Thursday, August 16, 2007

Double Time With the Seduction Line

Pete's full of surprises. For instance, I don't know about you but I get confused when a pastry chef says, "I don't eat white flour." It turns out Pete had a life-altering illness about the same time I did, lo when Gingrich roamed the earth, and now dietary elements I take for granted suddenly aren't. I eat everything. He does not. This is not a problem. It's a puzzle, and my brain rejoices.

When Dad was sick, I wracked my brains for simple and complicated ways to get a few calories past the bad taste cancer literally left in his mouth. On good days, when I thought of a way to trick the cancer palate, I felt like a million bucks. By comparison, lactose and white flour intolerance combined with an inability to digest seeds and nuts is a walk in the damn park.

I admit the lactose intolerance made my head spin a bit. A zillion years ago, I did a brief, embarrassing stint as a backup singer for this woman who played the women's music circuit. Yes, there is one. Getting to sing was great fun but rehearsals kicked my ass. She was vegan and fed me gallons of coffee and soy milk, bagels and ...something spread-y, I don't recall what. Her heart was in the right place, but I spent whole afternoons in the bathroom. Thus, when Pete said, "I drink soy milk" I bit my lip and bought a box. I mean, what the hell. It's not radioactive, right? It can't hurt me from the inside of a cardboard box. One morning when I didn't have to leave the house all afternoon, I poured a glooooop! of soy milk into my coffee and waited for digestive disaster.

None ensued. Emboldened by this minor triumph, I began pouring glooooops! of soy milk into my coffee every morning. Then Pete introduced into the diet soy spread, which turned out to be tasty and perfectly okay for frying. I was pleasantly surprised that we weren't fighting lactose intolerance with saturated fat. A month ago, I would have rejected these products out of hand; now, I am perfectly okay with them. It is slow going to dismantle my assumptions about what is available and edible, but the thinking - all the thinking - excites me.

We agree to disagree: Pete says no one needs cheese. I say you can have my cheese when you pry it from my cold, dead hands. Other than that, planning meals is a blast.



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