Current status: stress vomiting like a house cat.
I’m supposed to do this aerial showcase on saturday. My aerial…teacher, (Coach? Guru? Enchantress? Evil Siren?), Laura, keeps telling me I’m doing great, I’m ready, I’m good, it looks awesome. I think she’s falsely boosting my confidence just so I don’t start crying again.
I don’t blame her. I don’t think she ever thought: “Neurotic stress cases are so much fun to psychoanalyze, I’m going to teach aerials.” I don’t think anyone goes into performance arts because they love hashing out other people’s inner demons, but turn on the stage lights and you’ll reveal all the crap easily obscured in normal compact fluorescents.
That guy with the dreamy eyes and Brad Pitt hair? Sure, I’m swooning, but I’m swooning as a cool, confident lady. Unless he comes to the show. I want him to come to the show, because he should see my circus obsession/my ass in spandex, but what happens if I fuck it up? He’ll see me fuck it up! I didn’t need to be perfect in his eyes but now zOMG I need to be perfect in his eyes. If my parents had just brought me flowers for my debut performance as Speaking Mouse #3 in a 1990 production of Cinderella, I’d be all over this shit. Instead, every run-through brings up how I’m not good enough, strong enough, pretty enough, how I should have stuck with dance classes as a kid but I don’t stick with anything, that I need to do more yoga, that I had no business attempting to learn to ski as an adult because my MCL still feels that, that my job stress isn’t worth the paltry sum they pay me, that I don’t want to quit, but the office is kind of toxic, and honestly it’s a myopic and archaic industry and wouldn’t I be better off going back to school but I kinda don’t know how I made it through school the first time because I’m a terrible student and I don’t think I’m actually that smart – I used to, when did that stop? Probably when I realized it was far undervalued and I got farther in the corporate world with the right shoes and the right hair, but I’m basically medusa in cowboy boots so I have limited upward mobility…I’M JUST GOING TO DRINK UNTIL I CAN’T FEEL FEELINGS EXCEPT FOR THE COMFY EMBRACE OF THIS AMERICAN APPAREL UNITARD…and then, I fuck it up.
Sure, I have a BA in drama and there was that one time Samuel L. Jackson once said he enjoyed my performance, AND SERIOUSLY WHY DID NO ONE EVER TELL ME THIS UNITARD IS SO FREAKIN COZY? but aerials has nothing to do with acting. It’s performing for an audience, sure, but worse case scenario in a play, you miss a cue or forget your lines and chances are no one notices. If you mess up in aerials and fall on your head, everyone notices because while they might not have a clue as to how you’re suspended in that ankle hang, everyone knows YOU’RE NOT SUPPOSED TO FALL ON YOUR HEAD.
Sigh, I’m totally going to fall on my head, and even the full-body hug of this unitard won’t cushion the blow to my body or my ego.
Cue the stress vomiting.
One thing I did learn in years of theater school, no matter what happens, you take care of your castmates – cover for them, fill in the blanks, give them that look that says “we totally got this” even if it’s totally a lie. So I volunteered for the bake sale, and will divert my anxiety into stress-baking instead of throwing it at Laura (why can’t I untie my foot knot
pretty?!?!), because I’m pretty sure she has more than enough nonsense to deal with.
And unlike these cookies, which are perfect, I don’t need to be. And much like aerials, if you add alcohol to peanut butter and stir, it breaks. Don’t do it.
Gluten-Free Bacon Peanut Butter Cookies
- 5 slices of bacon
- 1 cup natural peanut butter, room temperature
- 1/2 cup + 1/4 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup lightly packed brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 400 F. Line a baking sheet with foil. Arrange bacon slices in a single layer and bake for 15 minutes or until crispy but not burnt done. Remove from oven, allow to cool and drain on paper towels. Chop into fine bits (I put mine through the food processor because no one really wants meaty cookies).
Lower the oven temperature to 350 degrees. Stir peanut butter so that the oil is completely incorporated into the solid peanut butter. In a small bowl, mix egg and vanilla, set aside. In a mixer on LOW (low I tell you, people!), blend peanut butter, 1/2 cup sugar, brown sugar, and baking soda until combined, 1-2 minutes. Add in the egg mixture, and continue to mix for another 1-2 minutes. Stir in bacon and chocolate chips by hand or with a spatula. (I like to use my hands.)
Pour a 1/4 cup of sugar on a plate or in a shallow bowl, roll dough into 1 1/2 inch balls and drop into the sugar, rolling to coat. Place cookies onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Gently press down cookies so they are flattened slightly. (they really won’t spread, so this will be the final shape).
Bake for 10-12 minutes. Cool cookies completely on a baking sheet. Store at room temperature. Makes 16 cookies.
And here is me not falling on my head.