Sunday, June 27, 2010

Too Much TV on an Impressionable Mind

It's already Sunday evening. I hate that Sunday evenings signal the closing of the weekend. It's been a rather nice weekend too so I'm sorry to see it pass.

I think the puppies will be sad too. They really like weekends where we get to stay home instead of going to my parents' house. Of course, it doesn't mean that they've quite learned the concept of 'sleeping in' yet but we'll work on that. I actually did get to sleep in until 8 a.m. on Saturday although technically, since Rory woke me up at 6 a.m. to go out, it wasn't continuous sleep. Today, she woke me up at 7 a.m. and there was no going back to bed.

On early mornings, I tend to be rather productive. I just think I need to train myself to go to bed earlier so it's a little easy to get up and be productive. Since I had a friend staying over last night, I got up and made the batter for crepes. It's sort of my 'thing'. Being a singleton Monkeypants is mostly fun but I do occasionally wish I had someone to cook for on a regular basis. Thus, I tend to like to cook for guests because I get to use my kitchen gadgets. I got a handy immersion whisk at a yard sale last week so I got to use that for the crepe batter. It's a fabulous device and it takes out all the lumps.

Since I had a guest in town, it meant a trip to Jungle Jim's. Because my friends tend to read this blog, they're generally curious about this grocery store which has me so enamoured. I like to give tours. I think Jungle Jims actually does official tours but I think mine isn't so bad. I think I'm quite informative and I offer the added bonus of being able to explain what odd-looking food items are. Thanks to the Food Network, I have become quite well-versed in weird ingredients.

I have learned that the Food Network has also made me into a bit of a culinary snob. I don't mean that I have high falutin' tastes. I mean that I tend to drop culinary terms into everyday explanation and not even realizing I'm doing it. For example, my friend asked me about making soup so I started to talk about the mirepoix. Naturally, she was, like, "uh, mirror-what?" Then she was looking around my kitchen and found my prep bowls so she asked what they were for. So I explained mise-en-place to her. The thing is, I don't actually mean to sound like a pretentious want-to-be-chef. I just watch far too many cooking shows. Worse than that, I watch the competitive reality cooking shows like Top Chef and The Next Food Network Star in which the contestants are young bucks who are all trying to out-chef each other. They make things like coulis and sabayon. They have fancy cooking technique terns like brunoise .

I am impressionable. I'm also obsessive. When I'm fascinated by something, I tend to absorb like a sponge. I can't actually do the things I'm learning about, necessarily but I like to know what they mean. It's annoying, even to myself.

Once upon a time, I was very anti-reality programming. I used to think it took jobs away from writers because they didn't need writers on these shows. Now, thanks to the slippery slope that was begat from watching Iron Chef America, I have fallen prey to the lure of competition, particularly that in the kitchen. Curses.

Sadly, my knowledge won't get me very far in my real life. Working at a software company puts a damper on the need for fancy cooking knowledge. It does help at Jungle Jim's when I'm browsing. I discovered that they have duck confit there. I'm always seeing that on Top Chef.

It's sad that TV has such an influence on me. However, I think, for the most part, those that I end up feeding don't particularly mind as it usually means they'll be eating something non-vile and, hopefully, tasty.

Still, for now, my flow of guests has come to a slow for a while. While I love having my friends stay, it will be nice to have some time to get some stuff done at home. For example, I have visions of turning my somewhat-unappealing family room into a Tuscan villa room. Of course, I'm not very good at decorating.

Maybe I should start watching more decorating shows.

Happy Monday!

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