The five people you’ll meet in the kitchen (and the one you should be)

No matter what, everybody’s gotta eat.

I don’t care who you are, if you want to keep walking around on this rock, you need to eat.  No exceptions.

But everybody’s different and the kitchen is where these differences come into stark relief.

I have identified the five main types you may run into:

1.)There’s the cook I call “Persnickety Pierre”.This guy can do no cooking unless he is working from a recipe that is practically Byzantine in its complexity.  Every step must be related in intricate, painstaking direction.  Food that should take 30 minutes takes an hour and a half because Pierre can’t keep himself from repeatedly opening the oven to check on the proceedings.

His kitchen is so sparkling clean you have to wear sunglasses in it.  There are enough cleaning chemicals in the cabinets to hold chemistry class.  He has a diverse wardrobe of Hazmat suits.

If he cooks for you, the food probably won’t taste terribly good, but you can be confident of never contracting a food-borne illness at his table.

2.)At the polar-opposite is Lady Laissez-faire.This self-taught, self-proclaimed chef cooks constantly.  There are only two problems.

She can’t be bothered to actually read through a recipe.  Her favorite expression is, “Don’t worry; I got the gist of it.”

No dish is ever truly finished, she never knows how many it will serve, and doesn’t have a clue how to save her leftovers, of which she always has many.

Her other characteristic is a lackadaisical attitude toward substitutions.  Honey for maple syrup is perfectly acceptable.  But Lady L has run amuck.  She will blithely sub out cayenne pepper for paprika, fish sticks for fresh shrimp, and once, in a pinch, gummy bears for mushrooms.  It may rarely be edible, but it’s always original.

3.) And there’s “Can-do Man”.

This is what happens when you consume too many chemicals.

If it doesn’t come in a can, box or bag, he’s not interested.  Kits are where it’s at.  Our guy eats so many preservatives in his food that he will be dead ten years before he starts to decompose.


4.) There is also the cook I call, “Finger-on-the-pulse-diet chef”.This miss eats no gluten, carbs, animal fat, refined sugar, or dairy.  If there’s a new diet out there, she has done just enough research on it to be misinformed.  She generously imparts her knowledge with everyone, whether they want it or not.  Priscilla firmly believes that bad diets are the root of all society’s ills.

High cholesterol?  White food’s off limits.

Insomnia?  Go paleo.

Color blind?  Eat capers and licorice, together.

Flat feet? No food with the letter “R” in it.

The funny thing is, our girl has acid reflux, eczema, and could stand to lose 15 pounds.

5.)Our final cook is called “The Frat Boy”.There are two kitchen tools upon which Biff relies.  One’s his microwave; he can heat up Spaghetti-o’s and pop popcorn like a champ.  The other is his telephone.  He’s on a first-name basis with every take-out place in town.  He built a tool shed from pizza boxes.  His fridge contains only beer and duck sauce.  He named his dog “Raman”.

And lastly I hope, you.

Know your recipes, and keep your kitchen clean.  But don’t be too uptight, and feel free to get creative.  Short cuts are ok if used sparingly.  Learn something about nutrition and try to eat right.  And once in a while, take the night off and order in something yummy and a little naughty. Above all, keep cooking, and have fun.

Thanks for your time.

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