Thursday, November 26, 2009

Bleeping Pie

Hi all,

The clock just turned 2:00 a.m..

I set here curled up on the sofa, watching Bridget Jones's Diary with my daughter, waiting for a pie to come out of the oven.

I am only running about twelve hours behind.

John Lennon said life is what happens while you're busy making other plans.

Well, for me, life is what happened while I was making Thanksgiving plans.

Nothing went right today.

I won't bore you with the all the details.

But all is well after one trip to the emergency care clinic, two hours spent in traffic, and four trips to the nearby Walmart Neighborhood Market ... only two of those for food.

I had such high hopes.

I planned my menu in advance. I read through all my recipes and drove to several different grocery stores earlier in the week, just to get all the right ingredients.

I was making everything from scratch and we were going to have the hap, happiest Thanksgiving since Bing Crosby danced with ... well, you know the movie quote.

That was mistake number one, Over Ambition, one of the seven disastrous sins of the holidays, it'll bite you every time.

Mistake number two was refusing to accept that I was in the weeds and move on to plan B.

Mistake number three was the most abnormal looking pecan pie you have ever laid eyes on. More on that in a minute.

It all began with my son, who's a bit of a neurotic, like myself. The apple doesn't fall far from the tree. He's been watching food documentaries lately: Food Inc., King Corn, Fast Food Nation ... and well, he refuses to eat anything with corn syrup, saturated fat, Yellow number 5, pesticides, hormones, or preservatives in it. Which pretty much cancels out everything except Kashi cereal and dried beans. And that doesn't make a very good Thanksgiving dinner. So this year I set out to make everything from scratch: homemade pickles, homemade chicken stock for the dressing and gravy, homemade rolls, and that most dreadful and difficult of culinary tasks, homemade pies.

Pies are hard.

Me and pie don't get along.

And it just so happens that my husbands favorite Thanksgiving dessert is Pecan Pie. And the poor guy went to bed tonight with me cursing in the kitchen, trying to bake a pecan pie. I felt like that furnace cursing dad in A Christmas Story. Tonight there is a cloud of obscenity hovering over my house, all in the name of pie.

And well, to make a long story longer, after two different tries, and a huge mess in my tiny apartment kitchen, I admitted defeat. I could not bake a pecan pie.

What to do? Tomorrow is Thanksgiving! My husband has to have his pie.

Lucky for me, he is not a picky eater and will eat any pie.

So with no makeup on and flour all over my brown suede house shoes, dazed and delirious, just before midnight, I grabbed my daughter, slipped into a coat and snuck out the door while hubby was sleeping and traipsed into a nearby Walmart Neighborhood Market and bought a bleeping Pecan Pie.

It was surreal. Like a scene from a movie. My daughter, myself, and a band of Mexicans oblivious to the holiday, strolling the lucent isles of the deserted Walmart just before midnight on Thanksgiving.We had a blast. There was something bracing and invigorating about the cold night air mixed with the fluorescent glow of Walmart that seemed to wash my worries away. Our serendipitous jaunt made it a Thanksgiving we'll never forget.

It is getting late now.

And I just took the pumpkin pie out of the oven and it looks pretty good.

Such a relief.

Must get some rest for the big day.

I never thought I would be saying this, but I am thankful for Walmart that stays open all night.

Happy Thanksgiving All!


Proud Italian Cook said...

Hi Michelle, Sounds like your Thanksgiving dinner turned out just fine. I would take your pie anytime over a Walmart pie! You poor thing up at 2am baking pie. Your family will always remember the adventure, love, and hard work you put into this meal for them. I once cooked a TG meal for 15, and an hour before everyone was to come I had sewer back up and no water. I called my SIL and said, "set your tables up we're eating by you" I packed up everything and off we went, hot turkey right from the oven and everything else!

Michelle said...

Oh Wow, Marie! You definitely win the prize when it comes to worst TG disasters. Nice of your SIL to take you all in. But then, you were bearing good gifts! I'd be thrilled if someone showed up at my house with a couple pies next year. To my hubby's credit - he will eat absolutely anything, including Walmart food. My kids and I wouldn't eat it if our lives depended on it. To my hubby's discredit, he doesn't really like all my cooking. Often he would be happier with a bologna sandwich and a beer.

Linda said...

Hi Michelle,
Just catching up on my blog reading now and I'm loving this story. I feel bad that things went wrong, but I'm also smiling from my own experiences (just this week in fact when the lovely advent candle ceremony went haywire)... Over Ambition. I like that. And perhaps a bit of naivety, when I should realize by now that things rarely ever go as planned, but that's okay. Things have a way of working out in the end.

Glad everything went well despite the initial setbacks and that you found humor and joy in the midst.

Hope your December is a blessed month.