Tonight was the “BBSer Reunion GT” — or whatever they’re calling it. If you don’t know what a BBS or a GT is, just pretend it’s a party.  The word ‘reunion’ I assume you know – in this case, most of the people in attendance hadn’t seen one another in 10+ years, and we mostly knew each other from when we were teenagers / young adults.  I Twittered about it briefly, stating that, while I have no interest in attending a High School reunion, when I heard about this get together there was no question whether I would attend.  I generally don’t make plans in advance, and this was a ‘sure thing’ that I turned down many other opportunities for in the last six weeks.  As opposed to the people I went to High School with, these were my real friends.  (Note to friends from the actual high school I attended: the few of you who exist were also, generally, BBSers and, as you know, we’re still in touch and good friends.  No reunion necessary.)

As I expected, more than half of the people there I didn’t recognize – either at first, or, in some cases, at all.  It’s been 10, 12, maybe more years since I saw these people, and some of them I only saw for a few hours, here and there.  Others I spent a lot of time with over my teenage years … and some of those I still forgot the names of – though I recognized their faces, voices, and characters.  A few of them looked like they had been somehow stuck into a time capsule after the last time I saw them; nearly identical to my memories, what memories I have.  Which was eerie.  Much more eerie than that most of their personalities seem to have likewise been frozen in time; that I’m used to.  People tend to stay largely the same, beyond a certain stage of psychological development.

It was good seeing them again.  There were missing faces.  A lot of missing faces.  It’s hard to get hold of people after so long, especially when no one knows their last names or … much else about them that might help find them, because when we were friends none of that stuff mattered.  But those who showed up it was good to see.

Continue reading Reunion

Working in the kitchen, making love

The following was originally part of a comment on Zoe’s LJ post about food.

I was working in the kitchen today, slaving over a hot stove and a cutting board and hoping my improvised recipe would delight and nourish and it occurred to me that all the time I spend every week, not just cooking, but also thinking about it, shopping for it, studying cookbooks and recipes on index cards and online, and all this time and effort and energy… It isn’t wasted. It never felt wasted, but it occurred to me today that spending an hour or more a day, most days of the week, cooking for my family is one of the most valuable things I contribute. Not (just) because cooking real food reduces costs, but because it adds value.

Whether because of the failing economy or because I’m failing to market myself effectively, I’m not bringing a lot of financial reward into the household right now. Yet when I’m able to put a good meal in front of my wife after she’s had a long day at work, I know there are more important rewards in life to invest yourself in, and that I’m a success in the areas that matter to me most.

My mom taught me -she tried to teach me- how to make her spaghetti sauce. If I’m able to remain a househusband, if I’m able to continue investing myself in showing my love through food, maybe in another couple of years … Maybe I’ll have the skill required to share what made her sauce so special, in making a sauce that my family will associate with love, happiness, family… We’re Italian, it’s all in the sauce, right?