Words of Endearment

Words of Endearment.

“Can you pick up your jacket, please?”  “Yes dear, but my right hand feels cold, even feels a little numb.”  “Yes, but use your warm hand then, you’ve got two you know, and while you’re getting up – take your cup to the kitchen- sink as well-, it has been sitting there all morning.”

“Yes, but can I warm my hand up a bit first?   “It’s not as warm to-day as it was yesterday”.  “Ah, you are always cold”. ..Why did I marry you?”  “I don’t know. It was a long time ago.”

Here are snippets of love words that can be heard in hundreds of languages and millions of households at any given time and all over the world. It is the araldite of common marital language that binds couples and relationships together. Now-a-days one daren’t use the word ‘marital’ without qualifying it further, because, at least here in Australia, it implies man and woman couples hitched together through an official certificate of proof. It still excludes same sex or odd sex couples. Sorry folks, just hang in there. It won’t be long now but keep up the same sex coupling anyway. Your certificate of marriage is coming soon

Savvy writers try and avoid pigeon holing with too many definitive descriptions of things, risking the wrath of readers. That’s why I, thoughtfully, added ‘relationships’, thereby including the whole gamut of possible mixtures of relationships. You can’t be too careful, even a full stop sometimes gets taken for being racists or homophobic, unless followed by at least a space.

“What are you taking out of the fridge?”  “Ah, just a plate, dear.”  “A plate of what?”  “Last night’s risotto, dear.”  “Ah, yum, can you heat it up?  I want half.”  “Yes, of course,” “I’ll put some water in the saucepan”.  “Use the non-stick fry-pan, you know, the round one.”  “I was going to use the non-stick one, I always do. You know that (Testily).”  “I meant to put in the baby peas.”  “You did put them in; have a good look inside the risotto.”   “Oh, you are right, I can see them now.”  “I thought there were more peas.”  “Well, I didn’t count them.” “Do you think I stole them?” “The peas have shrunk a bit, that’s why they were hard to see.”  “Yes, that’s because they have been in the fridge overnight.” “They just dried out a bit, that’s why.”

Again, later at night going to bed.

“I can’t find my pyjamas.”  “Try looking under pillow dear. They are always there.”  “I thought they were in the drawer”.  “No, I changed that system months ago and I told you.”  “Sorry, I’ve forgotten.”  “You forget because you don’t listen.”   “I do listen but I can’t do everything at once.” “Looking for pyjamas under your pillow is hardly rocket science.”  “No, but I am beginning to get indigestion from the peas in the risotto as well.”  “Oh, you are busy now, aren’t you?”  “Hope you’re not going to do strange things all night.” “I’ll try not to”. “I’ll take some Mylanta just in case.”

Good night-good night.

While some might well think the above is just useless and mundane natter, for many, especially the au courant and well posted in couple bliss, it will be seen for what it really signifies; proof of a well nourished and deeply involved couple. While its first frenetic rush of love might have subsided or settled with pausing passions and intimate familiarity there is still an enormous amount of involvement with each other. Take the issue of the peas in the risotto for instance. Twice the subject of peas are lovingly being mulled over and instead of those peas being found to be boring as many of you might well have come to expect, it remained significant enough to be mentioned at length by the couple.

Surely, this wasn’t just mundane natter for the couple. This is the very essence of long established and thoroughly involved loving couple. They care enough to keep talking.

Talk is the araldite of good relationships. (It comes in two parts; Part A and Part B and when mixed together hardens with age.)

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3 Responses to “Words of Endearment”

  1. Lottie Nevin Says:

    I love this post Gerald. It’s perfection. The peas, the araldite, the pyjamas under the pillow. You write very beautifully and from your heart, thank you.


  2. gerard oosterman Says:

    You are very kind and write very well yourself. Did you go to school in England or Holland? I am just curious.
    Indonesian food has always been my favourite. Right now I am cooking a chicken in rice wine and water with lots of garlic, leek and fresh ginger, carrots and shallots.
    I’ll use the left over liquid stock to make a risotto tomorrow.
    Risotto was Pavarotti’s favourite dish which he wanted made from black rice. He would eat this dish covered with gold leaf.


    • Lottie Nevin Says:

      You sound like the most wonderful cook Gerard, maybe you have some ideas for the Bali Kitchen that you could share? You could do a guest post or tell me about one of your favourite Indonesian recipes. How wonderful the thought of Pavarotti sprinkling gold leaf over his risotto, the black rice and the gold, how very elegant and chic.

      I was brought up in England but used to visit Holland a lot as my Mother was Dutch and her family lived there.


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