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This is what Mariah got me for Christmas.  Isn’t it awesome?  I love it, and I wore it yesterday for our Huge Amazing Family Dinner Party.  People there liked it very much too.  The thing you have to understand is that when I wear an apron like this, there’s nothing threatening about it.  It’s a promise, a very nice one.  Really.  You’ll like it.

I still remember the time I was cooking dinner for a friend who had done me a favor.  He e-mailed me beforehand to ask about the menu because he is, “a picky pain in the butt” when it comes to food.  I was a little taken aback at this.  Usually how it goes is I make whatever I want, and the people eating it are overwhelmed with gratitude.  That’s just the way it is when you can cook like I can.

This has backfired on me on occasion.  There was the year that I cooked dinner every night for my family.  I planned out all the menus ahead of time and posted them on the refrigerator door.  For April Fools I listed the most disgusting foods I could think of, gleefully anticipating the outrage.  I think Mackerel Cooked In Blood was on the menu.  To my surprise, my entire family seemed to take it in stride.  Not one comment, not one question.  They didn’t even seem to notice that the menu for April 1 was different.  I couldn’t understand it, but I thought perhaps they were conspiring to prank me back.  On the day, I served a regular, tasty dinner.  They ate it with gusto, and then someone asked, “Hey, weren’t we going to get mackerel something tonight?” I looked at them with exasperation.  “You didn’t really think I was going to make that, were you?  Mackerel cooked in blood?  Come on!” They kinda looked at each other, and then Boy-O (then about ten years old) piped up, “Well, yeah, it looked disgusting.  But you’ve put odd things on the menu before and we always liked them.  We figured that whatever it was, it would be good.”

You’ll eat it, and you’ll like it.  Promise.