The Tapas Post

Dodie and Car


I have an eccentric friend. You know the ones? They’re so delightfully weird, that you just could listen to them for hours. I haven’t talked to my friend for awhile now, we’ve been so busy, we live 150 miles from each other, and general life gets in the way.


We spoke for the first time in months last night, and I remembered a few of the many reasons she engages me so — her turns of phrase and nicknaming of persons, places and things are so inventive and hysterical that I stand in awe. But most endearing are her food comparisons. I don’t even think she’s aware of it, but her descriptions always involve cuisine, and are by turns, frightening apt, brilliant and bizarre.


One of my favorites was when she talked about a recent breakup and likened herself to a McDonald’s tray, saying, “…So I’m the tray and there were still some fries left on it, and he just dumped the whole thing in the garbage. You know how you do? Just nonchalantly slide the whole thing in the trash with one hand under the tray because you don’t want to touch the ketchup-smeared, crusty swinging garbage can door?”


Didn’t really make sense to me either.

But then it kinda did.




But it’s classic, classic Carolyn. She put me in stitches last night when she talked about her bout with shingles. In excruciating detail, she compared her shingles skin to various food stuffs, with each food representing a shingles stage. First her skin looked like “pork rinds,” and then “grilled cheese pizza,” then that same cheese pizza “with all the cheese pulled off it,” until it settled into a mottled “corned beef hash,” appearance, before finally reaching its healing stage, looking like “duck liver pate.”


Oh man. When we worked together in the early-to-mid ’90s, she would often deliver these edible similes in a trademark Blanche DuBois meets Susan Lucci voice that would have been right at home on Saturday Night Live. Pretty soon, we both started talking to each other this way, kinda like a “Wwweyelll, what do we hyave heyare? What are you due-wyan’gg?”

You had to be there (are you even still heyare??), but it was soap operatic, and twangy and Golden Girls and hysterical.


Then the nicknames. High holy hell. I was “Dodie,” and her sister was “Puppy,” and her good friend Robin was “Mal” (delivered in the Blanche voice, which came out “Ma-yall.”


So anyway, I was just thinking about Carolyn today. She’s been a good friend to me for a long time, and is a single mom because her dippy husband drank too much and was a layabout and she’s having some troubles with her second-grader, and had to put her father in assisted living and she deserves a break.


Would ya-ah think good thoughts for heeyar?


Thank ya very kindly,



22 thoughts on “The Tapas Post”

  1. I think you should start a journal of Carolynisms. I bet no one else can speak in such splendid metaphors. Then she’ll get a Hyperion book deal, go on the Today Show, guest host on American Idol, be on the cover of Vanity Fair, and marry Dermot Mulroney.

  2. I had the pleasure of spending some time this past weekend with my friends like this. It’s pretty amazing how easy it is to slip back into the person you were when you were in the height of your friendship when you have people like that in your life.

    Definitely extending good thoughts!

  3. Think, nothing! Type them is more like it! Please pass on my best wishes to your friend and tell her that no matter how often life gives us someone else’s dried out and flaky leftover meatloaf, sooner or later we all get dessert. I’ll cross my mental fingers that when Carolyn’s dessert comes, there is nothing low fat in it! Straight up saucy, chocolately, whipped-creamy, fluffy yumminess!

  4. Hope things work out for Carolyn.

    You know, I’ve learned with good, true friends that you don’t have to talk to them every day, see them often, or send endless emails to pick up right where you left off or for them to know you love them just for being them. They know about life and the things that come up. And they know you’re there for them when the shit hits the fan.

    My friend Mikey (he of the comas squared) and his family are like that. We used to spend lots more time together, but health issues (for both of us) have made that less frequent. Still, we’re there for each other. And his wife, God do I love her! She’s cut from the same cloth.

  5. I always feel a little weird being the only guy in a room full of young mommas. Deb, your peeps all seem wonderful. – But I’ll comment anyway.

    Loved the pic, and it is so cool to have a positive, pick me up kind of friend like that. Your smile in the pic seems so pure and genuine. I bet you feel like that whenever you are with Carolyn.
    Anyway, I chip in my best wishes for “heeyar,” too!

  6. I’ve kept in touch with only one friend from waaaay back when. We talk only a few times a year, but when we do, it’s like no time at all has passed.

    I cherish her friendship, it’s nice to have at least one person who’s been with you ‘from the start’.

    Sending good thoughts her way :)

  7. I have great friends like that, but dammit, they all live so far away. No matter how much time in between our calls, we pick up right where we left off, and get right down to the nitty gritty of our craziness. No pretense whatsoever. Love it. Now if only I could get them all to migrate west.

  8. okay…here goes. Sending good thoughts, hoping that her day didn’t SUCK like MINE DID.

    How’s that? (If she’s a good friend of yours, she must be cool. of course.)

  9. Definitely sending her lots of prayers and love. She sounds like a wonderful friend! I love those friends you can just pick up after months of chaos that has kept you apart and it’s like you were never apart.

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