Primes and Odds

I’ve been a cook for fifty years, mainly in my own home but did graduate from two cooking schools. They call doughnuts “a baker’s dozen” because thirteen looks like more than twelve. OK, there are other reasons from WWI. btw they found out about peanut butter and jelly together during that war, must have been their MRE’s.

Usually, I do food, flowers plants in 1, 3 or five. Remember Diagon Alley from Harry Potter fame? I always place an odd number of candles, plants, erasers (positioned over a knuckle-rapping ruler on The Nun Desk) and even aged chemistry flasks diagonally.

Thirteen chicken wings look like more than 12. Three spider mums look more lush than two, for my father’s memory. Three tiny milk bottles in a metal basket look better for single blooms for my family, than do two, as our old dog Z is a member of said family and has been for nearly 14 years.

My husband is a mathematical and software genius. I’ve never been really good at math, more at writing and literature. As a kid I learned music from my Dad. Music is numbers. Mozart knew that at age five. I’ve been told I have perfect pitch. I’m not a good musician but can sing harmony to anything on the fly, usually in fifths, and look at lyrics to songs I know and play them or sing along without notation.

Before anyone ever taught me about food (I was not allowed in Mom’s kitchen, only the pantry to make a vodka martini for Dad for when he arrived home from work, I was eight years old) or floral arrangements I somehow knew what looks good florally on the table, as well as food-wise. Of course with food I care about flavor the most but how it looks is important as eyes and nose check it out before the forks come out.

Remember Jodie Foster in Contact, the movie? The aliens were speaking in primes. Mr. B fascinated me in math class in probably 6th grade with primes. That was something I could do. I then excelled in Algebra then had problems with Geometry. It was OK. There was a really cute guy, Alex, who sat behind me in both, no we never dated, but I helped him learn the first and he helped me after school learning the second. We both passed.

As kids we had a little group with nicknames all from AA Milne books. I was teeny back then and kind of a mascot so I was Piglet. Alex was Eeyore the donkey. Years later I don’t remember the other characters, just know we helped each other learn math.

Now you know to arrange your food and flowers. I bid you adieu as I must take out the dog at 6:30 on this long holiday weekend and say a Happy Fourth of July! Cheers! Dee


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