Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Housefrau Basics: Boiling Water

Today’s kitchen mishap illustrates the importance of knowing your basics when attempting to frau the house. For instance, one should have a working knowledge of fundamental physics. Things like, “two objects cannot occupy the same space at the same time” and “gravity makes things crash into the floor if you don’t pay attention” and “wandering off while something is on the stove is likely to incur the wrath of the housefrau gods.”

Let’s talk about the latter. I haven’t cooked anything in about two weeks, and lord knows I haven’t picked up a dustcloth. In fact, I believe potato-chip-crumbs were starting to rival dust for the title of Substance Covering Most of the Surfaces in My House. But because I had plans for an outside individual to enter my home this afternoon, my latent sense of shame outpaced my innate laziness, and I got off my ass. Went to the grocery (I’ll spare you the details), cleaned up the house.

(A digression: I love the phrase “clean up.” It implies a bit more than tidying, but doesn’t actually obligate one to clean anything. So shoving all the debris into a drawer and wiping down the counters can do the job, and you get to cross “clean up” off the list without having had to do anything resembling a respectable amount of work.)

So this evening I was all set to start dinner, just like a good housefrau should. Thought maybe I would get going on a pot of rice, since it is insanely easy to make and, because it takes forever to cook, I can claim to be busy cooking while I am actually staring at sharpeworld.

Getting all fancy, I decided to make the rice not with water but with vegetable stock! Poured in the two cups and turned on the burner. Then I zipped downstairs to check the laundry. While I was there, I noticed that there were several items in the pantry that I had purchased duplicates of at the grocery store, because I forgot we had a pantry. Better organize that pantry, and fast! Then I realized that we had been wiping our mouths all week first with dishtowels, then with our sleeves, because I hadn’t gotten around to ironing the pile of napkins on the ironing board (also hadn’t gotten around to washing all the dirty dishtowels). Well, feeling all super-housefrau-ey, no more slacking for me! Ironed those suckers, got the towels into the wash, read a little bit (a bad idea to keep books in the laundry room, but the damn things are running me out of house and home; the books just seem to keep reproducing). Finally trekked up the stairs with a pile of freshly-ironed napkins and a renewed sense of domestic pride.

Boy, something sure smelled good up there! I guessed it must be about time to pour the rice into the boiling broth.

Sadly, no. I no longer had any broth. What I had was this:

My lovely, fancy, probably-really-expensive Le Cruset pan coated in what seemed to be irrevocable burnt. (Let’s all just agree to use burnt as a noun, shall we?) NOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!

I called my mommy. I was frightened I had killed the pan. She reassured me that the pan would survive and told me marvelous secrets about baking soda. Her comment on the ordeal: “If you can hurt a pan like that, it’s not worthy of you.”

IMed the LP. His remark: “Wow, you’re just like a sim.” Then he offered to bring dinner home with him from work, and I declared him official Hero of the Blog!

My mom called back two minutes later—“Hey, at least you have a great blog topic!”

And she’s right. Let my experience be an important lesson for aspiring housefraus everywhere: when you feel yourself getting overconfident and believing that you can both boil something and iron something in the same day, slow down and remind yourself of the cardinal rule of housefrauing:



Blogger Pirooz M. Kalayeh said...

This is my favorite blog so far. I love your mom's too.

2:23 PM  
Blogger housefrau said...


4:06 PM  

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