By Katia Protsenko
Politics & Culture Editor
It’s dawn and I’m wide awake.
As I lay in bed, I can’t stop thinking long enough to convince my eyes to close. On any other occasion I would get up and find something to eat, but this morning I’m not hungry.
This column has kept my world centered around food — I have cooked, eaten and thought about food more than ever before because I had something concrete to put that energy toward, and it has made me happier than I could have imagined.
But I’m leaving soon, and something besides food is taking up my thoughts.
I can’t stop thinking about the people who have made my quarter.
This is for the people that you have in your life. I may not know their names, but I have some ideas for what to feed them:
For your identical twin. Under some strange series of circumstance, you have fallen into each other’s lives. Who knew you would find that one person who shares your love of crappy pop music, ponies and pencil skirts? You have more in common with her than you could ever hope to comprehend, and know deep down that life would never keep you separate for too long. Share with your identical twin — share experiences, and share your food. She understands what food means to you, and what you think food should mean to everyone else. For the sheer pleasure of watching her enjoy something tasty, give her half of your sandwich.
For your little brother. You spent the last year giving him rides, but now he has his own car. He’s growing up. He irks you to no end, and you sass him nonstop. Somehow, you have found a part of you that will tell him all your secrets, and that will always include him in your everyday life. Don’t cook for him because he’s a big boy and can do it himself. Instead, take him to Costco for a hot dog and give him a piece of your mind.
For your wingwoman. You have a picture together from every obnoxiously-themed party you’ve attended this year, and you’ve pre-gamed together for every single one. She is pretty, smart and funny; she is the life of the party, and doesn’t even know it. Have something fast, easy and hearty with your wingwoman as you get ready for a night out. My personal favorite is one of those frozen meals in a bag — it’s the perfect amount for two girls, and goes great with the Two-Buck Chuck you’re pre-gaming with.
For your comic relief. He’s got that funny bone — you know the one I’m talking about. It’s like an invisible rib and everything he says leaves you smiling. He throws amazing parties, and is one of the people for whom you profess undying love almost every day. Make him a late-night snack; something easy like a quesadilla, made with love and shredded meat from last night’s dinner. Just be careful not to burn yourself like I did.
For the sturdiest boy you know. This boy will eat anything in massive quantities. For him, I make “everything” pasta. While the noodles cook, put the following into a hot skillet: olive oil, leftover veggies, a splash of wine, some pasta sauce, lemon juice, and anything else that’s in your fridge. Add the cooked pasta, season with salt and pepper, and let him top it with feta cheese, just because he likes it so much. This is a boy you can cook for, because every time you do he says, “Food should not taste this good.”
Yes, it should.