Making pancakes, as I learned at AP's birthday bash at the beach this weekend, is an unbelievably tedious chore. I don't know why I even volunteered my services. I hate cooking! The only reason I thought it might be fun to make pancakes for eight people was that I could use my Jim Beam pancake syrup that has been sitting in my cupboard for at least a year. I must have bought it one day at the store when I was having an I-Should-Totally-Start-Cooking-for-Myself moment that went as quickly as it came.
On Saturday morning, a little after 8 a.m., I positioned myself at the stove to make pancakes. I was surprised that I didn't have to add eggs to the pancake mix. Just water! This is because there were powdered eggs in the mix, which I assume are produced by depriving chickens of water for weeks at a time before they lay eggs. Anyway, the not adding water thing was awesome. It was, unfortunately, the only awesome part of the whole ordeal.
I know that everybody else at the beach house thought I was the most pouty chef they've ever seen. I know that people who read this post will think it's silly of me to complain about making pancakes. But if there is one other kindred spirit out there who can relate to the challenge of a person with ADD trying to make pancakes, I know you'll defend me.
I wish I could show you my impression of making pancakes. I performed this for everyone at the breakfast table through pantomime, but I'll try to summarize the routine verbally.
Todd pours batter into a pan. Stands and stares for about 2 minutes. Sighs. Taps foot. Sees bubbles forming around the edges. Todd flips pancake. Stands and stares for about 2 hours or days or months or years. Todd puts pancake on tray. Todd puts tray in oven. Repeat 16 times.
Making pancakes is a punishment that far exceeds any crime a person could ever commit. Making pancakes is more boring than watching golf. It is more tedious than ringing a bell at a Salvation Army Christmas kettle for 8-10 hours a day.
I ladled the mix into the pan that was only big enough to make one pancake at a time. (AP had commandeered all the big pans to make mountains of hash browns, which would soon overshadow my bastard stepchild pancakes at the table.) So, the pour, wait, flip, wait, remove, warm in oven and repeat game was prolonged due to my lack of experience in staking first claim to the big skillets.
The first two pancakes weren't so bad. If I had been cooking pancakes for myself, I could have prepared an entire breakfast on one commercial break as I watched a Project Runway marathon. But I was cooking for eight, so I knew I had to repeat this process about 22 more times. No way. Screw that. People can eat two pancakes each instead of three. Only 16 pancakes would be served, I decided. I proclaimed, "Life for me ain't been no crystal stair..." as I cooked and cooked and cooked.
Four and a half days later, I had about 7 pancakes done. I realized then that the little bitches were cooling at a rapid pace. Seriously, they were getting cold faster than I can slam a vodka tonic, so I started searching for a tray to put them on so I could keep the vile starch patties warm in the oven. When I found a tray and opened the oven, I discovered that there was no room at the inn since all the space was taken up by AP's little hash brown treasures and popular beloved scrambled eggs. So my washed up loser Roseanne Barr pancakes were shoved in the oven wherever I could find space.
Seventeen thousand years later, I had only one pancake left to make. By this time people were at the table eating breakfast as I stomped and sighed and groaned and wailed and gnashed my teeth and begged sweet Jesus to take me home. I poured the last of the pancake batter into the pan and began waiting. I was so eager to be finished that I turned the burner off as soon as the batter hit the pan. That turned out to not be a great idea, because the pan cooled faster than the pancake cooked. So, six billion years later, I flipped that last uncooked pancake the bird and said, "I'm done you disgusting puddle of paste".
I brought out the stack of warmed-over pancakes to my friends who were indulging in hot tasty eggs and potatoes. The hash browns, served piping hot, were so popular with everyone. People shoveled hash browns into their mouths with gusto. The darling sweethearts of the breakfast table, scrambled eggs, were loved by all. Some people were crying and speaking in tongues as they ate their eggs.
"Who wants to try my seething cakes of hatred?" I asked as I brought the platter of breaded frisbees to the table. I threw the despised dough discs down on the table. Each person reluctantly took one seething cake of hatred, but I knew they were just doing it to be nice. Chopper mentioned that he felt happy after eating the eggs but was suddenly feeling very bitter as he ate a pancake.
When I go to hell, I already know what job I will get. I used to think my job would be stacking cases of soda pop in a stifling hot storage shed on one eternal 99 degree day in the blazing sun. I had to do that one summer at camp and thought I'd never endure greater agony. Now I know there is a worse job for the hellbound - making pancakes. My job will be to make pancakes for all eternity, and the other people in hell will be forced to eat my pancakes. I'm not sure which is the bigger punishment.