The Big Quarantine – May 18, 2020
The Day in Looking for Stuff To Do: A rainy gloomy day and I used the morning portion of it to do some kitchen organizing.
I go through my pantry some rainy day in May every year, Covid or not. I picked May because that was the month I moved into my own house. Around my first year anniversary, I pulled something from the pantry that I didn’t remember buying. Of course I don’t remember the exact moment, but I bet it was one of those things where I stared at it in my hand, maybe giving it a slight toss as if I could divine how the beans or coconut milk or whathaveyou, made it to my pantry. Racking my brain to discern Why did I buy this? or When did I buy this? and then just throwing it away.
I hate to waste money like that and I tried to buy smarter. To control what was on hand, I would have pantry weeks where I wasn’t allowed to buy anything new for my meals, relying exclusively use what was on hand. Unintentionally, I trained myself for pandemic cooking.
The one thing I couldn’t stop buying for years was bottled salad dressing. Using expert level couponing and watching for sales, the dressing was super cheap. I don’t know why I thought I needed so much salad dressing. I certainly wasn’t buying that much salad. I guess I liked buying salad dressing. I mean, I like buying socks and have too many of those, but at least they don’t expire.
The year I threw away 6 bottles of unopened, expired dressing was the year I completely stopped buying bottled salad dressing. Now I make my own and it turns out, every May is a good time to pitch the unused portions of last year’s salad dressing ingredients like vinegar so I can freshen the collection for summer. I’ll pretend I planned it like that!
The Day in Mask Organizing: [Oh, hey, look at me finding a clever new thing to say about masks! ] I keep leaving the house without a mask. Some days remembering to grab money/id/phone/keys/ is asking a lot. Now I gotta add a mask? Yes, I do. My masks are now hanging on individual hooks near the door. If you didn’t know they were for disease prevention, it’s a rather festive collection.
The Day in Truth in Advertising: Planters Mixed Nuts were on sale at Kroger this week. If you’ve been grocery shopping lately, you know sales are sparse. I took the deal even though I know Planters Mixed Nuts is almost all peanuts…well, no, I’m mistaken. The can says LESS THAN 50% PEANUTS (by weight). I wanted to see for myself. So I ate all the peanuts first. It looks like Planter’s is not lying. I allow the statement.
Two things: First, I’m kind of a purist and don’t think peanuts even belong in a true mix of Mixed Nuts. Mixed Nuts (sans peanuts) are refined, something the Bridge Club snacks on. Peanuts are declasse, for ballgames and beer. Technically peanuts aren’t even nuts: They are legumes. For my money I like my peanuts separate from the real nuts and Kroger brand’s Simple Truth bag of (peanut-less) mixed nuts is very classy.
Second, I’m a fan of eating through a single component of a snack mix. I might even eat all the almonds next. (I understand this makes me a monster to some of you. Sorry.) This is a childhood habit. On the rare occasions we got M&M’s growing up I always ate the brown ones first because it made the candy jar more festive. Perhaps, more importantly, it would drive my brother crazy…and of course, that made me do it every time.
The Day in the Weaves of OTR: I’ve long wanted to take pictures documenting hair weaves that have fallen off the hair-dos of (probably) young women and onto the sidewalks of OTR. My thought is to make a picture book combining the sights of the city and the fake hair of its dwellers: The Lost Weaves of OTR – A Collection. There are always plenty of examples to consider. I see extensions and weaves on the ground a lot, especially on the weekends. Today’s sighting was a rare complete braid.