Maybe it’s the grappa.

Fanatic Cook’s recent post on HDL (“good” cholesterol) led me to vow to drink more alcohol, so the other day, Karen and I dropped some dough at our local liquor store. We bought grappa, gin, and port. Tonight, we cracked open the grappa.

It’s, um, stronger than I thought it would be. Drank it three hours ago and I’m still buzzing. Mazzetti liquor de l’Oro, if you’re curious, but I’m not recommending it just yet. It’s sweeter and stronger than my usual Brandy Peak grappa, which gives me a happy buzz. This Oro stuff is making me feel all sappy and sentimental, and when I get sappy and sentimental, I scan old photos.

I spent my second year at Berkeley in Griffith’s Hall. Funny thing about that year. It had to be the worst in my life up to that point, thanks to me breaking up with GFv1.0, dorm-induced sleep deprivation, the stress of school, and generally hellish 19-year-old angst. I suspect I got less sleep that year than I did during my surgical internship.

And yet . . .

Look at these folks. Look how happy they are.

If you want a bigger view, click on the photo.

Yup, they’re all happy, all except for Ernie, there in the foreground looking as if he were posing for a football team photo. No one remembers Ernie’s real name. We called him Ernie because he looked like Ernie from My Three Sons. (You have to be at least 40 years old to understand that reference.)

We took this photo towards the end of the year. Most of the folks who were going to drop out had already done so by then. Dale, he of the loudspeakers-which-go-to-eleven and the bottomless baggie of pot, he who routinely got so effed-up he would pee off the balcony or pee in the hallway, he who got straight As in high school: Dale flunked out after Fall Quarter. Russell’s ROTC roomie went nuts — but I’ll save that story for another day.

The rest of us made it. We all graduated, as far as I know, and I suspect a lot of these folks went on to great things. I’d like to think so.
I miss a lot of these people. The women, to be exact.

Once each quarter, the dorm cafeteria served up a Fancy Dinner. You know, something with meat in it. We decided to get dressed in our nicest clothes, make a big splash in suit, tie, whatever.

None of the other dorm residents thought to get dressed up. Just us! Because we were special, different than the rest. I really believe that.

You know what else?

Even back then, I had my mother’s calves.



  1. Pat says:

    Your mother was Sasquatch? Because that’s what those calves say to me…

    Like I should talk. Someday I’ll post a photo of me in shorts. (Not in a dress, though.)

  2. kate says:

    you know that most people who did stuff like that in their undergrad days would take that photo and rip it up and pay the photographer big money to destroy the negative. yup–it could be a good source of income for some enterprising blackmailer.

    You? You blog it and make sure we all know that you’re the one in the dress and clogs. Time for my close up, darling.

    THIS is why we love you. That and the frogs.

  3. kate says:

    oh and bare rump of course.

  4. Blue Gal says:

    I knew you were an honorary woman, but…

    Let me know which Port you bought and if you like it.

  5. Dean says:

    Jeez, Doug, with a little bit of Nair you’d have been HOT.

  6. Walnut says:

    Aw, thanks, guys *blushes*. Dean, Nair? But that would destroy my special je ne sais quois!