Did you know that the flower-crowned skull of St. Valentine is kept in a church in Rome? Yeah, me neither, and it’s kinda urpy, to say the least.
Which is kind of how most men feel about this day. According to most men I have ever met, it’s a totally-useless, invented-by-merchants, not-even-a-holiday day. Sorry, I appear to be channeling Dr. Seuss this morning.
And, I just deleted three paragraphs on giving/not giving, because they weren’t funny. You’re welcome. What was funny was a friend’s post to Facebook yesterday of a picture of a soaped-up, miserable dachshund in the bathtub, with the caption “February 13 is National Wash Your Wiener day!” Makes perfect sense. And a hell of a lot funnier than the unmourned paragraphs that now float around in the ether, or ethernet, as the case may be…
I did, of course, get Corey a gift for Valentine’s Day, witness the mustachioed bear in a cup also adorned with a mustache. It’s kind of funny, since he’s got a mustache at the moment. Not terribly funny. And, to a certain extent, it was only done because I gently tortured him into buying me a gift, so that meant I had to buy him one… which just shows you that the universe has a sense of humor.
‘Cause it does… like the fact that the bear is now sitting next to the coffee pot, so there’s a card, candy, cup and coffee on the counter occupying one square foot of space. If “bear” didn’t start with a “b,” it might possibly create a black hole, thus destroying the earth and life as we know it.
Is it recipe time yet? As you may know, I like baking, but I hate cooking. So last night we had chicken patty sandwiches and Tater Tots®, because I was the one doing the cooking. Honestly, if you need this recipe, you’re in bigger trouble than you know–you need help. Badly. Run!
Recipe for the Reluctant Cook
- Frozen chicken patties, one per person (or two if someone’s really hungry and totally undiscriminating)
- Frozen Tater Tots® (or shredded, seasoned potatoes that look like nothing else on the face of the Earth), a bunch of ’em. You can count ’em out and put ten of them on the sheet for each person if you want, but you can also give this up as a lost cause, good lord, just go out to dinner!
- Cooking spray. *sigh* You’re still reading this, aren’t you. (The cooking spray is that aerosol can that says “Pam” on it, or if the grocery buyer is a penny pincher, it will say “cooking spray.”)
- Hamburger buns, one package, or at least one for each person eating.
Instructions: (seriously? You’re not serious, are you? Dang.)
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. (Turn it on, in other words. Then turn the dial to 400 or use the Λ button on a digital oven until it says 400. Press “start” if it’s digital. There is no “start” button on an oven with a dial. Seriously. Stop looking for it.)
- Cover a cookie sheet with foil (cookie sheets are the large flat pans that are always under other stuff in your cabinet and make an incredible racket when you pull one out.)
- Spray the foil with a light coating of cooking spray.
- Place the chicken patties and tater tots on top of the foil, in a single layer, no pile ups.
- Open the oven door.
- Put the cookie sheet with the patties and tots on it in the oven.
- Close the door. No, not the kitchen door, the oven door.
- Wait 20 minutes.
- Open the oven door.
- Get the cookie sheet with the food on it out of the oven (warning, the cookie sheet will be HOT. Use a potholder–the half-inch thick square things that your kid brought home from occupational therapy–kid’s got a bright future.) and set the pan on the stove top.
- Poke one of the chicken patties. If it’s soft, then flip it over, and turn everything else over too. Once your fingers start to get burnt, go find a spatula, and use that to turn them over.
- Put the whole pan back in the oven.
- Wait five minutes. Check again. This time, eat a tater tot. Blow on it first–it won’t actually cool it off, but it makes me feel better. If there is no crunch, just sort of a wet soggy feeling and a texture like tapioca pudding without the pudding, just the tapioca beads, then they’re not done yet. Put the pan back in the oven for another five minutes. Keep doing that until everything’s crunchy, but not burnt.
- When everything’s done, call your significant other and/or adult children still living at home, and tell them to make their own sandwiches.
- Go sit on the couch until everyone has gotten their stuff, then go make your own sandwich. They left you a couple of tots (should have counted) and a chicken patty that is the exact texture of a hockey puck, but thinner.
OK, how many of you readers saw the cook as a man? Look again… no gender noted. 🙂
Happy Valentine’s Day!