Thyme After Thyme … Clarity Through Cooking.

Totally Edible Right? Wrong.

As of late, I’ve found my life to be a bit uninspired and by “a bit” I mean I’ve been in an F.M.L mood since returning from the worst.holiday.ever a few weeks ago. Originating with a botched flight to Sweet Home, peppered with the angst of a twelve-hour trek under the Tuscan sun by way of the southwestern heat and ending on the set of “When Bad Cocktails, Happen to Good People” featuring two of my siblings. And things only seemed to get worse from there.

I’ve mentioned the concept of schemas before and without re-hashing it, schemas are basically a road map of how events play out in our mind. For me, a person who makes a living planning things (events);  I’ve found that when things take a wrong turn I take it especially hard. In the case of last week, the beginning of the trip was perhaps a means to an end in more ways than one.

For those of you who are kind enough to indulge in my incessant ramblings,  you may be somewhat familiar with this NsSA character I dare to write of here and there … mostly here. We met late last year at which point I immediately decided I was love-stoned, smitten. That’s the thing about falling into something … the feelings that consume you are surreal and lovely. And then as you continue to grow, heads often begin to connect with hearts and there is a is this love that I’m feeling moment; one that I fear I may know all to well. And while I tout myself a hopeful romantic, it is my in the fiber of my being, to be a hopeless romantic,  a la Pisces.

There is the idea of a love that envelops … the kind of love people dream about … The kind of love that we all hope for. Indescribable love, that will be there for life or longer. I regret to inform you as well as myself,  that NsSA and I did not have that. Unfortunately,  that was not our story. And so when my head over ruled my heart earlier this week, I decided it was time to officially dissolve our faux life partnership.  Oddly, the experience of not only NsSA, but the proud and few before him was/is eerily similar to my dealings in the kitchen. Shall I proceed?

I haven’t shared with you to date, but I adore cooking,  specifically baking. The idea of marrying flavors and scents and textures to create one perfect dish … there is nothing greater. However, there are times when a pinch of this and a dash of that can ruin what could have been the best.meal.ever. And we all know spooning leads to forking … Hence, a relationship with too much of that and not enough of this will never be able to rise to the occasion when things get heated in the kitchen. In the Curious Case of Pretty One (me) and NsSA (him) whatever “it” is that helps one to stay the course — we lacked.

“You deserve to be with someone who focuses on all the things you are, or more importantly doesn’t focus on what you aren’t”  I typed in a last-ditch e-mail effort — no doubt, a recipe for disaster. Not to mention tacky, there- I’ll own it. He never responded, so he would probably agree with that statement as well. That is if he’s noticed I’ve departed.  But let’s be realistic, is there a “best” way to part ways with someone? Ok, probably not e-mail, but hey — I already hit send so what’s done, is done. 

Our story, NsSA’s and mine, reminds me of the Christmas I decided to bake a Chocolate Godiva Tres Leches cake for my family. Let me preface this by saying, every holiday I’m in charge of making dessert (I hope this is the correct spelling, I’m always confused by this and too lazy presently to google it; hopefully its obvious I don’t mean the kind w/sand and hooved animals). I’m in charge of dessert for one reason, and one reason only — I’m good at it.  So Christmas of 08,  after accepting a bake-off challenge via Glamour Magazine, I set out to bake “the impossibly delicious chocolate cake.” Cautioning, that if you’re able able to pull it off, this feat is the baking equivalent of a triple sow pow, Mr. Bo Jangles style.  Challenge accepted, I’m in.

To begin,  upon reading the recipe I knew it would be intense. I may have stretched and opted to do a few sit-ups before starting.  It was all over the place with its gremlin like instructions. Don’t Get it Wet … Wet it … Don’t feed it after midnight … Feed it after midnight … Don’t bake in direct sunlight … bake in direct sunlight.  A complete contradiction. Still, I thought — I will be the person, that follows these instructions perfectly and reaps the benefits of my hard work. And so for five hours, I whipped and dipped, diced and sliced, froze and unfroze. I popped and I twirked all over my kitchen,  because I knew if I were patient, there would be this amazing cake to show for it. So I pressed on.

Earlier in the day, around the time I was whipping and dipping – something didn’t feel right about the recipe. Call it, “bakers intuition.”  It may as well have been written in Aramaic. Still,  instead of stopping while I was ahead and sayyy switching to a recipe I was more familiar with I chose the path less traveled. I wanted to prove to myself that I could try something different and succeed. Make this cake my b*tch.  And so I continued … Essentially, when times got hard, I didn’t want to throw in my monogrammed apron and admit defeat. It was now personal.  This cake had challenged me to a dance off, and evacuating the dance floor was not an option.  *Note* I don’t like to lose, especially when I know there’s a possibility to win.  So I continued to sexy dance with this cake and all of its cake issues for the better half of my day.

Eight hours later,  after instructions had been followed to the letter-T, and icing had been whipped within an inch of its inanimate object life — I had a cake. Not only did I have a cake, I had a cake that was stunning to the naked eye. Absolutely breathtaking. That cake was like a glittery unicorn in a field of crimson and clover.  Presentation is key. Right?Wrong. When it comes to food, when everything is said and done … plates made and goblets full — the flavor is where it’s at. You want to look that cake in the eye and invite it to sit on your face, or at least — sit in your mouth.

My uncle was the first who dared to cut into this vision of sugary perfection, his knife effortlessly gliding through each layer. I breathed a sigh of relief. Moistness, check.  Eagle bran and cream of coconut caressed the cake knife like not-so-secret-lovers. Sweet surprise filling,  check. My eyes followed his fork as the cocoa cake goddess  navigated towards his mouth. “Oh God” he said, his lips involuntarily recoiled outward. “This is Awful!!” he proceeded to take a second bite in an attempt to reassure himself. “Oh yeah, this is terrible” he shook his head in agreement.

I had successfully created the prettiest, worst tasting cake or the “Death Cake” as it’s known amongst my family ever.  Ever. One by one seven other relatives reluctantly stepped up to the cake plate, only to echo the sentiments of my uncle.  My Gram delivering the final blow. “Awful, just awful” she said. And when I finally composed myself enough to take the plunge, I realized that thing I knew in hour four of baking, still rang true in hour eight. In theory, the cake was a great idea — but in the end, I’d bitten off more than any of us dared chew and swallow. And in the process, my good intentions pissed off people I love weren’t enough to make good dessert. Or as my nephew put it, “Your cake ruined Christmas.”  #TrueStory. No matter how perfectly I’d followed instructions,  in the end something was off and it wasn’t the right cake for me. The cake recipe, while confusing as hell looked good on paper, in fact it looked great on paper.  Stupid cake recipe.

I suppose the same could be said for relationships. While NsSA and I never made it to “I Love You” I do believe we cared for one another a great deal. And for the record, I think I was waiting for him to say it first. I’m sure if he ever read this he’d just say “I’m not an I love you kind of guy” — his answer to any and everything he doesn’t do.  Followed by some justification of how saying “I Love You” enables people in some way {Insert Psycho Babble HERE}. Snarky comments courtesy of hurt feelings.  But I digress …

Regardless,  sometimes you can have all the right ingredients, but if something is off … or the recipe is too complex, in the end all you’ll have to show is a beautiful cake that taste like death. And well, that’s no good for anyone. The good news is, when the right ingredients are combined — well, that’s a meal you don’t mind sinking your teeth into.

*Here’s Hoping.*

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About The.Pretty.One

"I will never be the woman with the perfect hair, who can wear white and not spill on it.” - Carry Bradshaw The Pretty One is the youngest daughter of a former 70s pageant queen and her first husband, a wealthy financier. A former debutante and southern belle, this Steel Magnolia is anything but. A visionary, she is the owner and creative mind behind a successful boutique communications and event firm. But what I really want to do is dance ... and blog.
This entry was posted in Astrology, Being Single, Break-Up, Cooking, Fate, food, Going Out, Humor, Love, Men, Notes To Self, Pisces, random rants, Relationships, Sexy Time and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Thyme After Thyme … Clarity Through Cooking.

  1. ....RaeDi says:

    It makes you think, wonder if it makes ‘them’ think….RaeDi

  2. sarafina says:

    AWWWWWW Is it really over, I already know the answer to that. Well I look your eloquent rendition of a life lesson. I too broke up by saying you deserve someone who can love you the way you are, and I’m not that one. Deuces.
    Solitude is my companion and books are my lovers #digressionintonnerdandladywiththecatsmode

    • Thanks Sarafina, lolz at “nerd and lady with the cat” mode OR in my case lady with the schnauzer :/ Alas, it tis over *Shrug* so …. yeah … that’s about all i have to say about that.

  3. sarafina says:

    that was love not look

  4. E says:

    Pretty One, to say that you have a way with words is an understatement for sure. I’m not sure if it’s the hormones or not, but I read this and visualized everything so vividly that I damn near peed on myself during your story about the “Death Cake.”

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