this morning was a bit of Christmas baking day. my mom has a common fear of phyllo dough that I used to have. one thinks it is hard to work with until someone takes the time to show you how to use it. it was a time when I was in Elgin, IL and I had to have some elderly Greek woman in a church check me out and give the green light that I must have been culturally lost, not gay, and really wanted to learn to make Greek pastry treats. once she blessed me and said, “he’s ok” the other 40 women (I was told making baklava was woman’s work) accepted me as one of them. this is where I got over my fear of phyllo.
I think mom is done with her fear as well. she wanted to make some for the Christmas holiday and had a simple traditional Greek recipe. it is very nice and delicious, but I tend to like the pistachio and rose water and Lebanese and middle Easter versions better. so we compromised and now she has a tray of each. I am still laughing at my dad bought me salted and roasted pistachios to use. it is funny today, but it is the reason for the delay in making the stuff this morning versus the plan of yesterday afternoon.
I guess that is simply the way it works. yesterday was all planned out for breakfast, work time, computer modeling time and baking time. it was all blown apart and changed, not much worked as planned and I simply got through the day.
but we now have two delicious trays of Greek and Lebanese baklava. dad is all happy, as he is the taster and really loves what I did with the phyllo dough scraps (thank you, elderly Greek women,, in Elgin, IL for showing me that baking trick.
I guess it is like anything else. if someone shows you how to do something, and they are decent at it. you can pick things up so fast. the problem in my life has I had so many interests that it was hard to find people that would show…thus…I simply became better at figuring out things, having to spend more time learning – yet – In the long term, I had to learn all the workarounds and tricks that you usually don’t learn until you do many projects and they cross over into solutions that are out of the norm.
this is why I lament where the USA innovation is heading as we have some odd social issue of everyone one wanting inclusion, but no one is willing to give up a bit of their stuff to come to space where different ideas, customs, and social traditions can help the greater good of all. I swear that is what made America great at innovations. we simply took people from everywhere and they had to live and work together with the idea that America was a land of opportunity.
today. I think the American dream is dead or simply used in political rhetoric as it seems to me that social media is making our culture almost more isolated unless you happen to believe the exact view of someone else. seems odd. but then again, In a week I will be in other countries and the views of outsiders while different, are at the core very similar to anyone not wanting change.
hmm…almost time to test the two baklavas. I confess I snuck a taste. Both are good, yet, I really love the pistachio and rosewater much better.
and I am fine not fitting into the norm of social acceptance. It was very odd and uncomfortable for me in that roomful of Greek women glaring at me. (it too 13 Sundays as a stranger for someone to invite me for a coffee and actually talk to me there) but I didn’t give a crap. I sincerely wanted to learn to make baklava. I didn’t care if they thought I was gay, not a woman, or whatever other cultural stigmas they had.
all it took was the blessing of the matriarch, “what is your problem with this man, he is ok!”
the world is great at telling people to be safe and not follow thier dreams. this is ok, if you want to have a life. the question you have to ask yourself, "do i want to get through life? or do i want to live and expereince life?"