Sep 222009
 

Kay.

I think it’s time to address the seven thousand emails I have received about my lack of pots and pans.Apparently many of my readers believe that this pot situation is a very big deal, and I think it’s time for me to publicly acknowledge those readers’ feelings. I hear you, friends. I understand that you are shocked and upset and worried about my children and husband. I know this because you are sending me recipes and coupons, begging me to buy pans and pots, even offering to buy them for me. You promise me in your emails that it would make my family feel good if I cooked for them, how it’s no big deal, how everybody does it.You are so very concerned, so very kind. But please understand this…

I can see right through you, people.

Let me guess, the next thing you’ll suggest is that these pots you love so much are non-habit forming, right?That I can just try them once, and then put them down…no big deal.Well, friends, we have a saying in Virginia… fool me once, shame on you… fool me twice, and shame on me and I won’t be fooled again. In Virginia.About pots. Or something.

Because I suspect, you POT PUSHERS, that if I try one of your beloved pots just this once, people around here will expect me to use them again and again and before I know it, I’ll be an apron wearing, food network watching, recipe swapping, Rachel Ray worshipping POTHEAD just like the rest of you.

Ever heard the saying “Misery Loves Company?” Uh-huh. I have.

WELL.

I choose to say NO, THANK YOU. I am above the influence. Take your dirty pots and hit up the next lady. (If in fact, there are any other ladies who don’t own pots.)

Remember that commercial from the eighties… “This is your brain. This is your brain on drugs?” Well, folks, the image above is from that commercial. That is your brain. On drugs. IN A PAN. Coincidence? Oh, I think not.

So ladies…you go ahead and choose this day how and what you will serve.

But as for me and my family, we will serve PIZZA.

Sep 172009
 

So…parties. They make me nervous.

I don’t feel like I’m very good at anything that parties require of folks. Like getting off the couch and changing out of sweatpants and mingling and staying up late. There was a time in my life when I fancied myself an expert at all of these things. But that was when I was comfortable with a few dozen helpful drinks before the party and an occasional arrest afterwards. Now, it’s different. My standards for myself are ever so slightly higher. Now I have no armor, no help, nothing to take the edge off and to make myself, or others, more charming. And so partying is harder. And honestly, quite scary.

My neighborhood friends had a party last weekend. Not a terrifying dress up , get a sitter, evening kind of party, but the potluck, bring the kids, you’ll be home by bedtime kind of party. Which is better for me. Except, of course, for the pot luck part. When my friend called to invite us she said “Just bring a side.” I know that’s easy for some people. I can tell because they add the “just.” But my “sides” are frozen broccoli and Lipton bagged rice, neither of which travel or present well.

I have prepared the same Lipton bagged rice every evening for the past 7 years.And every night, I still get nervous and read the directions carefully. I think there are three directions. Something like – add water and rice and boil and then stir. But I still prop that bag up, demand silence from the children, follow along with my finger, and concentrate. Because in the kitchen you must never let your guard down, people. YOU NEVER KNOW WHAT WILL HAPPEN.

Anyway, I was pretty sure frozen broccoli or bagged rice wasn’t the way to go, so I brought another trusted side. Cheetos.The BAKED KIND, friends, because I care about the health of the children. Although Cheetos are already bagged, I put them in another bag, so I could smuggle them into the party without anyone seeing what I brought. I have this system down to a science. So when we arrived, I waved my hellos, scurried inside, and slipped my Cheetos next to all the lovely casseroles that appeared to have one million ingredients each. DO PEOPLE SERVE CASSEROLES AT HOME AS SIDES? Don’t tell me, I don’t want to know. Then I went outside and played with my favorite group of ladies and kids in the world.

All was well and lovely until it was time to eat. Our hostess, Karen, whom I suspect my parents secretly pay to help keep my family running smoothly, called us all in to eat. The kids ran ahead and the parents followed, and we all stood around the table holding our plates and admiring the beautiful spread.And one of the kids said “I want some mac and cheese!”I did too. It was homemade and looked like a mound of love. And then another kid said “My mommy made the mac and cheese!” And I thought, Oh crap. I know where this is going.

So of course, another kid said “My mommy made the pasta salad.” And then another chimed in with, “My mommy made the chocolate chip cookies!” I stared at Chase, willing him to catch my eye so I could send him my “Don’t. Say. A. Word.” signal, which he knows quite well.

But ….no such pot luck.

He looked up, of course, and announced… equal parts loud and proud:

“MY MOMMY MADE THE CHEETOS!”

I am seriously considering calling the local high school this week and asking if I can audit their Home Economics class.

Sep 102009
 

Yesterday’s post was about God. Sometimes talking about God can hurt people’s feelings. What I want most in the world, besides a personal chef, is to not hurt your feelings. If you people knew how much I thought about you and worried about your feelings you would probably be very, very afraid.

In the future, when I refer to God, feel free to substitute the name of whatever light helps you find your way home. I usually call God well, God.I also call him Jesus, because Jesus was the First Responder to my spiritual 911 call from my bathroom floor several years ago, and because everything He said matches the truth in my heart. I also sometimes call the pizza man God because, well, families can’t live on bread alone.If you call God something different than I do, then…“to-mayto- to-mahto.” Let’s not call the whole thing off due to semantics okay?And if you believe that everyone has to call God the same name… I’d be honored if you’d stick around, too. Let’s all try to understand each other. Because with every passing year I become more suspicious that maybe we’re not really meant to spend our spiritual lives playing a never-ending game of Red Rover.“Send those PAGANS right over!”Red Rover requires a lot of choosing teams and yelling and running and winners and losers and bruised arms. Maybe instead we could all just sit down, take a deep breath and figure out what we can learn from each other. I think God, whatever He might prefer to be called, would like that.

Anyway. The point is that yesterday I wasn’t trying to assert that bumper sticker man was definitely wrong about God. BECAUSE WHO REALLY KNOWS? I was just saying that I don’t buy any theology that fits on a bumper sticker. But there are actually a lot of things I probably should buy that I don’t, like mops and new underwear and a pan, according to my sister.

She came over to cook dinner last weekend, which she does occasionally for the sake of the children, and she yelled from the kitchen:“Glennon, where are your PANS?” and I yelled back “I don’t have one.” And after that shocked silence to which I am becomingwell accustomedshe yelled something like “You don’t ownApan? How do you cook without a singlepan?”And I said, “Yeah. I know, IT’S REALLY HARD.” And then she walked into the family room and stared at me in disbelief for a good three minutes.When she finally spoke, she said something about how she had MULTIPLE PANS FOR VARIOUS PURPOSES and how I COULD SIMPLY NOT not have a single pan in my home.

WELL.

JEESH, SISTER,give me a break.So I don’t have a pan?So what? It’s not like there’s anything I cando about it. Every day I pray the serenity prayer, “allow me to accept the things I cannot change,” and then Itry to accept the fact that I do not have a pan.I’m not gonna sit around and cry about it. Also, if we’re being totally honest, I think you’re being just a teensy bit judgmental. Just because you’re a fancy pants MULTIPLE PAN OWNER, doesn’t mean that all of us have to join you in your life of excess. Sister, there are children STARVING IN AFRICA, actuallyat my house too, and you’re walking around with your head in the clouds, judging the panless and gloating about your MULTIPLE PANS.

Okay, this post is miles from where it started. I think my points were:

1. Let’s be the first group of people in the history of the world who talk about God occasionally without starting a war.

2. Please send me a pan. And a detailed note explaining what I’m supposed to do with it.