Do you know that everything I write, I’m writing to you?
It doesn’t matter whether it’s for work because I think about you when I think about skincare, keep bringing products home for you to try (you laugh; you’ve never applied so many damn products to your face before), and I think about you when I’m writing about food, and I think about you when I’m writing fiction or essays or whatever — give me something to write, and I think about you, do you know that?
I think about you when I cook, too, but that’s a more obvious thing because you’re a chef and I cook a lot for us.
I personally think that’s kind of dumb (just kidding), but, hey, I get it — you cook for a living; you’re not going to come home and want to cook some more. I’m also genuinely pleased to be cooking again after a few weeks of living in the in-between, in my new studio that was in need of layers of deep-cleans, all my stuff still in LA, stored at my parents’ while waiting to be shipped. Now, though, I’m a month-and-a-half into a new job, and my studio is finally mostly clean, like, mostly to the standard I want, and my stuff is here, from skillets to a pot to fish spatulas to way too many rolling pins, everything, really, except for measuring cups and a ladle. And flatware. I have chopsticks, two forks, a butter knife, and a spork, and that’s it.
That doesn’t stop me from making pasta, though, because I believe that, as long as there are chopsticks, anything can be eaten — and I tend to eat spaghetti with chopsticks, anyway. You’re used to it, too, and You’re helping cook tonight, which is awesome because you’re so much better than I am at blanching tomatoes properly, so much faster at peeling them. At a certain point, I just stop, let you do it all, bringing the tomatoes to a boil, smashing them as they soften until they’re broken down into a chunky sauce, simmering olive oil with red pepper flakes, and salting to taste and boiling water for the boxed spaghetti and adding a pat of butter to the sauce at the end.
Stop staring, you say.
I could watch you cook forever.
It’s just cooking!
Yeah, but you do it so nicely. And so quickly. And so nicely. Did I already say that?
You jokingly roll your eyes, pour the cooked spaghetti out into a strainer over my sink. Can you at least grate the Parmesan?
But you do it so well!
Oh my god.
See, this is why you should cook for me more. Isn’t it nice being so adored?
I have no words for that. Let’s just be quiet and eat.