Mrs. Lane is anxiously awaiting the Julia/Julie project. I have cooked with Julia since I was a child growing up in Oklahoma, watching her on OETA. My friends thought I was nuts, I sent to the station for her recipes and danced with glee when I received each one. Who does vichyssoise in Okie Dokie, even if it was the sixth or seventh largest city?
Many people don’t realize the revolution that was Julia Child. Before Julia, women were never considered as major chefs. There must have been women who were chefs, but most people in the 60’s and 70’s couldn’t name them. A standard question of my male counterparts in “The Big E” at the time of another major revolutionary event was “Name one thing women are better at then men”. My natural response was cooking, to which they retorted “Oh yeah, if women are better cooks, then why are all the Great Chefs MEN?”. Really – I hadn’t noticed Julia Child was a man. A movie script would have left them in stunned silence, but in reality, the mass “he” would have probably said “Well that’s one”. Ftankly, none of us knew much about great chefs, quite possibly, if I had turned the question around, the mass “he” wouldn’t have been able to answer the same question in the male gender. Because, before Julia, we simply didn’t know chefs, probably not even Escoffier. Is anyone out there actually shocked that I checked out a book of Escoffier’s recipes from the The Big E, Public, formerly Carnegie, Library, and made recipes for my appreciative parents? Well, my appreciative mother, who didn’t have to cook, perhaps not so much my father as I made a lot of what we now call “Chick” food. Maybe not either, I wasn’t so good at cleaning up and I tended to use every pot in the house!
So what does this history of misogyny have to do with a mess? Am I talking about the messes I make in the kitchen and, now, my dear husband must clean? No, I am talking about the mess that is my kitchen due to a floor replacment! Julia was much wiser, she purchased a house with hardwoods already in place! Not so Mrs. Lane, who must make a new house old, piece by piece, penny by penny. We first turned our attention to the family room and installed hardwoods there. Then the kitchen, with the associated pantry, was redone. Now, the living room, dining room Foyer and Powder room floor are being replaced, hence the displacement of furniture and china into the kitchen.