Monday, October 25, 2010

If Life Gives You Beets...

Ah, fall. When a young girl's (mine, anyways) thoughts turn to cooking cozy stews and pot roasts; when the weather turns crisp and frosty; when the pee turns to purple.

From the beets, you know? I love beets. The only trouble with beets is that all beet recipes on earth seem to begin with the instructions to cook the beets until tender, then slip off their skins. It occurs to me that the latter is likely a step that was originally designed to make one or two lesser cooks feel inferior for being unable to reproduce the feat, that somehow permeated the minds of all recipe mongers thereafter with the ridiculous notion that it is possible to "slip" a beet from its skin, as one might "slip" out of a silk dressing gown or "slip" a litre of Bailey's into their weekend coffee intake. "Slip" in my mind implies a certain amount of ease in doing something - I have hacked, sliced, scalped, dismembered and dismboweled many a beet in my day, but I have never in my life met a beet that willingly gave up its skin.

Slipping beets from their skins is probably one of those things that happens naturally for people for whom everything already happens naturally. Like Heidi Klum. (Heidi Klum is another thing designed specifically to make people feel worse about themselves than they already do.) I'll bet Heidi Klum simply flutters her eyelashes and beets everywhere positively leap out of their skins and slice themselves into perfect rings and never, ever dare turn Heidi Klum's pee purple.

More things designed to make people feel worse about life:

- the person at work who uses precisely three sugar grains in their morning coffee
- BMI charts
- chin hairs
- infant/toddler mittens with thumbs
- Martha Stewart (for reasons very different than Heidi Klum)
- that home gym-slash-clothes hanging equipment in the basement
- Ultimate
- age group check boxes
- passport photos
- dust bunnies
- the line on your income tax return that reminds you that you have contributed only a tiny fraction of a percent of the RRSP amounts that you will soon require to have tucked away in order to avoid dining on Fancy Feast and saltines in your old age, because aren't you 30-34 already? Although you look far older in your passprt photo. And was that a dust bunny that I just saw cavorting under your couch?

It stands to reason that the fact that so many things on earth make people feel worse about themselves is the entire impetus for the reality television industry. If your BMI has got you down, you can watch shows about positively gargantuan humans who haven't moved from their beds in decades and feel better by comparison; if your RRSP balance is pathetic, you can watch shows about people spending themselves into unfathomable credit card debts and feel better by comparison. If you have the IQ of an umbrella stand, you can watch... actually, there are a surprising number of options to help you out with this one.

But if your beets won't slip out of their skins, well, I'm flummoxed. Be grateful the little buggers are only in season for a short while every year, and enjoy the purple pee while it lasts.

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