The Roast (And Not My Husband)
My husband decided to make dinner for the family. This is always trying for me because he tends to ask many redundant questions. I realize he does this because he wants things to be right. Nonetheless, these are questions I feel he should already know the answers to after all these years of fixing dinner.
Alas, I thank him graciously and say a little prayer. “Please Lord, give me the patience to not choke him and to just answer the questions that I know are coming my way. I don’t want to go to prison. Frankly, orange is not my color and it certainly is not the new pink – Amen.”
The first task is the pan: “Which roaster should I use; the big one,” he asks as I take my seat at my desk and grip the sides to brace myself for the onslaught.
“Yes, the big one,” I answer. As an afterthought I point out, “We don’t have a little one anymore. There was a hole in it.”
I can hear him as he rolls his eyes at me behind my back. “I know there’s a hole in it. I’m the one who pointed it out to you to begin with. Remember?”
“Yes, dear,” I respond as I roll my own eyes.
Task two is filling the roaster: “Do I put these potatoes in there with it,” he asks.
“Yes, put the potatoes in there with the roast.”
I hear him going through bags. The noise stops and he says, “These red ones that you just bought?”
“Are there any other potatoes? I thought we were out so I bought the little red ones.” I go into the kitchen to make sure I wasn’t the crazy one, it was just him.
He counts the potatoes and says, “Yes, that’s all we have.”
I take a deep breath to steady my patience. “Then why did you ask?”
“I’m just making sure, that’s all. Do I put all of them in there?”
“Yes, there’s only a few. It’s not like a whole bag,” I tell him.
I return to my desk as the next task begins; the seasoning. “Do I use this seasoning from the soup mix,” he asks. I hear him tearing open the box, “This Italian one?”
“We don’t have Italian soup mix. We have onion soup mix,” I respond. I am determined that I’m not going to go back in there.
Silence and then he says, “It says onion and garlic on the box.”
“Yes, that is the correct one.”
Now, I hear him grumbling. This is a tactic he uses to voice his displeasure when he doesn’t want me to hear what he’s saying but in reality he wants me to hear what he’s saying. “I don’t like Italian. I’ve told her that before!”
I can’t help myself. “It is not Italian! Its onion with garlic flavoring, the same thing you’d sprinkle all over it if you didn’t have any seasoning; garlic powder and onion powder!”
Silence for a few minutes. “Do I put these red potatoes in?”
I take a few seconds to just breathe. Breathe in-breathe out-and repeat. “How many times do I have to answer that question before you understand what I’m saying to you? Do I need to reword it for better comprehension?”
“Yes, please put the red potatoes in that I just bought at the grocery store into the big roasting pan with the roast and sprinkle it with that onion soup mix flavored with garlic.”
“Do I need to cover it,” he calls out after seasoning everything.
“Have you ever cooked a roast uncovered,” I answer.
“What do I put the oven on?”
He usually forgets to turn the oven to preheat it so fortunately I remembered at the start of all this. I answered, “It’s already on.”
“Leave it on 250 degrees?”
I’m banging my head on the desk at this point and trying to hold on for just a few more minutes. “Please, Lord, he’s almost got it in the oven. Help me hang in there – Amen.”
“Hello,” he calls out checking. I hadn’t answered him yet.
“Yes, leave it at 250. That’s why I put it there.”
“Okay, I didn’t know if you were just preheating it and I had to turn it up or leave it there.”
Finally, he comes into the living room and sits down. I can breathe again. The barrage of questions is over; at least until the next time. This goes on almost every time he cooks.
I am reminded of the stand-up comedy routine of Bill Cosby when he explains that men do these things on purpose so women will send them out of the way and do it themselves - which is where men wanted to be in the first place; out of the way. And everyone wonders why I’m Cranky.