[ From the Archives of 365 ]
He tells me lemongrass tea is a cure for joint pain.
OK cut to the chase. My eyes are watering and the room is a blur. I’ve barely eaten today and have spent the last 2 hours trying to be intellectual in my writing tonight. The day has been insane. It’s rapidly approaching midnight, still not done with the day’s business. And now it’s time to go with the flow in whatever words come out. So here we go.
Meet Otto, (self-appointed owner. I found out a year after this encounter that he was the delivery man…wish he would have been honest with me) of Lemon Grass Thai Restaurant, a cool little joint around the corner from me. I’m telling you I’m lucky to have even gotten out of my office today and as I am writing this, I’m still at it working to deliver a project. By my side, my wife, who with a good friend Brandon, a very talented illustrator, are working on a set of perspective sketches for an advertising photo shoot I’m doing next week. No rest for the weary.
Flashback to 6 pm, when I grab my camera bag to hit the streets. Out the door, I go for another jaunt up Sherman Way. Not far from my house I look left and leaning against the wall, smoking a cig, is Otto. I look at him thinking, “who is this guy, and why is he loitering in my neighborhood?”
Not being the shy type, I know the only way to find out who he is, is to approach him. I step up, introduce myself, and invite him to 365.
Turns out, he is the owner (not so much) of one of my favorite local eateries. We go into the restaurant and take a few photos. He is a very energetic, educated, and amusing gentleman (again, why the deception).
I learn a thing or two from him about healthy eating. He tells me Lemon Grass Tea is a cure for joint pain. I’ll try it.
I want to write more, but I have to humble up today in letting you know, I’m toast.
I leave in sharing Otto’s recommended dish: Lab (a spicy beef salad). If you ever visit Lemon Grass in Canoga Park, order it, just try to not ask for Otto styl… or maybe you should.
All for tonight. And to my deceptive friend Otto, my heart is with you my brother—for it is not mine to guess what demons you are battling.
Talk tomorrow my friends, Richard