Who was afraid she'd forget the details of this little snippet o' life at the McGlinchey house . . . .
We were leaving the house last night, heading (in two cars, of course) to the Ridglea swim team kickoff party, the plan being that I would excuse myself early to attend a JWC department closing dinner, and Parnell and the kids would hit up a grocery store-type establishment for milk, macaroni and cheese and other staple items that were depleted during the Great House Makeover of Aught Nine. (Yes, it looks awesome. Yes, I will take and post pictures once the stupid 29-inch woven woods arrive. Yes, it's a total pain in the rear to live in an eighty year-old house where none of the door and window openings are "standard.") Parnell remembered that I had to make casseroles for Teacher Appreciation Day (at the private preschool that did NOT close due to greatly overblown piggy flu panic) and asked if he could do my shopping for me. I said, "No, that's okay, it will just be easier for me to shop and cook in the morning." He insisted. I went into two-minute drill mode, looking for the recipes I'd torn out of Southern Living and put "someplace where they'd be safe and I'd find them." (Ugh.) Gave up the ghost, grabbed a United Methodist Women's cookbook at random, turned to vegetables and detached two pages, selecting two recipes completely on the fly. (My theory: anything in a UMW cookbook is (1) easy - as in "cream of mushroom soup-based" - and (2) highly edible, albeit sodium-laden and probably terribly fattening.) Circled said recipes and said, "Here's your shopping list" . . . .
Fast forward an hour, I'm wearing a red rhinestone-studded tiara and judging an impromptu karaoke contest (LONG story) and I get a text message: "Whiffed on red onion. Everyone in FW apparently making your casserole tonight." My response: "OK. Did you actually search every grocery store in FW to arrive at this conclusion?" (Not that I expected him to do so - I was merely asking him, tongue in cheek, to justify his assumption.)
His response: "No, only Wal-Mart. Sending CSM [the nine year-old] into Albertson's now."
My response: "Does CSM even know what a red onion looks like?"
A pause, and then the response: "Got it."
So I get home and actually look at the recipes for the first time (since I kind of just closed my eyes and pointed at recipes at random) - broccoli salad (the kind with bacon, grated cheese and a sweet dressing - those of you who work in the Seventh Street corridor and are familiar with Caffini's will be familiar with this recipe) and a Rice a Roni/Fiesta corn concoction. (I did mention that we're talking about Methodist cuisine, right?) Good enough. I begin chopping broccoli. (Fans of Saturday Night Live and Dana Carvey, sing the broccoli-chopping song to yourself as you continue to read.) I chop the onions. I go to retrieve the bacon bits and find none.
"Parnell, where are the bacon bits?"
"I didn't buy any."
"I assumed we had some."
Okay, no problem. Bacon bits can be added in the morning - you know, the time of day when I was planning to get all of this stuff done in the first place. But I've chopped the broccoli and the onions, so I figure that I should at least make the dressing and let the stuff marinate overnight.
"Honey, where's the mayonnaise?"
"Didn't buy any."
"We usually have that."
"Ooooookay. So, when I said, 'Here, these two recipes are your shopping list,' you interpreted that as, 'Buy only those items that you think we may not have'?"
I attempt to move on to the rice/corn thing.
"Did you buy Rice-a-Roni?"
Editorial comment: We are NOT a Rice-a-Roni family - and certainly, given the size of our broom-closet-converted-into-a-pantry, we wouldn't buy Rice-a-Roni in bulk even if we DID buy it. Then I notice that he didn't buy ANYTHING in multiples. One can of cream of mushroom soup, one can of fiesta corn . . . for FORTY PEOPLE.
Very long story short - husband was dispatched to the store to buy: bacon bits; mayonnaise; Rice-a-Roni; MORE cream of mushroom soup; MORE fiesta corn; MORE queso dip; and another bunch of broccoli for good measure.
To husbands everywhere: We love the fact that you want to help. Really, we do. But when we say, "You know, it might be easier if I just do this without your help," THIS IS THE EXACT SCENARIO ON WHICH WE ARE BASING OUR ASSESSMENT. I'm just sayin' . . . .
And I'm NOT posting this to slam my spouse. He's the most helpful, accommodating male on the planet - everyone says so, and I would tend to agree. He's just, well, male. One of the great things about having boys is you realize that many of the things that you find challenging in your spouse are ALL ABOUT THE Y CHROMOSOME. When Connor was two, he insisted on "helping" me feed the cats. A second later - "Uh, oh - I spilled," and ten pounds of cat food were mounded over the spot where the bowl used to be. While that kind of help isn't always helpful, it does make for great blog posts, so there's the silver lining!