Last Wednesday was my birthday, and it might be the best birthday I have had in a long time. I celebrated it with a couple of friends at Lambert's and enjoyed a perfectly charming night out. But this isn't about how perfect Lambert's is; that's another piece all to itself. This is about my gift.
I awoke on my birthday disappointed to not see a birthday present in my room. With a sad face, I grabbed my towel and walked towards the bathroom and while doing so, stepped on a piece of chocolate. There was a trail of chocolates leading into the other room. There I found a table covered in almost every food I had ever expressed a love for: brioche; a baguette; Provençal olives; Haribo gummi bears; cookies from Quack's, Tiff's Treats, and Cipollina; blue cheese; seaweed salad; Nathan's hot dogs; boudin from Donn's in Lafayette; champagne; dark chocolate; Topochico; heirloom tomatoes; and a few other things I can't recall right now. It was overwhelming. So many great things in one place. And I couldn't possibly eat it all at once.
After the initial excitement passed, I was touched by the thought put into each item and how much legwork had to be done. I'm really particular in my tastes and am not the easiest person the find a gift for. This was the perfect solution. The best gifts are those born from listening and not the Sharper Image catalog.
Each item I received reminded me of when I expressed an interest in it, and from now on I will associate it with my birthday. By giving me all of those things, my girlfriend gave me a year's worth of conversation and memories, each food representing a different moment we have shared. It also says a lot about what I spend the majority of my time talking about. I've always said that food is love--for better or worse--and this proves it.