gordonzola: (Default)
Thanks for all the birthday wishes and the drinks last night. I am happy I don’t need to be at work until 11 this morning. Lucky 13 on a weekday night never fails to be empty of people and full of punk rock on the jukebox. My favorite kind of bar!

Judging goat cheese over the last two days was really great. I can’t tell you who won yet because the Best of Show isn’t revealed until the reception tonight but there were a few fabulous cheeses. There were also a fair amount of rancid and bitter ones and one that, quite possibly, was the worst, most dangerous piece of cheese I ever put in my mouth. We were judging pro and amateur and, surprisingly, a couple of really bad ones may be for sale at a grocery store near you. When I got to see who the producer was (and obviously the judging is blind) I was pretty surprised because their cheese has always been pretty good when I’ve tried it before. Ah, the perils of cheese judging. What we see in the room is not necessarily what you get. It’s possible they could have gotten lost at UPS unrefrigerated for a day or two so I won’t reveal the name here. At least until I check out my next batch at work.

And yes, we do have a spit bucket for cheese. Even so there were a couple of entries, both amateur, that we refused to taste because they were so visibly wrong.

But again, some of the products were fabulous. An excellent cheese after 5-6 bad or mediocre ones is very exciting. As a judge I get all, "Yes, yes, yes!" about it when the cheese sits in my mouth and gets better, not bitter. That moment makes it all worth it. Overall though, the level was pretty high for a mixed competition.

I smelled very goaty when I got home last night. Goaty, goaty goaty.
gordonzola: (Default)
Besides, you know, being a good thing to do, the best part about spending my birthday at a cheese-related benefit was all the cheese I got to take home. I was coordinating the cheese donations and had planned to only ask a few local folks for cheese. Word got out however, and cheese started appearing from all over the country . So much that between the cheese for eating and the gift baskets it took up 2/3 of my pallet drop in our cheese cooler. I started asking for auctionable items instead of cheese but at an event for 250 people we ended up with cheese for about 700.

Good thing I had a birthday party coming up.

I know you are all waiting for the cheese, so let’s get to it


From left to right: Redwood Hill Bucheret Pyramid (Sebastopol, California -- goat milk), Pure Luck St. Maure (Texas – goat), Tenerone Tri Latte (Italy – goat, sheep and cow this is the only cheese I actually bought so you know it’s awesome.) Bellwether Crescenza (Valley Ford, California – cow), Widmer 6 Year Aged Cheddar, (Wisconsin – cow, [livejournal.com profile] dairryiere carved a skull in it but the pics didn’t come out), Young Ewephoria (Dutch – sheep), Carr Valley Mobay (Wisconsin -- layer of goat and layer of sheep separated by ash), 2 Year Aged Gouda (Dutch – cow), Brick (Wisconsin – cow), Haystack Marinated Chevre (Colorado – goat), Sierra Nevada Organic Cream Cheese (Willows, California – cow) covered in Fig Jam (Spain).

(The following individual pics are actually better viewed large but I didn’t want to mess up your friends pages hence the linky. They should be darker too. Oh well)

Cheese porn #1

Cheese porn #2

Cheese porn #3

My party was awesome. A friend even came from Texas (coincidentally, not in honor of the occasion but still…) I thank everyone who showed up and give no guilt to those who didn’t Thanks especially to my co-hosts and housemates. Awwwwwww:
the hosts

Thanks also to [livejournal.com profile] chitinous. While she wasn’t there, she tricked me into putting on a Whole Foods shirt for an embarrassing picture that turned into an ice cream cake (Thanks [livejournal.com profile] anarqueso too? I’m unclear where the cake idea came from). You can’t see it in this picture, as only my embarrassed expression remains. No one wanted to eat that, I guess.
my cake

And here’s my favorite pic of the night. Me, a poet, and an ex-peace punk. We all agree that Boston hardcore sucked.
cindy, me, and mike
It’s actually sideways here, but I like it that way.

Unfortunately, I didn’t remember to take pictures (except of the cheese) until the party was almost over. Next time I’ll ask someone to collect documentary evidence. Thanks again everyone.

So, what should I do for my 40th?
gordonzola: (Default)
Thanks for everyone who helped me celebrate my birthday.* It was great.

Work was fun because I barely worked. I hung out with friends who came in to wish me happy b-day. I chatted with the BOD of the US Federation of Worker Coops who were meeting in our lounge (I’m proud to say that the singing of "Happy Birthday" by my co-workers disrupted their meeting). I flirted with customers even more than usual. Basically going to work on my b-day is great for me because I’m kinda an attention whore anyways. This way I get to indulge.

And yes, I did go to a bar afterwards to meet up with the USFWC BOD because I am that much of a co-op geek. But these are great people! I wanted to take the opportunity to see the out-of-towners while they were here. [livejournal.com profile] jactitation and a couple of other old friends stopped by as the co-opers were drifting away.

Today I’m going to my parents house to do b-day with my family and to clean the deer gore off my car. The damn thing smells so bad I parked it down the block.

I’m only 38 but I think I have to start planing my 40th. What did you folks do/what will you do for your 40th? (You little kids can substitute 30th for 40th)

*You know who you are. ;)
gordonzola: (Default)
...and since I've been away so much, I have to work all day long. If you're local and in the neighborhood, come by and say Happy Birthday. I'll be there from the early afternoon until close. And that way it won't seem as much like work.

But shhhhhh, don't tell my co-workers I told you to come.
gordonzola: (Default)
Thanks to everyone for the birthday wishes and the real life party. So many of you were so sweet to me that I honestly felt humbled and that doesn’t happen very often.

My fabulous day started by being at work at 7:30 in the morning receiving cheese. But that was fine because on one’s birthday, no one really expects a concentrated day of work so I fucked around a lot. Then the owner of a local cheese distribution company and his daughter brought in a chocolate sheet cake and a bunch of balloons, one of which had the Care Bears with the slogan "Have a Rainbow Birthday". Awwwww.

After work I went to the UFCW rally at the Church St. Safeway and the march to the Cala in the Castro. When one woman found out that our little contingent worked at a non-union grocery coop and was there in solidarity she freaked out with gratitude, telling all her friends and making them come over and introduce themselves. I explained the concept of "worker coop" a lot, even though I started to feel like a sectarian talking about the workers paradise.

My little party later at night was bigger than I expected. People who said they wouldn’t ended up showing up. My old film-maker friend from NY made a surprise visit and people from all over my life were there. One old friend pulled me aside and showed me a bunch of drawings asking if it was ok that he used my image for an educational cartoon book about AIDS aimed at butch bottoms. My face and his old boyfriend’s face on either side of a phallic rocket ship. "Just give me a copy," I said.

So many people were so sweet that I don’t want to single anyone out. But I have to publicly thank [livejournal.com profile] amarama for the best "platonic friendship birthday cake" ever made in the history of the world. The cake was chocolate on chocolate and covered with rubber baby arms of varying sizes. The little hands held 37 candles and four little speakers played a loud chorus of baby sounds when the little pacifiers were pulled out. Creepy and delicious. A work of art.

I seriously want to thank you all. I was touched. In a good way. I had a really nice birthday.
gordonzola: (Default)
I am 37. Tell me funny, sad, or otherwise notable birthday stories.

When I was in 5th grade my Mom bought a birthday cake for my little party and it was completely moldy on the inside. I thought it was green frosting of some sort. I was going to eat the pretty green cake until my mom saw it, uncharacteristically yelled, "Nooooo!" and grabbed back all the pieces. She brought the whole party, 6 or 8 kids, to the bakery and showed the cake to the horrified counter person who then let us get whatever we wanted. I mean, what was the person going to say when presented with a party of sad little kids?

I had an elephant ear. I remember wishing I had the cake.
gordonzola: (Default)
I haven't been around and it seems like eveyone had one. Happy Birthday [livejournal.com profile] psoup, [livejournal.com profile] vestalvixen, [livejournal.com profile] superchones, [livejournal.com profile] final_girl, [livejournal.com profile] jette and [livejournal.com profile] cindymonkey who all had birthdays this last weekend.

Whoo hoo!

Did I miss anyone?
gordonzola: (Default)
There’s always something stressful about celebrating my birthday. I’ve got no problem with my age. I’m actually happy about that. It’s the feeling I have that I should be doing something more fabulous or meaningful than I’ve planned. Because It’s my birthday after all.

But the thing is that I’m not that into fabulous. I have many friends who are and pull it off well, but it’s just really not my thing. My thing is more friendly, sloppy, messy, run-down, and probably beer-soaked.* I did have a moment last night when I wondered if I took the non-fabulous thing a little too far.

I had a birthday dinner with a few close friends. I picked a restaurant** that I like and that I knew would be low key, no-reservation-necessary and not too pricey because I knew my friends would insist on paying and I didn’t want them to be out too much money. But man it was empty. We were the only people there for most of the hour or so we were there. And there was a fly in the pitcher of beer. Still, the food was tasty even if I kept asking What Would Anthony Do?*** and wondering how often they actually got fresh meat deliveries.

Highlight of dinner: Me, [livejournal.com profile] nodoilies, and [livejournal.com profile] ilipodscrill arguing LJ vs. Friendster with Gary Fembot. Ugh, kill me now.

Finally [livejournal.com profile] jactitation, KerryPerry, and Dianarama showed up and we headed for the bar where [livejournal.com profile] fattest’s sister works. The bar that [livejournal.com profile] ctrhotpink used to describe as an "old man fart bar" when she used to go there in high school. Since it can be a little sports bar-y sometimes, it was lucky that the Cubs had already fucked up and their demoralized fans had slumped home leaving the bar fairly empty. But of course it was empty. That’s why I like it. Is the pattern becoming more clear?

After much anxiety about whether anyone I invited would actually show up, people did, and my Anchor Steam, magically, never ran dry. I usually compound my birthday anxiety by shyly half-assing the invitations and remembering people too late to ask them to come. But I had already decided to keep it smallish this year because I still felt partied out from our house party a month before. Still, I got to do what I like to do on my birthday, be the center of attention and wander amongst groups of friends trying to get them to mingle with other groups of my friends who they don’t know. Eventually people staggered off, some even drunkenly deciding to go to The Mint**** to sing Billy Joel and Queen songs.

But I didn’t. I felt done and satisfied with my birthday. And I had to get my yearly work evaluation***** this morning at 10 AM. Thanks to everyone who wished me a happy birthday yesterday!

*Or maybe I’m just lazy. Actually, I know I am. Why else pick a mediocre restaurant and a no atmosphere bar to hang out in for my birthday if not because they are both within two blocks of my apartment? But then again, acknowledging my own laziness is giving myself a present on my birthday really.

**You’ve been there [livejournal.com profile] surlygrrrl!

***Forgive me [livejournal.com profile] grapesoda.

****OK, everyone in SF has a website now.

*****Think Cultural Revolution era "Peer review".

******The only other LJ people who I didn’t name check above are [livejournal.com profile] plee, [livejournal.com profile] superchones, and her Bunnyboy. Except for Bunnyboy, I knew all of ‘em before my LJ existence.

*******[livejournal.com profile] arasay and [livejournal.com profile] de_gustibus you were missed. Why did you move to England again?


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