Saturday, July 20, 2013
to the oven
I am convinced we are olfactorilly (lordy how I love to coin my own words!) influenced, and nothing...absolutely nothing...can inspire a positive response more consistently than freshly baking buns! Likewise, I'm not sure anything tangible can match the "I love you" factor of bread you have made for someone important to you! Buns (bread in general) is a physical experience. From the mixing (is that really enough flour?) to the kneading, it is hands-on. Now understand, a bread maker will give you the same aroma. Frozen dough will give you the same aroma. But nothing matches the experience from scratch. And nothing says "you are important to me" like scratch. And nothing has saved as many lives as scratch. Allow me to elucidate! There were days I came home from teaching with students on my mind. You know, the ones who pushed every nerve I had, and then one more big shove? During the day, I had to convince myself that while orange was my favorite color, I wasn't interested in wearing a jumpsuit every day and even the promise of three meals a day and a cot at night didn't dissuade me from keeping my hands to myself. However, when I got home, to the mixer I would go, and make buns. This truly was a circumstance where the process and the result were both amazingly positive. When I knead bread, I am extremely physical. I take it from the bowl. I THROW it onto the counter, and while one had is constantly prodding and turning, the other is a fist, pummeling the dough. What an amazing release. Every bit of anger went from me into that yeasty concoction. It got more resilient. I got more resilient. And I named the dough whilst I was kneading. Picture it. Dough on counter. Left hand turning. Right hand punching. Voice in my head saying "Little Johnny! Little Johnny! Little Johnny!" And my aggression abated. And the buns went in the oven. And when they came out, we ate Little Johnny! The next day, the positive taste of fresh buns in my mouth, I greeted Little Johnny with good cheer! He had been quite tasty, and I was ready to see where today would go! Today we celebrate with our friends 50 years of memories since Cath graduated from high school. Today we revel in the fact that while we have aged, we're still powerful forces who laugh, learn, and love. And we do so with fresh buns! But today, instead of "Little Johnny", I was enjoying the physical release with the knowledge that I could once again tell our friends I loved them. As I do you!