The Carnivore has been running on at the mouth for a number of years about wanting a turkey fryer. It was easy to ignore him since he only brought this up at Thanksgiving and Christmas when I was too busy to even participate in my favorite argument whereby I trot out the old accounting degree to review how silly it would be to spend money on something that would not only be used a mere two times per year, but would be pointless anyway since Grandma is responsible for the turkeys in my family, and my mother-in-law handles the birds for his family.
And so it would go, year after year: The Carnivore would say, at the most inopportune time (like when I’m trying to figure out how in the heck we’re going to come up with the money for the annual property tax bill – which is always due the week before Thanksgiving), “We should buy a turkey fryer. Fried turkeys are far superior to roasted turkeys.” Or something to that effect. And I, with one eye on the adding machine and the other eye rolled far into the back of my head, would reply, “Um hmm.” And the moment would pass.
Until Christmas, when The Carnivore would say, “We should buy your grandmother a turkey fryer for Christmas,” with a most hopeful look in his eyes. “Um hmm,” I would say, “THAT is what she really wants.” And again, the moment would pass.
And I would get a reprieve from this ridiculous conversation for the next ten or eleven months.
Until this year, that is, when we all finally admitted that Grandma would not be back from Florida in time to cook the Thanksgiving turkeys. Grandma suggested to mom that maybe Preston could cook one of the four turkeys at our house. Mom mentioned that to me, and I, sighing heavily, brought it up to Preston over dinner. He was positively gleeful. “I’ll cook all four of them!” he answered enthusiastically.
Now, you would have to know The Carnivore to appreciate how seldom glee and enthusiasm enter his limited repertoire of emotions. And you would probably have to know ME to fully appreciate how seldom I use exclamation points.
The very next day, he came home with a large box containing what our slightly confused three-year-old now refers to as the ‘fry turkier.’ And I’m not sure if The Carnivore is trying to prove me wrong about how seldom I predicted it would be used, but still it sits on our living room porch, attached to what appears to me to be a very dangerous small propane tank. And after bounding out of bed at six a.m. on Thanksgiving morning to fry four, count them: four, turkeys for my family, he bought himself another small turkey which he then brined (a la Alton Brown) and fried for himself after we returned home for church on Sunday morning.
Five birds have now been sacrificed in the name of this absurd oversized appliance.
And apparently I will be living on side dishes this week since there is a large fried turkey on the top shelf of our refrigerator to provide The Carnivore with his entrées for the next few days. As a matter of fact, to reassert MY point-of-view at our dinner table and to make sure things stay balanced around here, I will be cooking straight from Vegetarian Times magazines and cookbooks all this week.
Tonight I will make some sort of hippie dish involving barley. That ought to show him.