My dad sat in his chair. An old brown corduroy La-Z-Boy, speckled with moth eaten holes, loose thread, and the imprint of two forearms nestled into the armrests. I sat across from him, snuggled into the green futon. It mirrored my dad’s la-Z-Boy, riddled with holes, loose thread, and impression of 20 years worth of boney butts.
“Is dinner ready yet?” I asked.
I meant it too. I was STARVING.
Glancing up from behind his glasses, he looked at me, “not yet,” he answered.
I sighed and waited, watched as he turned one, two, three pages of his book before setting it down on the armrest. He got up, walked the two steps to the propane stove and began to cook. I watched from the couch.
First, he cooked and strained the broccoli, draining the sallow green veggie water into the slop bucket next to the window.
Secondly, he sliced up the sausage. Alaskan made spicy caribou sausage, bought in bulk at Costco. Three. Juicy. Links. Cut up into large uneven chunks.
Lastly, he poured milk slowly into a pot, clicked the stove on, and tore open two packets of a mystery white substance with his teeth.
A few minutes later, he handed me a bowl overflowing with food. A lumberjack’s portion of dinner. In this bowl were the three ingredients mixed together to form the one thing that my dad could cook: broccoli, sausage, and lovely, creamy, instant mashed potatoes.