I used a different oil to make our mayonnaise today, and so of course that involved a modest amount of tiered panic. [Grapeseed oil takes longer than extra light olive oil to thicken. PSA. use more macadamia nut oil or more canola. PSA. it takes longer and is scary. taste fine. possibly a little better.] [I also didn’t realize I was out of extra light olive oil until after I’d dumped a bunch of egg yolks into the food processor. I did not cry.]
Anyways, when it finally began to thicken, I had my infinite food prep moment. I stared into the processor bowl at the pale yellow creaminess of a soon-to-be extra garlicky, well salted, mayo for our egg salad, and let the pepper flecks and soft banana colored peaks fill my eyes. The perfect inhale of oven baked garlic and black salt hangs on that image as acutely as the visual texture does.
Most experiences, for me, have at least a moment of eternity in them. They’re all exquisite, but some lack the slipperiness that so often slicks the saddle of an eternal beat. Heartbreak is one such moment. I realized, several months ago, that one of my friendships wasn’t real, not in any way that involved follow through or accountability. That moment of truth took place between two sentences mere seconds apart, and it still sits on its throne of gray grief and baleful loss like a gleefully crooning albatross. I’ve since, after days of letting that chair consume my every attempt to sit, accepted it as a new piece of furniture in my house. The grief is easier, but that moment is still eternal, even as it’s completely and totally done.
Purity is another sticky beat that hovers in my heart, often for years after its end. It happens predominantly with music, and I’m lucky that it happens often to me. ‘Purity’ is probably a fuzzy name to give it; I’m using it here to refer to an emotion’s complete consumption of my person while I’m either listening to or playing the music. A phrase will do it, or a single note, or a rest. Music is the only thing I’ve come across that can yank me out of my precise world and into a feeling I’d neglected to thoroughly see, all within a split second, a single note, a moment of utter purity. Everything else takes longer (and remember, I have no patience). Music, trained music, thoughtful music, devoted music, will put me in my darkest corner and fill it with nuance and light and creatures that need me as much as I need them. It will do it every time, and without hesitation. And even if a specific moment is over, when I hear that phrase (or note, or rest) again, I will be in that moment, fainter but with breathless ache, every time. Forever.
My infinite food prep moments are rare; mayo doesn’t usually hand one to me. But, other eternities are harder to carry, and I do love homemade mayo. So, I’ll take it. I’ll relish my satisfaction with my new oil experience, and I’ll try not to curdle the creaminess by anticipating my next time free beat.