Football isn’t my thing. But food definitely is. So when M asked whether I’d like to go to a house party to watch the Superbowl and added the key phrases “lots of salsa,” “yummy Mexican feast,” “roasted veggies and guacamole,” I knew I was in.
That’s how Sunday morning found us traveling down south by Caltrain. Now, I’m almost ashamed to admit this – despite being a San Franciscan native, today was the first time I’ve been on Caltrain. But lo and behold, it works beautifully. Caltrain’s seats are really nice! So much cleaner and airier than BART.
Regardless, an hour and a half later, we were in San Jose and M’s friend from his college frat days picked us up. We headed straight to a supermarket to pick up vegetable goodies for the resident vegetarian (ie. me) since apparently the only thing football-watching men care about is huge hunks of steaming, bloody meat. Shouldn’t surprise me, but it continues to amaze.
However, this supermarket wasn’t your average run-of-the-mill Safeway or Cala Foods. This place was Mexican heaven on earth. Called “Mi Pueblo,” it literally had everything Latin American under the sun. And all for pennies! I saw green garbanzo beans in their shells, fresh guavas, and tamarind pods just like the ones I picked off trees and ate in Costa Rica. All sorts of raw sugars, bulk grains, vats of dairy products, and even huge assortments of baked goods lined the walls. Oh my sweet Jesus. I told M I wanted to move next door.
Laden with bags full of food including a pound of rice pudding, we stepped into M’s friend David’s house to a counter already laden with deliciousness and tons of people digging in. Soon enough, M and I were stuffing our faces. David had made a ridiculously tasty cabbage slaw full of lightly pickled carrots and jalapenos. So good that I couldn’t stop eating it and started sweating and tearing because of the spiciness. That, combined with tons of guacamole, chips, other dips, and the roasted veggies, I thought I was going to burst. It was a constant 5-hour eat fest.
But of course there was the game too. That thing called the Superbowl. While I only have a passing interest in football on my best day, David found a way to up the stakes for me today. He pulled out a game called “Squares.” You pay $5 to write your name in a square on a piece of paper and David goes and does some magical random assigning of numbers around the perimeter of the grid. The money everyone pays for a square goes into a communal pot. If you picked a square with coordinates matching the last-digit of the score at the end of each quarter , you win a predetermined amount of money. M gave David $20 and told me to pick four squares.
Well, what do you know.
We won $100 in the third quarter. It’s not just me that seems to have a lucky hand in things like this. My dad is luckier by far. At any and every raffle, lottery, prize-giveaway we’ve ever been to at any holiday party, get-together, or show, he manages to win something. Seriously. I’m glad at least some of his luck seems to have rubbed off on me.
Happy Superbowl Sunday everyone! Hope you enjoyed the commercials!