Monday, May 25, 2009

Soul Food

Well, here we are again, the exhilarating start of yet another exhilarating week in the bowels of a dusty Government office.

Thankfully, I have many interests outside of work. Outdoor pursuits like hiking and cycling, writing this stuff, attempting to resurrect two unfinished novels and endeavouring to delight my palate and those of my occasional dinner guests with delectable and spicy Indian goodness. And not always succeeding. Well, that's part of the fun, I find.

I love to talk about food with my like-minded colleagues. We share tips and tricks and meal suggestions.

Today, I engaged in a discussion with a colleague about what to do with leftover star anises which sometimes find their way to the back of the cupboard and get forgotten about. (That's ANISES, not ANUSES! Although Anuses are sometimes referred to as Chocolate Starfish.) I got a tip to try boiling one with rice and turmeric. Hmm. I will try that later in the week. With a star anise. Not an anus. I don't particularly want my rice to taste of boiled anus. Blehh.

A nosey colleague happened to enter the office just as we were discussing this, and wandered over to listen to the conversation. When it finished she inhaled deeply and blurted:

Nosey: Wow, you're quite the cook, Govstooge? Aren't you?
Govstooge: I try.
Nosey: Is it just Indian stuff you do?
Govstooge: No. I try everything. But Indian's my favourite.
Nosey: Wow. You should be a chef!
Govstooge (Thinks: Umm. Is somebody looking to wangle an invite to one of my curry nights? Just so she can have a look round my house? Well, I'm fucked if that's going to happen, so...) No, Antigone. I couldn't possibly be a chef.
Nosey: Why not?
Govstooge: Because the doctors told me I can't work with knives. You see I have this uncontrollable urge to cut. Others who stand so close to me, usually. Like you're doing now.
Nosey: (Running away) Waah!
Govstooge: But I don't have a knife now! Just this pointy letter opener....

I'm sure my readers of the psychiatric profession are now consulting their Diagnostic and Statistical Manuals. But really, it's a defence mechanism against intrusiveness. I hope our Personnel Department feel the same way.

Anyway, tonight's Tarka Dhal was rather nice indeed. I didn't even burn it or anything!

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