This weekend is going to be a a very hard weekend for our family and, especially, me: Gin is heading off to college in the US at 5 am on Monday morning. I know it’s an exciting time in Gin’s life and this is what I keep telling myself over and over again, like a mantra! But I am going to miss her! (Thank God for Facetime!)
It has made me reflect upon my time leaving home and heading off to college. Which brings me to what I call “My Grandfather and The Blender story.”
Somehow or another I got an idea of getting a
blender to take to school. My mother
suggested that I get an “air popcorn popper” and I said, “OK. Can I get a
blender too?” I think we were in the
kitchen when this conversation went down.
I can’t lie; I’ve tried … My brother can vouch for this as he likes to
points out the holes in my fabrication.
I think this was taken at his
So the first thing that pops into my 18 year old brain is this: “I am going to make a chocolate chip cookies in it.” Now this is the summer of 1984 and this before the smoothie craze kicked in. My mother just stopped what she was doing and just looked at me. I think she even said to me, “I know exactly what you are going to do with a blender at school!”
A few days later my Grandfather (my mother’s father) called my mother. My Grandfather never called me; my Grandmother - yes; him - no. So my mother calls me downstairs and says to me, “It’s your grandfather on the telephone; he wants to speak to you.”
I pick up the phone, perform the necessary niceties and he got right to the point: “Your mother says that you want an air popcorn popper and a blender to take to school with you.”
I said, “Yes, Grandpa, I would.”
My Grandfather: “What are you going to do with a blender, Sarah?”
I repeat my lame excuse about the chocolate chip cookies. Now I have to interject here and tell you something important about my Grandfather: he was a recovering alcoholic. I think he joined AA around the time I was born and he was sobered from that time until he passed away. It was no secret and it was openly discussed.
He says to me: “Sarah, I think you and I both know that you will not be making chocolate chip cookies in that blender, am I right?”
I responded with, “Yes, Grandpa.”
My Grandfather: “Ok then, I want you to go out and by a really good popcorn popper and a blender. Do not buy anything cheap. Take your time shopping for these 2 items. I want to but these for you for college.”
I can’t remember what the popcorn maker was, but I remembered the blender, it was an Oster blender and it looked exactly like this one in the picture below:
These 2 items made it all the way until I got married to The Shaker. The popcorn popper eventually died. But the blender got stuck on “frappe” during my freshman year of school. My roommate and I came up with a drink that we called “green slime.” We took frozen lime concentrate, ice and whatever liquor we could get and blend it. It wasn’t bad but I don’t think I would drink that now. I kept my blender until we moved from California to North Carolina. The Shaker knew how attached I was to my grandparents and to this blender, but he even said, “It’s time to get a new blender; your grandfather would want you to get a new blender.” I agreed with him; I even think my Grandfather would be embarrassed to know that I kept moving around with it anyway.
Which brings me to Gin and her new Oster blender (I stuck with Oster in remembrance of my grandfather).
I said to her, “You better be making strawberry smoothies in this thing!” Gin’s response? She just smiled.
The Martini Knitter