Saturday, May 22, 2010

Meditations Upon a Bookstore.

Last spring, I made a pact with myself. I didn't tell anyone about it. There was no one to tell.

I promised myself, that if I appreciated something about someone: their actions, smile, writing, etcetera, I would tell them. Within the past year, taking my promise to perhaps a legalistic level, I have actually told a complete stranger that he had a lovely beard. This was not flirting, this was paying attention. I wanted to pay attention. I had lived through inattention. I had been invisible.

My best friend Val does this, and I learned it from her. It freaked me out at first. She tells random strangers things, things that I didn't tell (let alone notice about) my friends. She would also secretly pick lint, fuzz, and stray hairs off of peoples' clothing (I was first introduced to this caring behavior while being mass-transported, packed like a sardine in a crowded San Francisco bus. She didn't tell them anything. They didn't even notice. But, when they arrived at wherever important place they were surely headed, they were Put Together, fuzz-free!) I have not taken things to this level, not yet at least. Although, I admit there have been times I have wanted to and backed away, retreating in fear that they would notice my hand stretching out to pick their lint like our ancestors did lice. Maybe this action is indeed instinctual. I can't help it. It's human DNA!

Last spring, I was in a very strange and very new place. A woman I did not know lent me a devotional book. A man left a Thank You card at the bookstore where I work as an offering of gratitude for my directional advice, and there were many more notice-ings of strangers.

My father once called me the "eternal optimist." We were vacationing in New York City, and the weather was miserable. We Blocks are a frugal breed. We save. We walk. No cabs for us! It rained. "It could be worse," I said. Well, indeed it could. It started sleeting. "It could be worse," I said again, and it began turning to snow. In exasperation my dad told me to stop saying that.

However, I am now an admitted pessimist. I don't trust that things will "work out," and I don't believe what people say until their words are proven by actions. They will forget. They will get too "busy." Their attention will be turned elsewhere.

I don't want to be one of These People. I want to pay attention. I promise, I do. And as I grow into this promise, I am too often reminded of my humble humanity, and that I will fail. But, I promised myself I would do my damnedest.

This weekend I was given plants: living, breathing green life. An old woman with wrinkles around her smile, wearing a large straw gardening hat, gave me basil, chives, mint, parsley, rhubarb, sage, tomato, and two Plants of Mystery. "I don't know what those are yet," she said pointing, "see what they do, and bring me one of their eventual blooms and I will tell you what they have become."

I am certain that this old woman with the crinkled smile and straw hat, just wanted to get rid of the straggling plants leftover from the gardening club sale outside the bookstore where I work. Or, perhaps she noticed my daydreamer eyes gazing out the window from my countered perch...maybe she was paying attention.

And so, I have been working all afternoon amid smells of basil and chives; silently, the plants sit behind the bookstore counter held in a shallow grey tub, the kind used for kitty-litter boxes. They grow dim as the hours pass and my attention is paid elsewhere. They ask to be planted, to grow their roots in a do I...

Sautéed zucchini and basil...

...the salad it dressed was gone before I could take a picture.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Springing sprouts.

Spring is the season that arrives seemingly overnight. A morning's blue skies overcast to a grey afternoon, and are then overtaken as rain wins the battle with winter. Spoils of the febricitous war are seen at the earth's next go-round; the sun's path lights a different hue. The loser will gallantly attempt straggling skirmishes, gaining ground back...a Blackberry Winter reigning for a day, maybe two.

This morning was gorgeous. Not a cloud in sight. No skirmish on the horizon. By mid-morning, dreary soldiers had marched over the mountain range. And, on my commute home from work, the impacts of the afternoon altercation were clear to my seeking eyes...searching for signs of change. The foothills spread out in a welcoming carpet of glorious green.

This kind of richness comes only once a year. Only now, in spring. New grass sprouts are sweet in their youth, too sweet in fact, candy coated. Spring grass is dangerous. This is the kind of pasture that beckons horses and cows to indulge fully. The meadows call with invitations to roll in verdant luxuriance, the equivalent of our silk sheets, I suppose. Although, I have never felt the latter upon my skin, and much prefer the former. This is the kind of grass that causes bloat and colic at the cream of the field's first fruits; it, being too much for wintered bellies used to dry grass. Imagine eating a German Chocolate Cake, and entire German Chocolate Cake, after a month's fasting. You would bloat too.

I read today an article about my Second Brain, from a link off of Gluten-Free Goddess's Blog. Often, it functions as my first, that is, my Gut directs my actions and controls my life more than I want it to, and more than my Reason can control.

If the Mind controls the Gut (think about being nervous and getting a "butterfly" stomach, as stated in the article), does it not also seem logical to follow that the Gut can control the Mind? I know, I have experiential proof from the years leading to my divorce, that a mind in torment, results in digestive hell. I also know, with every day's passing, that the State of my Gut, impacts my Mind. "Impact" is too weak a word --- my gut controls my mind.

I have never been able to fully explain how mentally exhausting it is just trying to feed myself. Or, how much anxiety fills every spoon I lift to my lips. I know what is coming. I anticipate the control. I know that I will very likely be contorted, bending to the will of this lower brain.

This morning on my bus-ride, I read this:
"We all try to accept with some sort of submission our afflictions when they actually arrive. But the prayer in Gethsemane shows that the preceding anxiety is equally God's will and equally part of our human destiny" (C.S. Lewis, Letters to Malcom).

I feel my faith, and the beauty of God, in sorrow. I do not feel "joy" in belief. This, perhaps, my destiny? feel my anxiety not as a defect, but rather as my share in The Passion (Lewis, 62), for, there was surely anxiety present before those thorns as well.

And now, to dinner. To eating and anxiety...and turmeric root. This smaller and darker relative of ginger is delightful in its root form. As a ground spice, it is just another pretty-faced jar. But the root? The root gives character. The root gives stability to dinner. And, this root leaves a kissable trace.

I have been sprouting Mung Beans for a few days now, and this morning their tails told me they were ready, their length complete.

~ Dinner for My Other Brain ~

Sprouted mung beans
Basmati rice
Sautéed turmeric & ginger root
Olive oil
Sea salt
Freshly cracked mixed peppercorns
Romaine lettuce

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Fate and Placebos.

This kismet world has a way of working into our days, things to make us believe that there is something more than happenstance at play. Often it manifests as serendipity, an innocent diversion for Fate's serious day-job. And sometimes its confrontation proves a sobering reminder of a thing rather forgotten.

Today, I was confronted. Fate was at work.

A few weeks back now, my mom and a dear friend were out visiting. Both very motherly mothers, they brought up the placebo effect, when I said that sometimes I don't believe this cup of ill will ever be Taken Away. I have been thinking about this mental trickery they touted, urging me to think myself well. The mind does strange things and has its own reasons which the Consciousness often does not know.

For instance, my ex-husband always used a specific pen. They were his favorite and he always kept a blue, black, green and red in his pants pocket. For "variety," he said. Always variety...

When I started my job last summer, my desk came stocked with supplies. Pens, pencils, stapler, book repair tape, archive friendly plastic paper-clips, and more pencils. Everything one working in a library would need. Some of the pens were his favorite. I realized this week that I have not used any of those pens. Not once. Why don't I? Is my brain so affected by this man, that still my subconscious wants nothing to do with him. Not even a pen's stroke?

Today on NPR I heard a story about the placebo effect, as a reminder of Motherly Advice. It was interesting, this story. The doctor stated that part of the placebo effect may be caused by people's association with "Going to the Doctor," and feeling better. You feel sick, you hurt, you go to the doctor, they give you something, and you are well. So it goes.

My pessimism is the one thing that grew fat through this winter of discontent. Its growth waning my frame, emerging thick-skinned, like the Florida oranges that are more peel than flesh after unusually cold winters or unexpected frosts.

Here is a quote from the doctor interviewed in that NPR story:
"But we as humans find it very psychologically difficult to do nothing about a problem.....folks derive a whole bunch of benefit from being actively engaged in treating their problem...They want to be actively fixing their problem. It's like you go home, you see a hole in your wall. Most people won't just let it sit there. They want to do something about it, and your body's no different."

That is my frustration. I try. I do my damnedest to do what doctors tell me to do. I get tests they recommend done. I believe, or at least I believed that they could make me well. I don't mind the diet I am restricted to. I don't mind how much time it requires, how much mental and physical energy it socially awkward it leaves me. I have learned to accept the fact that any time I am out, half of my brain is preoccupied with looking for dangerous crumbs. I have learned to convincingly say I have already eaten.

But, time after time the doctors are wrong. Nothing changes. The pain doesn't go away, and I am not well.

I am an unbeliever.

I am a creature broken. And in another of Fate's works, my eyes found this today: "To be created is, in some sense, to be ejected or separated. Can it be that the more perfect the creature is, the further this separation must at some point be pushed? It is saints, not common people, who experience the 'dark night.' It is men and angels, not beasts, who rebel" (Letters to Malcom, C.S. Lewis, p. 64-65).

As an imperfect creature, I crawl on my hands and knees, feeling desperately to find my way through this Dark Night.

Eating food brings me no joy. The strange part though is, I love preparing it. At the clock's strike of 6:00 p.m., when I get home from work and start to chop and bake and wash...that, is the highlight of my day. I look forward to it. I plan for this treasured time, having dates with myself.

Tonight, I picked myself some lilacs. I dream up a whole hedge of them someday, in my own backyard. They go well with lemons. I learned about these "complimentary colors" from my mother, an artist.

And, I paired beets with tarragon, making their marriage bed in olive oil...heat roasting to tenderness.

~ Placebo Effected? ~

Roasted beets with olive oil and tarragon
Buckwheat Groats
Red leaf lettuce
Red wine vinegar
Sea salt
Freshly cracked mixed peppercorns

Monday, May 10, 2010

Joy and suffering...

...oil and vinegar.

"Joy and suffering are two equally precious gifts both of which must be savored to the full, each one in its purity, without trying to mix them. Through joy, the beauty of the world penetrates our soul. Through suffering it penetrates our body. We could no more become friends of God through joy alone than one becomes a ship's captain by studying books on navigation. The body plays a part in all apprenticeships."
~ Simone Weil

Joy and suffering -- oil and vinegar...they seem on the surface repellent. No, they will not mix; but, their flavors complement, and are dependent upon the other for meaning to exist.

I was introduced to Simone Weil by my Grandmother. I stand in awe of my grandmother, feeling very near the presence of a saint when with her. My sister and I spent the night over at my Grandpa and Grandma's house quite often when we were growing up. Some nights it provided my parents a "date night," and other nights we just wanted to be spoiled. We would play dominoes ad infinitum, slurping up exotic Fruit Punch ice cream floats, the creation of my Grandpa who jobbed as a Soda Jerk in his youth and still fancied Grandma's kitchen counters as his Cream Parlor, his grandchildren were ever-willing participants in his sweet indulgences.

Then, with a bedtime snack of saltine crackers and milk, we nestled up to my grandmother in her bedtime slippers and robe, as her voice carried us into a wooden shoe and off to the land of Winkin', Blinkin', and Nod...

She would tuck us in, my sister and I getting our own room! Quite a novelty in those days. Often, I would escape the carefully wrapped nest, and peek through a light slit in a squeaky door. The view was always my grandmother, on her knees at her bedside. She was not speaking, her eyes were not closed; but, rather pleading something of her carefully folded hands.

People often say that they are praying for me. I seldom believe them.

Except, for my Grandmother. I know she is praying...

So, recently when I was wrestling with Silence, I asked her: does she ever hear God's voice? I figured that if anyone heard, it would be this Saint. Her answered words wrapped me with a comforter, and again like a child I was at bedtime years ago...peaceful.

"No," she said, "I have never heard it." Though, "sometimes, certain thoughts might be God directed." Sometimes? Directed? Her faith didn't receive The Voice either. The bedside channeling was silent. Yet, her voice remained. My grandma said this quote, from Simone Weil, has always brought her peace amid deafening silence: "All of life is a waiting for God...Let me trust also the darkness of my own faith that is energized by my longing. Even if my waiting in darkness were to be the only truth I ever taste, I would still believe the ache in me is too deep to take lightly."

And tonight, as I watched vinegar and oil fight against each other in a small Japanese tea cup, I thought about more of Weil's words, those about Joy and Suffering. We want Light without Fire. But, it is not possible to encounter beauty without first knowing The Ugly.

I live, waiting for God. I yet long within the darkness of my faith. And, I eat, in pursuit of The Beautiful, while still veiled with ugliness.

~ Dinner ~

Red leaf lettuce
Brown rice
Green olives
Olive oil
Red wine vinegar
Sea Salt
Mixed peppercorns

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Dwelling in the Possible.

My mother does this. That is, she dwells in The Possible. She inhabits the spaces between doubts, puttying them with potentiality. Her optimist's thoughts prove sealants against the misanthropic leakings of others, such as I.

What am I most thankful for about my mother? I could list the things here, attempt to anyway, but pages would still come horribly short.

She gave years of her life, completely devoted to me and my sister's education, and development as Individuals. She was patient as I cried over math. She forgave, when I decided melting old candles into one big new candle was a good idea -- in her good cooking pan -- wax is not friends with stainless steel, it turns out. She nudged me out of The Nest, sure that I could fly; sure, that she had prepared me for turblence of the world's air. She coaxes still, with words assuring, "You are not weird, just unique." And, I believe her. Finally, I believe her.

Now? My mathematical tears have retired, and discovered a second career's work over adulthood's complications...and Men. My mother remains a long distant ear, receiving flailing words and a heart's failing faith, through dating, a marriage, graduate school, a chronic disease diagnosis, a divorce, and dating again. Sometimes, I feel reverted to adolescence. Does my need to be mothered never end? I have come to hope it will not...

I can still hear my mom reading my sister and I bedtime stories; sometimes with cojoling, a chapter would be read mid-day, when we just couldn't wait for darkness to fall to again enter the World of Words. I remember her rationing "Bambi" by Felix Salten, chapter by chapter. It was like dessert...too rich to be enjoyed throughout the day.

When I was about 12, at a Swanson Library used book sale, I vividly remembering her reaching up above my head to a shelf, picking out Pride & Prejudice. This was good. This was classic. I would read it, she said. "Have you ever read it?" I asked. "No," she replied, "but it is good." And again, I believed her. That one Austen, her most famous of works, was indeed good, and with my appetite whet for wit and domestic banter, and my introduction to intellectual flirtation, and I embarked on a Jane Austen quest, reading every one of her works I could. Most of these works were procured at consecutive library book sales.

I would lay, belly-flat, under the spell of old words and used pages, upon a blanket with new-born kittens or upon sun soaked straw with a baby calf; in winter, I would curl up in my bed in the middle of the afternoon, and as long as I was reading literature, it was considered to be education and I was left alone in my world. I am forever thankful for these times; for these internal tête-à-têtes. My eyes devoured words and ideas, too old, at times, for my young eyes. I encountered Words Not Allowed through John Steinbeck's East of Eden; and blushed my way through D. H. Lawrence's Lady Chatterly's Lover. I wondered whether my mom would continue recommending these un-read classics as good. I didn't want to ask. I enjoyed blushing.

Right now, I am thankful for my mom's stomach. She has celiac disease too, you see. She was diagnosed, and in the following few months, I was. We both grieved gluten's loss and an altered life, together. When simply feeding ourselves became too much, too overwhelming, too confusing, we could commiserate with each other. Even if it was simply sending an email to her stating "I Hate My Gut," I felt better. This type of misery does love, indeed needs company. We both sit and sip cup after cup of tea, as others eat. We share little excitements such as the discovery of a new gluten free snack bar, or a sale on Lara Bars. Her visits across the plains and to the mountians, have turned into weekend long Foods Fests, making special things, just for our "unique" digestion. There is comfort in crumbless creations, especially those shared.

My mother's soul is beautiful. My mother dwells in Possibilities...and I? I remain a shifting tenant in these quarters, a place in which I find hard to settle. But in her possibilities' promises I find calms of childhood, comforts to which I can return, as a grown woman yet in need of a mother.

I dwell in Possibility—
A fairer House than Prose—
More numerous of Windows—
Superior—for Doors—

Of Chambers as the Cedars—
Impregnable of Eye—
And for an Everlasting Roof
The Gambrels of the Sky—

Of Visitors—the fairest—
For Occupation—This—
The spreading wide of narrow Hands
To gather Paradise—

~ Emily Dickinson

~ A Dessert of Possibilities ~

Sautéed Rhubarb in Almond Oil
Agave nectar

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Tea for Two and Two for Zucchini.

Sun, and elevation, and descending 2122 ft. in 1.1 miles, make Tajikstani Teahouses, many shared words and thoughts, and late evening dinners, savoured with a comforting peace...

~ Dinner ~

Sautéed zucchini with fennel and chives
Romaine lettuce
Olive oil
Sea salt
Freshly cracked mixed peppercorns.

Now, a sunkissed face rests in reflection, quiet, and still warm and thankful for the day's graces.


Thursday, May 6, 2010

Brined Memories.

My mind steeped in vinegar today, latching to this one ingredient, wanting to make a meal in its honor. I have somehow developed this habit, of choosing the "Least of These." I consciously look for the ugliest beet, the misshapen carrot, the food that no one else will ever pick. This sounds like some lingering childhood complex from grassy fields and chosen teams. I, not usually on one. Not a "team player," it was not that I wasn't chosen, but rather that I chose not to allow myself to be. A group? Oh, my mind was a much more interesting friend, complete with voices and arguments all its own. And, I am sure a psychoanalyst would have a heyday going through these memories and behaviors. I can explain it all. I am Odd, an "Oddie," a proud member of this select group.

And so this underdog complex which I attach to unassuming foods, had fastened itself intent upon vinegar. Vinegar is rarely seen as The Star. It's not something to showcase, it works its way through the background, corded in complexity. A vinegar though, caught my eye...

...capturing my thoughts, I was taken back to a small red Honda Civic, driving north on Josephine Street.

This vinegar was Ume Plum Vinegar made from the treasured Japanese Umeboshi Plums. I had tried these plums before, driving north on Josephine St. Their olfactory greeting, brimming with brine, was enough to give me pause before popping one of these wrinkly pickled plums in my mouth. This wasn't going to be a sweet fruit experience. I think my face wrinkled up with much resemblance to the plum.

Always, my imagination is excited by things Japanese. When I was young, perhaps 7 or 8, I remember my grandmother wrapping my small frame in a kimono and slipping my feet into geta. I accompanied her to a Baptist Women's Group meeting, to talk about my grandmother's missionary experience in Japan, many years ago when my mother was a child. My grandfather, a tall and handsome Dutchman, had announced with his voice still thick with the language of his home country, to my grandmother as she stood before him pregnant, that they were going to Japan. My grandmother, a Minnesota dairy farmer's daughter, had gotten herself quite the adventure.

My grandpa died before I was born, long before, of a stomach/intestinal cancer. I have never been too sure. Perhaps the doctors weren't either. Cancer's grasp on someone so young, was blamed on the time my grandfather spent in concentration camps during the Second World War; his crime being working with the Dutch Underground resistance movement.

I have inherited this legacy of Odd Workings of the Gut. Shall I prize this as some strange connection to a man and history I never knew? But even so, without which, I would not exist.

Back again to vinegar. It captured my mind. Could I have this? Ingredients: Water, Ume Plum, Beefsteak Leaf (shiso), Sea Salt. That sounded safe. But, I have become ever the skeptic. Of everything.

Celiac Disease causes a painful awareness, acute in its nearness, of food's impacts on the body. Discovering that the protein of the Staff of Life was literally devouring me from the inside out, was more than just a jolting turn in diet; it was disturbingly processing the reality that for 23 years of my life, I had been killing myself. Slowly shortening each day's minutes whole grain by whole grain.

I remember feeling mad at the faceless names, books, magazine articles, doctors and even the FDA and their dam'd "pyramid," all touting the health benefits of whole wheat. Those 6-11 servings comprising the solid base? Sure "whole grain" encompasses rice, buckwheat, quinoa and other gluten-free grains. But, pancakes, a sandwich, or pasta, are far more likely to be eaten in a standard day's fare. I felt betrayed by the recommendations. This broke my trust. Does this sound unreasonable blame? Perhaps. But, now imagine finding out that something you eat, something you have been told to eat, something you have been fed, something you have been given time and time again to be "nourished" by, is in reality, killing you inside. And, you are going to your death upon recommendations, indeed commendations, of Health.

I still find it amazing that one tiny protein, one part of one single grain, can hold reign over an entire physical body, mental capacity and ability, and indeed entire life. Gluten was sentencing my death.

Where once labels were scanned, if at all, now they are combed and scoured, like some demented treasure hunt.

I deduced: this would be safe (I think). One never really knows. There, my skepticism.

Since childhood, I have been known to drink sauerkraut juice, pickle juice, and leftover olive juice straight from the can (these behaviors I now understand to my body's way of filling itself with its lacked and craved for salt). Always, a suspicious look follows my actions, silently questioning, "weird cravings, you aren't pregnant are you?" No, no, no, no! I sat today, with cravings beginning for this pickled plum brine, my stomach growing larger only with anticipation of indulging taste. Would the puckerings of plums on Josephine Street return?

The dark bottle hid the beautiful tone of this liquid's ferments, and I delighted at its rosied splash onto the teaspoon, drippings of aged flavor falling down onto the naked white flesh of mung beans sprouted only days into their youth.

~ Umeboshi Salad ~

Black Japonica rice
Mung bean sprouts
Red leaf lettuce
Ume plum vinegar
Olive oil

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Sweet on Salt.

It struck me this evening, as I fawned over my new jar of French Sea Salt, the very odd timing of this new fixation of mine. As New York City is making headlines over their proposed ban on salt, I am buying jars of the briny substance.

My fingers now on the keys, like hens, peck desperately, capturing the last morsels insecta of the day. The close-by window remains open, lingering into the coolness of early spring's evening; and, I feel balance return if only fleeting in its flight. I savour red leaf lettuce, gently wilted by warm wild rice, and my lips feel tingling reminders of salt's kiss...

It is funny how childhood memories sometimes come as uninvited guests. They conjure relevance, and enter without a warning knock. So it goes...twice today. Twice so far, at least. Magnolias are blooming. And, as I was walking from the bus-stop to work, I passed some of this foliaged glory.

When I was about 8 years old, there was a magnolia tree underneath my second-story bedroom window. It was young yet, and magnolias don't get very tall anyway; at least, not Second-Story Window tall. Their energy, more focused on growing plethoras of petals every spring, than matching height with pines and oaks. While unseen, this tree essenced my room with its flavor, flora and fragrance of spring. How does a mind put Magnolias and Salt together? I won't question mine, for fear its answer.

Magnolias and Salt. Both, object lessons in Sunday School. I remember the pastor taking a fuzzy magnolia bud and peeling it back layer by layer (all the while I was aghast at the devastation of The Bloom, ruined before it could reach its God-ordained beauty -- "I don't think God wants his created buds objectified in such ways," I thought. And yes, I did think in such a way when I was 6), and like an onion, it revealed many layers. This, the pastor said, was like our hearts. Sometimes myriad layers, ugly outer casings, were covering up the beauty, embryonic in its growth. Its time had not yet come; its spring had not ushered it on, pushing it further with assuring warmth. It it safe to bloom now little one...

And, salt. The salt of the earth. The light of the world. The city on a hill. And, I am reminded by a Groovy Song, that even so, sometimes "We all need help to feel fine (let's have some wine!) ."

I had a realization, about a year ago now: I craved salt. Lauded are low sodium diets, and packaged goods boast "reduced sodium" varieties. This must be good, eh? However, I eat nothing prepackaged. Vegetables? Rice? Fruit? Pulses? Nothing is salted. And, I salted nothing. I run, and I started getting horrible cramps in my feet and legs. "You need salt," I was told. That makes me 2 for 2 on unusual doctor recommendations: Eat More Salt and Gain Weight.

Then, I discovered Sea Salt. Why do people use table salt anyway? It tastes overwhelmingly brackish, strangely bland even. I didn't think I liked salting foods, because I didn't like salt. A least, I didn't like table salt. It was boring; and, was consistent in taste and dissolved in texture, leaving only its flavor to trace. Sea salt remains true to itself, reminding through encountered grit of its home -- the sea, and sand. It doesn't mix well. It stands out and lets you know it is different. It is the Light of the Dish.

North American and Himalayan sea salt have been part of my gustatory repertoire for awhile now. But, my affinity's newest find? French. Harvested from the Isle of Noirmoutier, Brittany, France by "sauniers." I am quite taken with it (and, with the thought of "sauniers").

I wanted a salad tonight. Ok. I'll be honest. Really, I just wanted to taste this salt again. I miss the sea...

~ Sea Salted Salad ~

Red Leaf lettuce
Wild and Brown rice
French sea salt
Freshly cracked white pepper

Tonight, I need some help feeling "fine." I'm going to go eat grapes...the parents of wine, yes? Should have the same effect...