As my current thoughts don’t seem to be what I want to write down, here is a re-run. How did my life get from there to here?

I once purchased and attempted to cook squid during the first month I was living in a new group house. Normally, I enjoy squid sliced, coated with breadcrumbs or seasoned flour, and deep fried. In this instance, however, I had purchased the squid whole as that is how it was packaged at the supermarket where calamari was on special super sale. I purchased my own oil as we had agreed as a house that communal ownership of such items would only lead to abuses. When I got home, I realized that (1) my good frying pan was being used to store someone else’s food in the refrigerator, (2) the remaining frying pan was losing its cooking surface in an endless torrent of brown, nonstick dandruff, (3) we had no knives sharp enough to cut raw squid, and (4) I had forgotten to get flour anyway.

So I tried to broil an entire squid body. This made the house smell kind of funny. The scent of whole broiled squid is not as pleasing as that of properly prepared and fried calamari slices. I think maybe there are like innards or something which need to be removed before heating.

So my housemates bitched and moaned. So I did the considerate thing and menaced them with the remaining raw squid, while I waited for my meal to finish cooking. I finally put one of the raw squid on one of my housemates’ bare back. Now this was a guy who collected guns and put fishhooks through his body parts in public for fun. So naturally he ran through the living room, shrieking, “Get it off! Get it off me!” The offending crustacean (What phylum do squids belong to anyway?) eventually slipped off his back and fell on the floor and believe me, even that early on in our occupancy, there was no way I was going to eat anything which had been on a group house carpet. It turned out that broiled squid was pretty inedible, at least the way I had prepared it, so I accepted a lease-long ban on squid in the house.

I could cook both before and after my residence in this group house, but there was something about that kitchen which caused cooking disasters. I would find myself looking through the bottom of a melted pot or offering a date a semi-burned grilled cheese sandwich and commenting, “Looks don’t last; cookin’ do.” Just by reheating something garlic-y in the microwave, one of my housemates once made one of two drunk guys who were making out on top of our stove vomit all over the kitchen floor. When they continued to make out on top of the stove afterwards, he threatened to turn on the burners. I don’t think he meant it in a homophobic way; it was just kitchen cursing us.

I tried to switch to eating things like cheap flank steak purchased in econo-packs, but the guy I put the squid on kept eating all my beef and claiming he mistook it for his own and excusing his theft my pointing out that he had let me taste it and he was a decent cook. Come to think of it, I think I was the one reheating something garlic-y in the microwave (although not the one threatening to cook the couple.) Maybe the kitchen spirits were just commenting on my taste in food no housemate would want to lift.