I woke up one recent morning feeling dull and heavy, as though my body had been filled with sand. The skies were clear and I’d certainly gotten enough sleep, but disorienting dreams had dogged me all night and I was riddled with the sensation that something was just…off. Clouds rolled in and the sunny day gave way to a summer squall. As evening drew near, I was decidedly blue, not to mention hungry.
I pulled a half-empty box of pasta from the shelf and, noting the relative emptiness of the refrigerator, decided to make spaghetti aglio e olio. While the pasta was cooking, I softened thin slices of garlic and a pinch of red chili flakes in a glassy pool of olive oil. When the pasta was cooked al dente, I added it to the heady blend of olive oil, garlic, and chili, then tossed in a handful of almost-wilted parsley.
I placed a long-neglected CD in the stereo. Louis Armstrong’s West End Blues filled the room and I felt my own blues begin to lift. Yet again, I became sure of two things:
1. a big plate of pasta never fails to soothe, and
2. the best remedy for the blues is…the sound of the blues.
While Pops played on the stereo, I twirled the spaghetti on my fork and took a bite, savoring the taste–and sound–of comfort.