Sunday, 12 September 2010

The Creation of Man

Yeah, yeah, yeah. Not written in a while, blah, blah, blah, excuse, excuse. Still love me? Hell yes you do or otherwise why do you keep coming back? You are all my biatches, fo’ sure.

Anyway, life the last couple of weeks continued on much like the few weeks before it. Busy, busy, seeing folk, having tremendous fun and being achingly cosmopolitan at the festival. In amongst this I managed a weekend up north to see my mum’s new house with her fancy man, five large dogs and one small cat. Despite the kitchen only having 2 walls and the guest room rendered uninhabitable by a surfeit of boxes, the place was lovely. The garden is so massive it’s like a municipal park complete with babbling brook and wildlife (well, dogs and the odd worm). They even got me gardening. Come spring time next year there will a fabulous array of daffodils cursory of moi.

So with all my socialising, running up and down the country and actually going to work, I must say I found myself happy but quite exhausted. So imagine my surprise when I realised this weekend I had no plans. No even just no plans, but Cat the put-upon-wife and Andi were both away meaning I had the flat to myself (no, Andi’s not moved in, but foolishly he has been given the spare key and now I never know when he might burst through the door). I did something quite out of character for me and made no plans. I consciously avoided texting folk incase they suggested meeting up. So when it came, this weekend I found myself quite foot loose and fancy free.

I did what one can only do when finding themselves alone. I bought some naughty food, a couple of beers and a crappy movie. That was Saturday. However, today I decided to be a domestic goddess. When I was unemployed, yes those dark days, I found myself baking a lot to fill the time and despite not being a natural chef, I did enjoy baking. However once I started working and the festival exploded upon the city, I found this past time fell by the way side. So today I resurrected it. Not only that, I decided to make gingerbread men which was my speciality as a teenager (the only thing I would bake, I have no idea why).

I called mum and got the recipe and realised I had most things I the cupboard, but just needed a few bits and bobs so nipped along to the supermarket. Half way around the shop I realised I had forgotten to get the most important piece of equipment required for making gingerbread men; that is the man cutter. I thought, never fear Morag you are in a large supermarket chain they will have one. Nope they didn’t. I was in a retail park so I didn’t panic. But then Poundstretchers, Tkmaxx and some random cheap shop called BHS (not the one we all know and love, another one with the same name -is that allowed? I thought there were copyright laws about that sort of thing) all came up with nothing. Well, that’s not strictly true in Tkmaxx I could have got a train, a star or an elephant and while these were nice, I was wanting the archetypal gingerbread figure. So I drove off to yet another large chain supermarket and it too failed me (neither of these were the evil Tesco, just putting that out there. I spit in your general direct Tesco).

What to do? I wracked my brain then suddenly a light bulb went off and not an energy saving one. John Lewis. They would have what I required. I mean have you seen that advert? That chick clothes her entire family, furnishes her house and does all the baking just from that one shop against montage sad/happy music so I surely could get a pastry cutter in the shape of a male homosapien there?!

NOPE. John Lewis failed me. Hear that ex-wife: Sarah was addicted to JL, although she never bought 2 of anything just because it was red (yes Andi I am talking about you and your predilection for M&S). By this stage I was panicking as I am sure you would have been. I mean I’d bought all the ingredients; they were in car waiting to be mixed. The shopping centre was getting busier and busier and it was almost lunchtime and I was hungry. Hungry and no pastry cutter. In a last ditch attempt I went to the one last place I could think. Poundland.

Poundland is a source of great joy and great sorrow to me. Everything is a pound- joy. People there- sorrow. They are poor- I have nothing against that, I am poor now, but the people in Poundland can’t seem to walk and move like the rest of us. Instead they just hover like midges in little clusters around the store, their mouths usually hanging open and grunting to one another. On Sunday lunchtime, the place was packed it was almost unbearable. However, needs must and went in. Unfortunately the kitchen stuff is in the middle aisle at the back, no way of avoiding maximal exposure. So I stop-started my way to the section filled trepidation. I mean if John Lewis didn’t have pastry cutters then what was hope Poundland would? I got to the section and to great dismay I saw a packet of pastry cutter shapes- stars and the like, but no men. My heart filled with sorrow. It was the end. There was nowhere else I could think of to get a gingerbread man cutter. It was over.

But then I glanced down, at the end of the aisle, separate from the rest of the baking kitchenalia, next to the Tupperware- a small cardboard box. Unassuming, almost hidden amongst the brightly coloured lids. Could it be? I edged closer- not in fear; I was just stuck behind an obese granny who could only shuffle. Then at last I saw it. Not only a gingerbread man cutter, but a gingerbread woman cutter and two smaller gingerbreadchildren cutters! And all for a pound!!!! Joy, joy!!!!

On my return home, I was quite overcome by emotion and was forced to have a cup of tea and some crackers. And then I began. I began to create my men, women and children. I mixed, I kneaded and I baked. And they were complete, ready for the world. I hadn’t made this recipe years and I was cautious – what if they were horrible? What if I’d lost my touch what if they tasted bland and floury? I picked up my first little man and bit......

I had created man and he was good.

What did you do with your Sunday?

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