As I was trying to work on my writing tonight, my sixteen year old daughter came into my room complaining that she had to study for her physics exam but needed help because she didn’t understand a few things.
Now I’m not one to toot my own horn or anything, but I tend to be the type of person who can figure pretty much anything out given some time.
Her exam is in three days!!!
I told her there was no way I could possibly learn a whole semester of physics in enough time to help her.
Thinking I had successfully gotten out of this predicament, I silently celebrated until she told me that all I had to do was listen to her while she taught me because the act of teaching someone helps her figure out the things she’s having trouble with.
I weighed the pro’s and con’s of this, trying to decide if I would survive the mind numbing boredom of scientific explanations that I had absolutely no interest in.
As a compromise (because I had decided there was no way I’d survive) I offered to make her pizza from scratch since she had been begging me for supper for about an hour already. I told her I would pretend to listen and throw in random questions or gasps of understanding every now and then to make it seem more realistic.
Tempted by the promise of supper, she thought it over for a few moments before agreeing.
And so it began…
If I haven’t mentioned it before, occasionally my cooking experiences end up…not so great. Smoke alarms have been known to go off, a couple small fires have happened, but all in all, the final product is usually always very delicious. I know it doesn’t make sense, but hey…that’s just how it is.
So a few minutes later, my daughter sat with her books at the kitchen table while I went about preparing ingredients for her pizza.
Every few minutes or so of ignoring whatever she was rambling on about I interjected the required “Can you explain that again?” or “I don’t get it.”
Things were going quite smoothly until the pizza had been in the oven for about ten minutes.
I had opened the oven door to check on the pizza and was immediately engulfed in clouds of smoke. Apparently the oil from the cheese had run off the top of the pizza, through the holey pizza pan and on to the bottom of the oven.
Ok seriously, I just have to ask what the thinking was behind putting holes in a pan that was meant to contain something cheesy/oily??? It just makes no sense to me. And what makes even less sense is why I bought the damn pan in the first place.
So anyway, as I coughed and wheezed, and yes…again got another asthma attack, I quickly assessed the situation, determined that since the oven had not yet caught fire, it was still safe to continue cooking, so I shut the oven door and pretended nothing happened.
As I leaned against the counter desperately trying to draw breath into my swollen windpipe while puffing on my inhaler, I glanced up through the smoke to see my daughter looking at me calmly with one eyebrow raised.
I waved my hand in a “pay no attention to the smoke” gesture, and went back to trying to breathe.
My darling child, used to my cooking adventures after sixteen years, shook her head with an exasperated sigh, got up from her chair, yanked the batteries out of the screaming smoke detectors, and opened all the doors and windows in the house.
After a few minutes, the smoke had finally cleared enough for me to once again see the outline of my child as she leaned close to her papers, squinting to see through the tears from her smoke abused eyeballs while she continued explaining physics to me as though nothing had happened.
Like I mentioned before, somehow the things I cook end up tasting great even though the process of cooking them occasionally ends up threatening my very life.
The pizza was divine!!!