Archive for May, 2009

Devil and the Deep Sea

I am always stuck in a bundle of contradictions. Especially when it comes to my passions, shopping and cooking. I really pride myself on buying inexpensive clothes and accessorizing them to make them look all put together. Or when it comes to cooking, I am obsessed with getting a dish in the exact same taste as I found at the restaurants, and using loads of shortcuts to get there. Both my clothes and food are generally well appreciated when I do make the effort, but here is where the dilemma comes in.

For example, the other day I was shopping at this massive chain store (ok ok, Target) and I found this really great dress in cotton. It was white with grey modern prints and very breezy. And also burnt a very tiny hole in my pocket. I wore it to my friend’s baby shower with a cranberry red belt with a steel buckle, for which I had again paid a princely sum of $5. And in the baby shower, my other friend complimented me on my dress and asked where I got it. And this is where I get stuck e-v-e-r-y s-i-n-g-l-e t-i-m-e. Do I let her know I bought it at Target and it was such a bargain or do I shut up and let her assume that I am the patron saint of expensive botiques?

Even with cooking, it is the same issue. The thai reciepe I posted here nearly broke my heart. But I had decided and it had to be done. And why? Because I used my super brainy skills and found a vegetarian substitute for oyester sauce in the chinese store. It gives the exact same flavor as oyester sauce BUT it is not labelled anything as obvious as “Oyester sauce substitute”. So you need to do a bit of homework there. No, it is not that I am the only person on earth to figure this out, but you know, it is like my little secret. The one for which I tried various combinations of useless sauces till I got the right one, the one that makes everyone wonder how I got the dish to taste the like the restaurant one (there I go again!) at home.

For a long time, I have been trying to figure out why exactly I have this dilemma. Why can’t I just let people know, which I anyways do because I am such a big mouth and cannot shut up to save my life, and then sit back without any twinge of regret. And finally I found the answer. It is praise. I mean, I will tell my friends and they will go all wah-wah on me. But when they use my recipe for another get-together where I am not around, they will reap all the praises when the secret truly belongs to me. Thats it. Simple and plain jealousy.

May be its not devil and the deep sea, it is devil and a very very shallow pool of water.

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May 27, 2009 at 10:05 pm 10 comments


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