It’s Not Self Care When I Do It


How bout an outrage break? There are plenty of things to do besides obsessing over catastrophic, blood pressure raising news. Camping doesn’t sound so bad now, does it? (Don’t answer that.) I’ve been trying to get a whole bunch of stuff done so that I’ll have an elegant and graceful slide into a perfectly attuned school year next week, or something. To aid me on my way I’ve been listening to Amy Winehouse at full volume on my headphones. And taking breaks to watch fall fashion week runway shows. Color me relieved that apparently it’s ok to wear red this year–real deep, true, red.

And thank heaven for the hip boots…I’d just love to try to shove my ample thigh into one of those. And the fringe. And the metallic silver. And the granny sweaters. Actually, I really am excited about granny sweaters coming back in. And the red. That is never a joke.

But don’t think from my obsession with watching runway shows that my fall wardrobe will reflect anything so with it. I plan to keep with my uniform of gray–gray trousers, gray sweater–for the duration. But sometimes red shoes.

I am also practicing occasionally walking through the kitchen. Matt took over cooking for our holiday to give me a break, and Elphine makes a cake every day for ‘tea’ so I haven’t had to go in there for any reason. But yesterday I had a hankering for my favorite thing so I succumbed to full crazy and actually turned on the stove.

What you do is, you go to Aldi, which, again, has to be said, is the best place in the whole world to acquire the basic requirements of life–you can get everything you need in twenty minutes without the psychological burden of choice, of standing in front of fifteen kinds of tinned tomato trying to decide which one is right for you, you just take the option that’s there, and it’s basically always delicious, and take it home and cook it. Where was I? Oh yes you go to Aldi and buy hot Italian sausage. And cauliflower and mushrooms and maybe broccoli, really whatever kind of vegetable you like. And then you go home and cook it all in lots of butter, with a tablespoon of brandy ladled in at the end, and a dollop of full fat cream. And then if you’re allowed to have whatever you want you eat it out of a bowl in front of the tv with a glass of red wine. But if everyone complains you set the table and watch the children eat plain sausages and french fries, assuring them that what you are eating is healthy and therefore disgusting.

That’s it. It’s so simple. Doesn’t take hours and hours. Really like fifteen minutes. And you can skip the bread and potato and rice and pasta because you just don’t need it, especially if the sausage is infused with enough mouth burning spice.

Today, though, I’m going to make pizza which isn’t nearly so comforting.

I know, you’re saying, she turned off the news, listened to some music, ate something delicious, probably even painted her fingernails (I did)…that sounds suspiciously like ‘self care.’ To which I repost, it is nothing of the kind. It’s called ordinary living. And if you think it needs some special psycho babble label to make it ok, you’re probably in favor of Iceland and the Nazis and voted for Hillary and Trump. What kind of a monster are you? (Don’t answer that.) I swear, it’s not self care, it’s not impactful, its…let me see…what should we call it…

An Ordered Life.

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