(Guest post, by Jeff)
An ode to marriage:
I stayed with the girls last night while holly took the boys to a
movie. Before leaving she gave me the run down on finishing up the
dinner she had started, beef stroganoff.
It started simple
enough....just boil some noodles. Once I committed she then starts with
the rest of the story. Blah blah do stuff blah do stuff....here I'll
write it down for you she says. I like bulleted
lists with clear steps, so this sounds good. She grabs a piece of
paper and starts.....bullet 1) drain meat first. Then much to my
surprise she stops....that is it? Really.....all that blah blah do stuff
is summed up in a single bullet....so lost/annoyed/feeling tested.
I moan and look annoyed and she finally gives in and spoon feeds me
some more info. Why it had to be this hard to get some instructions is
not clear to me....but I got them and I got this.
and I get started. Noodles are in a big Tupperware with no literature
attached....man how much do I need? That isn't in my notes. Call my mom
but no answer....crap. Oh wait, how do we figure out all sorts of
things in 2014....Google. "How to cook noodles" enter.
the point I realize how in the weeds I am.....so few ppl search for how
to cook noodles.....Google doesn't freaking know. I get all sorts of
info on making them from scratch....you know like an Italian grandmother
would do. I just laugh at the disconnect.
While I am not an
expert is stroganoff, I am an expert at Google....I got this. New
search "how many cups of noodles in a serving". Enter. Now we are
talking.....cups to servings info for many different noodle types. I got
Noodles in water. Moving on.
wants a cup of water brought to a boil.....no problem. Water in pan
provided by holly. Wait....this pan is huge. Water is 1/4 inch deep.
Really? Going to boil 1/4 inch of water? I re-read the instructions, I
recheck the pan I was directed to. All is checking out...but this seems
odd. But I refuse to deviate from the plan. I feel like a x-wing
pilot honing in on the exhaust port "stay on target, stay on target"
Water check, meat (drained) check, sauce packet check.....May the
boiling begin. Boiling check, reduced to simmer check, thickening up
just like advertised.....I got this.
At this point I'm on a roll....I got this. I even have an original thought....we need a side. Green beans it is. I got this.
All is done, on the table, on plates......let's do it.
Wow that is the worst salty stroganoff I have ever had. The girls and I
make the best of beans and noodles. Eating just enough salty meat to
Flash forward.....holly is home.
She and the
boys sit down for dinner. She asked if it was good. I just smile ans
answer "you will see". She looks at the salty meat mush and her eyebrows
furrow. Lots of questions start flying....but I'm clean. I know I
followed the directions "I'm on target, I'm on target". Yes both
packets, yes water, yes drained the meat, yes yes yes yes yes yes yes.
"Did you add the sour cream?" Damn you, damn you all to hell. No.
All that work, all that progress, all that beating Google into submission. And it all comes down to sour cream.
Jerry maguire's "you complete me" has no idea how much was required to complete ME.
Completing stroganoff needs only sour cream, completing me needs Holly.