Food for thought (part 2)
In the first “Food for thought” entry I discussed my supper at Taverna Plaka in Atlanta, Georgia. That was a wonderful experience, but not quite perfect (but through no fault of the restaurant itself). Something was missing for that dinner: Company. Meals are the very essence of quality time for friends and family, and I wasn’t able to share my pleasure at Taverna Plaka (but next time I will go with a friend).
Today I had lunch with my friend Joe. We went to Fogo de Chão in Washington, D.C… Ohmygosh!! It was one of the single most spectacular lunch experiences I have ever had. It was an event. The setting is immaculately clean and beautifully designed, the Brazilian/Portugese servers are prompt and courteous (almost to the point of embarrassing me), and the food is both visually and nom-nom-nomerifically stunning. It was almost overwhelming, it was that splendid.
We started with the “salad bar,” though I feel I do it a disservice to call something that looked more like landscape architecture a salad bar. I don’t know what else to call it though. It was perfect. I would almost venture to guess that each greenbean was placed strategically on the serving platter, and that each shaving of Parmesan was carved with care (so as to give the illusion of perfectly homey crumbles). I was nearly scared to touch anything. But I did. And it was yummy!
The meat portion is interesting. Each person at the table is given a round piece of paper that resembles a coaster. One side is red, the other is green. When the red side is up no one will come offer you his meat (if only it were that easy in the clubs, right?). But when you turn the green side up within moments a gentleman with a particular type of meat (sausage, chicken, lamb chops, leg of lamb, filet mignon, etc.) will come and offer you some of whatever is on his skewer. After I got a cut I left my green light on, and immeditely someone else came and offered me something else. I said, “No, thank you,” and he went away confused. Then immediately a third came… and then I was getting panicked… Finally Joe said, “You have to turn your coaster back to red.” Ohmygosh! Fabulous!
At any rate, Joe and I sat for what must have been nearly two hours talking. And you know what? The meal was superb, but it was made all the better for sharing it. With Taverna Plaka I was reminded that food is joy. But with Fogo de Chão I was reminded that people with food lifts that joy to inspiration.
I don’t socialize near enough in my personal life. I just don’t. I get tired of deflecting assumptions and defending my choice of career. I get tired of expectations, and I am generally worn out of people’s company after the weekend; however, this trip to Washington, D.C. has reminded me that I really do love people. Yes, I needed a reminder.
While I’m praising Joe’s company and Fogo de Chão I should also heap some praise on Dr. Terry Gerace. What a perfect host he is. He, as you may remember from my other postings about him, is a huge portion of the energy behind the FUK!TS I came here to help promote. He is also the owner and operator of what is probably one of the single most amazing Guest Houses/Bed and Breakfasts you’ll ever hear about: The Artists Inn Residence. It’s uncanny – he found a muralist who can do trompe-l’œil effects so well that I thought the wooden staircase was marble until I actually stepped on it. Amazing!
Dr. Terry spent three years on the house, and it features many reclaimed works of antique metal, stone, and wood. I’m staying in the Shakespeare Room (each room is themed to focus on a particular artist: William Shakespeare, Leonardo da Vinci, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Katherine Hepburn, Salvador Dalí, and Duke Ellington). It’s quite simply the most relaxing and intriguing sleep over I’ve ever had (which is almost as insulting as calling the vegetables today a salad bar). The format is adjusting from nightly/weekly rates to monthly rates, so if you are planning an extended stay, you should definitely consider contacting the Artists Inn Residence, which is right in the middle of DuPont Circle.
Joe and Terry (as well as many other recently discovered precious friends) remind me to invest in people more deeply than I have in years. They are fantastic people. Between food, conversation, and hospitality they have made my visit here both constructive and very happy. As I venture more and more outside of the clubs in pursuit of my adult entertainment career, I am finding that this is a journey I should have started sooner. I am excited again about the possibilities that wait ahead.