Ok so while tart has a few meanings I feel it’s my duty to offer this community service related to the word tart.
When I was younger (sheesh I make it sound like I’m an old fart) we used to have regular drinking sessions, not every night just Monday after I finished coaching the kids, Wednesday after work, Friday after we played cricket, Sunday after we played volleyball and Saturday when it was a special event, you know special like we woke up still breathing on Saturday morning after Friday nights bender. Saturday morning was also kids cricket and I probably shouldn’t admit how many times their coach took the field with an alcohol limit higher than it was legal to drive with. At one stage I offered to move into the Indoor Sports centre because I could walk to my shop from there and I spent so much time in the place I may as well have lived there.
Had I actually moved into the Centre I would never have learnt a valuable life lesson because the ingredients of that lesson would not have been put in front of me. What ingredients am I talking about? Well in this case it was whatever we could find in the pantry.
After polishing off half a case of beer and a bottle of Jack Daniels/Jim Beam between us (lucky we had good jobs because even 20 years ago a case of beer was $30 and Bourbon around $35 a bottle) we got hungry so at midnight before bed we’d trot off to the pantry to make something. How we didn’t burn the house down is anyone’s guess but we needed food, how we didn’t wake the kids…actually we did. How we actually survived who knows but we did.
We cooked up whatever the hell we could find in cans, all in one pot, all cooked for the same time and usually mixed with eggs, cause one needs protein. If it tasted good it was called it Syphilis, if it tasted bad we called it Gonorrhoea (don’t judge us we were drunk 🙂 ). I don’t know why we bothered naming them because we could never remember what was in them, even waking the next morning and looking at the empty cans and rubbish wasn’t always an accurate indication of what we mixed into the midnight snack.
So that was just a silly lead in to the single biggest lesson that I learn from cooking while drunk and here it is. Check once, check twice and check three times which white grain substance you grab when it comes to making coffee because no amount of sugar, honey, maple syrup, can sweeten up a cup of coffee that has been made with two spoonfuls of salt instead of sugar. The tartness of that much salt in any size mug can not be killed.
Yeah yeah I know what you’re thinking, why after one taste of salted coffee would one consider trying to sweeten it rather than tip it out and make another one but remember the keyword DRUNK!
A mildly interesting aside to this story: The two kids in the house that we often woke while being drunk were 10 and 7 at the time.
I coached the 10 year old at cricket and despite my inability to actually play, apparently kids need a leader not an expert player and we did focus a lot on being good sports not good players, he not only ended up in England playing county cricket he’s now a Emergency Room/Triage nurse so I did play a part in the success of someone 🙂
The 7 year old was probably the first kid I ever attached myself too and she attached to me like no other. We played, wrestled and most importantly at 7 years old she knew how to mix a bourbon and coke that didn’t kill me or knock me on my arse after one sip. Still to this day if anyone hurt that girl I’d be standing behind her father with the second cricket bat.
As pay back for waking those two up in the wee hours of the morning I would often be woken by one or both of then running through the lounge room, airborne from the doorway and landing on me. Its great feeling when you’re either hung over or trying to avoid a hang over before going to work. An even greater feeling is hearing their mother tell them to jump on me because we kept her awake as well and then her cackling laughter as I groaned with two kids jumping on me.
That 7 year old little girl is now a mother of two kids, her eldest son is in our eldest daughter’s class at school and her youngest son starts kindergarten with our youngest daughter next year. She hates me reminding her son that at his age his mother used to jump on me in bed and he should pay her back but it still amazes me to think that the 7 year old kid I knew 24 years ago while I was suppose to be acting like a responsible adult now has kids the same age as ours.
Her mother and I did have a bit of a fall out 10 years go because her she had trouble getting along with my wife but we do still talk and email, god knows how any of us survived all that drinking but we can at least laugh about the co-incidence of our kids being the same age as their grand kids.