I had an all-truffle dinner. Sadly, not great truffles. But even a mediocre truffle is a truffle, and a truffle beats a Wendy's double-with-cheese every time. The appetizer degustation: bufala mozarella with truffles, a broccoli terrine with truffles, carpaccio with truffles, and toast with truffles. The secondi was sunny-side up eggs with truffles. Drop a morsel of bread onto the plate, cut a slice of egg and place atop the pane, make sure to position a slice of truffle on top of all that, and oh yeah, baby.
For desert a bit of chocolate with orange. A glass of desert wine whose name escapes me, but which reminded me of a subtler Tokay. And the inevitable -- and who would want to evit it -- espresso.
Why do I tell you this? To earn your hatred. Oooh, let it wash over me, I will wash it away with a super Tuscan.
Spent the day yesterday with a Brit looking at houses. Spent today with an Aussie looking at houses. My bartender was an Aussie as well. The streets are full of gaggles of American girls whose blue-jeaned asses I dutifully contemplate, and who return my leers with smiles that say, "You remind me of my dad. Or Lex Luthor."
I've gone to the total shaved-head thing. I look like an albino turtle. It's cold here, so I go about in a long, navy topcoat, with a graphite scarf, grown-up slacks and miserably uncomfortable shoes, all of which disappear in the gloom of night, so that I end up looking like a floating hard-boiled egg with glasses.
Buona sera. Io sono Lex Luthor. Io sono Yertle il trataruga albino.
I think the waiter was an actual Italian, but he was such an over-the-top parody I suspect he might be an American acting student. I can't prove it. "I'm a do-a this-a to-a prepare-a the glass for-a the wine."
Naturally, I try to communicate with the locals, using what I know of the Italian language, all of which I learned from Chico Marx. "Why a duck? Why-a no chicken? Atsa matter for you?"
Best thing about looking at houses in Tuscany? There are two kinds of views: beautiful, and Jesus, that's really beautiful.
Olive trees? Oh yeah, they've got olive trees. And grapevines. Also castles. Looked at a house that's down the hill from the Frescobaldi castle, in a former watchtower. If I rent the house I'll have to sign an agreement to take the Frescobaldis as my liege lords. And I gather I'll have to supply three men-at-arms or six archers in the event of war with Chianti.
Best news so far? I wanted to see if I could download US television. I signed onto Hulu and tried to load a House. It turns out you can't access Hulu from outside the US. So I called the kid. 5 minutes later I was downloading from Hulu. Lex Jr. came through.