Yup, that’s right. I wasn’t merely joking when I said there were new writers enjoying the GTS clan.
Our first newbie hails all the way from Australia (if you couldn’t figure that out by her name) and is our second international to join our crazy crew.
We’re on three continents now… what, what!
There will be more to come on the elusive Grace DownUnder in the coming New Year, but for now sit back and enjoy a little sampling of her Aussie style
I think I was jipped on my Lesbian Starter Kit. I got the short haircut, the copy of But I’m a Cheerleader and the crazy mixed bag of anxiety, confusion and relief that comes with working out you’re actually a big old dyke, but I missed out on the Iron Chef-like cooking skills. You see, every other lesbian I know can cook. Most of them go well beyond simply “cooking” and can create culinary miracles, but at the very least, none of them would have any trouble whipping up an amazing meal to impress their date.
My skills, on the other hand, are somewhat lacking. Don’t get me wrong, I can feed myself, but my abilities don’t extend much past that. If faced with the prospect of having to make dinner for someone I was trying to impress, I’d probably just cut straight to the polite handshake and the insincere offer to catch up sometime, it would save me so much preparation time, stress and save her the hours spent curled around the toilet bowl with a bout of potential food poisoning.
I don’t know how it happened. My mother is a fairly decent cook, I did OK in Home Ec. at high school but somewhere along the line things went very, very wrong. This time of year always inspires me to get back on the horse and give the whole cooking deal another go. I don’t know if it’s the pages of flawless festive food splashed over magazines, or the foodie blogs that make a triple-decker, vegan gingerbread house look like something you can knock together in a couple of minutes before you run out the door to another party, but it ignites the little fire inside that gives me the burning desire to MAKE.
Before you assure me that things have changed and I should just give things another shot, let me share with you a little silly season misadventure I like to call the “Rum Ball* Incident”.
One fateful Christmas, during my first few years as an undergrad, I had the amazing idea to make everyone’s presents. I had a bunch of time and hardly any money, so home made gift ticked both those boxes for me. The fact I possessed nothing in the way of culinary ability did not factor into this decision, and even now my only justification of this act can be blamed solely on youthful optimism.
After preparing the dry ingredients for the rum balls without incident, something went terribly wrong when I added the condensed milk. The seemingly innocent mix of crushed biscuits, cocoa, rum and condensed milk had become something halfway between wallpaper paste and quicksand. I kept on mixing, as the recipe instructed, until the spoon was stuck in the mixture that was now set fast in the bowl. Realizing I had been defeated, I tried to scoop the contents of the bowl into the sink (if at first you don’t succeed, hide any evidence you ever tried, right?) but it wouldn’t scoop. This shit was stuck like superglue to every surface it had come in contact with. Severely disheartened and left with few other options, I opened a garbage bag and swiped everything into it and stuffed it in the bin.
Needless to say, many a loved one was presented with a nicely written card in lieu of an edible gift that year and I’ve never attempted to make rum balls again. Most importantly I learned that I should never, EVER cook for anyone I like.
*A staple Christmas food in Australia. Crushed plain cookies, cocoa, rum, condensed milk mixed together, shaped into little balls, rolled in desiccated coconut and left to set in the fridge. Absolutely impossible to get wrong….unless you are me.