Sunday July 23, 2017
The Four Hour Chef
He puts the Sunday sauce on the table and dunks his forefinger into the bubbling red without a second thought. He tastes it, likes it, gives it a stir. His mother would be proud. His ribs slide off the bone like melted butter. He did well to remember how she did that. Sunday sauce growing up was what they’d call it when they actually had time to prepare a meal with as much love as they’d like to put in. Sundays are for dinner and for church on the little television and for home made bread. Now he Sundays on Thursdays or Tuesdays depending on the week. He makes a Sunday sauce and thinks of when he was a boy. When he came to Canada in January and saw snow for the first time. When his whole family liked being together before the sickness and the problems and the open wounds began to fester.
Tuesday March 8, 2016
The Artist’s Way
In my house we never had enough moments of pure ease–we had some tensions around the dinner table–us correcting dad’s grammar, one little one getting in trouble for skipping school again, the big on getting in trouble for wanting to leave the dinner table to go work on her homework, the middle one getting in trouble for slamming the door earlier.
“Eat what’s on your plate”
“Eat this or don’t eat”
If you don’t eat what’s on your plate, you can’t leave the table”
We couldn’t say we weren’t hungry–we couldn’t say we didn’t want the risotto or the second day fried spaghetti or the chicken scallopini or the veal fettine with lemon and parsley. How could we say we don’t want to eat these good things with you when you get mad at us for BREATHING.
“You should feel so lucky you get to eat like this”
“You should see what the other kids have to eat every night: pasta from a can, tuna salad sandwiches”
“But we like tuna”
“Not for dinner we don’t”
Some moments reeked of attempted ease.
A joke here–him trying to steal a fork full of meat off our plates when weren’t looking–a question about the neighbour’s dog.
Sunday November 3, 2013
The Birth Of Frankenstein program
When we first arrived in Winnipeg, it was rainy and it was Autumn and it was colder than anything we were used to. On our third night of trying to settle into our small, blue bungalow, my mother was feeding my younger sister, Beth, and I beef stew. We were grumbling about missing Edinburgh. Our father had received a contract with a chemical engineering company and, having been politely asked to leave his previous job seven months prior, we quickly uprooted for the Canadian prairie. On that fateful third night, Beth and I ceaselessly reaming out our poor mother (we would never dream of doing such a thing with Dad), there was an unassuming knock at the door. My mother, Beth and I behind her, heard an echo of “Trick or Treat!” from a chorus of ghosts, none more than five feet tall. My mother shrieked and Beth and I jumped back. The poor parents escorting their brood on a Halloween expedition had to explain to my mother what this all was. Before we knew it, Beth was in one of my mothers fancy dresses and I wore my father’s best suit. We took to the street.