Tag Archive | eating

To Everything a Purpose

I gotta be honest with you guys – I have always had a hard time leaving behind the underdogs. I can’t turn my back on a runt, or the ones who need to be saved. This habit has no doubt penetrated the bubble of my personal life, I mean, just take a look through my past relationships and you’ll see that. If that doesn’t convince you, then maybe the ‘zoo’ I’m currently building – consisting of strays, rescues and neighborhood animals – will do the trick. Unfortunately, or fortunately, depending on how you look at it, this quirk of mine has been passed on to my daughter. My somewhat purposefully theatrical daughter.

You see, the other week we were at the grocery store, just doing some regular shopping – nothing new – and as I rooted through the cabbages looking for the perfect specimen, my eye caught sight of what had to be the smallest cabbage in the world. At least the smallest that I have ever seen.

Naturally, I brought this up to my daughter as an “oh, look at the cute little thing,” moment.  Sarah on the other hand, having the uncanny knack of knowing just what to say at any given moment to give me pause, pointed out that she simply couldn’t believe I hadn’t picked out the diminutive veggie resting at the top of the pile.

She actually made me feel sorry that I had left him behind to fend for himself.  Don’t tell me this girl can’t spin a tale. In great detail, she explained to me that everything in the world has a purpose, even this pocket-sized vegetable. Only no-one was likely to buy it since it’s so small and therefore it would be left behind to wither away and rot, never able to fulfill its purpose – that of being eaten…perhaps turned into a lovely veggie dish, or maybe a small serving of sauerkraut.

She was able to convince me that the life of this cabbage was some sort of Disney movie, and if I didn’t buy it and take it home, the little guy would never meet his happy ending. My daughter put it like this, everything has a purpose, and now this extraordinarily petite cabbage will never be able to fulfill his. It’s a beautiful sentiment, but seriously, I already feel guilty enough about all the other shit in life, I don’t need this too.

Needless to say, she successfully guilted me into going back to buy the wee little thing. What does that say about her? Hell, what does it say about me? And just what am I going to do with a baby cabbage?

the world’s tiniest cabbage

Pray for Me

Lord help me, but our rinky-dink grocery store which is out in the middle of nowhere, just like the rest of us in this small town, just put in a Starbucks. Yes. A Starbucks. Which is quite ironic given the lay of the land around here. But hey, it’s coffee and if there’s coffee, I’m there. This oasis just opened two days ago, and I’ve been there 2, 3, 5, okay, fine, 6 times.

Now, you have to understand that previous to this, we had two Starbucks nearby – if a 30-minute drive in one direction and a 45-minute drive in the other direction can be considered “nearby.” So obtaining the desired bounty of a spontaneous craving for caffeine was just a bit time-consuming and often simply not worth it. This was a good thing. Both for my weight and my wallet. But now, now that delicious, overpriced, heaven in a cup is just 5 minutes away. AND it’s literally next door to the high school, soooo…dropping my daughter off at school and picking her up just became that much more fraught with peril.

Even more so because like a local, lower-level drug dealer trolling for victims, this Starbucks’ marketing ploy was to offer free samples…then they upped their game to coupons…you know, to get you hooked – if you weren’t already. And can I just take a moment here to ask “just what the hell does Starbucks put in their coffee anyway??” I mean, what kind of person spends $4.00 on a cup of coffee?? An aficionado addict. That’s who.

The fact that there are few carry-out coffee choices here notwithstanding, I was perfectly happy with McDonald’s coffee, if not the grumpy employees who run our McDonald’s, thank you very much. Now? Arrgghh!  Now there is the very real possibility of my waistline getting fatter while my wallet gets thinner on a daily basis. But my espresso fueled productivity?  Through the freaking roof.

 

When I Win the Lotto

Let’s be clear.

I will win the mega-millions Lotto.  This was told to me by a fortune-teller at my local carnival this past summer.   She also told me I would get a break, and she was right; my bank account is as broke as they come.  How did she know!?  It boggles the mind. Truly.

The first thing I will do as a mega-multi-millionaire is to run for president.  Hold on, someone just told me that’s already been done.  Damn.

My next plan as a future Lotto winner is to buy The Perfect House.  You know the one; with the swimming pool in the kitchen, the bowling alley in the foyer, and the self-cleaning bathroom?  I love New York, and I also love California.  I would happily move to either place, or maybe both, if I didn’t have to worry about making a living.   That would be the extent of my real estate investments, though, because I’d be traveling all of the time.  If it weren’t for my animals…well, and a general lack of funds…I’d never be home as it is.  Since this is my future, according to Madame Mystery at the Country Fair, I’m interviewing animal caretakers and looking into buying each pet a mobile home.   Just kidding; Rufus the Invincible has a license but he doesn’t drive.  Wouldn’t it be great to have enough money to take them with me as I trek the world, though?

I’m not a big lover of stuff.  Sure, stuff is great, but instead of buying even more stuff, I’d indulge my laziness. I’d have servants – paid very well mind you. In return for a generous yearly salary, room and board, medical insurance, the whole nine yards, they would have to be on call 24/7. And having lived with myself for quite some time now, I know that I have bad days where I’m …um…grumpy, shall we say? On days when I’m less than my nice self, I’d offer up an extra $200 or so in cash in advance – first thing in the morning (forewarned is forearmed they say) and explain to all and sundry, today I’m a bitch. Sorry. But here’s $200.

feed me! oh, was that harsh? here's some cash!

I’m sorry for what I said while I was hungry.  Here’s some cash.

One of these well-compensated individuals would be my “runner.”  If I want coffee or some of that great carry out seafood from across town, I’d just call the runner. I’d also have a chef, but one that does more than make those frilly little dishes that look like cat food with a piece of sidewalk weed on them.   My chef will be as versed in good old home cooking as he is in fine French cuisine.  “A big old slab of homemade meatloaf drowning in gravy, Monsieur Snooty, if you please, and  a loaf of your finest bread, with chocolate mousse for dessert.  And a diet Coke.”   At midnight if I’m hungry for a snack or a full-blown meal, I’d just buzz the chef’s quarters.   Heck, let’s take it all the way and send the runner to the kitchen for my snack. Oh yeah. I know how to live.

Now, we’ve discussed my mobile pet idea, but of course I won’t be travelling ALL the time…I would eventually make pit-stops at home. So for those times when we are home, I’d hire someone to clean up all the cat hair and hairballs.  This would be an awesome job for someone, seriously.  I’d pay them well to dump litter boxes and clean up outdoor…errrr, leavings.  These dainty hands will never again flick a hairball under the couch, or pour more litter on top of the old in a vain attempt to get out of changing the box.  Don’t judge me, you’ve done it too.  This person also gets to take my dogs out whenever the need arises.  I may just train the dogs to buzz for their caretakers themselves and eliminate the middleman altogether. The middleman being me. Just so you know. Cause I’m lazy.

me...being my lazy self

me…being my lazy self

No more stuck in traffic for THIS Lotto winner.  I mean, I might be stuck in traffic but I wouldn’t have the “stuck in traffic driver stress.” You see, I’d never drive myself again…anywhere. I could just lean dramatically back in my seat and sigh loudly, like I did when I was a teenager.  Good times.

With all the time and money in the world at my disposal, you’d best believe I would be one sexy, albeit idle, chick.  I’d have salon and spa days, and relax on the French Riviera, drink at a café in Tuscany, and hide myself away in a thatch-roofed cottage on the coast of Ireland. You know. Just the essential travel spots.  I have already bought a cover shoot for Glamour, in case you’re wondering.  Madame Mystery insisted that I would be adored by millions and loved by all.  Or was it that I owed millions and would be sued by all?  It’s a little hazy, and I was still reeling from the Tilt-A-Whirl.

I would need a hobby to occupy my time.  Of course, right? Everyone need a hobby.  I’m dangerous with pointy objects, so knitting is out.  I’m not very athletic, so sports would be out, too.  Thank goodness for that; that last one involved excessive movement.  Who the hell wants to do that!? I decided to Google a bit of fancy hobbies, and my research turned up the following.

  • Collecting fine antiques: This isn’t your grandmother’s china cabinet here.  We’re talking hundreds of thousands of dollars spent on a rare coin, stamp, rug, or piece of jewelry.  On top of this, I would need to build a special storage facility and insure the whole thing.   Sounds like a lot of work for things I can’t really use, doesn’t it?
  • Investing in an art collection: Up until now, I have considered the TV Guide as a valuable artistic statement.  Turns out, there are paintings and sculptures that I don’t like or understand for several million dollars apiece.  I can own some of this baffling work for myself, if so inclined.  I’d pay other people to look at it and make appropriate “oohs” and “aahs.” But then I’d need to get insurance, a security guard, an alarm system. Who has time for all of that?
  • Race Car Driving: I kid you not, I could enter the exciting world of race car driving.  Probably, the equally exciting world of hospital emergency rooms as well.  If I visited the hospital enough times, I would just build a wing in my name…provided I remember my name after the accidents.   This fine sport costs hundreds if not thousands of dollars per hour when on the track. That doesn’t take into consideration the medical bills. Blech.
  • Boating: Nothing says indulgent like purchasing a boat as big as my house and burning through enough fuel in a half hour to power an entire third world country for a year.
  • Gambling in high stakes games: When the opening bid is a million dollars, I think I’ll leave my inner Kenny Rogers on the table and just fold ‘em.

Maybe fancy hobbies aren’t for me? I just couldn’t get into anything like that. Oh wait, I do know one hobby I could get into. I could collect animals – all my favorites: pigs, horses, sheep, chickens, cows, dogs, cats, the works. Emptying out a livestock auction or a shelter, now that I would enjoy. The money I would spend on fuel for a race car each week could pay a keeper to take care of them – and what it would cost to buy a boat or that antique umbrella holder dipped in gold could surely buy the necessary property on which to build a sanctuary to keep them healthy and happy.  Now THAT, that I could get into.

When I win the Lotto, I can see myself still being me, only a hell of a lot less stressed…and maybe a few pounds heavier.  I’d like to think I’m not one of those individuals that money would change.  I’d also sure like to find that out for myself one day.

In the meantime, if you see Madame Mystery, tell her I’m still waiting.

just sitting here...waiting...any day now...

just sitting here…waiting…any day now…

Thanksgiving Preparations

There are certain staples for every Thanksgiving dinner. Turkey? Check. Cranberry sauce? Check. Pumpkin pie? Check. Arguments with family members over politics? Check and check. Let’s face it, even though we know it’s a bad idea politics and Thanksgiving go hand in hand. Inevitably after a couple few several glasses of wine, we have our disagreements on where our country is heading, we re-evaluate what we thought we knew about our close relatives, maybe we lose a little respect for some family members, then dinner ends and we get on with our lives. This year, though…oy.

The discussions about what’s happening at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue might get a little more heated than normal. To say that this past political season has been divisive is a bit of an understatement. Bring up the topic of gun control, abortion, or foreign policy and watch out. Your Robin turns into your Joker. Your Garfunkel morphs into your Axl Rose. Suddenly, the person you call family begins snarling, cursing your name, and sometimes just saying downright hateful things right in your face – viciously arguing their views. Don’t even get me started on the third-grade level name-calling. Ugh.

Thanksgiving is frustrating enough without politics, don’t you think? First off, the hours of intense cooking (often under harsh scrutiny by someone else at the table who thinks they’re mashed potato/stuffing/green bean casserole recipe is far better than yours) are for what? Ten minutes of actual eating? Or should I say inhaling? Then, there’s the cleanup. The mountains of dishes coated in congealed fat and butter take forever to clean. The “eating” part of the event is barely a blip compared to the pre-meal planning and post-meal de-cluttering. Which just doesn’t seem fair if you ask me. But then I love food more than I love just about anything. Yeah, I know. I need help.

This year I’m going to try to get a seat at the kid’s table where the conversation is sure to be light and I will no doubt learn a new joke about bodily functions for my ever-growing repertoire. Not to mention they don’t care if you’re a messy eater. Hell, they are too! AND they’re allowed to be picky about what they eat. Now that’s right up my alley. Plus, PLUS — they don’t know what wine is and won’t give you a side-eye when you keep guzzling the “happy juice.” Oh yeah. The kids’ table it is!