Wednesday, August 20, 2008

What's For Dinner?: A Rant

Seems like ranting has been the flavor (ha!) of the day around a few of my regular haunts out on the intertubes, and damn it, I have a rant too. But first, lets answer the question above. What was for dinner tonight? Grilled cheese and shitty French onion soup. And why, Matt, would you be having grilled cheese and shitty French onion soup for dinner? Because I'm a little tired of making dinner, that's why.

Now don't get me wrong, I don't mind cooking for my family. I enjoy cooking and I enjoy experimenting with food, but every once in a while, it would be nice for someone else to make dinner. In Brandi's defense, she doesn't enjoy cooking and she has to take care of Logan all day, so she's not exactly keen on jumping into the kitchen at the end of the day. She does make dinner, but only on the nights where I'm working, which means she's making dinner two nights out of seven. Then there's Vern, my father-in-law, who made baked chicken, rice and some kind of canned vegitables just about every night of the week, unless he had dinner with someone else.

Part of the problem with making dinner when I come home is that after being at work all day, Logan wants to spend time with his daddy. This makes making dinner much more difficult when there's a screaming toddler getting in the way for every step you take in the kitchen. If I manage to get him distracted in the living room with something, then he has some kind of internal clock that tells him he needs to scream every two minutes and run into the kitchen to make sure I didn't sneak away somewhere.

Most recently, though, I've just become a little tired of cooking. When I ask for volunteers, no one ever wants to step forward. A typical exchange might go like this.

Logan: screams (translates into OMG Where'd daddy go!?!) *runs into kitchen*
Me: Do you think you could distract him for a while so I can make dinner?
Brandi: I've been dealing with him all day and he just wants his daddy.
Me: *picks up Logan and tries to cook single handed*
Logan: Want's to play, not be carried around the kitchen.
Me: This isn't working. Could you please watch him for just a little longer?
Brandi: He doesn't want me.
Me: Ugh, well does anyone else want to make dinner then?
*cue crickets*

Another thing that bothers me is that when dinner's ready, I let everyone know, and usually have to let them know again before they rouse themselves to come eat. Then, everyone gets their plates ready first and I get at it last by which time it's not really hot any more.

So that's why tonight was grilled cheese and this god awful soup mix that I had some left over from another recipe. It was simple and quick and I didn't really think about it. Even so, I ended up getting at least half of everyone's sandwhich darker than they prefer.

Ugh, I feel like I have more to say, but I'm out of rant juice.


Anonymous said...

Matt - I can say that I completely understand! There are four people in my home that know how to cook. There are two of them that work part time during the summer and sit on their butts playing video games the rest of the time. Who gets to try to put dinner on the table at 6:30? (minus the toddler - my sympathies...)

I have to admit that I'm a bit of an enabler. I'm a really good cook, so to some degree it's easier to just shut up and cook than to push a sulking teenager into making something he doesn't want to poorly for the family.

Still... I'd like a cook and housekeeper. Gardener. An errand runner would be great too. Every parent should have lackeys. And, of course, the bank account to pay them with.

And on the sandwich light or dark enough? Repeat after me: "I'm not a short order cook. If you don't like it this way, make it yourself." Get a stepstool for Logan. ;)

Random Michelle K said...

Michael cooks dinner most nights at our house.

The general rule is that if you don't like it, cook dinner your own damned self.

Makes dinner time a lot more peaceful, and if I get veggie burgers for an entire week, I can cook dinner myself if I don't like it.

Janiece said...

"I'm not a short order cook. If you don't like it this way, make it yourself."

The general rule is that if you don't like it, cook dinner your own damned self.

Damn skippy.

I do the cooking at our house, too, mostly because I have more skill than anyone else (but I'm not as skillful as Jeri or Anne). If I don't feel like cooking? I don't. It becomes "every man for himself" night, and people are welcome to make a sandwich, heat up a frozen pizza, whatever they can find. They don't like it? Starve.

That may sound harsh, but that freedom allows me to cook cheerfully the rest of the time.

As for folks not coming to the table when called...if it was me, I would call everyone to dinner, then make my own plate. If they don't come when called, you still get a hot meal (along with the toddler, since he's there anyway). I expect it would only take a couple of cold meals before they started coming when called.

My two cents, and take it with a grain of salt. I'm a bit defensive on this issue, having been in a relationship where I was taken for granted in this manner.

mattw said...

Hey I made my second girll cheese thank you very much.

Anonymous said...

Opps you were signed in.
Hey I made my second grilled cheese, and I just finished making lunch for myself my dad and our son. so poo on you. love you!

Tania said...

Oh. Yes.

I have now deleted (three times) what I want to add/share/rant myself. So let me just repeat myself.

Oh. Yes.

mattw said...

I would just like to clarify, so I'm not in big trouble when I get home tonight after work, that there are things Brandi does around the house that are pretty much only done by her. And she works her butt off during the day with the terribly two (almost) Logan.

It worked out this way that I do the majority of the cooking, because, frankly, I'm the better cook (her mother didn't set the best culinary example). It'd just be nice to have dinner made for me on occasion.

Ilya said...

"It'd just be nice to have dinner made for me on occasion."

A proclamation that I hear from Natasha once in a while. In her case, of course, it is an idle sentiment, since both of us know quite well that I can't cook to save my life. (Well, ok, I can certainly boil an egg or two, so there.)

I admire a man who can cook - and I'm not just saying it to make you feel better :)