Women in Palestine use this formulation to make their eyes stand out. Not New York women, though; New York women use chemicals.
- Catch a certain bird that can be found running about the mountains of Palestine. This bird is about the size of a grown man's hands cupped into a globe, smaller than a chicken and much like a pigeon, and yet not actually a pigeon. (If New York pigeons lived in Palestine, however, they would apparently be in great danger.) You can catch the bird with a wire trap or noose, though the trap is preferable, as it will keep the bird alive for 12 to 24 hours.
- Kill the bird, prepare it, and roast the meat. It is delicious cooked over a wood fire in the mountains, especially with lemon, but it would not be so good here in New York, because you can't make fires in the park and everyone uses chemicals in their barbecues. There is a place near Paterson, New Jersey, where you're allowed to make wood fires, but it's hard to get out there more than two or three times a year. It is very good then, though.
- Take the kidney and liver from the bird and put them in a hollowed-out lemon.
- Set the lemon near a low but steady source of heat and leave it there until the organs are fully charred.
- Mash up the charred materials with a finger or small stick.
- Apply to eyes.
This recipe and commentary courtesy of my very kind car-service driver from LaGuardia to Park Slope, October 9, 2005. I can also provide recipes for fish cooked in wine, chicken-rice casserole, and an easy cure for itching, on request.