Although I’ve worked hard all my life, I’m an inherently lazy person. This is especially true when it comes to doing small, everyday things for myself. Why bother? Doing them will just slow me down and since they’re small, anyway, it won’t really matter in the end. Right? . . . Right?
Well, while making a martini recently I had a breakthrough which, as it turns out, I often have while drinking. My drink was naked and I don’t mean only of the vermouth. It didn’t have a lemon peel. I love a peel of yellow in the drink, the slight fragrance it gives the liquid and the tangy first taste it transfers to the glass when rubbed along its rim.
All this from the skin of a piece of fruit that would happily sacrifice it’s otherwise short life for my drinking pleasure. Problem is, I’m generally too lazy to drag my ass to the fridge and slice a chunk off of a lemon to fulfill this deep desire. How long would it take me? Thirty seconds? Geez, what a loser I am. It’s such a small thing.
While I sipped my lemon-less martini, avoiding doing something similarly significant and garnish-like, I’m sure, I began seeing the lemon peel as a metaphor for life and realized that maybe it’s the small things we do that are often the most important. Without some of the small stuff, the big stuff loses a lot of its significance; its flavor; its romance; and even its value. The garnish is almost imperceptible in the big picture, but makes all the difference. Without the garnish, is life any fun?
So, I’ve been thinking about it. I’m going to start stepping back and taking more time to create and enjoy the garnish in life. Since it all started with drinks, though, it seems like that’s where I’ll focus my initial attention. While peeling a lemon for today’s martini, I’m going to throw in olives and onions too. As my friend Rick says, “the whole garden salad.” After all if a little garnish is good, a lot of garnish is better, right?