Coffee and dessert around dining room table solve most problems

by: COURTESY OF ISABEL TORREY - PLEASE PASS THE SUGAR - Issues - geopolitical, familial or otherwise - can be resolved when food is added to the mix as it's hard to argue on a full stomach.Coming up with an idea of how to get the world's - and local - leaders to agree on serious matters is so simple, it's a wonder someone else hasn't come up with my solution.

Yes, you're probably scoffing and inwardly saying, Why does some crazy King City woman think she can perform a miracle that even the Pope hasn't?

Easy. In a single, short sentence, here's how: "Invite all these important lawmakers to sit at the Torreys' table and share a cup of coffee and a bit of dessert."

You see, Lawrence and I have had strong, opinionated people - many that roar and write letters to the editor, express vitriolic views on candidates, issues, measures - but not a one who wasn't placid, peaceful, and docile after coming through our front door.

So, let's pretend Obama, Biden, Putin, Hillary, Portland's mayor and reps for the live-beneath-the-bridge adherents came to visit the Torreys. Now I don't know how it at your house, but this is the way it goes at ours: Everyone becomes a paragon of politeness while deferring to other guests. Here's how I predict the conversation would go. (Any of it sound familiar to you?)

Isabel: Barack, may I get you a cup of coffee?

Barack: Is it already made?

Isabel: Yes, the pot's always on.

Barack: OK, but don't go to any bother.

Isabel: Cream or sugar?

Barack: If they're handy. If not, I'll take it black.

(Lawrence's and my problem is getting anyone to express a desire or even an out-and-out opinion. Not only that, but here's how it goes if I offer an extra tidbit:)

Isabel: I have chocolate cake and cherry pie. Mr. Biden, what'll you have?

Biden: Whichever is the least trouble.

Isabel: Mayor Hales?

Hales: Either sounds good.

Isabel: President Putin?

Putin: I'll have what the rest have.

Isabel: What's your choice, Hillary?

Hillary: Pie or cake's fine.

Isabel: Jim (a bridge spokesman), how about you?

Jim: I have no preference.

Bill (another placard bearer): Neither do I.

Mrs. Biden: Whatever you have the most of.

Isabel (changing the subject): Barack, I think your coffee's ready for a warm-up.

Barack: Don't bother, it's just fine.

Isabel: Another slice of pie, Hillary?

Hillary: Is everyone else having seconds?

And so it goes, ad infinitum… Nobody wants his or her own way; everyone defers to the other.

What a way to solve the world's problems!

Yes, I know. One shouldn't joke about the seriousness of war or military strategy or affairs of state.

But just suppose this King City woman's crazy idea worked! Wouldn't that be nice?

©Copyright 2013 by Isabel Torrey, a King City resident and 40-year columnist.

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