Tuesday, 7 February 2012
I'm not domestic. I'm not one of those women who gets a little thrill over cute oven mitts or who relishes buying new dish sets and cookware. At least, I thought I wasn't.
Lo, a Pinterest poster's charming image of vintage Pyrex dishes, stacked neatly with their cheerful pinks, blues and golds, glossy and shining, had me scouring etsy for vintage Pyrex finds. Looking through those finds, it made me a little sad, or, maybe sad isn't the word. Melancholy? It made me feel a little nostalgic, a little homesick, for something I'd never really experienced myself.
Looking through the good, solid American cookware of the 1950s and 60s, I saw things we'd never even think to use nowadays: butter dishes, gravy boats, ornate serving pitchers for coffee. The art of serving guests has almost completely deteriorated, and these items, once useful tools, are now antique relics, destined for a shelf somewhere, at which younger generations can marvel.
Yes, I know, we must press on and let progress and technology guide the ship. We women don't have time for gravy making or for setting a proper table and making sure that everything matches, and that napkins are folded just so and all of the spots are gone from the silverware (the GOOD silverware). As a modern, professional woman, I'm glad that I am where I am. The last thing I'd want to be would be enslaved in a kitchen, chopping and boiling away. Gravy boats had to drop anchor for my professional happiness and success. Still, I can't help but feel a lump in my throat for that simplicity we traded in...But, then again, maybe that's just 'cause I never learned to make decent mashed potatoes.