Tuesday, January 12, 2010

MAX, my Italian love

Long time no blog eh?
I've been soaking up my last days of being home
in the wonderful city,
trying to distract myself from the fate that awaits me in Poughkeepsie
long nights in the library reading while half asleep,
shopping being limited to 3 hours on the weekend after enduring a 
sweaty, obnoxious shuttle ride 
vending machines with Swedish Fish but no Sour Patch Kids 
(which should constitute a crime)
gross clumps of hair in the shower drain
frigid toilet seats that give me a surprisingly unpleasant jolt in the mornings
(people just love to leave the bathroom windows open)
but amongst those other nightmares that bring me
oodles of gloom
is the watered down pasta sauce that sadly coats the 
spaghetti, penne and all other things Italian
You know what I realized in college?
how much I love spaghetti, it was always one of those things I took for granted
never realizing the joy that those noodles could bring to my heart 
when slurped and enjoyed with plenty of thick, tasty sauce
spaghetti is so simple, so classic, so key to life honestly
that the college dining experience can 
massacre something so simply delicious
is beyond me, it is an utter shame
so as I enjoyed my first plate of spaghetti and meatless meatballs
I was elated, transported to another world of pizza and mama's pasta sauce
but that wasn't enough for me, I love my mother, but she is not Italian
I need some of nonna's cooking to satisfy my Italian cravings
the cravings my roommate knows much about
because instead of counting sheep at night, we talk about food until we are drowsy
best cure for restlessness, ever
anyway, the only way to satisfy, and possibly perpetuate 
[perpetuate is such a Vassar word, ew]
my craving for Italian was to visit the best Italian restaurant I know
MAX, on 4th and Avenue B, otherwise known as heaven
which the Zagat gave a 22 for  food, 15 for decor, and 16 for service
boo! I say to the 22 & 15!
for the dark rustic ambiance of the place takes me to another world
as does the food, after ordering Caprese & 
homemade gnocchi with tomato sauce, basil & mozzarella
I was set, ready for some sweet Italian loving
loving that I definitely cannot find at Vassar
the fresh mozzarella, tomato & basil were out of this world
and made me wish I was Italian for a few seconds...maybe a few minutes
so that I could have a fresh, moist little lump of mozzarella inhabiting my fridge at all times
then, the gnocchi came and I was instantly transported to a world of Vespas & gelato
a deep bowl of tiny potato love pockets in thick sauce, 
& cheese that was so melty and stretchy
I'm salivating just reliving the experience
those gnocchi made the gnocchi at Vassar look like fat maggots swimming in dirty red water
that sounds really gross actually...
anyhow, I love the Jersey Shore and everything
but the true Italian essence was in New York City, sitting in my bowl drowning in cheese.

This is exactly what I would look like if I was Italian, it's just uncanny.

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