Culinary School: Have Mercy

Elyria July 9, 2010

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What I really didn’t want to do was squeeze into a bathroom stall and change from work clothes into a pair of checkered pants. I couldn’t for the life of me imagine how I was going to pick up my heavy, tired legs or how I would truss a chicken or make up a marinade or tourné five kinds of vegetables or do a sink full of dishes. Read: I was tired and I wanted to watch Bravo with a glass of wine. In the interest of keeping it real, I want to tell you I was having a moment. Please forgive me.

Except, I’ve signed this imaginary contract with myself and I’ve committed to doing this thing and you don’t just bake a cake half way now do you? No, you finish it with a big, thick layer of icing and then you eat it. Which, I guess, is just a strange way to say that I went to class.

So, there we were — me and my tired legs — in the kitchen again and our objective was to truss and roast a chicken. Standing there, fumbling with my twine, I must have looked like I was trying to teach the poor thing a lesson. Yes, of course it was already dead but it was clearly trying to make a fool of me, resisting my every good intention to properly tie it and prepare it for roasting. In the end, I’m happy to tell you that Tony Danza was not the only boss in town and I wrestled it down, (wo)man over wild and slid it into the oven.

And wouldn’t you know? I roasted one of the best chickens in my grand history of roasting chickens. The skin was crispy and sticky and flavored with a chile/garlic sauce and it’s juices were practically gushing when I sliced it open. I was looking at it and it was looking at me and right there we decided that we had the market cornered as far as chicken roasting goes.

When the night was over I piled into my car (along with my tired legs and my knife kit) and I drove home in the dark. The windows were down, the wind was hitting my face and skimming my arm, which was hanging out the left side. The faint scent of chicken lingered on my coat and it reminded me that I had once again bullied through another day. I know it isn’t much, I know it isn’t a mind-blowing life lesson, but at this stage of the game this is all I’ve got to offer: Keep going. Just a little. One more time.

{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

Evan July 9, 2010 at 11:59 am

You’ve got a food blog here, are you allowed to admit you didn’t want to cook?

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Courtney July 9, 2010 at 12:01 pm

Yes I think it’s allowed in the rule book.

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Jen July 9, 2010 at 12:15 pm

If you ever feel that way again, call me and I’ll have a glass of wine and watch Bravo in your honor!

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Courtney July 9, 2010 at 12:17 pm

Oh no you didn’t…

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Jen July 13, 2010 at 11:33 am
Jill July 9, 2010 at 12:55 pm

wow, not only did you reference tony danza but you also, probably unwittingly, brought to life another 80s sitcom dude with “have mercy”. any idea who i’m talking about? yup, uncle jessie! nothing like these characters to bring you some comfort in trying times like these. let’s have another sitcom sing-along!

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Courtney July 9, 2010 at 1:07 pm

You’re right.. I wish I was clever enough to have noticed!

More insightful 80s sitcom lyrics:

Show me that smile again. (Show me that smile)
Don’t waste another minute on your cryin’.
We’re nowhere near the end (nowhere near)
The best is ready to begin.

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Intuitive Eggplant July 9, 2010 at 6:09 pm

I have no idea how you manage to do all you do – and blog about it. But I’m sure glad you do :)

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Courtney July 10, 2010 at 3:18 am

Well… encouragement always helps ;)

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5chw4r7z July 12, 2010 at 7:01 am

I so glad you worked your way through it and still had the energy to blog about it.
Awesome pictures.

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Small Girl July 12, 2010 at 10:36 pm

The last picture of your chicken looks beyond delicious! Glad you made your way through class though!I used to have an advanced sauces class with Kinsella late night Tuesday..and after an eight hour work day the last thing I wanted to do was stand six more hours…thanks to my friends, kinsella’s sly comments, and “glee” waiting for me to blast it and sing to on the way home… I made it through! Keep doing what you’re doing…because clearly you’re doing wonderful! [=

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Jill July 15, 2010 at 9:45 am

btw, i’ve had the growing pains song in my head on and off for a few days now.

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frank June 1, 2012 at 5:33 pm

Ahh, butchery with Chef Kinsella! That guy was a beast!

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