Arguing The Toss

Today, during a meeting at work, one of my colleagues decided to share a top culinary tip with us. She’s a pretty smart cookie, so I was curious to know what mind blowing gastronomic trickery she was about to impart.

She smiled, opened her mouth and said:

“The best way to tell if your pasta is cooked properly is to throw it against the fridge and if it sticks, it’s cooked.”

Illogical

After a long pause and a few shared looks of concern for both her mental health and the quality of her spaghetti bolognese, I replied, “Or, you could, y’know, taste it”.

After a few nods of agreement at my introduction of sanity, and some repressed chuckles at the ludicrous nature of what she’d just spouted out of her mouth hole, she sat up in her chair and became very animated.

“I’m serious! It’s the best way to test if your pasta is cooked!”, she insisted.

She was wrong, of course.

“Ask anyone!”, she continued, “Google it!”.

This was a great suggestion because if it’s on the internet, it’s got to be true. Hey, did you know that a duck’s quack doesn’t echo?

So, as we argued the toss (see what I did there?), we decided to Google it and, lo and behold, there were a plethora of videos uploaded by NOT chefs showing that pasta, when thrown at a fridge or a window (or a flat screen TV, or a work colleague’s face) does, in fact, stick.

At this point we argued that under-cooked pasta will also stick because, y’know, starch.

She wasn’t having any of it.

So, as we all went back to our desks, still disputing the issue, she collared the first person we came across and pounced on him; “Hey, how do you test if pasta is cooked properly?”.

He paused for a moment, clearly not expecting to be asked this question today, and replied with, “You throw it at the ceiling and see if it sticks”.

“YES!!” she screamed, victoriously throwing her hands in the air, before turning to us with fingers pointing, “See, I told you! Ha!”.

So let me get this right, your only reliable and factual back up is someone who is clearly NOT Google, and also throws his pasta ON THE CEILING to check if it’s cooked? Not only does his kitchen probably resemble a cave full of stalactites, but he’s also an idiot.

Being half Italian myself, I know how to check if your pasta is cooked; you time it and you taste it; it’s simple really. Hurling your food at a kitchen appliance is not a sure fire way to check how cooked your meal is.

Plus, it’s fucking up my fridge magnets.

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He shoots he fails!

I have never referred back to another person’s blog before, but there’s a first time for everything I guess, like skydiving or licking a pensioner.

I subscribe to a great blog (which I highly recommend) and today she was talking about the stresses of packing a suitcase.  I must admit I’ve never had too much of an issue, but then again I spent a lot of my youth playing Tetris.

Plus, once you’ve been made aware of the ‘socks and pants stuffed into your shoes’ trick it’s safe to say the feeling of smugness overrides the feeling of despair at not being able to fit in yet another t-shirt which you’ll inevitably bring back unworn and full of creases.

The one part of her post that really resonated with me was that moment an item you’ve lost suddenly (and maliciously) turns up after you’ve asked someone to help you look for it.  And I don’t mean you find it quicker, I mean it is sitting there in plain sight where you’ve already looked a dozen times.

Bastard.

This got me thinking about the opposite of that when you’re unable to recreate an awesome moment because you have someone there to witness it.

Case in point…

A few weeks ago I was sat in the break room having a sandwich.  It was late in the afternoon which meant no-one else was in there.

Perfect.

As I finished my sandwich I looked over at the bin, which was about 8 feet to my left, and smiled as I picked up the foil my sandwich had been in and screwed it up into a ball.  Then, with my right arm, I threw it casually sideways over my head without looking and, not only did it go in, it didn’t even touch the sides!

Boom!

I performed an airgrab, accompanied it with something like “Yeah, get in there!” and then went for a high five only to realise no-one was there to witness it.

Cock.

It could have bounced off a cupboard, ricocheted off the fridge, rolled along a shelf and been scissor-kicked into the bin by a passing mouse and it still wouldn’t have made the blindest difference.

No witness means I could have just made it up.

Yet if there HAD been someone there I wouldn’t have been able to hit the bin if my life depended on it.  It may as well be 50 feet wide and house a black hole inside, sucking in the universe, and I still would have missed on an epic scale.

“I got it in last time!”

“Of course you did Dan, sure you did”

ball in bin