So much for my blogging hiatus; I was going to take a week off from writing (really, Kim, I WAS!) but I've GOT to normalize this behavior. Please tell me that I am NOT the only one who might find this on her kitchen counter in the morning - a bottle of canola oil inverted so as not to waste A.N.Y. before it’s rinsed out and thrown into the recycle bin. Waste not, want not, right? Good to the last dorp, really? Turns out I forgot that I put it there in the madness of trying to get dinner on the table last night – making fried okra is so tricky because you have such a small time frame in which to get it battered, fried, and served while its still hot and actually get to sit with the family while they enjoy it. So there it is this morning, wedged between a bag of white trash from my sister-in-law on the left (Yum, Yum!) and a loaf of white bread (I know, I know, wheat bread is SO much healthier!) on the right, staring at me as if to ask, "now what?" I guess that last night I figured I’d try to use every last drop, but this morning I find it kind of funny to have saved, what, a half of a teaspoon of oil?
That makes me wonder: What is it that makes me want to get every last bit? It’s not like we can’t afford to throw that last morsel away. It’s not like resources are scarce and there’s not any more where that came from. And it’s not like I couldn’t get that okra fried without that last little drop. I keep going back to the pictures in my head of my mom with her spatula, scraping the bowl clean – just ONCE I wanted to be able to lick the extra whipping cream out of the bowl! – but can modeling really be that potent, that forty years later I’m doing exactly what I saw mom do when I was ten? I’m all for conserving our resources but this inverted oil bottle example seems a little extreme to me somehow.
So what's my next move? I don’t have any recipes that call for that little bit of oil and I don’t have a new bottle of oil to pour it into. And what, if anything, does this have to do with the big picture and what's cookin' in my daily life? Is there anything else that I need to make sure not to waste, to use every little bit of, as we head into 2012? Oh, how I love a good metaphor!