[Feminism is] a socialist, anti-family, political movement that encourages women to leave their husbands, kill their children, practice witchcraft, destroy capitalism and become lesbians. ~Pat Robertson
It begins when the doctor says, “It’s a girl.” I always wonder if fathers are disappointed by this news. Suddenly little league baseball and fly fishing and father/son camping trips disappear when a daughter is born. Instead, this tiny human being is furnished with a host of other expectations. It is a strange thing, for sure. Though the ideas of feminism and gender roles and sexism have been discussed, debated, and dissected plenty over the past decade, the thought of ones identity based on genitalia is still fascinating.
In any case, one of those expectations includes the ability to and love for cooking, at least in my Pennsylvanian suburbia. My mother tried her best to instill this interest into me, but I stubbornly resisted, hoping that if I ever did need to cook, the ability would appear naturally. 23 years later, this is not the case.
It wasn’t that I thought cooking and baking were unappealing; I simply would rather play. Cooking was not mandatory in our household, but cleaning, laundry, and gardening were, so in my spare time taking directions and learning were not as attractive as swimming, playing, and friends. I certainly never minded helping bake cookies, but the thought of making a whole meal sounded messy. I didn’t want to have to clean it up.
When college and adulthood arrived, I admit I was less than prepared to handle even simple cooking tasks, calling my mother weekly to find out how to fry an egg or keep the rice from exploding all over the stove. Even now I struggle with basic things, especially when there is no recipe. I find myself staring at ingredients, trying to somehow unearth my womanly instinct amidst the butter, flour, and eggs. However, in my quest to discover Kate 2008 I have tried to stretch myself, trying to do and say and be things I previously resisted. That, coupled with my infamous tendency to get overexcited about new hobbies, has brought me into a cooking frenzy.
I am hoping this interest in cooking and baking lasts longer than my brief passion for rollerblading, or the time I thought I should major in Psychology. My boyfriend would probably like this spell to last as well, though I fear he has had to endure plenty of first time blunders, such as the undercooked egg I tried to give him for breakfast or the pork chops I drained of any moisture, taste, or enjoyment. Somehow it has always been exceptionally easy for disaster to strike when I am in the kitchen. Flames are common, and somehow I always measure out the wrong amount of salt.
But seriously, cooking is fun. Baking too. The whole mixing, pouring, and seasoning thing amuses me. And it’s always lovely to be appreciated after you feed someone. It satisfies a very primal urge, one I’d always dismissed as nonsense. Naturally, I am inclined to cook healthier foods, using natural products and low fat accessories. This has proven to be quite expensive, but I think a worthy endeavor. Yesterday I made fruit smoothies for the first time and the result rocked my world. I was in heaven, spiraling into a hodgepodge of lemon, vanilla, and strawberry flavor. No sugar added!
So, if you’re every hungry and in town, feel free to give me a call. I will make you a fruit smoothie, full course dinner and a delicious dessert, as long as you eat everything with a grain of salt (or a few grains, in my case). It will be my way of thanking you for indulging in my non-feminist and domestic ventures, preventing me from leaving my future husband, killing my future children, practicing witchcraft, destroying capitalism, and becoming a raging lesbian.
Training is everything. The peach was once a bitter almond; cauliflower is nothing but cabbage with a college education. ~Mark Twain