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The supper circus, complete with clowns and jugglers

March 2, 2012

If I could go get a shot that would make me suddenly able to multitask in any reasonable manner, I’d do it.  This business of being overwhelmed if I have to do more than one thing at a time is for the birds.  Not that I’ve ever seen birds do more than one thing at a time.  They eat, they sleep, they poop. No wonder their lives are simple.

I had today off and so I figured that meant I had time to do something a bit more labor-intensive for dinner.  When I work until 5pm, the earliest I get home is 5:30, and at that point I’m looking for what I can pull off quickly. Unless, that is, Mr. Sparky beats me home with a better idea, which he often does.  But either way, our menu is limited to things we can make within an hour.

So I got a bright idea.  It sounded so simple at the time.  What I did not note is just how many things required all my attention at the same time.

Homemade pasta.  Yes…homemade.  Homemade tomato cream sauce.  Sauteed mushrooms.  Meatballs (at least I had a glimmer of sense and bought those frozen instead of trying to make them homemade).  Salads with hearts of romaine (not the bagged stuff), grape tomatoes, feta cheese, and pepperoncini.

It doesn’t sound that bad, does it?  Seriously…how bad could it be?

Well, if I’m at the helm, it could be really bad.  And I could do it all about one click short of a total meltdown because I’m overwhelmed, overloaded, and I can’t even find time to get the dang forks on the table.  The tomato sauce needs attention while the meatballs have been in the oven 40 minutes too long (don’t worry, I turned it off) and the mushrooms are in danger of over-browning and I need to finish putting the salads together and I haven’t even put the pasta dough through the machine yet and for some reason one burner isn’t working right and our hottest burner is slow at bringing up the pasta water and I need to grate some cheese and chop some basil and AHHHHH!!!!!

I’m not a bad cook.  In fact, I’m a good cook.  But I’m bad at timing meals, mostly because it involves multittasking and having half a clue how long it’s really going to take to do something, which is almost always very different from how long I think it’s going to take to do it.  And when a lot of those somethings need done at the same time, like tonight, I’m sunk.  I do much better with meal preparations that are linear in nature.  I am good with the “first you do this, then you do that, then you do this, and then you do that” sort of thing.

Dinner was actually very tasty.  Recovery from the dinner prep experience has been a bit slow, but I think I’m finally finished wheezing and hyperventilating.

I haven’t even considered what’s for dinner tomorrow night.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. Joann permalink
    March 2, 2012 9:47 pm

    I think you deserve a nice glass of wine, some fruit, and good cheese for dinner tomorrow!

  2. March 4, 2012 4:27 pm

    I think there is an art to getting all of dinner on the table at the same time at the right temperatures and the diners in place, too.

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