California Conversion

Foodie (on the phone with the Beast):  We have to start going out to restaurants.  I need better material other than the mediocre meals I’ve been making and take-away food.  We still haven’t been to Nota Bene.  Or what about the Spice Room?

Beast:  What if I just bring home California veal sandwiches?  

Foodie: Perfect!  I’ll rent a movie.  How about “Doubt”?

Beast:  Okay.

This was a shocking reaction, and I’m not talking about the jump from Splendido to California Sandwiches (it’s the weather I think:  all I want to do after work is eat comfort food by the fire in my jogging suit watching television.)  I’m talking about the Beast agreeing to see “Doubt”.  Usually I have to watch classic films, like Twilight, or Quantum of Solace, on my own time and spend “quality time” with the Beast watching films that don’t star Jason Bourne and don’t have an indie rock soundtrack.  Even though Doubt was nominated for a few Oscars, I’d suspected it would still fall under the Beast’s too-cool-for-Hollywood radar.  

Back to dinner:  I’ve never been enamoured with California sandwiches the way the Beast is, or for photo2
that matter, the way every man is:  every time I’ve lined up at the original downtown Claremont Street location, it’s like I’m in the middle of a calendar photo shoot because I’m surrounded by construction workers, police officers, and fire fighters. I think this sort of food (breaded and deep-fried meat slathered in tomato sauce with optional cheese, grilled onions, mushrooms and peppers, and served on a ridiculously large Italian-style roll) appeals to a primal sensibility.

 But on the way home to visit my mom last week, I had a California sandwich epiphany.  There’s an outpost on the Queensway that serves up the same delicious stuff to the Mississauga and Etobicoke crowd.   While my veal sandwich looked just like the ones I’d had downtown, its taste was superior.  I was eating it like such a savage that I feared the Beast would think me unsightly.  But then I saw the same tomato sauce dripping from the side of his mouth and down his wrists and heard the same moans of satisfaction.  This brings us up to last night, on the couch, watching Doubt and eating our dinner:

Foodie:  The California sandwiches we got on the Queensway were saucier than these ones don’t you think? 

Beast:  Way saucier.  You can’t keep writing about how we eat at places along the Queensway though.  People will think that’s all we do.  We just rent cars and drive along the Queensway looking for fast food.

photo11Foodie:  Oh shit!  Thanks for reminding me!  I need to photograph this.  Hold still.

Beast:  I don’t want my face on your blog!

Foodie:  Stop fussing!  I just want an action shot of your paws lifting your dinner to your mouth.

Beast:  Are you going to finish that (eyeing the remains of my sandwich)?

Foodie:  Maybe.  But there’s no way you’re going to finish your two sandwiches plus this little bit of sandwich.  You’re going to make yourself sick.

Beast:  We’ll see.  Have you converted to California sandwiches yet?  That should be your blog title.  Get it?  We’re watching Doubt, and converting?  It’s good, no?

The movie was good, but it was sort of like watching a play starring famous people on a really shitty 18″ Panasonic television.  The sandwiches were better.  And best was this afternoon when the Beast sent me a link to a BBC article reporting that chimpanzees exchange meat for sex.  Thanks to evolution, I got a veal sandwich and he didn’t have to do the fucking dishes.

Foodie     **

Beast       ***

2 responses to “California Conversion

  1. Did the “Beast” get a manicure for the shot where he is holding the California Sandwich? Nice touch, Impeccable!

  2. A different Stephen

    On an early morning trip to my local lumberyard I was delighted to see that Vinny’s Panini, home to a veal sandwich that far surpasses anything from California in delectability and homey goodness, will be open this long weekend. I have now begun to plan my entire day around an enormous lunch and the long nap that will follow.

    Thanks for the coffee, by the way.

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