Monday July 19th, 2010

The exercise:

Include garlic in some way in your writing. Bonus points for lack of vampires.

Kat and I picked up our marriage license today - we're now legally allowed to get married!

But only in the next ninety days.

If we don't, we get to pay for another ninety day license.

I don't understand a lot of things. This is just one of them.

Mine:

I could smell the garlic roasting as soon as I stepped out of the car in the driveway. Immediately my guard was up, and I had to fight the temptation to get back in and drive off into the sunset. But, foolishly, I entered the house to try to talk her down yet again.

The stench was overwhelming indoors and set my eyes to watering instantly. Blinking rapidly, I forced my way to the kitchen where I found her waiting for me.

"Welcome home, honey," she said, a plastic grin firmly affixed to her face as she offered me a plate of toast slathered in garlic butter. I almost smiled back, impressed with her subtler than usual strategy. Normally she'd just start throwing cloves in the hope that one would manage to go down my throat.

I should never have told her I was allergic to that foul bulb.

3 Comments:

Greg said...

Clearly Vancouver worries that if it doesn't regulate when its citizens can marry they'll just be off doing it all the time, and before you know it, Osoyoos will be the Salt Lake City of Canada. Marriage licence always makes me pause though, it reminds me muchly of 'dog licence.' Surely the marriage licence should come with an exam to check you know how to marry properly :)

I love garlic, as it happens; I have a tin of homemade garlic paste in the fridge at the moment for use in Indian curries. The cold does nothing to diminish the smell, so it's very tightly sealed! I do like the little twist at the end of your tale though (and I'd eat that garlic toast).

Mine:
Alli sat down at her desk. It was a new school, a new term, new people. She allowed herself a tiny smile; she'd chosen a desk right in the middle of the room. She'd be surrounded by the other kids, safe in the crowd. It wasn't somewhere she usually got to be.
The classroom filled up in spurts, children coming in in groups of three, four and five as they met up with their friends at the lockers first and walked to class together. Desks were picked out based on these groupings, and no-one flinched away from Alli, or made any comments.
Yet. She knew it would come.
"Hi!" A blonde-haired boy with a large boil on the side of his nose was smiling at her. "Are you new here?"
"Yes." She nodded and smiled, willing herself to be less shy. He sniffed.
The teacher came in at that moment and sat the class down, and laid the register in front of him. He called out the name of each child in surname-alphabetical order, until he came to Alli.
"Allium... Sativum?" he said. He looked up, and found her. "Really?"
She sighed, knowing that by tomorrow everybody would have noticed the permanent odour, a reflection of her name, and said: "Yes."

Heather said...

Marc- Funny, especially as I frequently threaten my husband with serving seafood and forgetting to mention its presence. Being he is allergic, it would have certain effects the woman in your story seems to desire.

Greg- Poor, poor girl. It was hard enough for one of my school mates to be named Love Lee Pretzel. Pretty much the only reason I remember her is because of her name.
-------
Amelia looked over her pot, the eyes of her audience glued to her movements. She enjoyed these moments in the spotlight, but her favorite part was after she was done. The murmurs and known affects acted like a bottle of good champagne. It made her giddy and a bit tipsy.

"After your base has simmered for at least 30 minutes, add in your more solid ingredients. I prefer to start with potatoes and carrots. They tend to hold up the best." Amelia stirred in the bowl of precut carrots and potatoes. The more novice in the audience took notes while the more celebrated nodded in agreement. She continued on about how the texture of those vegetables should feel and how that could be roughly translated into time. As she spoke, she added in other ingredients: celery, peas, corn, flour to thicken the liquid, salt and pepper, a few other spices.

"And finally, the ingredient many of you have been waiting for me to disclose." She paused dramatically, her hand holding the bowl over the pot and the steam clouding the thick glass. "My secret ingredient." She poured the contents from the bowl having measured it precisely just before the show. Cleaning her hands on her apron. "Are there any questions?"

Several hands shot up around the room. A wisp of a woman in the front row spoke first. "Am I mistaken in saying that minced garlic was in the bowl?" she asked both confident and uncertain at the same time. her hand lowered as Amelia appeared flustered momentarily.

"Oh my. Yes. It was garlic. Approximately 2 tablespoons." She smiled broadly as the remaining hands in the room lowered. She didn't add that 1 of those tablespoons was actually castor bean.

Marc said...

Greg - I think the whole thing is rather ridiculous. I'd love to know what exactly my $100 is paying for - and why it's only good for 90 days! That makes no sense to me.

The prompt was inspired by harvesting a bucketful of garlic from the garden, I guess I forgot to mention that in the post :P

For some reason I really love that 'Really?'

Heather - my sister's husband is allergic to shellfish, I'm sure she does the same :)

I had to double check what a castor bean was, but at least it was what I expected!

Love the setup and all the little details. I liked how the novices were scribbling but the knowledgeable ones just nodded :)