It was my favorite kind of author event – the writer speaking off the cuff, relating stories and anecdotes as they arise. Of course, as he himself noted, you can’t exactly read a cookbook aloud. But more than that, the format fit his personality: informal, funny, and not afraid to tell it like it is.
I won’t give a blow-by-blow of the evening. Frankly, I like Lebovitz, but I’m not a devotee (of which there were many in attendance). I don’t even own an oven, for heaven’s sake! His recipes are something I scroll through, intimations of sweet dreams that have nothing to do with my reality (plus, I can just go to the patisserie).
One seemingly unrelated tidbit I learned is that Cafe Etienne Marcel will host two weeks of ‘Sex and the City 2′ launch events starting next Monday for any of you fans out there. Why do I know this? WH Smith is a partner and hosting several author events. The bookstore’s marketing director explained that there would be classes on ‘mixology’ (the perfect cosmopolitan, anyone?), making cupcakes, and walking gracefully in heels. Lebovitz seemed surprised to learn that he was programmed for an event there, too.
After the book talk/signing I joined Karin for a birthday drink (hers, not mine. I’m a Scorpio, baby!) I tried a ‘violette’ kir which I had never even heard of before. (The basic kir is white wine and cassis liqueur.) Seemed a propos to sample something new – we had stumbled onto the Carpe Diem cafe.
All in all, it was a great evening, with elements I imagine people populate in any dream of Paris: pastries, posh drinks, hours passed in classy cafes.
The fact that I don’t actually bake, wear sneakers instead of heels, and am more shabby than chic doesn’t change the fact that all of these things could be a part of my life. On certain warm May evenings like last night, I find myself drinking pretty cocktails that a cute waiter has just delivered with a smile. Sometimes it’s fun to pretend.
P.S. That would have been a nice place to stop, right? I can’t help myself, though. As I sat writing this, a group of teenagers walked by and started laughing at me maniacally for no reason I can discern. And so my new persona – Sex and the City, City of Light version – evaporates in a fury of self-consciousness. Just like that