Hello, recipients of my exceptionally occasional newsletter. Many things have happened since the last installment. Among them:
The Secret History of Home Economics came out in paperback.
I wrote a gajillion articles for the USA Today Network, some of which concern food and women’s jobs.
Inspired by a teacher in my book, I began keeping bees, which led to fiddling around with candles and mead, all of which fuel my ongoing reflections on what work is and isn’t necessary to make a home. (Neither keeping bees, nor making candles, nor brewing mead is at all necessary to make a home.)
I sadly lost a calico and happily acquired a brown tabby.
Like many other young-Gen-Xers, I took up powerlifting.
I scheduled talks coming up in Oklahoma, Virginia and Tennessee (am I missing something? I might be missing something).
And most recently, Rep. Pat Schroeder died. Which got me off my duff to put out an issue of this newsletter, re-sharing something from three years back. (If you read this anecdote three years ago, fear not boredom: I rewrote it.)
Schroeder was one of our great feminist politician humorists, not unlike Texas Gov. Ann Richards. When asked why she was running as a woman, Schroeder answered, "What choice do I have?"
Schroeder had no interest in domesticity. Her worst grade in high school was in home economics. (She became valedictorian anyway.) Nonetheless, she told the Sporkful podcast, voters used to ask her to send her favorite recipe, a request we can safely assume they did not make of male politicians.
Here’s what she used to send in response.
“Find a bowl. If it’s on the floor, wash it because the dog has probably used it. Find some cereal. Hopefully, it will be sugar-coated so you don’t have to go on a scavenger hunt for the sugar. Then get milk from the refrigerator. But it is imperative that you read the spoil date before using. When these items have been located, assemble.”
People who received this recipe thought her campaign staff was trying to sabotage her, Schroeder said.
Read: My grandmother's Jell-O mold is sweet and complicated, like family itself
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