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Thursday, January 12, 2006

Of aging, sportscars and tits

I'm four months too old to be a baby boomer. For the math challenged, that means I was born in August of 1945. Depending on your age, 1945 is either just emerging from the mists that envelope the 20s and 30s--my parents heyday--or it's progressively buried more deeply in antiquity. By any measure, those of us born then are old. With today's expanded life expectancies, we can reasonably hope to get older--20 even 30 years older--but we're old. 60 is the new 40 they say. Right. I'll take 40. Actually I'll take 35. Because 36 marked the year that I was weaned from my immortality.

36 was the most traumatic of birthdates. It pushed me over the cusp--72 was really old then and I was halfway there. I bought an MGB. It was red and spent as much time in the garage as it did on the road. I also started spending more time visiting doctors. I wanted a complete physical. Tell me what's wrong so I can fix it. They did, but I didn't. They still do, and I'm getting better but still transgress.

After the MGB, I opted for a sedan, but only for a few years. Age drove me into a Supra. Loved it. Fast, sexy. Driving to Dallas to launch a new career, three girls in a Camry gave me thumbs up as I passed them at 70.

In Dallas, we fell in with friends our age. They still are, but they're old too. One of them--who later drifted off to India, then Houston--skewered me with his observation of aging men one day. "Two things men get as they race towards 50," he said one drunken afternoon standing by his grill next to his backyard pool," a sportscar and tits."

I had both. And still do, with the exception of a sportscar. So do my friends. I'm sure he does as well, though I haven't seen him for several years. I'm on his joke list, however, and daily share in the bittersweet reminders of youth that sustain dirty old men.

What's this have to do with food? Well, as my friend was waxing on the foibles of old men, he was grilling a mound of beef that was one of his signature meals. The recipe follows. It's for a dozen or so people.

5-7 pounds of sirloin in one piece (tell the butcher you want a beef loin ball tip roast and see if he understands you)
at least a pound of melted butter flavored with a bunch of chopped fresh parsley and a tablespoon or so of Lawry's seasoned salt

  • Bring roast to room temperature
  • Put in on the grill
  • Baste frequently with the butter sauce
  • Cook to desired doneness (medium rare is best)
  • Slice and serve

If you eat enough of it, you won't need to worry about getting too old.

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