Is it so hard to spit out watermelon, grape or orange seeds?
Is it really that difficult to make a peanut butter & jelly sandwich for your child or, better yet, teach them how to make one themselves?
What’s so tough about rinsing and tearing lettuce to make your own salad?
And ice tea…ice tea is one of the simplest, most straight-forward things to make. (Tea (loose or bagged), water, sugar (or not), lemon (or not), ice.) What’s so hard about that? You don’t have to watch the water boil, in fact, if you watch it, it’ll seem to take forever to boil. Put the water in a kettle, step away and do something else. The kettle’s whistle will tell you when the water’s done.
Think about it. We can purchase:
- Salad mixes.
- Pre-packaged, frozen, pb&j sandwiches (Crustables)
- Hard-Boiled peeled eggs (BornFree)
- Seedless watermelon.
- Seedless grapes, oranges, etc. (I guess no one’s figured out seedless apples although you can buy apple slices already cut at the supermar,)
- Prepared ice tea.
- Instant oatmeal or grits – blech.
Called convenience. Touted in commercials which scream – “too busy to cook” over and over as a mantra. Laziness and lettuce. Triflingness (is that a word) – who’s really too busy to make a PB&J sandwich? How about teaching the child or children how to make one for themselves?
Several years ago, I saw an interview with then-hot fitness guru Susan Powter, She talked about how many fat people were lazy; too lazy to peel an orange which she said took more effort than tearing opening a bag of chips or something. Her phrase stuck in my mind because at the time, I realized that I had become that lazy. It was easier to snack on crackers than to peel anything and chop, well, no. That got me on the road to eating more fruit. I also gradually stopped buying crackers. Goodbye Ritz. So long Town House and Waverly wafers. Much, much easier to resist when they’re not in the cupboard.
One night last summer, after a day on the computer, I had the urge to quickly fix a peanut butter and jelly sandwich after my husband called and said he wouldn’t want dinner because he’d had a long lunch. (Cooking dinner and eating with him is one of our shared pleasures except when it’s not.)
“You’d cook for him, why not make something nice for yourself,” my internal voice said.
Then I heard Susan Powter’s voice in my head. “Lazy, girl,” she bellowed. So, instead, I made a salad with lettuce, red onion, cucumber, cherry tomatoes, avocado and 5 shrimp that I sautéed with a little olive oil and herbs. (I would have had all 5 shrimp on my salad except that hubby came home and, despite having said an hour before that he wouldn’t want dinner, smelled the shrimp, saw the salad, so I ended up sharing with him.)
I’d already cleaned and torn up half a head of red leaf lettuce so the salad assembly was easy. I do this every few days in the summer.
Best way I’ve found to clean lettuce:
Submerge the lettuce in a big bowl of water, changing the water twice.* Then I give the greens a spin in the salad spinner a few times. Then I lay then on a flat-weave cotton dish towel – patting them dry of any small bits of moisture that are left. I put the cleaned lettuce into a container with a tight-fitting lid and it keeps nicely for 2-3 days.
Anyway, no laziness and lettuce here. No food saintliness either. Sometimes, especially for breakfast, I will succumb to the lure of a PB&J but, as often, a big bowl of oatmeal with brown-sugar prepared with old-fashioned oats is what I do. (I haven’t yet tried steel-cut oats.)
Ain’t nothin’ to it but to do it!
*(Can I save this water to water plants with?)