I Want This Book.

Sunni's picture

Well, it’s actually a five–volume set of books. Even at that, the price is outrageous—upwards of $500 once sales tax is added. But I’m still trying to work a way to acquire it.

I suppose it wouldn’t surprise any of you to know this set is cookbooks. But they’re not just any cookbooks: they’re large, techy, detail–oriented cookbooks that show and explain the science behind the myriad ways of cooking stuff. If you aren’t drooling yet, perhaps watching this vid with coauthor Nathan Myhrvold will explain why my keyboard is close to shorting out:

Amazing, ain’t it?

[Actually, truth be told, I’m rather conflicted on something. I’m not sure if I want to save my pennies for this set of books first, or buy enough luscious silk yarn to make a gorgeous sweater I found in a book. The yarn would set me back about $300. The book is about 20 years old, and the yarn used to make the sweater back then is no longer being made. Even if it were, it might cost nearly that amount too.]

Deep breaths, deep breaths

Sunni, they're cookbooks. Wonderfully printed, perhaps insightful and informative cookbooks, but cookbooks. How many terrific and healthy meals can you purchase and prepare for $500 using the recipes and knowledge you already possess?

You're being seduced by a fabulously effective marketing campaign. And that's all I have to say about that.

“He blinded me with science.”

You’re right—and thanks very much for saying so. It isn’t the recipes that interest me: it’s the science, and especially being able to see what goes on inside the food during the cooking process, that is so fascinating to me.

So, how do I talk myself out of the yarn, dear friend?

The sweater

Just curious... where would you wear a $300. sweater? I have a blouse that cost nearly $50. more than 20 years ago (it was a gift) and I'm terrified to wear it least I damage it. Not to mention that it is much too dressy to wear to the store or the gun range. I wish I had the money to add to my trade goods. sigh.

I love to look at it and enjoy the fond memories of the lady (long deceased) who got it for me, but it's pretty useless otherwise.

Wherever I want to!

I have a blouse that cost nearly $50. more than 20 years ago (it was a gift) and I'm terrified to wear it least I damage it.

After seeing my sister work hard to save for a rabbit-fur coat and then never wear it, I resolved never to do this. And I haven’t: I bought good quality clothing when I was a college professor, and wore it to work even though I routinely got chalk dust all over myself. Both of my leather coats get hard use and have scars and stains. I am very pragmatic about my clothes.

So, I’d wear the sweater a lot most likely, if I liked it. And if I didn’t like how it turned out, I'd frog it and knit something else with the yarn. In trying to find an image of the sweater to show y’all, I’m coming up empty (not surprising, given the age of the book). It is pretty unique.

Follow Your Bliss

Yes, Uncle Warren, they're cookbooks. But Sunni loves to cook. What's the most you've ever spent on a guitar? I say to Sunni: follow your bliss.

My bliss wanders more than the planets

It is definitely the techy, geeky content that is the major appeal of these volumes, Saint: I already have more recipes than I can cook in my remaining days.

More to your point, however: I am trying to follow my bliss. But it seems to wander more than the planets in the night sky. I wanted more paying work: although I still have just one client, that client has increased my workload twice and has just proposed I take on a new task that will increase it again. This comes at a time when I: am really getting into my knitting and have projects beckoning (including holiday gifts); am trying to work on improving my health—which includes karate (I just promoted and have to take that up a notch, plus learn a ton of new stuff), eating habits, and addressing my asthma and sinus issues; and have a book idea that will not leave me alone. The book requires that some research be conducted before it can be written. Notice I haven’t even mentioned taking care of the snolfs ... which includes their homeschooling. All of these things contribute to my bliss, but I’m starting to think I cannot possibly follow each of them well (let alone fully).

Did I just hear you say, “Welcome to my world!”, Saint? :-)

Wandering or Interesting?

I used to work for a guy who liked to say "you can do it all, but you can't do it all at once". Maybe that applies here somehow...

It seems to me that you're not wandering, you're just interesting. You're brimming with projects, you're taking responsibility for many aspects of your life, and you're wondering how you can possibly "fill the unforgiving minute with sixty seconds' worth of distance run". You're alive and thriving and probably not a little stressed out about it all, but at least you're not bored (or boring!). ;-)

It definitely applies.

Thanks, Saint: you’ve provided some great perspective for me. And you’re as kind as always.