(editor's note: In observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, the staff has been given the day off. Today's post is a republished post that originally appeared on Abez's blog this weekend as part of a blog-exchange program. The normal(ish) posts will begin again on Tuesday. Thank you.) *streches arms over head, heaves contented sigh, returns to curled up position on couch for nap*

How to mortally wound yourself around the kitchen - or -
the secret ingredient is blood!

1. Prepare a batch of cookie dough. Be sure to sample the ingredients before adding them to the mix: finger-swipe of melted butter, spoonful of brown sugar, cheekful of chocolate chips until said cheeks are bulging outrageously and you cannot deny the moniker "squirrel nutkins" as passersby shake their heads at you. Blend the ingredients well with an electric or old-timey hand mixer. Just before tossing the beaters into the sink, save time, water, and soap by licking the raw batter off of the metal strips. Scoff at the threats of Salmonellosis and attempt to clean off even the hard-to-reach inner curves of the beater. Pull a muscle in your tongue (possibly the styloglossus if not for the sheer enjoyment of saying "styloglossus") Cry out in pain. Pause. Continue licking the batter off with slower movements and care. Lesson the first: your tongue is not an acrobat.

2. Prepare rice. Assemble your materials by lining up the canister containing the basmati rice and the pot in which to cook the rice. Step back and enjoy your accomplishment thus far. Measure out 1 cup of rice. Rinse the rice out several times and offer mild curses when some grains escape with the runoff water. After rinsing, add 1 and a half cup of water to the rice and set it on the stove to boil over high heat. Add a chunk of butter and a pinch of salt. When the water is boiling rapidly, lower the heat to a simmer, cover the pot, and walk away. Set the timer for 10 minutes. While waiting for the timer to go off, clean up your workspace. Lift the canister containing the rice by its lid. Watch as the base separates from the lid in slow-motion. Wait for the canister to crush your toes and the rice to fly into your hair, your eyes, and possibly your lungs. Lesson the second: let someone else clean up the kitchen for you.

3. Prepare an apple. Wash the apple. Contemplate its beauty. Grab a knife. Recall how your mother would deride such crutches as a cutting board when chopping, slicing, and peeling a variety of fruits and vegetables. Attempt to emulate your mother. Grasp the apple with your left hand. Work the knife gently around the apple with your right hand to divide the apple in half. Put aside one half of the apple and begin to core the other half. When you are sure that you have a good and steady grip on the knife and apple, plunge the knife directly into your hand. Die. Lesson the third: you are not your momma.

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