Coolly, she twirls the walrus-ivory doubling cube between her lacquered-nail thumb (rouge) and enameled-nail forefinger (noir). She noses her Napa Valley Merlot (1982) aged in a caramel cask with parmesan cheese rinds and copper shavings. Inhales deeply, inclines the glass towards me. Blood oranges? Certainly. Charlie Chaplin’s cane (Modern Times) and bowler derby (City Lights), lovingly stored at the Smithsonian? Likely. She looks into the doubt in her opponent’s eyes, smiles, and exhales as if she’d been smoking in this no-smoking club in Hong Kong. Her breath murmurs of years’ worth of persimmons ground into the fibers of shag carpets by Manolo Blahnik stiletto heels. “I double you.” And holds the doubling cube out to him, mocking him through her piercing yellow marble cat-eyes (sunglasses). The bakelite pieces and baffle boxes dumbfound her opponent, and in a swaddling haze, he accepts, and beavers her while saying, faux-confidently, “Challenge accepted.”
I’m merely watching this, yet at this passing and redoubling, I Sing the Body Electric. The sense of the wood carves new pathways from my tongue through my nervous system. A parade of green plantains, white cherries, artisanal vegan marshmallows, and sparkling cider made from century old Macoun apples make cameo appearances in a lemon mousse cake made by a transplanted, sullen, talented Parisian chef. Evidently the chef stirred the batter with a small, stolen, sandalwood rake, originally used for bonsai zen gardens, but lately used by valets to comb the fringes on suede buckskin jackets.
The finish takes a long time. A very long time. He temporarily escapes a prime blockade as she begins bearing off her men. My throat turns into a jar of moths under the misapprehension that my uvula is flame. A marzipan U-boat fires a slow-motion dandelion-puffball torpedo into my sinuses as she hits his men, backgammoning him. “The eight-fold path to wealth,” she intones, unfolding her fingers like a fan to take his money.
On the scale of dividing the continuum of time into integral units–
The Port Dundas 52 Year 2017 Limited Edition, distilled 1964, is the week–Yes, Seven Cosmic Days to Put the Universe in Order, and 52 weeks of a long finish to play backgammon and enjoy the Port Dundas.
–Our thanks to Diageo for the sample!