Sunday, February 20, 2011

Unspoiled Brats

After the club last night, we wandered down Elgin Street to a birthday party at Ontourage, which may be a spelling mistake, or may be an intentional piece of wordplay, or possibly both. Within the bar were several of our friends, including the lady who has agreed to act the part of the femme fatale in my rabbit epic. I couldn't face the idea of tacking straight into a gale of booze, so I detoured to the adjacent establishment, Brat.

Brat is an upmarket hot-dog joint. This does seem like a ridiculous idea and one doomed to failure, but I was completely charmed by it. Unlike the horrendous over priced hot dog joint in London's Soho (where that seemed to be the whole concept - flog over priced, horrendous hot dogs to people) Brat is more like a distillation of all that's good about Holland and Germany. Well, it's high-class sausages and beer, there's no BMWs or thumpin' techno involved.

Given I was paying over a hundred dollars for a hot dog, you'd expect something special, and it did come with a portion of French fries and a bun made from rye bread, rather than some lump of fluffy white starch straight from an anonymous bread factory. The caramelised onions were perhaps a little OTT, but the sausage, oh, the sausage! It was just ridiculously tasty, rich and smoky and this was just the vegetarian option. If I'd eaten something with meat in it I'd probably have passed out, delirious with shock.

We were the only customers, which is perhaps unsurprising at eleven pm on a Saturday night, but if you're not going to chow down hotdogs then, when are you going to do it? I'm keen that this experiment in high-class sausagery is a success, so I'm going to encourage everyone I know to head to Brat as soon as they can, to smother their sausage in Dijon mustard and then sit there, quivering with surprise at what they've just eaten.

Hmm. I hope "smothering your sausage" isn't a synonym for self-abuse.

After that epic, today couldn't really compare. I had the never-ending thrill of filing six months of bank statements and utility bills, half an hour of fixing up the last stages of my Automatic Comedian (a quick tweak to make his verbiage start and stop more naturally) and then the rest of the day was filled with nothing at all.

This was the day of the Hong Kong marathon; a grey, dull day with plenty of drizzle, good for running in, I suppose. It's been almost two years since I last ran a marathon, and it doesn't look like I'll run another one soon. Marathons seem to be one of those pursuits where you don't recognise your last one until some time later. I always thought I'd do another after Tokyo, and run it faster, but the chance of that seems to be receding faster with each week.

Still, it means no more complimentary sponsored nylon t-shirts to add to my wardrobe, which is probably a good thing. And if I can just keep up my pilates habit this week (5 days last week) I'll have done that more than I did in all of last year, resolutions or not.


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