Tuesday, July 6, 2010

I think I'm growing up

Particular - adj.
of, relating to, or concerned with details
distinctive among other examples or cases of the same general category : notably unusual
concerned over or attentive to details : meticulous nice in taste, fastidious, hard to please, exacting

My family is full of particular people.  (No, I didn't say peculiar, although that also may be true.)  There is a great sense of a right and a wrong way to do things, and as a rule, choosing the right one.  Our women are particular about their homes, especially their kitchens and all things related to dining, their posture, their speech and elocution, their underwear drawer, their appearance.  We joke a lot about my grandmother's insistence that there is a right way to load a dishwasher... her way.  If you don't do it right, she will come along behind you and do it over.  Our men are particular about other things.  My grandfather kept a journal of the weather and a brief account of daily events for most of his life. 

As a youthful lifestyle of rebellion against this prevailing trend, I chose to be particular about very little. When we moved into our home, my dear friends and family helped me unpack and arrange my kitchen.  This could be a dicey task with some women.  But not me.  Myriad times I was asked where some type of accouterments should go, and my answer was "I don't care.  Wherever it ends up is fine." (I'm also generally indecisive.) I'm noticing, though, as I get older, I am picking up particularities.  The first major sign was when my children arrived.  I have been a very particular parent.  I held out longer on the household stuff. 

Speaking of kitchens, another funny moment was when grandmother and my husband were working together in my kitchen (note the already nontraditional turn of events here).  Grandmother asked DH where a certain thing was.  He showed her.  Then, she said "When you get older, you'll learn where things go." We were in our 30's at the time.

All this to say, I am noticing that I am getting more and more particular as I get older.  Not to the extent of the matriarchs, mind you, but increasing by small degrees.  I don't have a right way to load the dishwasher yet, but for the first time today, I wanted to.  I am not known for culinary prowess, but I am particular about how I cook.  I have to set the stage with indirect lighting, music, and a glass of wine before the production begins.  There also has to be a scented candle lit, which is in direct opposition to my aunt's insistence that only unscented candles should be used around food.  Remember, particular people are notably unusual.

Maybe soon I'll be old enough to know where things go in my own kitchen.

I am generally particular about settings and surroundings.  I cannot digest food in rooms that are bright yellow, orange or red.  This made McDonald's difficult for many years, until they began to remodel their stores.  I am so particular about colors that it's taken me two years to begin painting the walls in my home, the decisions just too daunting.

I think this means I'm growing up.


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