I’m in a bit of a pickle. Not a giant edible pickle, with me trapped inside, but rather a spiritual pickle. An emotional one. One that cries tears of vinegar, most likely. Imagine that – vinegar tears. Ow. That is not good. No, my pickle is this: I don’t want to write. I don’t feel like it. At the same time, I *do* want to, and I want people to read it, too, but motivating myself has been a tricky task. Part of the problem is that I have been busy in the kitchen with one thing and another, so I have a backlog of things that I had no time to write about. I don’t know if it rings true with anyone else, but I’m happier when I just have one or two things in the blog bank, and I can blog as I go after each noteworthy kitchen session. Having too many things stored up makes me feel like I have to choose which one, and like I have a lot to catch up on, which is oddly demotivating. I know, it’s not logical, and feel free to skip to the end. There are no pictures of food in this blog post. I am sorry. I’ve added some illustrative pictures of other people’s, though.
The general feeling of not wanting to write has been compounded by feeling like I might be getting sick again, the undercurrent of Fear that this induces in me and also by the fact that I had a right bad food day yesterday, which therefore meant I had a right bad day altogether. This last is the point I wish to discuss. You know, to keep myself on topic. Use of the word ‘discuss’ there suggests a rational conversation, or a wrongly spelled athletics event. This post will be neither. I have Things to get off my brain, and I intend to do so here. It’s very much a one-way street. You had your chance to bail up there, at the end of the last paragraph; illness; anger; bad food day; you’re in it for the long haul now…
The bad food day started when I arrived at work to find that the tub of soup I’d brought in had leaked. As it happened, I’d thought this might be the case, so I’d sealed it up in a food bag before I left the house. Still, I wasn’t looking forward to getting soup all over my hands in the process of transferring it to a bowl. This was a pain, but not what you might call a Big Deal. Worse was to come, dear reader, once that most sought-after of working hours, lunchtime, came sauntering around. I transferred the soup to a bowl, and popped into the microwave. After a minute, I opened the door to stir the soup. Everything seemed fine. Calm. Maybe too calm. As I closed the microwave door to continue heating, I gave the spoon a lick. The soup did not taste so good. I gave it another lick, to check. Why did I do this? I’m not sure. It’s just one of those stupid things humans sometimes do, I suppose. The soup was more than ‘not so good’, it was absolutely foul. Now for the phrase of the day, which almost rivals Dante’s refrain in Clerks: “…but I only made it on Monday!”. Yesterday was Wednesday; I’ve never known a pot of soup to turn bad so fast. I blame the cabbage. Cabbage, j’accuse! I was pretty gutted, and annoyed, and frustrated, and as such proceeded to make a Poor Choice. I’m using capitals here to denote what might be sub-headings in a tabloid newspaper, should they ever finally decide that puppies that fit in tea cups aren’t news and therefore reporting on my each and every move is a better plan. I hope that day never comes, but if it does then at least I’ve given them a hand in laying out this particular chronicle.
I went to the sandwich fridge in the canteen. I looked at the sandwiches on offer. In a fit of Undirected Pique, I chose one of the least healthy sandwiches available, thinking that if I couldn’t have my healthy and free soup then I’d just have something that I’d enjoy, and consequences be hanged. I lifted a bacon, lettuce and tomato on a white baguette, paid for it, and stormed back to my seat, where the G man waited patiently. Poor G man, he’s the victim here, really. I unwrapped the sandwich. I bit into the sandwich. It was not a good sandwich. The bacon was more fat than meat, and more rubbery texture than flavour, though there was definitely Salt in evidence. The tomato was that peculiarly tasteless variety that you seem to be able to find in all the supermarkets in Scotland, despite it being so easy to grow delicious, flavourful specimens without really trying too hard. The lettuce? Ha! Don’t talk to me about the lettuce (as if you had a choice). What little there was skulked among the underbaked, chewy, devastatingly dry failure of a baguette like something you’d find round the sides of a poorly maintained garden pond, but with less texture or taste. What I am trying to communicate here is that I Did Not Like This Sandwich. I ate a quarter of it, then queasily extracted the bacon from another quarter, which is when I fully appreciated the effort that must have gone in to making this ‘meat’ out of a block of lard, some pink food dye and a kilo of salt. I was now furious. I was furious more at myself for paying for this sandwich instead of making a better choice, but I did save some fury for the unknown sandwich maker. I didn’t express this at the time, of course, instead choosing to wait until the next day and then blog about it, in what can only be described as a Teenage Move.
I went back to my desk after lunch in a dreadful mood. I was at this point actually almost upset and tearful, over a stupid bowl of soup and a rubbish sandwich. I choose to believe that this has its roots in the aforementioned Fear of becoming ill again, rather than the events of the day. Either that or my life is shallow enough that I can be driven almost to tears by soup, which is not a possibility I care for, I must say. I got back to my desk and had a nice rant about lunchtime and a nice Lemsip. The Lemsip made me feel better. Then there was surprise chocolate cake, and that made me feel better too; a Lemsip, a slice of cake, and a good old chat with my lovely colleagues, and I was feeling much happier. I had a big dinner planned for last night, too, which I was looking forward to making and eating. Things went pretty well with this dinner, until I went to check on my homemade pear, basil and ginger sorbet (I’m looking forward to getting the recipe for this out there, I’m pretty sure it’s a Winner). I’d blitzed it all up and put it in the freezer to set; when I took it out to check, it was still soft. I tried to put it back in to the freezer, and promptly dropped it. The tub it was in was cheap plastic, and performed the doubly aggravating move of smashing on the floor and jettisoning its lid across the kitchen. It was losing sorbet from both top and bottom, and at an alarming rate. The anger and frustration from earlier in the day came back, but by now they’d had time to morph themselves into Rage, or at least a Rage-ette. I had to ask the G man to clean it up for me, I couldn’t face it. I was also getting on with preparing the two-course dinner we were going to share, so that wasn’t as bad as it sounds. He managed to save about half of what was there, though it didn’t set in time for us to eat it so it’s still in the freezer, untasted, unproven. I think it’s going to be good. That’s why I’m so mad that I wasted half of it by not being careful. Gah!
The remainder of the day passed without great incident, though I did insist on going to bed at about half past nine because I was ready for it to be Over. Dinner was perfectly nice, and I enjoyed it despite making Oscar the Grouch seem like a friendly, fun-loving soul. Thus ends my rant. It looks like I wanted to write after all. Thanks for reading. If you’re not reading… well that’s kind of a moot point, eh?