés are clichés because more often than not they’re true.

(continued in my next post)

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