In predictably fickle fashion, Doris has left her kitchen post for a good week or two now. Let’s face it: there is something so terribly unsexy about consistency, it’s no wonder she’s wandered off. Knowing what you’re going to get and then getting it over and over again… Who wants that?
General indecision and the enduring crushing burden of all of life’s potential have weighed heavily lately, couched in that certain Winter tendency to hibernate, bury and avoid.
All this doom and gloom has been particularly difficult to dwell on considering the sparkling warm days beckoning action and a sunny disposition. I ventured out of the house today in search of Vitamin D and distraction and naturally ended up at the supermarket (that shall remain unnamed).
There is something quite particular about the way a person with unlimited time and absolutely nowhere to be peruses the aisles of a supermarket. It’s like a long walk in the park but in harsh fluorescent light and with much less chance of encountering beauty or something of natural origin.
I treat it like an expedition. A journey of discovery. I often arrive with no plan and no intention beyond having a browse. I pick things up, study their labels, marvel at their existence or get outraged by their providence. Sometimes I put things back where I got them from. Sometimes I put them down somewhere else. (Tip: this journey is best taken solo, certain cheffys have been known to find this approach to shopping bemusing and outright insufferable)
When I spied the jars of Thomy mustard surreptitiously tucked on the second highest shelf today in the ‘random food stuff from another country’ section I was excited. We have other jars of mustard in the house, but Thomy mustard has long been acknowledged as the superior option: always sought-after and renowned for being a little hard to track down in suburban supermarkets.
Mustard and I have romanced for as long as I can remember. I backpacked my way through Europe at 19 armed with little more than tie-dye petticoats, a pashmina shawl, a copy of Tom Wolfe’s Electric Kool Aid Acid Test and a tube of Thomy Mustard stashed in the outside pocket for easy access.
Mustard has the remarkable knack of transforming anything into a snack or meal. It’s versatility is unrivaled and as far as I’m concerned it’s range of application knows no limits; I’m yet to discover something you cannot put mustard on.
Loving mustard is also a knowing nod to my father, a fellow mustard-lover (perhaps the original?) and an unusual unifier of three siblings who otherwise find little in common. The end of the mustard jar in my childhood household was a truly unwelcome affair. Even the majority of our water glasses in the glassware drawer were Thomy mustard jars with their labels removed.
And so today’s joyful mustard discovery dictated that there would be sausages for dinner, accompanied by bread and shitty supermarket sauerkraut. I ate them in the kitchen standing up. I didn’t even toast the bread because we don’t have a toaster.
I might also mention here that Dry July is well under way and I’m informed that new-found non-drinkers are notorious for reaching for the carbohydrates and sugars in a furious but futile effort to fill the gaping caloric black hole usually kept fed by alcohol.
I’m not sure if this mustard and sausage combo counts as a meal or even contains any nutritional value but not much compares to eating food imbued with the sweet whiff of memory.
Mustard & sausages: 10/10 Mustard for Lyfe.