If at first you don’t succeed…
Why do I like to cook? Well, until about two years ago I didn’t. Quite frankly, I wasn’t any good at it and I had the feedback to prove it. From a botched batch of lemon bars to the most inedible tray of chicken wings you’ve ever seen in your life, my friends and family have been quite vocal in their dislike of my cooking. Even after a lot of practice, I still make quite a few meals that are just not that great, but I learn from the process and I enjoy it. I suppose that is what matters.
If you know me, you know that I can be anxious and easily stressed. Cooking gives me an outlet for this. And when I stress over cooking, I just drink wine – preferably pinot noir. I tend to set unrealistic expectations for myself when it comes to cooking, which is pointless since my husband will rarely criticize anything I make for him. He may criticize my cleaning, the way I dry dishes, the method I use to pull the shades up in our living room, how I water the plants, how I turn our computer off, etc. (Note: these are actual complaints.) Trust me, I could go on – honestly I could go on forever because I am married to the most particular person since…well ironically…since my father. While this subject alone could be put me in therapy for years, it fuels my love of cooking because: 1) it never gets boring; 2) it always allows for imperfection and 3) it consistently gives me something to be better at than Ryan.
A few months ago we had a cook-off – Top Chef style. The ingredient: scallops. The challenge: create the best dish. True to form, Ryan was overconfident and tackled too many dishes and when things got crazed in the kitchen he just started throwing sundried pesto over everything (including Greek yogurt and kiwi). I love him dearly but it was one of the worst meals I’ve ever had. Mine was pretty good, but honestly it didn’t need to be that good to win. But to be fair, Ryan excels at making egg sandwiches. He fries up a couple of eggs, throws them on a grilled bagel, adds cheese and some mixture of butter and ketchup and mayo – which somehow results in a damn fine egg sandwich.
Ryan just asked me if I was writing something for my blog. Yes, I am and it is partially about you my sweet husband. This is about to cross my lips when he asks me if I know what tomorrow is. My friend Patty’s birthday? Bruce Springsteen’s birthday? (no wait that is Wednesday). As he rolls his eyes, he says “It’s the first day of Fall, Cheri” and hands me an iced sugar cookie in the shape of a squirrel. Sometimes being married is really great.