Friday, December 2, 2016

The Last of the Turkey

In the days after Thanksgiving we find creative ways to use the last of the turkey until we're truly sick of all things feathered.  As I write this, I have a scorchingly hot turkey salad cooling in my fridge that would peel paint off a battleship, and it's wonderful.  I love it.

I've even given some of it to my neighbors because they love the hot stuff, too.  I'm hoping they like it as I do.

The carcass of the turkey, as well as some bones and a wing, are boiling away in a stock pot so I can extract the last of their goodness.  It's a thing I do, as many, so nothing goes to waste.  I can't tolerate waste and the older I get, the more adamant I become about that.  It's not about money or being cheap.  I've been without.  I've had nothing.  And I know there are those out there in that shitty boat right now.  I can't feed them but I'm not going to disrespect them, either.

I've come to realize I'm a far more sensitive person than I used to allow myself to be.  I used to be some jaded, bitter asshole and over the years I've allowed myself to be a nicer man.  Maybe by the hour of my death I will be in my final form and able to tell the world I am genuine.  But until then, I'm just another human being struggling for self-definition through a long list of dysfunction.

I once knew a guy who grew up in a home much like mine.  He didn't say his family was dysfunctional.  He said it functioned exactly the way a home like that was supposed to function.  So the question is, am I dysfunctional as a person, or am I simply the logical consequence of a series of actions and situations?

There is a side to me that realizes we humans are nothing more than a series of actions, reactions, magnetically influenced genes, and geographic placement.  It depresses me horribly.

This week, I found I had friends who were watching my back.  Friends who were watching out for my best interests.  This week I learned friends were protecting me because they cared.  They warned a woman to be careful and not to hurt me because I'm a good guy.  I have never, in my entire life, ever had that happen.  Never.  It brought about a rush of emotions because I've never been the guy anybody gave a shit about.  To know somebody cares enough to want to protect me emotionally is humbling.

I'm still waiting on a check to come in from a refund.  The long story is this--I was told my debit card from work was chargeable and it wasn't.   I tried to charge it and locked up my funds in a system that is taking their sweet assed time giving me my money back.  It is frustrating beyond words.

My pot of soup is boiling away right now.  I'm reducing the stock.  Soon, I'll add some chicken stock to fortify it and add some noodles.  Simple, to the point, and good for a cold night.  There's nobody here to share this with.  I'm okay with that right now.

Also this week, a woman shut the door on my attempt to get closer to her.  She's beautiful.  But, once again, I get it.  Sadly, I get it all too well.  While I could say the usual pithy platitudes of how it's her loss, blah, blah, blah, the truth of the matter is I doubt she even cares, nor does the loss even register in her mind.  I mean really, what did she lose?  A fat guy cooking for her?  Talking about books she's never read?  Discussing films she's never seen?  She'd become bored with me within a week if not sooner.  I would be friendzoned.

Maybe that's why so many of my friends are married women.  They're closer to my age, experienced in the bullshit of life, and there's no chance of things going in the wrong direction.  I'm sure a couple have to explain to their husbands that this guy they talk to is no great catch and nothing to be jealous about.  I don't mind that.

I just spiced my soup up and it smells great in my apartment again.  Less like a dead bird being cooked and more like a dish you would want to eat.  Soon I'll throw in some Chinese noodles and when they're done, I'll be able to eat.

It's hard to cook for just one person.  I'm often giving food away to friends or women I'd like to be closer to.  It's never done me any good romantically, but it's the only way I know how to make any kind of connection.  I'm not good with the rest.  I don't know how to approach a woman and I certainly don't know how to do much else.  It's no big secret why I've lived alone for most of my life.
The harder I try to not be a simple reaction to a series of events, the more I find myself falling right into predictive behaviors.  It sucks.  I want to be that unique snowflake but in all reality I'm a series of calculations.  I'm nothing more than an algebra equation with social and psychological variables.

Solve for Ted.

Maybe that's why she shut the door on me.  She already solved for Ted and realized what she would get.  Once again, I was too much and not enough.  But that's okay, more of this great soup for me, and I can decide what to watch on Netflix while I eat it.


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