Thursday, September 10, 2009

For Love not Money

By Belinda

It was Labour Day weekend and, as usual, I had plans. I sometimes wonder what it would be like to live a life that doesn't have plans, but I don't think I could do it.

One plan that wasn't on my agenda was making rhubarb custard pie, but then, as well as having more plans than I could possibly accomplish, my plans are fluid. This is probably why I ended up on the Monday morning of Labour Day weekend, listening to a book on my walkman; "The Procrastinator's Handbook," (read by the author, Rita Emmett;) and baking a rhubarb custard pie. Rita Emmett sounds like a very nice lady. She has a comforting voice and makes me feel as if I might have hope, if only I would heed her advice.

Brenda had been working the pie angle for weeks, during which my spare time was occupied with a spaghetti supper fundraiser. Brenda loves making people happy, especially those she is fond of, and she is fond of Kevin, the maintenance man at the college where she works. She just knew that a pie would make him very happy. Specifically, one of her mom's pies.

So on Monday, I caved. I pillaged the rhubarb patch, and it coughed up just enough to fill 3 cups--perfect for a pie. Upstairs, the room that I meant to organize lay in disarray for a little longer, while I hoped that Rita's wise words would sink in while I baked, and rearrange the way my brain works.

When Brenda came home in the afternoon, there lay the pie, golden and flaky, waiting to be delivered to its destination the next morning.

The pie made Kevin's day, and, as Brenda knew he would, he shared it. She said that fights were breaking out over pieces of it. Barb, her co-worker, who is a baker par excellence herself, raised one eyebrow and said, "Your mom made the pastry?" then gave a nod and said casually, "It's good."

Brenda had to tell Kevin that I was over fifty and married--to her DAD. We roared with laughter at the fun that pie caused. Apparently I could get rich by selling them--but I'm past getting rich by standing over a hot stove.

Funnily enough, when I finally returned to the clutter in the room I was planning to organize on Monday, I came across a little writing pad. I had made some notes in it when Peter, Sue, Paul and I had sat down one day a few years ago and actually discussed starting a pie business. We didn't get very far because Peter had just left a position as production manager for a logistics company, and when he started doing a time and motion analysis of the pie production process, I knew somewhere deep in my soul that this was not going to work.

The name we came up with was scribbled on the note pad:
Original Sin Fruit Pies: Everybody has a Vice--Make us Yours

And as a sideline, we thought we could have: Fallen Angel Cake.

The next plan I have is teaching Brenda how to bake a pie.


Julie said...

Oh! What stories you both will have from teaching/making pies with Brenda. The stories that Brena will have to share in years to come will be so precious

Susan said...

This was so funny! Not slap-myself-on-the-leg-fall-on-the-floor-laughing funny, but deep down joy-giving, chuckling-in-my-heart-all-day-long funny. Which is the best kind of funny of all.

Marilyn said...

Oh, I LOVED this. Can't decide which part I liked best, - that you were listening to a book about procrastination, that Brenda was "working the pie angle for weeks," Peter's time and motion analysis or the names!

Great story! Thanks for the morning chuckle, as Susan said "all day long funny."

Suz said...

You know what "they" say "Life is what happens when you are making plans." I loved your story and you know the unorganized room will always be there waiting for you. I also loved the idea for a pie business. You aught to read "the E Myth" (I can't remember the auther) but it talks about just such a business and the pitfalls and successes.

Dave Hingsburger said...

PIE! You do make the most wonderful pies. Your pie store would have been the brothel of pastry ... um, maybe that's the wrong way to put it. rhubarb, rhubarb, rhubarb

Belinda said...

Well! Equal to a nice slice of pie, is a good bellow of laughter. I feel very happy to have offered up both to my friends this week. Thank you for enjoying.

And Dave--Original Sin Fruit Pies--from the brothel of pastry? Ha ha!