Friday, July 27, 2012
Vacation with the P's Pt. II: Is it Time to Eat Yet?
Have you ever wondered if you when you were a baby, the nurse grabbed the wrong infant and sent you off with another family?
I honestly wonder if I was switched accidentally at birth, instead of going to the two vegetarian, skinny liberal arts, hippy college professors, I wound up where I am today.
When I was on vacation with Ivy, food consumption/activity went like this, which is my everyday routine: small handful of nuts/orange/flax seed for b-fast, fruit/veggies later in the day, light, healthy dinner (salad), if any dinner at all, daily-excerise, a few "light" Miller 64 beers, maybe a walk, then bed. However, this vacation is alarmingly different.
The above picture is my contribution to supper night for my family last night. It was met with polite reviews. It was a heart-healthy, low-cal, taco chicken salad. However, I'm sure everyone wished it was served with some mashed potatoes and meat and would have tasted better covered in gravy.
My family is food-oriented.
If my family had a restaurant, it would be in the top ten percent of Fortune 500 companies. People would bite and pull hair to buy stock into our restaurants. The floor of the New York Stock Exhange would be chaos, screaming in the aisles, pushing, kicking, clammering over our stock. Our economy would come out of recession and would thrive in prosperity, and one of my siblings, having "saved the economy" by opening restaurants in all 50 states would be elected president.
Customers would line up blocks outside of the front door, waiting to get in. There'd be fights over who was first in line. We'd have to hire security. We'd be millionares and have several shows on PBS and the Food Network. The Food Network would be changed to The Neumann Network.
My family is food-obsessed.
I suppose to a smaller degree, I am a foodie, who delights in watching the Food Network and America's Test Kitchens, growing my own herbs and canning and creating new dishes, only unlike my family, I eat to live, not live to eat.
To my family, Food (with a capital "F"), and more importantly, EATING is an activity, a sport, like say competitive swimming or acrobatics. Eating marathons are commonplace. My family has a sort of private olympics when it comes to eating, my dad always taking the platinum metal. Desserts are are required, though my mom's diabetic, and my dad's significantly overweight; second helpings are a must, and counting the minutes to the next meal is strongly encouraged.
The ultimate swearword is not a four-lettered word, but "vegetarian." To say "I'm a vegetarian" is worse than saying, "I think Al Queda are a bunch of super dudes."
And then there is me, trying to maintain a healthy weight and actually come close to a doctor-approv ed BMI.
Yet, my family conversations often go like this:
Me: "We just ate an hour ago."
"But WHEN"s DINNER? I'm starting to get hungry again."
"We have to get home in a few hours."
Me: "Why? The show hasn't started yet."
"We have to start dinner. We only have 6 hours and my marinade requires three hours chilling time."
"Starting dinner" is a phrase that means cooking, often for hours. My mom's stroganoff is an "activity" that takes 24-72 hours preparation including: perusing various supermarkets to find sales, purchasing said items, prep-time cutting, dicing, etc., actual cooking time 2-3 hours. Also, everyone is REQUIRED to participate or be labeled a social pariah.
Needless to say, that means "dinner time" in my family is usually between 8:00-9:00 p.m. followed by an alarming array of desserts and an immediate retiring to bed.
Of course, this leads to obesity but that's fodder for another blog.
Is it lunch yet? (sigh)