I know my college days are past and I’m supposed to be maturing in my habits, but this living alone isn’t terribly encouraging to that. My mother recently bemoaned not having made her bed for a day (possibly even two!) and began singing to herself to block me out when I sympathized by revealing how lax I’ve been in that department for the past three months. For the first time in my life, I’m drinking out of the milk carton (hey, I buy the cute little half-gallons now and am less afraid of dropping them on my head during the procedure), eating 50% of my meals sitting on my bed, and experimenting with the cooking powers of an electric kettle. Using a bowl and plate together with multiple applications of freshly boiled water, I have determined that I can cook nearly any type of pasta without leaving my hermit hole.
Yesterday, however, I sank to a new low. Last week, I purchased the necessary ingredients for baking brownies, feeling that I might have need of therapeutic baking in the near future. Yesterday, I took advantage of my foresight and used baking therapy to create a batch of brownies to be used as chocolate therapy. It was a very calming experience, it’s true, and I washed all my mixing bowl and wooden spoon immediately afterward in an extremely mature and prompt manner. We won’t discuss how many times I licked my fingers during that process, since that’s irrelevant, really. I condensed the 9×13 pan worth of batter into a single 9″ cake round, since that was the closest baking dish I had handy, and when it was finished baking, I …. well, I took a fork and ate them straight from the pan.
I don’t want to mislead you, I’ve eaten brownies from the pan before. When made at home, they will frequently sit out on the counter with a cookie spatula in the pan for quick and easy access. But there is still a pretense of civilized behavior, as we cut out a square of brownie and separate it from the remaining block of chocolate fudginess. Yesterday, I devolved past pretense. It was me, cross-legged on the bed, and the pan of chocolate in my lap. My first bites were dug directly out of the center of the pan and I didn’t stop until there was an Australia shaped hole. Looking back, I’m shocked to recall how far I fell – not even eating in a regular polygon shape.
But it gets worse still. Yesterday I wanted brownies for lunch, but I resisted, instead consuming an entire head of steamed broccoli before allowing myself to move on to the chocolate. This morning, upon awakening, even those inhibitions had dissolved and, still pajama’d, hair uncombed, bed unmade, I once more fell upon the brownies. I ate around the edges, I ate from the inside edges, there was no pattern or reason behind my attack.
Now you know the embarrassing tale of my chocolate-driven de-evolution. I am a living warning – the stuff is not safe. Each episode with this batch of brownies has taken me further down the dark hole of the etiquette-less. I look back and remember that I was reading Miss Manner’s Guide to Proper Behavior only a few short months ago and blush at how far I have fallen. And, like a dark cloud at the edge of my consciousness, is the remainder of the pan, sitting in my room, calling to me. Next time, I might not even remember to use the fork.