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I Was So Embarrassed
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“You really can’t cook, can you?” My boyfriend Savoy said that day he visited me at my apartment in Lincoln City, Oregon. We’d been seeing each other for three months or so, and both of us felt like our relationship was getting super serious.

I didn’t know until the first time we went out to eat that Savoy is a long-time vegetarian, and he’s picky about food. He usually wants organic foods, and he thinks the microwave is poisonous and doesn’t believe in it. I, on the other hand, have depended on the microwave for sustenance and survival for many years. How can I anyone survive without a microwave? I mean, my parents didn’t use one. My mother yelled at my kids in the early 1990’s when she’d visit us and the microwave was on, “Stay away from the microwave!” she was afraid radiation would attack them. My Dad had a microwave which came with his apartment, and he never used it, but he cooked frozen meals just about every day. I asked him why he didn’t use it, and he said, “Why do I have to be in such a hurry?” Well, I was always in a hurry. I was always on the go, and I needed that microwave for countless things, heating up meals, vegetables and leftovers, cooking my oatmeal with blueberries every morning. I practically survived by the microwave.

“Umm, I can heat things up and put together meals!” I answered as Savoy looked at me struggling to find a proper pot to cook vegetables in. I knew he hated the microwave and now I had to figure out how to prepare a meal for him — a guy who loves to cook and does it well, everything healthy and organic. When I visit him at his place, he makes delicious meals for me — and they’re so good you don’t notice they’re vegetarian at all. He does use some replacement meats and tofu a lot, but he makes it so tasty. That’s what inspired me to go vegetarian as well. I’ve never been one before, although my older daughter has been vegetarian for years now and has never gone back to eating meat. She did go Vegan for about two years as well, which is commendable.

I decided to attempt to make spaghetti for him because it’s one of the few meals I can make and put together without messing up. Savoy brought over special organic marinara sauce for this which he had made and carefully placed into jars. Who is this guy and where did he come from? I thought.

All I had to do was heat up pasta, fry up the mushrooms and onions for the sauce, and heat up some veggies to go with the meal, along with garlic bread — how difficult can this be? Even I knew how to turn on the oven and put the garlic bread in, no problem there.

But Savoy was very unimpressed with my pots and pans collection which was dismal at best.

“What happened to all your kitchen stuff?” he asked.

I explained that my kids had “borrowed” some of my kitchen stuff and my sister-in-law had burned some pots and pans while attempting to cook for all of us when my brother and his whole family lived with me the year before. I had to throw the pots away because they were messed up so badly. Then I left stuff with Stevie and Liezl, like my nice four-piece toaster. A crockpot adorned my kitchen counter, making it look like I cooked, but in reality, I hadn’t used it in years.

So before I prepared dinner, we went to the Goodwill Store down the street from my apartment which had lots of really good kitchen stuff at reasonable prices, Savoy explained. He studied the small pots suitable for heating up vegetables to make sure it was the right and said, “Here, get this one.” He found a larger pot suitable for heating up pasta, as well as a colander which I could not find anywhere, but I knew it was “around.”

Then there was the thing about knives. “You only have one sharp knife? Whaaaatttt?” Savoy said as we had walked out the door headed to Goodwill. That was unheard of for him, only one sharp knife. In reality, I used to have a lot of sharp knives, included steak knives, however, my brother hid them from schizophrenic niece so she wouldn’t try to harm herself, and I could never find them again, and that’s why I had no knives.

He had finally picked out all the things I needed, including a couple of knives, and we went back to my place where I managed to prepare an acceptable meal for my boyfriend. Whew!


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