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Tuesday, June 17, 2008

The Missing Female Trait

I'm missing a gene --the one that calls to the depth of a female's soul and says, "You must provide food. There must be plenty, it must be aesthetically pleasing, and most of all, delicious."

Ok -- maybe I have the gene that calls the command. But I certainly don't have the gene that can pull it off.

I would love the idea of entertaining guests in our home, if it weren't for the expectation of food. Doug always says that chips and salsa are "plenty good". But deep inside, I know he's not right...

Appetizers (more than one)should be adorably displayed on a clever serving dish.

At least one of the beverages should be blended and require foo-foo glasses.

Meat should be marinated and handsomely prepared via grilling or roasting methods.

Potatos and/or vegetables should be basted in exotic spices and served casserole-style to ensure the masses will all be able to enjoy.

Dessert should consist of at least 15 ingredients and require a four-hour lead time for preparation. Of course, an alternative (such as cookies) should be available in case of dessert failure.

Oh, crap! What about a salad? A soup? And what about the mess in the kitchen I'll create trying to make off this stuff?

I would much rather give a speech to a large crowd than prepare a dinner meal. Heck, I get nervous just bringing a dish to someone else's dinner party. I just can never seem to ever get my hands around an entire project involving food. Maybe it's because I try to take shortcuts when I cook. Maybe it's because I haven't bought enough Pampered Chef products. Nonetheless, my disfunctional "entertaining" gene is bound to haunt me for life.

But I continue to work on it. Today I made a suggestion that gave by pysche a smattering of hope.

I'm in a management group with three other men. And tomorrow, lunch is being brought into our staff. (We made our sales goals two months in a row.)

"What do you guys think of bringing a dessert for the crew? You know, to show how much we appreciate their efforts?"

Some chuckles. They don't respond. I volunteer first.

"I'll bring a pan of brownies."

"Oh, you're serious?"

"Yes, I'm serious. I think the staff will appreciate it!"

"Um. OK. You'll bring brownies for everyone then?"

"Well, the idea is that we all bring something."

"Oh. Well, I can bring Oreos."

"My daughter just made Monster cookies. Will that work?"

"My wife makes a killer strawberry pie."

That's the spirit! I have a Betty Crocker mix that only requires one egg and some vegetable oil. It even includes the frosting.

Maybe the key is starting small. Today it's Betty Crocker. Tomorrow, who knows? Maybe I'll try a Martha Stewart recipe.

Maybe. Or, better yet, have my friend Charlene sell me more of her "Tastefully Simple" items. They are killer.

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