Thursday, May 12, 2011

the easter bastard (m)

One Easter morning, about 28 years ago, my father paid a visit to my cousin Patty's house.  Her young boys, J & J were high on chocolate, faces smeared with the remnants of a Russell Stover bunny.  "Uncle Joe!, Uncle Joe," they exclaimed, "Look what the Easter Bastard brought us!"

Apparently, they confused the word "bastard" for "basket."  I'm sure it was because they heard the former word with more frequency than the latter one.

This year, I too, got a visit from the Easter Bastard.

Yesterday was Easter and I made dinner for 15 people.  This is a small production.  This whole week, I’ve been missing my mother like crazy.  I think her death has finally sunk in.  I went to a bakery and turned to ask her what treats she wanted, but of course, she wasn't there.  So, I muddled through my week on my own.  Trips to Costco for the beverages, the liquor store for the sample-sized brandy and Cointreau for the flourless chocolate cake I was making for Sam's friend, J, who has a gluten sensitivity.  The farmer's market for the fresh vegetables, the gourmet meat market for the special cut of tenderloin.  I ordered a ham from Honey of a Ham and I ordered a cake from the place where Susan got my birthday cake (which was outstanding).  It was like conducting an orchestra.

I set the tables on Thursday, glasses turned upside down so no dust would get inside.  I covered the plates with a Vanity Fair paper tablecloth so the plates wouldn't get dusty either. 

On Saturday night, I asked Harrison to color the eggs and my husband to stuff the plastic eggs for the big hunt.  At 9 p.m., Harrison walked off the job to Facebook someone and my husband was watching the Celtics game (or was it the Bruins?) and casually informed me that he couldn't find the plastic eggs from last year.  I looked at the clock...CVS closes at 10 p.m.  I raced to the store and got more plastic eggs.  Came home and finished coloring eggs and ripped H and T for not helping out.  They finished stuffing the eggs and I went to bed at midnight.

Yesterday morning, we went to Church.  I got home and made salads.  Sam and J came in an hour before the guests and helped out.  My friend, V, came and brought a homemade dessert and a fabulous sauce for the Chateaubriand (far better than the A1 sauce I had laid out for it).  The meal was delicious.  There was too much food in both quantity and variety.   I stayed on plan if you include the fact that I ate my 49 bonus points all in one day.

By 8 p.m., my legs were burning.  I was on my feet virtually all day.  My brother, Phil, said he never saw such a mess and was "overwhelmed" by the clean-up.  Everyone helped get the house in some kind of order.  Several people helped stack the dishwashers. 

My husband said he'd take care of the dishes. I applauded his initiative.  This means putting in the detergent and waiting for the cycle to run through.  Once done, I told him to leave the doors open so the dishes wouldn't smell in the morning from being left in a closed dishwasher all night.

This morning, I wake up, pop 3 Advil and begin the final clean-up.  I hate putting the dishes away.  45 plates, 30 glasses, 30 forks, 15 spoons, 15 knives, some pots and pans and serving bowls.  I have to get the ladder to reach the cabinets where the good china goes.  It takes me a full hour to put everything back in its place.

I am so focused on the task that it isn’t until the very end that I realize something doesn’t seem right.  The dishes look clean but they don't feel or smell clean.   

How could that be?

I try to re-trace the steps.  Rinse the dishes.  Put them in the dishwasher. Put the pellet in the compartment.  Shut the door.  Press Start.

What could have gone wrong? 

I remembered my husband volunteering to run the dishwashers.  That's where the plan broke down.

I open the dishwasher door and see the evidence.  There, on the floor of the dishwasher, is a dishwasher pellet still sitting in its package.  My husband never took it out of the little plastic bag.

I have to take all the dishes, glasses, silverware and serving bowls out of the cabinets, re-stack the dishwashers and re-run everything (not to mention put everything away again).

The Easter Bastard stikes again. 

I am so stressed out, I eat Sam's Godiva Chocolate Bunny.

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