Thursday, January 26, 2006

Skills test

A very pretty lady and dear friend of mine writes about home cooking:

I find it troubling that ordinary people are so out of touch with the basic mechanics of preparing food. If I mention at work that my husband is sick, people will say "better pick him up some chicken soup on the way home". If I then say, "well, no, I was going to make him his favorite chicken/rice soup" (which home-prep, btw, is pretty much a necessity with B., given his gluten intolerance and inability to eat many many pre-prepared foods), then said people look at me like I am crazy, masochistic, or some sort of Martha Stewart Super Homemaker, and gasp "From SCRATCH?". Well, no, not exactly. I mean, the stock comes in a box, but the rest is just eggs and rice and lemon and canned chicken.

It's not like I'm proselytizing at work and abroad (at least I hope not) but I do wish people wouldn't ask me about my food and then treat me like a freak when I tell them. Perhaps if I lived in NYC, with takeout on every corner, I'd feel differently.

Unfortunately, my dear, if you lived in NYC you would be me. We live in a culture of tragically lowered expectations. BTW, my friend is not only an excellent cook, a poised and elegant ballroom dancer, and a gracious hostess, but a full-time engineer and primary breadwinner. Who says women cannot do it all?

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