I once stood where Caesar was stabbed. In the Largo di Torre Argentina, in Rome, when I was nineteen. There are lion statues there and the myth goes that one puts his hand into the lion’s mouth and if it closes, he’s deceitful. I didn’t put my hand in. I’ll never put my hand in.
I lie a lot. I lie about small things that aren’t even white, they’re paler than that. They are innocent, but entrapping. They are gnat-like and hover around sweet things, sweet people I find attractive. I want to impress. It’s been a characteristic about me since I was a child. I don’t know if I’ve ever really impressed anyone, but it’s always fun to pretend.
Loneliness is the most unkindest cut of all. I am often left in a dissatisfaction at my own amusement with simple pleasures. I have had the house to myself for two days and have taken Murphy to the sitter’s and drove in the car for nearly an hour and a half total. I put a bid on a house, a house that’s shared, a house that has a concrete backyard and is close to a tennis court. A house that’s in a nice neighborhood, but is equalized to our standard by the budget we set for it. I could never live alone.
Then I wonder why I crave it so much. Why I sit facing a certain way, away from others. Why I am so bothered by the constant, incessant need to ask how my day is. Why do pleasantries make me recoil? I think it’s the inauthenticity of it all, the mechanism of courtesy and the lack of true, distinct attention that I may get from so-and-so. I cannot impress the disinterested. I need an audience to survive.
I’ll wait patiently. I will go to the dog park that doesn’t have grass and is volunteer-driven and I will talk to a woman named Mariel about our dogs and I will drain my battery to 10% talking to my dad about his business trip to Arkansas and I will drink a whole Gatorade and wake up at 5:45 am to ensure I get to read A Farewell to Arms in the brown leather couches of a Starbucks close to work. I applied for a part-time job at a French bakery and lied on my resume (as I always tend to do). I ate cereal for dinner last night. I made tacos today.
And while I wait for my audience to come back, I will listen to Murphy breath heavy and taste the goods I made myself.
Cornmeal Cookies (via)
- 1 stick unsalted butter, softened (1/2 cup)
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- Zest of one lime
- 1 large egg
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup flour
- 1/2 cup 100% yellow cornmeal + extra for rolling
- Preheat oven to 375 Fahrenheit
- In a large bowl, whip softened butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
- Beat in salt, zest, egg, vanilla.
- Add flour and then cornmeal once incorporated. Use a rubber spatula to mix to ensure full incorporation, as mixers often do not get the bottom/sides of bowl.
- (Variant from original) Allow to rest in freezer for a few minutes.
- Pat or roll onto floured/cornmeal-dusted board.
- Cut into rounds.
- Place on parchment-lined baking sheet.
- Bake 8-12 minutes until just golden on edges.
- Allow to cool.
(I paired these with a grapefruit curd, which will be featured in my next post)