Wednesday, October 24, 2012

cashmere, coffee and anxiety

A savvy, wealthy, conservative friend of mine told me yesterday that  Romney is going to win. He's glad, because his partner is Syrian, and "Obama won't arm the rebels but Romney will." That was enough for a sleepless night, tossing in misery at the thought of that band of heartless thugs, and their Fox allies, once again occupying the White House. The "nice" Romney with the sweet sad smile, or the callous Romney who snidely dismissed the 47%, which one? And Paul Ryan - let's not even begin to consider self-righteous, bulgy-eyed Mr. Ayn Rand. The horror.

But this afternoon, I ran into a neighbour in the produce department at No Frills, and we ended up in heated agreement for 15 minutes beside the cauliflower. She says that the statistician Nate Silver, who's been startlingly right in past elections, predicts a narrow Obama victory. I'll go with that, for now, if only to enable me to get some sleep tonight. Please. Please.

A great discovery the other day, which I'd like to share with other Torontonians - the Merchants of Green Coffee. I'd seen them selling their beans at our local farmer's market, but assumed the name meant that somehow I had to roast my own beans, and ignored them. But no - they roast. A student wrote a piece about her addiction to coffee and these vendors in particular, so before I returned the rental car on Monday morning, I sought them out. They have a wonderful big funky caf√© just east of the Don Valley and south of Dundas - old tables, big windows, wifi, people sitting quietly with computers, and the divine smell of the freshest coffee. I bought a bag of Ethiopian, and it's superb. I look forward even more to my mornings now. And to going back one day to that lovely hidden space, to drink their brew and sit with my computer.

There's a great French word - "frileuse." It means tending to be chilled. I have always been frileuse, wearing three layers when others are in t-shirts. For a frileuse comme moi, there is one important word, and that word is cashmere. The most important item of my winter wardrobe is a black cashmere turtleneck. Softness, utility, style and warmth, in equal measure - but also expense, and the decimation of downy little goats, I gather. My old t-neck is worn out, and the new ones are prohibitive and politically incorrect.

Which makes me especially grateful that my favourite secondhand store Doubletake produced, today, a black 100% cashmere turtleneck for $5. I may not take it off until April. Tomorrow morning, I will be wearing black cashmere and sipping pungent Ethiopian coffee, well rested because Obama is going to blow that out-of-touch faker right out of the water.

Well, at least two of those three are guaranteed.

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