“I reached out to tap him [linesman Harv Hildebrandt] on the head and my hand caught in his hair. He was wearing a toupee which came off in my hand, so I just dropped it on the ice. The funny thing is that Harv reached down and put it on backwards.” - WCHL New Westminster Barons coach Ernie McLean in 1976 (league was not amused and ordered McLean to post a $5,000 personal performance bond)
—  (via Hockey Hall of Fame)

I have a new article up on Chapelboro.com!  I’m really excited for this one, because it’s my first restaurant review, which pretty much is the culmination of a dream I’ve had for most of my adult life.  I never thought I’d be able to do it because, well, working as a writer is a hard gig to get, and I imagine that getting work as a food writer is even harder. Chapelboro is definitely a labor of love thing right now, but I couldn’t feel any better if I had gotten this published in the New York Times.

This probably seems weird to some readers.  I know that I get more than a few sideways looks from even friends and family over how much I nerd out of cooking and eating.  But for me, food has always been more than just fuel.  It’s almost like meditation for me.  I’ve dealt with anxiety issues for most of my adult life, and food is a really good way for me to bring my attention to the present moment.  While I’m cooking, I have to be present in the repetitive motions of chopping or stirring, or I’ll end up losing a finger or burning the sauce.  While I’m eating, if I’m really trying to pay attention to the flavors and smells and textures of the dish, I can’t focus on anything else.  I can’t think about my to do list, or how I could have said that thing I regret in a better way, or do I look ok in this top.  It’s just the present moment and what is in front of me.  I get to meditate three times a day.  Minimum.

And at the same time, food connects me to the roots of who I am.  It helps me connect with friends over lunch, or with Evan as we plan and cook dinner together.  It connects me to my past just as much.  I learned to cook from my grandmother; she would strap me to a bar stool as she cooked when I was little, giving me little child-friendly tasks.  When she passed away at the beginning of my senior year of high school, I was devastated.  I had so much left to learn.  I’m still learning from her, turning to her recipe box, filled with cards with her spidery script every Christmas as I make cookies, bringing out her cast iron skillet with decades of seasoning when I make bacon on Saturday mornings.  And in those moments, I feel the most like myself, and the most connected with her, rooted in my family’s traditions.

Food connects us to ourselves and each other, and I can’t think of anything I’d rather write about.