Welcome, y’all! Today I’m going to be sharing my answer to the weekly blog challenge question posed by our #WWBC host Long and Short Reviews. Be sure to drop by there to find the list of participants in today’s hop, as well as sign up information if you have a blog and would be interested in joining in.
And the question of the week is…what’s a skill I wish I had but don’t. I’m pretty sure in two seconds most of you will be shaking your heads over this one. Actually I hope I don’t make anyone spit their morning coffee back out.
Let me start by prefacing that I basically had a bonus mom in the form of my grandma. My mom, on the advice of her doctor who believed she was losing it, went to work outside the home in a factory when my sister turned five and I was eight. Now, before the groaning starts, I have nothing, absolutely nothing, against women in the workplace. I worked for many years outside the home in more job fields than you can count on both hands and one foot. I actually wound up in the same factory mom was slaving away in at age twenty-one when I found myself a single momma. What I take issue with here in this scenario, is that the doctor decided Mom needed a back-breaking job to get herself together. And that’s what factory life was like, back-breaking. What Mom actually needed was some counseling because I’m pretty sure she had some depression issues. I’m not bitter that she was out working and certainly not upset that she had something going on she couldn’t control. I’m a bit peeved at the mentality of the doctors of the day, particularly male ones who wouldn’t recognize hormonally induced depression if it bit them in the special parts. Mom turned into a bit of a workaholic after that and as a result Grandma became the bonus mom. So, none of that has a thing to do with the question, now does it? However, there it is. And it’s leading up to something.
Grandma was a workaholic in her own right. She was what I believe people call these days a homesteader. She had gardens and canned what she grew, and she raised chickens. I think we kids actually thought the eggs in the store were artificial in some way because we saw where real eggs came from. We also saw where Sunday fried chicken came from. I’m sure y’all know that fried chicken is a southern staple every southern gal learns to cook from a young age. Trust me when I say, we kids were well aware of the circle of life at an early age. Are we traumatized from it? Nope. Not in the least.
Now I’m grown and I have gardens of my own. I know how to can and freeze, and I do. And I have backyard chickens. While we have more eggs than we know what to do with at times and share them regularly with our neighbors, the one thing I can assure you of is this: none of my girls have been Sunday dinner. My chicken comes from the store like everyone else’s because it’s anonymous chicken that hasn’t been named Pearl or Myrtle. I know it probably sounds weird, but again, there it is. However, even if I were to contemplate this notion of inviting the girls to dinner, this is where the skill I wish I had comes in. After all I learned from my grandma, watching her do her own butchering for years, I cannot cut up a chicken to save myself. I’ve tried! I buy the whole fryers at the store and bring them home only to mutilate them. There’s usually not a decent piece to be had worthy of dredging with a nicely seasoned flour then browning in the iron skillet filled with lard.
I have just admitted my greatest culinary shame. I cannot cut up my own chicken. I always have my butcher take care of it for me.
While that’s my greatest culinary shame, another shortcoming of mine comes in a close second. I can’t make a decent from scratch pie crust to save my life. Grandma must surely be looking down from heaven completely appalled, or laughing her fanny off.
So, there you have it. I wonder if the butcher would take pity on me and try to teach me if I asked nicely?