Dear Cooking

Dear Cooking,

I know I haven’t been close to you lately, apart from boiling water and adding pasta. I know I just grab any pot that is encrusted with sauce from the night before and has the occasional desiccated pasta spiral stuck to the bottom and then rinse and reuse. I know that I don’t even make my own sauces anymore even thought it only requires me mincing a tomato and simmering it in some spices (which come in a shaker) and a little olive oil. Maybe there would be some garlic and onion in there, but those come in powder form too. And yes, the only cutting I now do is slicing cheese for a bagel sandwich. I am ashamed. Deeply ashamed of how I abandoned you.

Once we were close. I would create teriyaki chicken and cook steaks. Steaks. Those only take minutes to sear and then a slip into the oven to cook. I loved how everything tasted. I began to fall in love with food. And I also started to fall for you. I did fall for you. I was in love with you.

But we started to part ways as soon as our love bloomed.

It’s the oldest excuse, so pardon me for using it, but we grew too close too quickly. As our love grew, you became more demanding. The twenty minutes you used to like to share with me when I was cooking my own sauce or creating a thai peanut soup was all that was needed at first. But you grew clingy. You demanded more and more difficult things. I slaved to be perfect. I slaved to do more. And soon you took hour after hour from my life. I couldn’t go on. I can’t go on, not like that.

And so I broke it off.

I needed to be by myself for a while.

But now I see that you’ve chosen my roommate for your affections. A woman this time too. I didn’t know that was in you, but I don’t judge. Your smells are intoxicating and each chicken that she removes from the oven, seasoned and cooked so that the meat falls off the bone, makes me want you back. I long for you. I long for your seasonings and your devotion. I want to be with you again. Maybe this time we will only spend 20 to 30 minutes together before dinner and then quietly eat. Then there will be the occasional soup that demands a day of work. But that’s enough, isn’t it? That’s all you have with her. I can do that. I will do that. And I’ll do a little more. And I cook asian fusion just like her, but I can also go south, maybe some creole is in order.

So please, I want to cook again. This mac and cheese is my last.





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