Life With My Geek – Square Inches Of Dessert
I find that when you’re really good at something, when you totally grok it, you often forget the complexity of that thing. This includes an entire spectrum of things, from reading English to riding a bike, writing code to making Rice Crispy treats. When we truly get it, it changes the nature of the task.
I do not get computers. If it weren’t for my geek, I’d still be trying to find the hole through which to feed the chipmunks inside my computer. Seriously! How can all that stuff happen without chipmunks running around and around and around? My geek gets the computer; he’s taken over the care and feeding of my cyber chipmunks, and everything is grand.
And I do not tread where my geek excels. Nope. I leave all that glory to him. I’ve learned a few TLA, I vaguely understand the ideas behind some of the technologies, and I approve the purchase of most of the requested “I-need-this-for-work” items. (Although I did draw the line last week when he attempted to convince me I should take his 1 month old Dell and he should get a bigger-better-faster machine because he didn’t feel like taking the time to get the virus off my machine.)
Last weekend my geek and uber-nerd boy stepped into my realm, the kitchen. Uber-nerd boy dreamed up a family activity which has now come to be know as The First Annual Thanksgiving Dessertathon. The rules were simple: each kid was assigned a grown up of their own and was allowed to create a “dessert” of their choice.
It sounds simple.
And it was simple, really, until the two non-neurotypicals mentioned above became involved. Thankfully, uber-nerd boy and the geek were last in the kitchen. That wasn’t planned out specifically, but small mercies…… The other kids had already created a ginger bread house, a castle out of Jolly Ranchers, and a three piece ginger bread punk rock band when the geeks took over the kitchen to make a Rice Crispy roll.
I stuck around in case they needed my help. This was entirely possible as my geek can only make pancakes and eggs, and uber-nerd boy often ruins pasta, which is the only thing he cooks. Both were please that this particular dessert did not require use of the stove top, only the microwave; but they were still nervous, so I hung around.
I felt like I was trespassing. In my own kitchen. It was like I was watching aliens. First, I was privy to a five minute conversation breaking down the form/function ratio of the other desserts. It was decided that all three other desserts had a very undesirable form/function ratio. This conversation was held in earnest, and it was decided that their dessert would be heavy on the function portion of the ratio.
I inserted, at this point, that they were just making a Rice Crispy roll. I receive a withering look.
The recipe called for a 15 x 10 x 1 pan. They looked bewildered and confused, so I handed them the jelly roll pan. My geek says, “that’s not 15 x 10 x 1”, and I said, “it’ll work, it’s close enough”. Nerd boy says, very distraught, “Dad, it’s the wrong size!”.
I say, “It’ll work.” And then for my own amusement I add, “Don’t forget you’re doubling it.”
Frozen like deer in headlights.
Nerd boy is rendered immobile. My geek’s mouth opens and closes a few times like a gaping fish. I smile widely at them both (and giggle inside my head).
Then I hear my geek tell nerd boy to go out to garage to get the measuring tape. The boy lights up like a light bulb. He also retrieves paper, a pencil and the calculator. I left the kitchen while they were determining the square inches required by the recipe vs.. the square inches provided by the jelly roll pan.
Last thing I heard? Uber-nerd boy suggesting that perhaps they should measure the pan across the diagonal, like computer screens….