Saturday, September 8, 2012

Toto, Pteradactyl Cats, Tomato Salsa, and Jason

Last week I had a brilliant idea.  I recently bought this new kick-ass Ninja blender and while the thing is awesome for making smoothies, I wanted to try making something new.  Let me just say that I LOVE fresh cilantro.  I could eat it by handful.  But sometimes it needs to be mixed with something.....enter the SALSA.

When we were ordering groceries the other day, I carefully researched salsa recipes online and added the following items to my online shopping cart:
  • Fresh tomatoes
  • Fresh cilantro
  • Limes
  • Red onion
  • Fresh jalapenos
  • Fresh serrano peppers
  • Fresh garlic
Sounds good, right?  Right!

This is totally NOT what my salsa looked like.

So while I had all the necessary ingredients, I didn't really think through my idea.  I chopped the onion in half and threw it in, threw in a whole clove of garlic and all the other fresh ingredients.....including the tomatoes.

I pressed the button on my Ninja and within seconds everything had turned into SALSA BABY FOOD!  Yeah.  I realize now that I should have chopped the tomatoes by hand.  They were complete mush.

So today I had a second chance.  I recently met a neighbor at bus stop.  Our sons ride the middle school bus together.  Jason, the father, talks about his garden a lot and first he asked me if I'd like to come to his house and see his cucumbers, (Yeah, it's not what you think....) then he asked me if I'd like some of his cucumbers (still not what you think...)

Yesterday he arrived at our house unannounced. During the work day.  While THE LION TAMER and I were working.....  He brought a bag of fresh produce from his garden.  He apologized for not having any cucumbers, but he did have fresh Roma tomatoes, fresh jalapenos, and fresh serrano peppers.

So while I was making small talk and being polite, all I could think about was SALSA.  I knew I still had onions and cilantro in the fridge, but I also knew the clock was on countdown. I had a work conference call in 30 minutes.  Would I have enough time to chop everything and get it in the fridge before the call?

I made small talk for a few more minutes and then thanked him again for the wonderful produce. I slowly started to walk toward the doorway.  Instead of following,  he proceeded to tell me about the different strains of green peppers and which ones thrive in certain soil conditions and temperatures.

I decided to be a little more direct.  I apologized and told him I had a conference call in 25 minutes.  That's when he sat down in the middle of my kitchen floor and said that my black pug dog looked a lot like Toto.  Then he cackled like a witch and said "I'm going to get you my little Pretty!"  In my dog's face.  And then he did it again.

Not to be ignored, my fawn pug went over and pawed at Jason's leg.  She wanted attention too!  Jason ignored her and cackled at the black pug again.  The fawn pug pawed again.  Jason told her that he refuses to acknowledge negative behavior.  He cackled at the black pug one last time and then turned to the fawn pug and whispered in ear ear.  I didn't really get what he was doing until he turned to me and told me that he's watched every single episode of The Dog Whisperer.

And then I was smacked in the face.  No, not by Jason.  He was incredibly sweet and harmless.  I was smacked in the face by my own lack of observation and the realization that Jason has Aspergers.

 Here I am - the mother of a child who has Aspergers, the wife of a man who *sometimes* admits he has Aspergers - and I was being a judgmental, impatient ass.

At that point, I said "to hell with the conference call".  Seriously, I said it out loud.  No one heard me though.  My husband had come in the room and he and Jason were debating the theory that cats evolved from dinosaurs - specifically Pteradactyls.  They also talked about gene mutation and virus evolution and antibiotic resistance and encephalitis and strep strains and the version of syphilis that has no cure.

For Jason

Today I finally had time to make the salsa.  And the tomatoes didn't turn to mush.  I put the large bowl in the fridge so the spices can blend together.  Tomorrow I'm going to take it to Jason's house.  He wants me to meet his wife.  I want to see if we have anything in common.