Oysters are probably an acquired taste. I don’t understand just why I have no problem eating them, when I would rather top myself than have to eat locusts or other creepy crawlies. But anything from the sea is fine with me.
I would never have thought of oysters as a chinese dish, but last Saturday I was introduced to them by a co-worker.
Steamed oysters – on the half-shell – in black bean sauce, garnished with finely chopped spring onions and red chilies. They were huge. The biggest one approximately 8 inches wide. The shells were piping hot and the taste of the oysters themselves shone through the spicy sauce.
The small chinese restaurants on Amsterdam’s Zeedijk have nothing to go for them as far as atmosphere is concerned -but a plate full of decorative oysters draws attention, and before you know it, you are chatting with the other customers, obviously ‘foodies’ like yourself. It makes up for the barren tables and neon light. No frills. Just food.
At 2,75 guilders a piece the oysters make an excellent starter cum converstation piece. The Peking Duck that followed… would be a journal entry in itself.
Sunday: It’s hot outside and it has been a lazy weekend. I spent a virtually horizontal Saturday: in bed with the mother of all hangovers. Today, I’ve worked on getting ‘Dag’ on line. Four years of the Internet have numbed my writing skills, so I need to get out there and get words down. On line diaries are virtually chewed out, but hey, I’m doing this for me… not to help propel the Internet towards the 21st century.
On my stereo: AIR – Moon Safari.
God love ya, Francie Bradie – dreamt up out of the warped mind of writer Pat McCabe. Neil Jordan’s film is a cartoon world gone mad. Images of the American 60’s permeate an Irish front room: black and white footage of yankee propaganda, the mushroom cloud, Kennedy’s voice, cowboys & injuns, wankers & eejits and pictures of the pope. A boy grows up while his world falls apart – his mother takes her life, his father spins tales of a happy past while he drinks himself to death, his best friend betrays him and the priests wiggle away in their frocks while the boy’s accounts of his visions of Mary (played by Sinead O’Connor) makes their juices flow.
Violence is inevitable you know… you feel as you are swept away by the story. And when he strikes, your sympathy’s with Francie, you’ve learnt to see the world through his eyes.
Hey fish… fuck off!
The Butcher Boy – Neil Jordan
Eamonn Owens, Stephen Rea, Brendan Gleeson.
Seen at Movies, Amsterdam on Friday, June 20 – with Jeff.
The Butcher Boy – Pat McCabe
Picador – ISBN 0-330-32874-3