Understanding Self-Loathing Using Omelets

When it comes to convincing myself I’m worthless, there’s nobody better than me. I can look at all my accomplishments, my work, my reviews from my students, my cat who still thinks she’s hungry even though she ate half an hour ago, my degree, and I can understand that all of those things are neat and good and probably tell someone something about how they think I should feel about myself. But those things don’t matter. Those things aren’t how I measure my self-worth. I use omelets.

The omelet is a simple dish requiring a few eggs and whatever you can shove inside it without feeling guilty. Vegetables, leafy greens, the quaking souls of the unjustly damned, and cheese are all delightful options for starting a day off with a semi-healthy meal. Omelets are simple, easy to cook, quite satisfying to look at, and I have fucked up more of them than anyone who owns an apron should.

I cast a dark pall of inadequacy on the prestigious tradition of apron wearing.

What does financial stability matter if I can’t just get a few mushrooms and spinach to play well enough together so they don’t compromise the weak, spongy structural integrity of the eggs? What use is validation from my students if I always cut too many damn vegetables and am left with a bowl of shredded leaves and fungus after I’m done cooking? How can I call myself a stable, functional adult for whom cooking is getting pretty important, if I can’t manage to cook an omelet without accidentally cooking scrambled eggs with vegetables?

Every superhero movie has the low point in which the hero mopes around town and has to overcome relatable struggles to demonstrate for the audience that if the hero is just like them at their worst, then it’s perfectly rational to project yourself into the hero’s identity when they’re at their best. Nefarious tactics to promote vicarious wish fulfillment and expensive CGI delusions of grandeur aside, I have been at that low point. If an audience were watching the movie of my life, a few months ago would have been the point in which everything was going well for me until I fucked it up. The camera would spend more time lingering on the damp, wretched emotion written on my face, the lighting would be dimmer, the music would probably have a piano. Everyone watching would know that my life is in shambles because I couldn’t cook an omelet.

I would stare gloomily out windows like a CEO whose couldn’t be repaired from the damage a flock of Eagles did on the engine

The sad period would linger. I would pass through rewarding hurdles in life, but they would mean little. The audience would know that such tangible successes like getting a job or finally finding a conditioner that works for me don’t matter. They’d know I had found something beyond those accomplishments to judge myself on, and I was not worthy.

But then something changes. A new pan, real butter, a better understanding of proportions of vegetable to egg, whatever it was, our hero has found a way to do it. From the ashes of a thousand burned eggs, comes forth an artistic masterpiece, a wonderland of flavor, a perfect hemisphere of egg and vegetable.

Yeah, so what if this whole post was to justify sharing a picture of my omelet. It was quite tasty, and I’m not ashamed even a little bit. Nope. Not at all. 

I do not measure my worth by such arbitrary things as the direction my life is going or the things I’ve come through. I measure it by how delicious my weird egg-vegetable half-discs are because no matter how much I’ve done, I’m always going to find something stupid to justify my self-loathing, but for now I’ve got this omelet thing down.

6 Replies to “Understanding Self-Loathing Using Omelets”

  1. I’m so proud of you for moving up in the world and learning how to cook. It’s a useful life skill. Omelettes are not too bad once you get the hang of them and use the right equipment. I wonder what it was like to make an omelette before the days of nonstick coating. I bet they were fattier, just fried in a sea of butter. Or they stuck to the bottom if the cook didn’t know any better. You may think this is nasty, but in Maine my home state there are people who like to fill their omelettes with jam. You could go sweet or savory or spicy. No idea if you have Stonewall Kitchen products where you live, but they make some interesting jams, like with jalapeños. If you can find a jalapeño jam that would go great with cheese as a double filling! Now, try to impress me. Fry an egg over easy so the yolk isn’t broken yet has only a slightly runny texture, not a thin liquid, but rather a sort of gravy consistency. The white should be fully cooked through yet not browned in any way. If you can do this, you can make eggs the way someone I dated liked them. Ẅhen you get it right the first time, like I could, you can tell them to go screw themselves and lose your number and be the most revered three day fling the turd ever had because nobody ever cooked that egg like mama until you came along.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. There’s just so much here that I want in my life. At first, jam filled omelettes sounds wrong, but I’ve had jalapeno jam and I see now it belongs with eggs. I’m closing in on that perfect egg. I’ve got my yolk consistency down to a sultry gravy, but the issue of browning bamboozles me. I’ll investigate different oils and temperatures because I want to be able to cook an egg that can leave this much of an impression on someone.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I truly hope you don’t bother. I did bother because I dated a moron who was fussy. I can eat a fried egg any old way, just as long as the yolk is runny and I can dip my toast in it. So glad I corrected my dating error!

        Liked by 1 person

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