Tuesday, April 16, 2013

The inadequacy of egg skills..........

So, we're visiting Jeff's grandpa in San Diego. He's a lovely, funny, full-of-stories, almost-92-year-old man who has a house that's neat as a pin, full of antiques. Just walking around the house is entertainment in itself, wondering about each unique piece of glassware, or furniture.....what are their stories?

Grandpa comes from a very different time. He wakes up early, fully dressed and ready to take on the day. Breakfast is cereal, toast and tea - routine is comfort. When we visit here, I always feel self-conscious if I sleep too late, and I would certainly not lounge about in my pajamas like I do at home on a weekend. This guy used to wake up at 4 a.m. to milk cows and do barn chores BEFORE school. My kids wake up fifteen minutes before they need to leave and run a comb through their hair. Chores in the morning? They would seize at the mere thought.

So, this morning, Grandpa and I decided to change things up a bit and have Eggo waffles for breakfast. Easy enough. But then he pulled out the eggs. I guess some people like an egg on their waffle? Gross!! And I thought, oh, lordy! As my kids can attest, I suck eggs. Well, I suck AT eggs. Making them. In any fashion except fried, yolk broken, brown on both sides. Over easy? Sunny side up? I don't even know what those mean, and I certainly can't make them to order. I CAN scramble eggs, but even those often end up browned and dry. Breakfast, in an of itself, is not really my favorite thing. If I had it my way, I'd grab Starbucks every morning and a carb-loaded pastry on the side. As it is, I'm always scrambling (heh heh, see what I did there?) for something nutritious to eat for breakfast (besides, you know, leftover chocolate chip cookies).

When the eggs came out, I knew I needed help. But I also knew Grandpa would be aghast at the knowledge that I didn't know how to make decent eggs. I mean, that's women's work, no? Yeah, not so much in our generation, but Grandpa hails from a time when women did the cooking. Not to say he doesn't do his fair share - he certainly takes care of himself on a daily basis, and he took care of an ailing wife for many years before she passed. I'm guessing Grandpa has made many an egg. But the fact is, I cannot make good eggs.

So, I did what I always do when faced with a cooking dilemma - I ran to the bedroom and pulled Jeff away from his work computer and said "Emergency! Grandpa wants eggs! I suck at eggs! Help me!" Jeff reluctantly came in to cook up the eggs but not before a few awkward minutes passed where Grandpa kept waiting for me to start the eggs ("Go ahead and do your thing!" - GAH!). Thank God for Jeff who cooked the eggs to order and helped me save face.

Who needs eggs anyway? I am SO not into breakfast-making in any way, shape or Mickey Mouse pancake form. My kids would come home from sleepovers gushing about their friends' mothers who cooked up feasts of french toast, bacon and fresh fruit, and I considered myself a kind hostess when I set out five different boxes of sugared cereal for their sleepover friends, and cut up some oranges.

I think it's important to own your shortcomings. And so I decree: I suck at breakfast. But I WILL buy you Starbucks. And a pastry.

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