Tuesday, October 1, 2013
CE Kitchen - Push au Kim
I'm in the kitchen, fixing spaghetti. I'm at that point where the meat is simply simmering and I'm not ready to add tomato sauce and spices, and I've only just added the noodles, so I pull out a book and sit down at the table to read. A book about logic, incidentally.
Actually, it's about how to defend your faith against the attacks of unbelievers, particularly evolutionists. It's good so far, and I've learned some pretty interesting tricks. Mostly involving logic and how logic only works in a Christian worldview.
I read a page or two, then hop up to stir the meat and the noodles, fishing one of those wiggly "worms" out for me to taste. I know it's far from done, but I'm like Clever Gretel from the fairy tale. If I'm not reading ... I'll start snacking. I guess I'm a little better, since Gretel didn't have reading to rescue her. She just ate.
Replacing both of the lids, I turn around with the intent of returning to my book ... but standing at the end of the table, blocking my route to my book, is a man. He's short, maybe six inches taller than me, with oriental eyes, hair done in the traditional Chinese fashion (Mostly shaven save for a small circle of hair which is long and braided), wearing catskins and ridiculously fancy books, and holding ... two dead rabbits.
Well, at least I think they're rabbits. They've been skinned and all that jazz, so it's hard to tell ... but I've seen dead, skinned rabbits before, so I'm pretty sure.
"Um ... hello Push." I stammer. "I didn't hear you come in."
He holds out the meat. "I catch rabbits, you cook. I take to rich man, he make you good husband."
My eyebrows go up. "Seriously?"
"You good cook, he like food. You make good wife."
"Push, I'm only eighteen!!!"
He tilts his head to the side as he contemplates my words. "Yes, you little old, but I no tell. You cook, he like food."
Before he can set the rabbits down on my nice clean table, I pull down the huge meat pan off of the top of the frig and set it on the table. "Okay, I'll admit that Rosamond married at sixteen ... but Robin was eighteen!"
"As I say, you little old."
"And one of Robin's daughters doesn't marry until she's twenty-one!"
"She very old."
I swallow, trying to contain my irritation. Sure, Push is one of my favorite characters, and sure I'd like to get married ... but his timing is very bad. "Okay, so you're telling me you're going to take this meat to a random rich guy and tell him I made it and he'll marry me?"
"Yes, you smart, author, you understand plan."
I sigh. "He'd probably hire me as his cook ... You'd better praise some of my other qualities while you're at it ... such as my looks. I have the perfect hair, after all." My hair is currently in a Robin knot, but I pull it down and shake out in demonstration.
He examines me critically for a few moments, then shakes his head. "You hair nice length, but it too frizzy, too pale."
I smooth down the frizzest part, the "halo" around my face, and shrug, "Okay, so I'm not a perfect geisha ..." I glance at my arm. "I bet my skin's too dark, too."
"Far, far too dark. I tell him to keep you out of sun."
"Anything else wrong with my appearance?" I ask, annoyed. It's one thing to be insulted by female characters, but male ones ... "Too short? Big feet?"
"You too tall, and feet far, far too big. But I no tell. He eat rabbit, he marry you."
Okay, feet I can understand. "I'm five foot one - on tall days. That's short." I fold my arms over my chest. "So I'm ugly ... better sell me on my great personality, then. You know, I always look on the bright side, have a great imagination - I love writing ..." I turn back to the stove to check the meat and decide that it's time to add the sauce, so go hunting for the can opener.
He shakes his head. "We no tell him that."
"I'm great with kids?" Can opener found, I open the first can of tomato sauce and pour it into a bowl, then strain the meat grease into the can.
"You good play with kids, you no teach them no be seen, no be heard."
My eyes flick back to the rabbits, my annoyance rising even higher. "Where did you get those?" I ask, adding the sauce to the meat and opening the second can.
He looks offended. "I Push au Kim, mighty hunter. I trap them - very cunning!"
"They'd better not be my sister's pet rabbits." The second can is dumped into the meat and I begin shifting through the cabinet for spices. Popcorn - we're out of paprika. Oh, well. We've done without before.
He shakes his head. "Rabbits no pets."
"They'd better not be." I add oregano and garlic salt, stir it in, and put the lid back on, allowing it to simmer while I turn my attention back to the noodles. They're ready for straining, so I go find the strainer. "Look, I'm making spaghetti right now, and my family's about to come over and we'll eat supper. Your timing's bad. Come back tomorrow and pester me."
He grabs the rabbits and gives me a disdainful look. "I go ask Kathie - she be grateful." With that, he's gone.
"Honestly! Well ... there goes my chance of ever marrying a Chinese guy ..." I laugh. "It's a good thing he's one of my favorite characters - many of the others would NOT have gotten away with that."