With the turn of the calendar year, we seem to have entered a new and special season: Awards Season. Every movie ad you hear, these days ends with the words “awards eligible.”
I recently thought to myself — heck, why stop at movies? Why can’t foods be “awards eligible”? Or gadgets? Or, indeed, everything else in our lives?
So I looked around my life and found plenty of “awards-eligible” nominations:
Most useless relic of my former life: my purse. I can’t even remember when I last saw it.
Most ridiculous everyday problem: I can’t find my glasses. Again! It’s much like losing my cell phone, except I can’t place a call to the glasses just to hear an embarrassing ring tone from my own back pocket.
I know they’ve got to be somewhere in the house, because I haven’t left the house in one and a half eternities. So where can they be? Happens Every Damn Day. You’d think they’d learn.
Most predictable pandemic development: toilet paper rolls got smaller. I know because I saved a lot of the tubes for an ill-fated art project, and when I stood them all up in a line, it was obvious the tubes had gotten shorter. And fatter. Much like me!
Strangest pandemic development — canned-bean cans got weird. They still feature pull-tab tops like big soda cans, but now too often the pull-tab just pulls off, leaving the can as intact as ever but with no obvious way to get it open. Luckily I still have a can opener, somewhere in the hurricane go-bag.
Most valuable utensil: Can opener.
Most annoying vegetable, anywhere: artichoke. So much work for so little payoff.
Silliest-sounding vegetable anywhere: Rutabaga. I have never eaten any, I just giggle at the name.
Most bi-polar vegetable: Rhubarb. I just have to say what’s up with a vegetable that people say is so delicious they’ll make a pie with it but whose leaves, if eaten, will kill you? It’s the vegetable version of Japanese Fugu fish, and I say Fugu-daboutit!
Most reliable berry: Blueberry. Keeps its flavor and juiciness the longest before drying out or turning to mold.
Least useful berry: Raspberry. Half the time the berries are moldy before you can get them in the door. Best when fresh off the otherwise-annoying brambles in the back yard.
Most enjoyable thing about winter:
Hot chocolate. Runner up: instant oatmeal — especially the Dinosaur Oatmeal I used to buy for my kids. They don’t have to know I buy it now for myself.
Least enjoyable thing about winter:
Power failure. Brrrr.
Most predictable plumbing problem during pandemic:
Drain clogged with longer and longer hair.
Most persistent odor in refrigerator:
Believe it or not, dill. This has surpassed onion or even garlic. A fresh bunch of dill apparently died weeks ago, somewhere in the back of the refrigerator, and even though I cleaned out everything I could reach, the filtered-water pitcher’s water still tastes of dill.
New Least-favorite herb:
Realizing that there is still a big container of ice cream in the freezer only to open it and discover there is only ONE SPOONFUL left!!! Who would do such a thing? A savage, that’s who.
Best silver lining about pandemic:
No need for deodorant — or even mouthwash— for Zoom meetings. No need to leave time for traffic or parking or even to change out of pajama bottoms.
Third most annoying feature of Zoom calls: “You’re on mute,” usually said loudly to people who know this already and who are stabbing at the control so desperately that it cancels itself out.
Second most annoying feature of Zoom calls: Freezing up. This is especially annoying because your own experience — that you are the only one NOT frozen — is exactly inside out from the experience of everyone else, whose lives have gone on without you.
Most annoying feature of Zoom call: After the freeze is over and you are finally in the meeting again, that’s when Zoom feels the need to blot out some of the frame to inform you that “Your internet connection is unstable.” “I know that!” you scream, causing everyone else to wish you were back on mute.
Favorite mantra to recite every night: Made it through another day!
Favorite mantra to recite every morning: Made it through another night!
Only goal: Hanging in there. One day and night at a time.