So other than Caroline being Calvin's miniature spitting image, there was one more incident this week which added to the long line of incidents that have sealed the Envelope of The Undeniable; this kid is more him than me. Indeed, other than her inability to get through a day without injuring herself repeatedly, it is becoming clearer and clearer that I was simply her feeding-machine for the 80 months that I carried her in my womb.
Background: Calvin can't cook. Well, ok...he can, but only if there are VERY. SPECIFIC. INSTRUCTIONS.
In the absence of painstakingly specific instructions, he won't even acknowledge that anything can be done with those broccoli florets in the crisper. And taking those cookies out one minute before hand to ensure they stay soft? NO, THE DIRECTIONS DID NOT SAY SO! Adding a splash of chicken broth to the stir-fry instead of ONE EXACTLY-MEASURED tablespoon? Did the directions say to do that? THEN, NO! YOU CANNOT!
In short, cooking is no joy for this man. Even a frozen pizza becomes an endeavor performed on the most treacherous ledge. The pizza will be left in for EXACTLY the 12 minutes the directions say; no more, no less. You want to leave it in an extra minute or two for a crispier crust? Tough, the directive from the proper authority was not given.
Well, guess who inherited Daddy's refusal to take culinary risks?
The other day, she got a treat: one of those Kid Cuisine frozen meals. You know the ones, right? The ones you wish you hadn't read the nutrition label on because you then realize that feeding one to your kid is pretty much the same as giving her a heroin needle, slapping her on the back and saying "Go nuts, Buddy!"? Yes, those.
So she's in the kitchen and she's reading the directions and following them exactly (taking things out of the tray, microwaving, taking the tray out, stirring, adding the previously-removed items, putting it back in....etc) when suddenly she runs across a direction that has Mommy putting breaks on. The photo on the front shows the little fried death-patty in a bun with the whole thing cut in half seemingly at the same time. But the directions...those diabolical directions...seem to call for the cutting of the bun and the fried death patty separately before the joining of the six peices back together again. And, according to the directions, she was about to get a knife, cut the patty in half, then cut the bun in half top-to-bottom (it's already halved length-wise) and then assemble the whole thing back the way it should be. This seemed a waste of time to me (as well as an unnecessary prolonging of the time she's holding a knife), when the patty can just be put IN the bun and the whole thing cut ONCE at the SAME TIME. And I pointed this out to her. See, I said air-demonstrating, you can just put the whole thing together and THEN cut. It'll come out more evenly and save you some cutting! Voila!
"No, Mommy, look! The directions don't say to do that! They say to do it THIS WAY."
"Caroline, I'm only showing you an easier way. Directions don't always have to be followed exactly."
And that's when her head exploded.