Tuesday, December 08, 2009

The secret to clear skin

I was wandering around the Polish Triangle today, that area bounded by Columbia Road at its base and Dot Ave and Boston Streets at its sides.  These two last two converge at Andrew Square, hence the "triangle" in Polish Triangle. 

Walking the sidewalks, I noticed all the women I passed, no matter thier ages, had skin close to perfection.  The older ladies had some crow's feet, a few worry lines and frown lines and laugh lines, but overall their complexions glowed like freshly churned milk.  As for the younger ladies, I wish I knew the Polish equivalent to the phrase, "Ooo-la-la."  All the passing people were speaking a language heavy on the consanants in unfamiliar combinations.  I overheard a lot of sz, cz, tz, scz, sctz, ctsz, tczsk, etc.  Accent marks were flying through the air left and right.  That's were the 'Polish' comes from in Polish Triangle.

I stepped into the Baltic Deli at 632 Dot Ave, a block from the T station.  It's more than a deli, its a grocery store too, the way all the Polish delis are in the Triangle and Andrew Market is really a liquor store.  I bought some pickled beets and noticed that the cashier had a complexion like a waxing moon.  The cash register is right next to the sausage counter and the juxtaposition of this vision of clean pores and polished marble beauty posed next to kielbasa links, mysliwska, jalowcowa, and kaszanka didn't compute.  I looked around and I learned an ancient Polish beauty secret.

You can eat all the fatty, smoked pork packed into natural casings that you want and still look like you bathed in milk this morning.  All you have to do is balance your diet with ample helpings of 'winter vegetables.'  Cabbage, beets, parsnips and potatoes counteract the corroding effects of city air close by the interstate and along a major thoroughfare.  Pickled carrots and squash reverse the capillary-clogging effects of a diet rich in fatty meats and perogi.  If the refrigerator section of Baltic Deli is any indication, beer shouldn't be thought of as an accompaniment to a meal; it is really one fifth the menu.  I like that thinking and I think I can adopt that regimen.

Walk around the Polish Triangle...  It is like walking through a training ground for both the Mr. and Miss Universe pageants.  It's only because Dorchesterites are so naturally shy that Massachusetts hasn't won the Miss America crown every year.  Maybe it's time.  I met a young lady at Baltic Deli this afternoon who could be a contender.

The real gourmet Polish sausage, pickled and fresh, is found between Andrew Square and Columbia Road, between the southen border of South Boston and the northern boundary of Dorchester in the Polish Triangle.  Take the Red Line to Andrew Square and head south, either along Dorchester Avenue or Boston Street.  Both are lovely boulevards chockablock with visual diversions and little shops.

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