One of my best friends, Gaye, a true Georgia girl, is the epitome of what I describe a “relaxed sophisticate,” meaning she has a classic look and attitude, while at the same time always very much at ease. Still a true blonde, even after a couple of landmark birthdays, she is petite with big blue eyes, delicate features, and a quiet voice. Although she lives in Atlanta, I see her often as I travel to the city on business, and for a number of years we owned houses that sat side by side in the mountains near Asheville. We also travel together, and have covered a lot of ground, visiting some exciting metropolises, such as New York, as well as a variety of out-of-the-way, beautiful spots like Anna Maria Island. Habitually, we seek out good food and great restaurants in all of our excursions, both near and far.
I picked her up the other night for dinner, and she came dressed in a cream cashmere sweater, pleated beige wool slacks, and a Burberry headband done in traditional plaid; topping this off was a magnificent camel colored cape lined with brown, black, taupe, and white faux-fur. She looked stunning.
(The Colonnade's neon sign lit up at night)
We set out for one of our favorite haunts, a 1950’s Atlanta landmark, the Colonnade. With naugahyde booths and waitresses that still call you “Sugar,” it has a comfort food menu featuring juicy steaks, turkey and dressing, and platters of fresh seafood paired alongside seldom-found southern classics, namely tomato aspic, sweet potato casserole, half-pear salad, and butter peas. But our hands-down favorite are the chicken livers. And Missy can straight throw down those crunchy, deep fried nuggets. It is quite a sight, seeing this immaculately dressed, compact beauty as she maneuvers liver after liver, manicured nails flying from plate to mouth.
We had ordered several side dishes with livers to share, but before I could take a few bites of my iceburg wedge, little Lana Turner had almost finished the whole platter of our piece de resistance. All that was left were one or two pebble-sized pieces, a few stray crumbs, and a dribble of Texas Pete Hot Sauce, Gaye’s gilding agent of choice.
(Missy cleaning up the plate)
Feeling no shame, she just batted her eyes at me and said “Guess we need to order some more.”
Lesson: Just because the girl is tiny and pretty, it doesn’t mean she won’t eat all the chicken livers.