Monday, September 03, 2007

No Suggestion Of The Outside

I once made a tuna casserole, my efforts possibly creating one of the nastiest concoctions ever. I didn't know what I was doing so I threw a bunch of stuff from my then-boyfriend's cabinets together and hoped for the best. I was young and full of hope. The best didn't happen. The canned meat taste (I had included some deviled ham for flavor -- loud doesn't even begin to describe its peculiar taste) overwhelmed the other ingredients as canned meat is wont to do. The potato chips burned; the rest remained a soggy mess. My then-boyfriend couldn't even look at the thing. My heart felt heavy with yet another failure. "This fucking sucks, Michelle," he said, ever the diplomat. I had just started working nights as a desk clerk and hadn't slept in days; my body refused to adjust. I dumped the entire thing over his balcony, hoping not to hit any unsuspecting victim, wanting to get it out of my bleary sight.

A copy of Be Here Now sat open on my boyfriend's nightstand on Terrible Tuna Night. I looked around the room, a windowless studio apartment with no suggestion of the outside. The kitchen was the bedroom was the living room. The only place you could escape was to the bathroom if you had a fight. The place was all broken windows and shattered security lights. The kind of place you didn't want to be, but there you were. I wondered what Ram Dass might have to say about where I was. But I couldn't find a lightbulb for the lamp which had burned out, couldn't even find my night reading light. The night seemed to drag on forever, and I still couldn't sleep. But I was there, in the perpetual now, trying to believe that darkness might have as much to teach me as anything else, even if I couldn't name it.

Michelle's Spell of the Day
"If you think you're free, there's no escape possible." Ram Dass

Cocktail Hour
Drinking music suggestion: Hot Rats Frank Zappa

Benedictions and Maledictions
Happy Labor Day!


Tim said...

Happy Labor Day Michelle!
That was cruel of your boyfriend to say that of your creation, even if it might have been true. You should dumped it on his head.

the walking man said...

only White people top casserole with potato chips.

But I am going to be completely honest here Michelle my mother, a working woman from before she had the first of five kids until just after she had my younger brother in 1956 worked. Until one of her grand children in the mid 90's showed her how, never could so much as flip an egg over. The woman for all i can remember of the 53 years i knew her never once cooked an edible meal for that matter I don't think she ever cooked a meal and my grandmother was a great cook but she was a housefrau.

Moms was a great social worker breaking the glass ceiling at her agency but when it came to cooking the old man did it until i was old enough to follow his written instructions then that became my chore.

My old man could make 7 layer tort cakes from scratch including the delicious chocolate frosting ...but then he was a phD. chemist.

but my mom in her older age would eat microwaved chicken for the love of God.

so don't feel like the lone ranger just learn how to put chicken in the microwave.



Charles Gramlich said...

I mixed up a concoction like that once, when I was just starting out cooking and was pretty drunk. I even ate some of it and didn't mind the taste, because I couldn't taste it. But the next day it truly looked like cold and dead Klingon ghak and I had to throw it out or throw up.

Love the sign, "sorry, we're open."

Cheri said...

Tuna casserole is a hideous thing and you should be glad that it didn't turn out right because no human on earth should be eating it. My father loves it and makes it often, and by sheer luck it seems, all the kitchen smells tend to settle in my room. So three days later, I'm still smelling the baking tuna.

Anonymous said...

...and who gives a flying turd?

Hot Rats is a good listening suggestion though.