We always like to imagine we have decisions, usually when things have gone wrong and the only real choice is to walk away, no matter how much energy and time we have spent, no matter how badly we want it to be otherwise. Usually this recognition comes right after some grand gesture to show the flag, a present or party, a vacation to distant lands. As for the parties, I have attended these dead and dying affairs, have given them. As a child, I had served what my mother had spent hours making, perfect in every way, all the mistakes given to me and my sister to eat before whatever party she was throwing. We’d make ourselves sick on her mistakes, not because she made so many, but because there were so few things acceptable to her for public presentation. She had a recipe that I loved, sandwich meat cut so that it was transparent, spread with a layer of cream cheese and rolled layer by layer until it was a log. Then she’d cut up the tiny log into perfect circles called burning bushes. She’d perform the first step long before there was a party and freeze them. Before they thawed entirely, she’d cut them up so they’d stay intact. The timing was not as easy as it sounds but she paid attention to the details she could control.
I’d go around offering everyone a burning bush, people taking them out of hunger or kindness until each last one was gone, the empty tray only important for what it once held and what it might hold again after it had been scoured of the remnants anyone had been careless enough to leave behind. The reflective tray mirrored my face back to me. Distorted and smeared as that reflection was, I’d inevitably look, thinking, that’s me, before disappearing back into the kitchen for more treats to offer whoever was still there.
Michelle's Spell of the Day
"I'm a minor player in my own life story." 24 Hour Party People
1 part rum
1 sprig of fresh peppermint
1 dash of simple syrup
2 crushed strawberries
Serve over crushed ice.
Benedictions and Maledictions
It's the first day of fall, my favorite season! Enjoy!