Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Yes, My Name is Darcy Elizabeth...Burke

Maven Darcy BurkeAnd no, my mom was/is not a big fan of Pride and Prejudice. My middle name, Elizabeth, was my great-grandmother's middle name, and Darcy was/is just a name she liked. It was that or suffer the humiliation of Lothar von Wolfgang Lange should I have been a boy. See, my parents had agreed that Dad would name the boys (hence my older brother is Richard Helwig Lange, III) and Mom would name the girls. Mom really wanted a girl and Dad threatened her with Lothar von Wolfgang. Thank goodness for the double X chromosome!

So, that's a little trivial tidbit about me. What else? I guess I'm extra-writerly because I have three cats, 2.6 according to Mr. Burke. He says that to get a laugh because one of our kitties has three legs. She lost a leg to cancer almost four years ago (she's doing great!) and is sometimes known as Hippity-Hop, though I prefer to call her Kira. In addition to Kira and her sister, Maura (they are 8), we share our home with Belle Kitty, a beautiful fourteen-year-old Maine Coon.

You might think that's a full house, but of course there are the Burkettes. Quinn, my daughter, is six and in first grade. Zane is 3 and in preschool. Lots of high-energy fun at Burke Manor! Oh, and of course, I must mention Mr. Burke, my husband of nearly sixteen years. Mr. Burke is an attorney specializing in general business litigation and construction law. I support Mr. Burke's firm by keeping his books.

Aside from writing, bookkeeping, mommying, and wifeing (is that a verb?), I like to cook, scrapbook, work in the garden, and, of course, read. I also enjoy wine tasting and since we live on the edge of Oregon's fabulous pinot noir country, it's super convenient. And, uh, expensive if you aren't careful.

Your turn: What do you wish you had more time to do? Do you like wine? If so, what do you like to drink? Ever had Oregon pinot noir? (Warning: it's addictive!)


B.E. Sanderson said...

LOL, my cat's name is Kira. She's a 4-yr old mutt (although I could claim she's part Russian Blue - she has the fur to carry it off).

I love wine, although I don't drink much any more. I've never tried Oregon Pinot Noir. I'm more partial to the German whites - Riesling, Spatlese, Auslese, Liebfraumilch.

I wish I had more time to paint - which leads to my wish that I could take lessons on how to paint. Maybe I'll become one of those old ladies who paint (and, like I told my husband, who lives with 15 cats after he's gone).

lacey kaye said...

So many questions this early in the morning!

Loved, loved, loved the wine you brought this weekend! In fact, there's still a glass left. Might go really well with my scene-writing tonight!

Bill Clark said...

I never met an Oregon wine I didn't like. Unfortunately, they're a tad hard to procure here on the East Coast, where there's lots of competition from local CT and NY wineries.

Not sure why Lacey still has a glass left, or why she's not sipping it with her eggs Benedict for breakfast. If only I had a 3,000-mile-long straw, there wouldn't be any left for tonight, that's sure!

P.S. Did y'all know that eggs Benedict was invented here in Greenwich by Commodore Elias Benedict, magnate and close friend of Grover Cleveland, whose operation for cancer of the jaw was carried out in secret on Benedict's yacht, "Oneida", so as not to panic Wall Street?

Seems that one morning Benedict poured Hollandaise sauce over his ham and eggs. And thereby started the trend now named in his honor. When you come to visit, I will show you Benedict's mansion, built at the mouth of Indian Harbor on the former site of Boss Tweed's Americus Club.

Curiously enough, as I write this, I am gazing out the library windows at the headquarters of Unilever, on Benedict Place, the site of Benedict's earlier mansion in town. When Greenwich wanted to build a new school on land donated by the Sugar King, Harry O. Havemeyer, Benedict paid big bucks to have them leave off the top floor, which would have ruined his line of sight to the "Oneida" - he would not have been able to signal his intentions to the crew, if you can imagine! Greenwich, venal as always, grabbed the money and capped the building at the second story, where you can still see staircases to nowhere that were once meant to lead to the top-floor gym.

To return to the topic of wine, another factoid: most new McMansions built in this burg these days have wine cellars with a capacity of at least 10,000 bottles - and often much more. That's a lot of pinot noir!

Erica Ridley said...

Am I weird if I say Lothar von Wolfgang Lange sounds hawt?


(OK, yes. I can deal with that.)

I love wine too. And painting, B.E., although I haven't done it in years (making my closet full of supplies totally useless). What kind of paints do you like? I have zero skill at watercolor, but I don't completely suck at oil/acrylic. (Unless I've been drinking wine... *g)

Bill: 10,000 bottles... wow. Is that even good? I thought most wines weren't really meant to age for more than a few years at most. Of course, that's me assuming these people aren't drinking 30 bottles a day, which would clear out the cellar every year. A pal of mine has a wine closet right behind her desk chair in her office. Super-convenient!

Keira Soleore said...

Hello Darcy! It's great to "know" you after having chatted briefly here about this and that.

So Lacey, do tell: what vintage, what year?

Marnee Bailey said...

I didn't realize that cats were such a characteristic of writers. I have two myself: Brashear (named after the previous enforcer on the Philadelphia Flyers - he's definitely the enforcer at our house!) and Tess, just because I like the name.

And I love wine, but I'm a Chardonnay drinker right now, though I do enjoy a good pinot grigio as well. I went through a red phase a couple years ago, I'm rebounding.

Bill Clark said...

As I understand it, Erica, true oenophiles lay down cases of vintage wine at the birth of a child, to be open and drunk at his/her 21st birthday party. Other cases just get laid down and left there, until the wine auction market is hot enough to warrant cashing them in. And, of course, if you're having a dinner party for 500 of your closest friends, you surely don't want to run short... :-)

Darcy Burke said...

Great cat name, B.E.! And I love German wine too.

Interesting history lesson, Bill! And I'm so sorry you can't get much Oregon wine. You mentioned visiting McMenamin's when you were out here. They make great beer and pretty decent wine, but I wouldn't take you there on a tasting tour. :-)

Erica, now that you mention it Lothar isn't so bad!

Keira, it's a 2003 Bergstrom Pinot Noir from their de Lancelotti vineyard. Tasty!

Marnee Jo, I love chardonnay too, but it has to be from Oregon. We have some really nice chardonnays.

Re: wine storage - we cellar wine based on what the winery recommends. We have some that we tried and went, "ugh, let's sit on that for five or ten years," but we've also had some that we've saved in order to savor and then drink it and realize we missed the magic moment. In the wine bracket we're in, we don't have too many that we'd sit on for long periods of time. Typically ours sit 3-5 years at most.

Bill Clark said...

You're right, Darcy - the beer at Edgefield was great, but the wine only so-so. That must have been why the tastings were so cheap! ;-)

B.E. Sanderson said...

Erica, I've always wanted to paint in oils. I took 4 years of art in HS and one year in college, but we never got to oils. I did some stuff in acrylics, and watercolors, but mostly I've been a pencil sketcher and I did do some ink renderings. It's been too long since I did any of that, though. *sigh*

Your comment about your wines reminded me, Darcy. I found the best little Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon while I was in UT. I'm not a fan of red, but it was too tasty. I wish I could remember the name of the vineyard. The best wine I drink these days comes with a screw top. Arbor Mist Peach Chardonnay anyone? ;o)

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Manuscript Mavens