Lowered Standards | HumorOutcasts

Lowered Standards

April 12, 2018
By

I don’t like to cook. Yes, I sincerely mean it. Being in a partnership means I have my share of responsibility for our food. Frankly, I have about one miserable failure a month. I learned the hard way early in our married life that you shouldn’t put Saran Wrap in the oven.

The good part about my issues is that I have a husband with extremely low standards, so it works out well for me.

He’s a marvelous cook but only cooks when he has time to do something special. So, he’s the extra cook, the person who makes the corn and pimento casserole for a funeral, the person who makes the rare special birthday cake or anniversary meal. He’s famous for his meatballs, his mandarin orange cake, his holiday carrots, and a host of  family  request. He’s tackled a standing rib roast and his holiday meals often contain something new and wonderful.

During the week, I’m the primary person responsible for food. My Beloved prepares the weekend meals. Mind you; I’m not complaining. I’ve had breakfast in bed every Sunday for as long as I can remember. We’re talking  freshly ground coffee beans, chocolate chip muffins, and fresh fruit, perhaps pineapple, blueberries or strawberries. Or an omelet made to my specifications.

Weeknights I may pick up two large berry salads at Wendy’s or Subway. Sometimes I will cook from my repertoire which hasn’t changed from my twenties, nachos, spaghetti, lasagna, tuna melts, tuna salad sandwiches, cucumber sandwiches (he doesn’t like), the Big Salad with grilled chicken (as Elaine on “Seinfeld” says) or fish grilled on the George Foreman.

Thursday night I tried to fake him out, because I didn’t feel like cooking and everything I could pick up bored me stiff. I sent him an email at work that said, “It is okay if we have fish sticks for dinner?” My evil ploy anticipated his response being, “Oh, no, let me bring home Outback or Longhorn.” I mean, seriously, who still eats fish sticks? Don’t even get me started on what I think the “stick” part is.

Nope. He said, “Great, and can we have macaroni and cheese with that?” Meaning the Bob Evans Mac and cheese in the refrigerator.

I should have known. Low standards. Not sure why there are fish sticks in the freezer. The tartar sauce in the fridge expired about the time Generalissimo Francisco Franco did, so I tossed it. I made my own, a little pickle relish, a little Mayo (no Miracle Whip in this Yankee’s house.)

He loved it. Dang. It’s an incongruous situation because his mom was a fine cook.  When he and his brother went to potlucks, they only ate what Mom made. Everything else was unacceptable.

As I came home Friday night, I noticed the American Legion’s marquee proclaimed “Chicken Livers and Gizzards” night. And they have take-out. No way was I going to try to trick him again. I cannot abide food that sounds like the Jed Clampett family has it for Sunday dinner in the billiard parlor, using the pot-passers.

I should have known better about the fish sticks. After all, of the five of us who traveled to Scotland together, he was the only one who finished his haggis.

Amy Abbott

Abbott is syndicated on Senior Wire News Service and writes for newspapers and magazines. She's the author of multiple books, and is currently featured in "Laugh Out Loud," the first anthology of the Erma Bombeck Writer's Workshop.

More Posts - Website

Share this Post:

Tags: , , , , , , ,

11 Responses to Lowered Standards

  1. April 14, 2018 at 4:43 am

    My wife and I have worked out a deal: She cooks, and I wash dishes. Everyone’s happy, and nobody dies.

  2. Cynthia
    April 13, 2018 at 9:13 am

    Such a fun read! Looking forward to more!

  3. Bill Spencer
    April 13, 2018 at 6:32 am

    Enjoyed this, Amy. Welcome to Humor Outcasts. Can’t wait to see what you’ve got cooked up for us next.

  4. Donya Lester
    April 13, 2018 at 12:00 am

    Given this “success,” might I suggest for your next fake-out meal the always tasty State Fair corn dogs? They’re divine with gourmet mustard. 🙂

    • April 14, 2018 at 12:30 pm

      When Dad was on the SF board, we got all kinds of freebie food and just played “Munch Around the Park.” Those were the days…..vanilla taffy, lemon shake-ups, corn dogs, etc. Husband would love the corn dogs with gourmet (or WalMart) mustard. Lowered standards!

  5. Kamille Stich
    April 12, 2018 at 8:13 pm

    Great job on the tartar sauce!

  6. Jeanne Sathre
    April 12, 2018 at 7:46 pm

    Perfect read as I sit here debating between frozen corn dogs or a third night of chili.

  7. April 12, 2018 at 5:07 pm

    My disinterest in cooking—with certain exceptions—has always embarrassed me. I am so happy to read about a smart woman’s struggle with culinary “duties”

  8. Pam
    April 12, 2018 at 2:00 pm

    I am also blessed with a husband who cooks. We like classic French cooking AND Clampett food. Go figure😂

  9. Mary Kay Fleming
    April 12, 2018 at 1:35 pm

    Lol, Amy. I have similarly manipulated my family’s expectations of housekeeping!

  10. Lezlie Bishop
    April 12, 2018 at 12:54 pm

    Hahaha. You always break the laugh gauge when you write about your “cooking.”



User Login

New Release
How to Write and Share Humor
By Donna Cavanagh Published by HumorOutcasts Press

Available in Paperback and Kindle


New Release
The Astounding Misadventures of Rory Collins
By Brian Kiley and HumorOutcasts Press

Available in Paperback and Kindle



New Release
Rats, Mice, And Other Things You Can't Take to The Bank: An Inspirational Collection of Essays from Humorous to Simply Human
By Leslie Handler. and HumorOutcasts Press

Available in Paperback and Kindle






Archives