Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Garlic chicken with a side of sacrilege

"Scenes from Supper Tables"
A Play in Two Acts
Inspired by a painting by Jacopo Bassano (1515-1592) and the conversation at dinner last night

Act I
Setting: An upper room in a house in Jerusalem. The lighting is subdued. Thirteen men are seated around a rectangular table.


Peter: What did he say? Something about one of us betraying him?
Judas: I didn’t hear anything.
John: Zzzzzzz…..
Bartholomew: Aw, man. Lamb’s head for dinner again?
Matthew: Hey, there’s no plates. Who was supposed to bring the plates?
Philip: Not me. I brought the half empty bottle of wine and one glass.
Simon: I think James was supposed to bring plates.
James: Not me. Maybe the other James.
James (the other): I brought plates last week.
Thomas: I doubt it.
John: Zzzzzz…
Andrew: Scoot over. Why is everybody squished onto one side of the table?
Philip: Who brought the dog?
John: Zzzzz….smarfl....leper....goat cheese….snort….zzzzz.

(Lights fade out.)

Act II
Setting: A kitchen in a suburban home somewhere in Utah. Two adults and three children are seated around an oval table. A fourth child (the baby) sits on her father’s lap and spends the scene trying to pull his plate onto the floor. A heavy cloud of garlic hangs in the air. The table is set for dinner with dishes of garlic chicken, baked potatoes and mixed vegetables.

Child #2: (inspecting the inch-thick layer of ranch dressing on his baked potato) I need more ranch dressing.
Father: I think you have enough already. It’s supposed to be a garnish.
Child #2: But I can still taste the potato.
Mother: So how do you guys all like my new chicken recipe? I thought it would be fun to try something different.
Child #1: (with desperation in his voice) Do I have to eat it?
Child #2: (dutifully) I tasted it, Mom.
Mother: Well?
Child #2: It was gross.
Child #3: Mine’s too hot.
Mother: Why don’t you eat your potato while it’s cooling off?
Child #3: Okay. Please pass the ranch dressing.
Mother / Pitiful Martyr: Why do I bother? Nobody likes my food.
Father: What about me? I had two pieces of chicken. I thought it was fine.
Mother: Thanks dear. But you’d eat anything I made, even if it were blackened to a crisp.
Baby: Gaaah…emmm…buh! (translation: Don’t lump me in with my ungrateful brothers. I am really looking forward to garlic flavored breastmilk tomorrow.)
Child #1: (having spent the scene peeling the skin off his potato, poking it with a fork and eating one baby carrot corn-on-the-cob style by nibbling around the outside edges and leaving a little vein behind) Can I be done now?
Child #3: (getting down from his seat for the 17th time to chase sparkly things or poke his sister) I’m done too.
Mother: But you haven’t even tried your chicken.
Child #3: It’s too cold.
Mother: (exasperated) Forget it! From now on I’m just going to cook Ramen Noodles for every meal!
Children: (in unison) Yeah!

(Mother keels over and dies from fatal heart wound.)

CURTAIN.



5 comments:

scribbit said...

Our alternate meal of choice is always PB&J. Sometimes I'll leave it as an option, sometimes I like to see them suffer.

TARA said...

I once saw an exasperated mother with a very picky eater child actually grab his head and try to force him to chew by manipulating his jaw with her hands! Eeeek! You can imagine how effective that was.....

Julie said...

Michelle,
Yup, we do the PB&J too but the staple of choice lately is the nutritionally vacuous Ramen.

Tara, (HI!)
That wasn't me (was it?) No I usually don't resort to physically force feeding my kids. I use other methods like bribery, guilt trips, threats, etc. FYI those work about as well as the jaw manipulation.

The Lazy Organizer said...

I'm thinking about getting feeding tubes for my kids. Then I don't have to do all that work of shoving the food down their throats, I can just pour it in.

The only difference at my house is that my husband complains as loudly as the rest of them.

Actually my kids are less picky than they used to be. Either they're getting older or my cooking is getting better.

Tell me the truth. Did you like the chicken?

Julie said...

Lara,
You'll have to share some recipes with me!
Truthfully I thought the chicken was not bad. But it wasn't worth the garlic fumes which still hang in the air. I should have known what I was getting into when it called for 5 cloves.