Writer’s Block : And The Gold Medal Goes To….

By Corinne Wnek

When it comes to sports, I’m a fair weather friend. I generally like the excitement of competition but this seems to kick in for me only when events like the Super Bowl, the World Series or the Olympics are all over the news. Fencing? I don’t care. The finals of the Epee event? I’m right there waiting to see who medals. Maybe it’s the idea of excelling under pressure that tugs at my heartstrings. I can easily relate to that kind of pressure because in my house, the Homeowners Olympics are played out every day.

There is no question that if ‘Cooking’ was an Olympic sport, I would be the favorite to win gold in the ‘From Scratch’ event. My own original recipes are pretty good and, if I say so myself, I have rarely disappointed my taste testers. My Italian gravy, not ‘sauce’, of which I have mastered at least seven different kinds, comes from ripe, plum tomatoes, not a can of ripe, plum tomatoes. Like Kentucky Fried Chicken, my secret is in the blend of seasonings and, of course, red wine. And the gold medal goes to me.

‘Roasting’, however, as an Olympic event, is in a league of its own. It takes great skill to do this well. One must know about the cut of the roast, how to brown properly, what the correct starting temperature in the oven should be and when to subsequently reduce the heat. The real test of a skilled roast master, someone worthy of the top prize, lies in how the ‘gravy’, not sauce, is made. And the gold medal goes to my husband Rick. He is team China when it comes to a pot roast.

The sport of ‘Cleaning’, on the other hand, is more complex and is broken up into two venues: indoor and outdoor maintenance. The indoor cleaning events are all about neatness in bed making, quickness in reaching for the dust buster or vacuum when needed, speed in emptying the trash when full and in the final rotation, using appropriate laundry products and water temperature when doing the wash. This is too easy. The gold medal goes to me.

But it’s a different skill set needed in the outdoor maintenance category where medals are also up for grabs. Mowing the lawn is the lead off event here but one must try to avoid the full point deduction for failure to use a weed wacker. When a weed wacker is used but not well used possibly because someone might be thinking about fantasy football lineups, one can incur up to a half point deduction. A well-trained homeowner knows that any job worth doing is worth doing well. And the bronze medal goes to my husband.

After challenging this decision, Rick soon realized that he could have earned at least a silver medal but his failure to put in that much promised little stone walk way off our back deck, just cost him gold, and maybe a few other things, too.

After all, this is the Homeowners Olympics and it’s all about teamwork.

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