Monday, April 28, 2008

So This Is What It Feels Like to Be a Man

This weekend I was struck pretty hard by a craving for waffles. It's all I could think about. Waffles, waffles, waffles. I wanted to sink my teeth into a batch that was made just-right: crunchy on the outside, warm and fluffy on the inside. I wanted to puddle butter in waffle divots and drown a stack in maple syrup.

I didn't make them for breakfast. The reasons why aren't complex. First, I had a box of Cocoa Krispies in my cupboard, and if there's anything that gets me up in the morning it is the promise of a giant bowl of chocolate cereal. If anyone tries to get between me and a box of Cocoa Krispies, I will fuck them up. So, as you can imagine, I was set on my breakfast food. Second, I was lazy. I usually have plenty of energy in the morning. I am one of those irritating morning people who, mere seconds after she wakes up, is revved and ready to go. I have never once in my life hit the snooze button. Not. Ever. Once I'm up, I'm up. And it doesn't even take much to get me up. My alarm is my radio--not one of those terrifying metallic clang!clang!clangs!--and the volume of the radio when it goes off is low. I set it for four. To give you perspective, here's an interesting fact: when I'm at home and listening to the radio at a normal level, it's usually on nine or ten. It really doesn't take much to set me into motion.

Still, I felt very little like being in motion on Saturday morning. I'd just done pilates and I was already mapping out my day, which was full of paper grading and cleaning. I wanted nothing more than to start the day with a quick chocolate-y fix, which meant cereal instead of, say, chocolate chip waffles. But when I couldn't silence the internal chant for waffles, I compromised. I made them for dinner.

Or, more precisely, I attempted to make them for dinner. Now, listen. I like to think of myself as a whi in the kitchen. I am capable of making a lot of really good, really complicated things. Which is why I shouldn't have trouble with waffles. After all, I've been making waffles for years. Years! And what's hard about making a waffle? I don't even make my own batter. I pour out the mix, stir-stir-stir, and then I pour.

Well, alright, it's been a while since I made waffles, and I guess I had a momentary lapse of good judgment. For one thing, I filled the iron too full. But usually I am too conservative in my pour and end up with spiky waffles that aren't at all uniform. This time I was going for a fully-formed waffle. I got a little too carried away, I guess.


That didn't even bother me. I laughed. I mean, here I was trying to get a plump waffle, and I'd gone and over-plumped it. A lot. It would be disgusting to clean up, but at least there was a full waffle cooking under the plates.

Except when the steam stopped and the light signaled my waffles were more than likely done, I couldn't lift the latch. It was stuck. Glued together, almost. First I figured it was because of the overflow and that as soon as I tugged it would give. But when I tugged nothing happened. So I tugged some more. And then I tugged some more. And then the whole iron yawned open and one side of the waffle went with the top part and the other side of the waffle went with the bottom part. The insides looked lovely: perfect, fluffy. But the waffles weren't coming out of the iron. And it's not even that they were burned to the machine. They weren't. In fact, when I chipped the outside away from the supposedly nonstick griddle, the crisp outsides were just the right color of done. They were beautiful, but there was no saving them. And I had to salvage what was left of the batter and turn it into pancakes, which I was absolutely not in the mood for.

The waffle iron was a mess. A MESS. I could only peel back the crisped dough with immense force and a knife, and I got so frustrated trying to do so I had to stop before I stabbed the waffle iron right in its gut. I went on with my pancakes and ate my dinner and thought about how good those waffles would have been. And the next time I walked out into the kitchen and saw the mess again I was so disgusted that I almost picked the waffle iron up and threw it in the trash because--well, let's face it--throwing it out and spending $35 on a new one would have been much less effort than actually cleaning it. And if the Boy from Work were standing in my kitchen and surveying the damage, he would've already made the decision to chuck the iron and would've moved on to swiftly calculating how longer dinner would have to be put off while he ran to Target to buy a new one.

Sometimes I really envy boys.

1 comment:

Jason said...

That's not what it's like to be a man. A man, alone, is not going to bother with a waffle iron. Or mixing.

I used to take one of those boxes of chicken patties and bake all six of them. Then I'd put cheese on them and then put them on hamburger buns.

Then I'd eat all six. Because they were there.

Of course, I'm not claiming to be a typical man. I suppose I can see other, more civilized male humans screwing around with batter for dinner. I suppose.