Doggie Bags Are For Mommies Too

I’m sure that when my children decided they would become pescatarians, the impact that would have on their Mom did not enter their thought processes. Somehow their memories of me watching ‘Diners, Driveins & Dives’ or ‘Food Nation’ and salivating over all of the yummy burgers, ribs and steak sandwiches did not translate into the thought, ‘How is Mom going to handle this?’ Of course not! It’s a new millennium and as a Mom in this millennium, I am expected to be supportive, affirming and magically able to create pescatarian menus for every meal from the fateful decision announcement day forward. Well, I’m trying: swapping lentils for chop meat in chilis and burritos, diced tofu for chicken in stirfries, and parsnips for bacon (see prior Sans Corned Beef post). The result is an overwhelming sense of meat deprivation that over these past several months has forced me to steal from my dog. I confess here knowing that my cockapoo can’t read but let me explain. The night before I decided that a nutritious and vegetarian tofu and vegetable stir fry would be that evenings entree, my husband was at a men’s pub night where they were serving him and his colleagues (who must have been a bunch of cowboys) 24 ounce porterhouse steaks (yes, two dozen ounces of rare, perfectly grilled, juicy, salted, over an inch high, slices of delectable-ness). He returned from that meat-feast with leftovers wrapped up by the kitchen in aluminum foil. The next evening after I fed my pescatarians the delicious and nutritious vegetable and tofu stirfry (with ‘Emperor’s purple rice – thank you Costco) and as I was pushing it around on my plate, I remembered the doggie bag on the shelf in the refrigerator. I leaped up, throwing the shiny aluminum lump on the counter, and unwrapped it like a child opening their most anticipated present for Christmas. Inside the crumpled aluminum were a few t-bones and on top of them rectangular slices of steak. I claimed the slices for myself and told the cockapoo, ‘Sorry but the stuff on the bones is yours – Mama gets the sliced pieces because I need them more than you!’ I took them to the sink, rinsed them off, placed them in a frying pan for a few minutes just long enough to kill germs but not enough to turn them medium rare then placed them on my plate all while my cockapoo watched and waited dumbfounded. Although I knew I had sunk to a new low, I was as happy and content as Guy Fieri (or Adam Richman for that matter) biting into a masterfully created meat masterpiece. We might have to call those restaurant souvenirs ‘Mommy Bags’ from now on.