Tell me your Funny Not Funny moments?
I’ll go first.
I need to move out.
I need to apply for temporary assistance so that I can move out and find my footing and run a business that is quite literally a newborn, and not tank everything.
I need to apply for assistance which bring up a lot of feelings in itself, and that’s okay, because I’m still doing that thing with my feet, One In Front Of The Other.
So I sit on hold and I do the explaining which leads me to the Marathon Form Filling Out which leads to me waiting by the phone in preparation for my phone call with my assigned social worker.
I do my best to get both kids out the door and on a walk as a distraction to all of us but instead I managed to be midway through a diaper change, pulling up Scarlett’s pants, as my phone rings.
The woman on the end sounds irritated before I get my entire greeting out.
Let me preface this by saying a social worker’s job is a thankless one, God bless America.
So I make sure there’s patience and a smile in my voice.
But there’s neither in her’s.
I’m barely into Line One when she practically barks into the phone-
“No, no. We know the children, are with their father.”
“You’re going to have to meet with the investigator.”
“There’s been a case opened with CPS.”
I applied for food stamps. What? A case? My children are with their father? Their father is in the other room, my baby is in my arms. What CASE?
And then I’m not really following my own words because I’m hysterical.
Sarah (my first name, didn’t you know?) we’ve been over this. You’re going to need to meet with the investigator in person. You have to stop this.
I’ve set the baby down next to his sister and I take my heaving into the bathroom out of sight where I promptly shove my head in between my legs.
A case? Someone called CPS because I want to move out? Because I applied for food stamps?
I tell her I have no idea what she’s talking about. That I want to withdraw my application. That this has been hard enough, if I would have known…
Wait, she says. Tell me your last name again?
Truckey, I tell her.
Oh my god. Oh god. Sarah? Are you okay? Sarah? Oh god. I’m so sorry. Ma’am, are you okay? I’m so sorry.
I had you mistaken with somebody else.
And that’s the end of that story. I mean, honestly, that’s the end. Because that was the moment, the human error moment, that broke a tiny piece of me that I don’t think I’ll ever get back. A human error, one that was resolved, and yet I found myself literally choking back bouts of tears the remainder of the day, never being able to fully recover.
I am so sorry. But also, no, you don’t qualify.
But, are you okay? Are you going to be okay?
I don’t know, am I?
Of course I am. Honestly, 15 minutes after the fact I managed to find the morbid humor in it as I usually do, but every time I revisit it, I wanted to cry all over again.
When The Going Makes You Cry
So, there’s that.
It was wild and snatched all of the air from my lungs, and was a simple mistake in the end, but it managed to really fuck up my day and my spirits. When your days are ruined and your spirits are low, the only thing that will do is pasta. Despite having the life vacuumed out of every crevice of my body, I was determined to make, but not bake, something with my hands.
A very simple marinara was the answer, and I salted it with my tears.
Funny, not funny.
This marinara is simple and straightforward. Fresh basil is a must, so is all the olive oil.
A few splashes of red wine vinegar at the very end is always the move.
- 2, 28 oz cans San Marzano crushed tomatoes
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 20 cloves of garlic, peeled and thinly sliced
- 1 cup fresh basil eaves, packed
- 1/2 Tbsp salt, plus more to taste
- Red pepper flake (optional)
- Pour oil in a heavy bottomed pot (I love a Dutch oven), add sliced garlic and pepper flake if using
- Set heat to medium low
- Let garlic steep in the oil, don't fret about it not initially "cooking" you want to do this part really slow to infuse the olive oil, and also to not burn the garlic (burnt garlic = gross)
- It will start sizzling around the 5 minute mark. Keep an eye on it, and let it sizzle and infuse the oil.
- Cook for another 5 minutes, until the oil has started turning to a golden color and the garlic has a little color to it as well
- Add the tomatoes. Slosh out any extra with a little water
- Add salt, turn to medium heat, slowly let it come to a simmer.
- This is where you can take the reigns. Like any sauce, this one is best if it can cook low and slow for awhile (re: several hours) Don't have the time? That's okay, at this point, you can have dinner on the table in less than an hour.
- After it has simmered for about 45 minutes, add the basil, and allow it to infuse the sauce for at least 15 minutes.
- Taste for seasoning. Try a couple splashes of red wine vinegar before getting carried away with tons of salt.
- Get creative. This is a really great solid vehicle for other things. Throw a parmesan rind in it, add some pancetta to the garlic, toss in some veggies. The sauce is your oyster.