My garage door has stopped working. Whenever I hit my remote, it makes an ineffective clicking sound and refuses to engage. So, today, finally, I got around to calling up the local LiftMaster dealer in my area. I explained the problem and their representative seemed genuinely sympathetic – before informing me that the company only serviced businesses. Fortunately, she had a name for a guy who served residential customers. I called him up, presumably interrupting him in the midst of his afternoon nap. I explained the problem and he seemed genuinely sympathetic – then informed me he was more of a “replacement” rather than a “repair” guy. “Once one of those things goes, it’s usually cheaper to replace it than fix it,”he assured me. “You can get a new one for only two hundred fifty bucks.” Two hundred and fifty bucks? Only?! What deal!! At that rock-bottom price, I’m thinking of getting one installed for every door in the house! Can you imagine? Never again having to go through the trouble of twisting the doorknob and pushing or – even worse – turning all the way around to shut the door behind you. Hell, if I’d known they were only two hundred and fifty dollars a piece, I would have handed them out as Christmas gifts to all my friends who drive. A simple push of the button would make entering and exiting their car as simple as opening and closing the car door themselves! I mean, at these prices I’d be foolish NOT to purchase an entirely new system instead of simply addressing what may be nothing more than a minor glitch.
The other day, I prepared a couple of dishes inspired by mom’s cooking…
I used to go out a lot. And I do mean A LOT. Hell, for the first eight or so years I was in Vancouver, I rare if ever ate dinner at home – and, when I did, I was usually ordering in. Things have changed though and now the reverse is true. I cook at home A LOT and rarely go out for dinner. But, occasionally, I do venture out. Like the other night when I met up with my friends Jodi and Steve for dinner at Oru in the Fairmont Pacific Rim Hotel. We opted for the $49 Tasting Menu that was comprised of six courses but, strangely, dessert wasn’t one of them.
To start, a surprisingly good Baby Cos Lettuce salad with spiced almonds and orange in a coconut vinaigrette. Then…
Next up was an excellent Sake Kasu Sablefish with gingered tomato and sweet miso.
Even though it wasn’t included as part of our meal, Steve and I decided to order dessert. I had a delightfully dense and decadent chocolate creation while Steve went with –
Although I wasn’t blown away, I have to say I was pleasantly surprised. I tend to be suspicious of hotel restaurants, and doubly suspicious of restaurants that specialize in the all-encompassing Pan-Asian cuisine, but Oru availed itself nicely for the most part.
On the way out to get our coats, I spotted Jodi’s footwear and had to snap a pic.
Anyway, back on the home front yesterday I was feeling very much like a contestant on Top Chef. “For your QuickFire Challenge, you’ll have to come up with three dishes to serve a vegetarian. You have one hour. And your time starts….now!”
I also made a sweet chili broccoli stir-fry and, for dessert, a Kasu-Brown Sugar ice cream that proved a little too sweet but possessed a spectacular underlying sake flavor.
A reminder to post those questions for author Marjorie M. Liu if you’ve got ’em!