The Beast has been sick–more sick than I’ve ever seen him. He’s afflicted with a terribly painful ear infection that’s left his face swollen, plus a case of Impetigo (which my mom thought only babies could get.) We had to cancel our annual weekend getaway to the cottage with the American family, which left me very disappointed. It did mean that I could go to a little pool party that my friend was having on Saturday, and it also gave me an excuse to bake that friend a long-overdue birthday cake.
On the phone Friday before leaving work for home.
Beast: Will you rent a TV series on your way home?
Foodie: Of course! Which one?
Beast: The Wire, Mad Men…I don’t care.
Foodie: Are you serious? This is amazing! I’ll get Mad Men I think.
Beast: Fine. I can’t believe how much pain I’m in. When are you coming home?
Foodie: Well I have to bake my friend a cake tonight but I need to get special ingredients.
Beast: What do you mean?
Foodie: She can’t eat dairy or gluten so I have to get some things we don’t normally have in the house. But I’ll hurry home after that.
Beast: Will you get me fruit pops?
Foodie: Yes, of course.
Beast: I want canned soup, too. And I want a chocolate cake. Can you make me a chocolate cake but the kind from the box?
Foodie: Are you serious?
Beast: I FEEL LIKE I’M DYING!!!!!!!!
When I got home the first thing I did was make the instant chocolate cake.
Then I made some dairy-free pesto and a few other things to bring to Saturday’s pool party. And then I whipped up a German-style potato salad with some grilled sausages for dinner: it’s a meal that the Beast has been requesting for a while so on account of him being sick, I delivered.
By about 8:30 pm, we finally started watching Mad Men, a series that the Beast has always resisted. But with his immune system down, he gave into it.
Foodie: Is the potato salad too vinegary for you?
Beast: Surprisingly, no. It’s very good.
Beast: What’s so funny?
Foodie: You’re like this lefty Hippie character who’s reciting poetry and talking about Miles Davis.
Beast: I AM NOT. TAKE THAT BACK! I’m like Don Draper.
Foodie: Yeah, right! You’re the hippy guy and I’m Don Draper.
Beast: You can’t be Don Draper–you’re a girl!
Foodie: Well, I am more like Don Draper than you are.
We polished off three episodes that night and the next morning I had a dairy-free and gluten-free chocolate cake to make! The recipe called for spelt flour (which still has gluten in it), so I substituted rice flour, which I’ve never baked with. It proved to be…challenging.
Texturally, you could tell this wasn’t your run-of-the-mill white flour cake. But taste-wise, it was pretty darn good.
The pool party was lovely, and it made up for me missing out on cottage time. In fact, I had so much fun that I lost track of time and was an hour and a half late getting home.
The Beast calls me on my cell phone.
Beast: WHERE ARE YOU?
Foodie: We decided to play tennis after the pool party and I’m just getting on my bike now.
Beast: Can you bring me home KFC?
Beast: Popeye’s Chicken then?
Foodie (yelling into phone but also trying to whisper): NO!
Beast: A cheeseburger?
Beast: What’s wrong?
Foodie: Well, I just had a lovely day and I made sure to stock the house with food for you, including a chocolate cake, and now you’re getting on my nerves!
Beast : I AM SOOOO SICK!!!! WHY ARE YOU YELLING AT ME?!?!
Foodie: I am hanging up now.
Beast: I’m hungry!
By the time I got home, I had a rage brewing inside of me. And I’m not entirely sure why. I mean, I would want to be taken care of too if I were as sick as the Beast was, but I was filled with resentment. I found him on the couch in his underwear watching TV.
Beast: I’m the one who should be mad at your for being late! Why are you acting like you’re mad at me? And why are you wearing all my clothes? You shrunk that Lacoste shirt on purpose so you could wear it. And those are my shorts!
Foodie: They’re Eddie Bauer women’s shorts that are too small for you! What did you eat for your lunch?
Beast: I fried up two wieners and had the left-over potato salad.
Foodie: Did you think about what you’d like for dinner?
Beast: I told you! FRIED CHICKEN! Do you know how many commercials I watched today for KFC? Why didn’t you pick it up like I asked you to?
Foodie: Because I didn’t want that for dinner.
Beast: I’m starving!
Foodie: I’M STARVING!
Beast: Well, you’re always telling me to come up with ideas and I did and you shot it down!
Foodie: KFC is not a dinner idea. You should make me dinner.
Beast: You make ME dinner.
Beast: You look adorable in my tennis whites.
Foodie: Thank you.
Beast: What about this: I’ll walk to that Stampede Grill place and get us burgers, fries and onion rings and bring it home. It should only take me about three hours since I can barely stand up.
Foodie: (Pause) I’ll go on my bike and get it.
Beast: Grab my debit card out of my purse. I insist on paying.
It was a total Don Draper move, minus the purse bit.