The Breakfast Table

Rock Cornish Game Hen Nostalgia

I am on the board of the Kennedy Center Honors. It’s one of the nicest things that’s happened to me, and it means I get to go to it and to nominate people who never win. I mean, never. This year I nominated Mel Brooks, Doris Day, Miss Peggy Lee, Tina Turner, Les Paul, Chet Atkins, Mike Nichols, Stanley Donen, and Sidney Lumet among others. I wish I had kept my list of nominees. It was a lovely list. However, Victor Borge won, as you have noted. He always reminds me of Rock Cornish game hens, which, as I recall, he raised and sold and made famous. Every Rock Cornish game hen in America used to come with a little tag with Victor Borge’s name on it. One night, when I was in college, I went to dinner with my roommate at the Algonquin–the Algonquin! My parents were paying!--and we had Rock Cornish game hens stuffed with wild rice and chicken livers and my roommate vowed she would serve them at her wedding, and she did. At her first wedding. Shortly thereafter, she slept with my first husband. To whom I was married at the time. But never mind: Just thinking about all this has made me not just nostalgic in an unexpectedly cheerful way but also completely mellow about Victor Borge’s winning the Kennedy Center Honors.

The report in the Times about police misconduct was released by Mark Green, the New York public advocate who will become mayor-for-a-minute if Giuliani beats Hillary. I bet you hate him. I don’t. But I feel sad that so many people–myself included–have come to think that liberal solutions don’t have a whole lot to do with running a city. (I mean, honestly Kurt, do you think cops in New York speak that way to double-parked blacks?) And speaking of race, which I probably am, do you like Bill Bradley? I saw him speak this summer in one of those small rooms he’s so good at speaking in, and like everyone else who sees him in those circumstances, I was stunned at how smart and charming and relaxed he was. There are a lot of small rooms in New Hampshire.

I know that designs on plates with chocolate syrup are very late-’80s, but they haven’t gone away. Only yesterday one appeared on my plate.