“You can’t stand messes.”
I could take a photo right now and put that lying lie back to sleep but that wouldn’t change his mind. He sees me walk into his room, the one with the “Juvenile Delinquent” sign on the door, and pick up shit. A week’s worth of flannel (welcome to the PCNW), socks, socks, socks, papers, cough drop wrappers, old bills, things he can find only when they’re – how can I put this without unmaking the point I’m trying to make – in a mess.
But I like messes. You should see my hair.
Or my brain.
That mess will take a lifetime to clean up. And I delay it as much as I can because I feel like I have nothing but time. I go watch a sad, sad documentary instead. I feel blessed instantly and tell myself I have nothing to complain about (I don’t) so I go fix the messes I can fix. The ones I can see and the ones I’ve made myself. They’re easy.
I’d like to think of myself as a doer. I haven’t given this much thought here but I’ve seen myself function in a job-like setting. I don’t have friends that can stand around and break me down for me over glasses of grape juice so I make these assumptions myself. I never like just standing around and I feel the urge to do things. Like a crazy person. I don’t like cleaning either. Cleaning is boring. It’s silly and it’s a humongous burden. It seems to take away from the things I’d much rather be doing .
Again, all signs seem to point to the fact that I like messes. I don’t know what he was talking about when he called me out. I mean…I really don’t.
I stand in a kitchen, pouring out cups of flour, watching the powder get in my hair and on my hands. My shirt is white so you probably won’t notice any on it. A tiny mess, no big deal. I use two bowls, spoons, plates, another three tasting spoons, okay maybe I need this bigger mixing bowl and oh my gosh, I need the food processor. So I fill the sink with dirty dishes and brush my hand along the counter top. What I made is probably in the oven and what I’m about to make is someone happy.
I can justify that mess.
In every other place, I crave some sort of order. It’s irrational. My mother-in-law pointed out yesterday that we all have our quirks. I’m reading two books right now and both of them have unsettled protagonists. It’s my luck. I’m following both stories as they pour out their hearts because I know both will reach a point where they get it. They’ll dissect every nerve that makes them swell with uneasiness and I’ll sit there and gasp (“What makes us most normal is knowing that we’re not normal“) They will understand why they’re going on this journey and they will make me feel at ease about my humanity. I’ll know that it’s okay to be a little lost, and a little quirky.
Maybe when I stop feeling so antsy I’ll write a book about it. Because it’s my silly.
Silly little mess of a journey.
I think I’m finally ready to share this recipe after weeks of experimenting. I don’t know how the rest of you test recipes but my failed tests will need to be consumed one way or another. So here’s to Saturday breakfasts that were welcomed with love even though they didn’t always taste like the sweet pumpkin clouds I was trying to create.
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tbsp cane sugar
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 tbsp Greek yogurt (Can be substituted with 1 egg)
- 1 tbsp local or homemade pumpkin butter
- 1 1/2 cups vanilla soy milk
- 2 tbsp melted butter, cooled slightly
- 1 tsp pumpkin spice (or ground nutmeg, cinnamon, clove and all-spice)
- Oil or butter for the skillet
- Maple syrup and salted butter, to serve
Whisk the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large mixing bowl. Melt the butter (which should be cooled, but still melty) and mix it in with the soy milk, yogurt and pumpkin butter in another bowl. If the butter is a lot warmer than the cold ingredients, it will get chunky when mixed in. This happened to me the first 5 times and it annoyed the hell out of me. My cool (okay it’s pretty obvious) tricks were to (a) pour the butter in the flour and mix the rest of the wet ingredients separately. (b) Mix the soy milk and butter together. If the butter clumps up, heat the milk-butter mixture on medium low heat stirring constantly until the butter melts. Then you let is cool a bit before adding the yogurt and pumpkin butter. I’m glad we had this conversation.
Next, whisk the wet ingredients into the dry flour mixture and stir until there are no lumps remaining. Mix in the pumpkin spice and inhale.
Heat a skillet on medium heat and coat it with oil of butter. Non-stick pans work the best for the perfect pancake flip. No pressure. Spoon 2 or 3 tbsp of pancake batter onto the skillet and wait for the top of the batter to bubble before flipping it over. Cook for 30 more seconds on the other side and flip it on to a plate. Repeat with the rest of the batter until you have a nice thick stack of breakfast. Spread a little butter in between each pancake and drizzle with maple syrup.
Eat while it’s still warm.