Please add tonight’s experience to the list of things that only happen to me.
Tonight, when I went to move my laundry from washer to dryer, I received the following note left in my washing machine from a man I ran into twice in the elevators of my building:
While it would be very easy for me to ridicule this based purely on the fact that his email address is email@example.com or mentioning that he was wearing a white turtleneck and brown fleece vest or by pointing out that it’s impossible that I looked nice and friendly because I a) didn’t speak to you and b) pretty much default to Ice Princess, I have to say that I found this extremely creepy.
It’s 11 at night and I’m a single woman who lives alone who needs to go back and forth to the basement by herself three times. How do you think this note made me feel, Elevator Man? Assuming the absolute best, that you found me nice and friendly (unlikely for the reasons listed above), why would you think that leaving a note on top of my machine (that required you to lift everyone else’s, examine the contents, and determine what was mine based on the laundry bag you saw I had in the elevator), would make me want to contact you? My space is private and at 11 on a Thursday night, I’d like to be able to sleep soundly without thinking about stalkers who had private access to my laundry and know where I live.
Now, I’m sitting in my apartment dreading having to go pick up my laundry because you could be hiding around any corner. So let it be known to future men in elevators who think that leaving women notes on top of their clothing is charming or romantic: you need to be Ryan Gosling hot to pull this move off.
Last week, I checked a major Someday/Maybe item off my to do list (also the sole item in the “Fun” section of my task management system… feel free to judge accordingly): an introductory culinary knife skills class.
I’ve always loved cooking, but these days it’s not a practical hobby: I travel a ton, I live alone, and if I were to spend a weekend home cooking, I wouldn’t be able to consume the food before either it went bad or I got sick of it. Also, my kitchen is an ugly, sad, poorly ventilated room with hideous cabinets and thus, I don’t spend much time there.
Anyway, you should run — not walk — to take a knife skills class (and if in DC, I highly recommend the one at CulinAerie with Susan Watterson as the instructor). Here’s why:
- You are probably not holding your knife correctly. I know this because the last four friends I told this story too (who love to cook) were not holding their knife correctly.
- You are probably not be efficient with motions while chopping or slicing.
- Deboning a chicken will be one of the more satisfying experiences of the week.
- You’ll learn a number of ways to be more efficient with your shopping — both of knives and food.
- You will produce a beautifully cut carrot within the first 20 minutes. Please see mine:
That said, I’m a big fan of optimizing experiences. Here’s what I would keep in mind if you are taking an introductory cooking class on a Saturday morning:
- Apparently a lot of people give newlyweds/newly-engaged/cute couples in their lives cooking classes as a present. Here’s the thing: the cute couple in someone else’s life is not a cute couple in my life. I spent three hours behind two hippies making out between cuts. And I had a big knife at my disposal. It was quite an exercise in restraint.
- A lot of people see knife skills as a good intro class and, literally, have never cut anything other than the packaging around a microwave meal. Be prepared for people around you to be confused about pretty much everything. Wait… when you said keep the root on to hold the onion together, did you mean this root that I just cut off? Ooopsies!
- You just might be forced to work next to Mary Jane. Because I did and she was a complete moron who will likely have to repeat the course several more times. Mary Jane was a delightful Southern belle in a relationship with a hairy and verbally abusive man whose name I’ve already forgotten. What’s great about WhatsHisName is he doesn’t let his own lack of knife skills slow down his criticism of everything Mary Jane does. And what’s great about Mary Jane is like a goldfish, by the time she swims around the bowl, she’s forgotten everything he’s said.
Since I’m solutions-oriented, rather than offer a multi-paragraph, detail-studded “Ode to Mary Jane,” I’ll give you this advice: if you take this course, you should call and find out a) if you work in partners and b) if you’re at small tables or in small groups. And then, you should take the class with however many friends you need to use as a buffer from everyone else in the room. Sartre was right: hell is other people, but if you’re going to be stuck there, you don’t want to be while learning how to wield sharp objects.
Today, my beloved MoPo and I are headed to Eisenberg’s Deli for lunch for the greatest egg salad in the world. I get mine on toasted rye with extra crispy bacon (no lettuce/tomato/onion) AND a chocolate egg cream.
If you haven’t been to Eisenberg’s (and if you like egg salad, that’s a travesty), then you should absolutely buckle up and enjoy this adorable mini-doc about the 83-year old diner.
Just last weekend in DC, I went to We The Pizza, and also ordered an egg cream only to have the woman at the counter whisper “are you sure you want this? Do you know that it’s not a cream soda?”
Not that I needed further proof in New York’s supremacy, but that was pretty much the nail in the coffin.