Last night, preparing my third batch of mince pies this month for yet another gathering involving mulled wine (mulled by someone else this time, thankfully, as I found my own attempt at the weekend was a little too dominated by the pungent taste of cloves), I had an out of body experience.
From my vantage point on the kitchen ceiling, I looked down in some consternation at the spectacle of a blonde thirtysomething year old (whose dark roots could bear a little retouche, incidentally, as seen from this particular angle) gently tapping icing sugar through a sieve with a teaspoon, onto a mince pie which was partially covered with a cardboard cut out of a star, with a smaller star inside it. The results (see photo) were undeniably very fetching, but I had to wonder whether this lady shouldn’t be devoting her energies to some other, more rewarding activity than drawing stars on pieces of card and cutting around them with nail scissors.
The domestic goddess thing (if one can qualify for goddesshood when the pastry is bought ready rolled, the mincemeat out of a jar, and one is not wearing an apron) may have gone just a little too far.
As I snapped back into my body again, with an elastic band like twang, I hastily grabbed a beer from the fridge and wiped my shaking, floury hands on my jeans, in an attempt to sully the tableau of myself as Pastry Goddess.
I did however keep the cardboard cut out. It might be needed again on Christmas day. You never know.
Later still, I reluctantly prepared to do some ironing. At the best of times, this is a task which tends to be deferred until not one pair of work trousers remains and it absolutely cannot be avoided. On this occasion, to add insult to injury, the (mostly black) garments which awaited their turn had accidentally been washed with a pink jumper of Tadpole’s (with a delightful cat motif, courtesy of belle maman), and were all, without exception, covered in a fine dusting of pink fluffy lint.
This was a job for the “sticky toilet roll on a stick” device, if ever there was one. I have no idea what this contraption is known as, either in French or in English, and, in case you were planning to take it upon yourself to enlighten me, I would prefer not to know, as there are some things in life that should remain a mystery.
But the sad fact of the matter is that it was only yesterday that it came to me in a sudden and unexpected flash of enlightenment that there are actually SEVERAL LAYERS of sticky stuff on the (loo)roll.
There was me thinking that the “sticky toilet roll on a stick” was the most wasteful invention in the Western world, because after cleaning the lint off a single T-shirt it had to be consigned to the bin and a new one (or a toilet roll refill) purchased. How misguided was I? How could I have been blind to the existence of the several layers of untouched, virginal, supremely adhesive roll which lie beneath?
So, in case any other poor souls are labouring under the illusion that sticky toilet rolls on a stick are single use products, I decided to share my (latest) epiphany with the internet.
Please tell me I was not alone in thinking this?