Monday, September 19, 2011

Slumming it

Sometimes Josh gets in a mood where he wants to understand what it's like to be poor. I don't think he really gets that it's different for everyone. One family's priorities are not another family's. I try to explain it anyway feeling it's somehow important, although I don't exactly know why. Sometimes Josh jokes about it, and I'm not sure if he genuinely thinks it's funny that we walked around wearing sneakers that had holes in them or he's doing that whole "laughing because I'm nervous" thing.

This weekend when we were food shopping, Josh asked me to make a "poor people meal." I didn't even get into how insulting it is to say that, because sometimes you have to pick your battles. Really, the least expensive meal that's still healthy is rice and beans. You can only eat that so many days in a row until you opt to just skip dinner rather than eat it one more time. That's where "chicken-n-shit" comes in. I'd get two chicken breasts, chop them up, toss them in a frying pan with whatever vegetables were still left in the fridge, cook up some rice or something, and call it a day.

Josh nodded. "Make it?" I knew there was no rice at home, so I grabbed a box of Rice-a-Roni since it was on sale. Looking through the fridge I found green pepper, tomato and broccolini. Josh sat on the counter watching me cook the whole time. Dani came in to see what was going on. She took one look at the stove and turned to Josh. "Are we breaking up?" He had to reassure her we're not, and got all awkward trying to explain why he'd want to slum it when we don't have to. "You could have at least used brown rice," were Danielle's parting words.

I handed Josh a bowl of food. He ate the whole thing, saying it was good. Sure it's good - when it's all a big joke with your girlfriend. Not so good when there aren't lots of options and each day when you come home you're not sure what food will still be there. Josh can go enjoy the high sodium rice on his own.


Purplefroglet said...

Pulp wrote a song called "Common people" which comes from a similar place to your post (although it clearly doesn't represent your own experiences), perhaps you should play it to Josh and see if he gets the hint!

Lil'Sis said...

You truly have the patience of a saint.

OTRgirl said...

Maybe it's his way of trying to put himself in your shoes? Albeit, done a bit sloppily on his part. You're nice to have made the meal anyway.

Yankee, Transferred said...

We called that "Refrigerator Cleanout" when my kids were little and I had no money.