That Friday feeling…

Today has been a bit of a lazy day. I slept like the dead, probably because of the painkillers I took last night. I didn’t do much writing yesterday and have done even less today. It’s not going to happen today, I don’t think. I have a friend coming round for dinner (yes, another friend – even I am shocked) so we will be eating/chatting, etc, etc.

It occurred to me earlier, as I was getting stuff out for lunch, that cooking is a creative pursuit, even if it doesn’t get words down on paper. I had a bit of a challenge yesterday. I had prepared a chicken and chorizo casserole and that was bubbling away happily in the oven. Then I realised that the casserole was sitting on the only shelf, so how the hell was I going to get the cheese biscuits in?

Eventually I got a rack and put it on top of the casserole dish and put the tray with the cheese biscuits on top of that. This probably would have worked if the top of the casserole dish wasn’t a knob one inch in diameter and therefore not the most stable thing to balance a baking tray on. Inevitably, the tray fell off. I muttered dark words which coiled the air like miniature evil tornadoes and retrieved the tray. Luckily the biscuits had stayed on it. I repositioned the biscuits and the tray.

The second time it fell off the curses appeared like anti-light, so that the room seemed a little dimmer each time one fell from my lips. I retrieved the tray, noticed that most of the biscuits were on the floor of the oven and uttered more evil promises to the gods of oven shelves.

The third time it fell off there were about ten biscuits left on the tray. I got the tray out, got the casserole out, got the shelf out. Put the casserole back in on the floor of the oven, put the shelf in above it and put the tray on that. The biscuits came out something on the golden side, but perfectly crispy and tasty.

The next batch went in and came out without a hassle.

Now, the thought that occurred to me in conjunction with all this while I was going about the business of setting up today’s lunch was that this could be seen as a metaphor for the writing process. As I thought it through I came hurrying to my laptop to write it down, which is why my stomach hates me and is growling like one of my curses.

The thing is, if I had planned out the whole casserole vs. cheese biscuit operation, I wouldn’t have wasted so much time retrieving biscuits, trays, racks and so on from where they had fallen in a very hot oven. If I had planned it out, I would have put the casserole on the floor of the oven in the first place. If I had thought it through the first time the rack fell off, I would have got the casserole out then and make the switch.

But I didn’t. I kept on with a flawed, i.e. half-arsed, plan which simply didn’t work. Basically it was no plan at all. While I got some perfectly good biscuits at the end of it, they weren’t quite as good as they could have been and required a good deal more effort than the second batch. And I got burnt. Literally. Which always hurts. The batch that I planned came out more or less perfect.

Lesson in there for the writers among us, I think. And possibly for life in general. Now I have to go and have lunch. I’m starving.


About Mhairi Simpson

Writer, dreamer. Magic, dragons, pink mice, cake. Come say hi!
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8 Responses to That Friday feeling…

  1. Michael says:

    Ooo you sound like a fantastic cook. If I might suggest one thing (as I’m interested in learning more about preparation)…you should take some pictures as you prepare the food step-by-step and that way I could more easily reproduce on my own what you’re doing in the kitchen :))) you’d be my bestest friend hehehe

    • Hahahahaha. My casseroles are very simple. You cut everything up, throw it in a casserole dish. Pour in a load of chicken stock (or beef if it’s beef you’re cooking), cover it and whack it in the oven (about 180C) for four hours. Easy peasy πŸ™‚ But if it will make you happy I’ll take pictures next time and do a recipe post πŸ™‚

  2. alberta ross says:

    oh dear – sounds a bit like my creations! maybe we have all done it in our writing – carried on and on because – just because – as long as we do move it forward in time, (and learn – although I still do repeat mistakes!!) hope your stomach is happy again

  3. Regina Linton says:

    Sounds like you got it all worked out in the end. Now my tummy is hungry. πŸ™‚

    • πŸ˜€ Yes, it got sorted eventually. Just could have been done more efficiently. I’m hungry again. Well, not so much hungry as craving something. I think I might go and bake some more cheese biscuits. Can’t be worse than chocolate πŸ™‚

  4. andrewmocete says:

    Curses like anti-light. Careful you don’t take the whole house down next time you’re mad. I’d miss you.

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