I’d gone to the Farmer’s Market and had a wonderful time swanning through the booths in an impossible, eccentric and beautiful sunhat my husband gave me. I carried an environmentally-correct canvas tote full of fresh beans and cucumbers, and had a huge bouquet of fresh fragrant dill in my arms. The day was a gorgeous one, and I felt girlish and glowing and sweet — quite a stretch for an irritable old seasoned matron. I was set to spend the afternoon making pickles.
I swept into the kitchen and put the dill on the cutting board — immediately having the thought that I should cut the stems and put them in water to stay fresh. Still wearing the hat, with my purse over one shoulder and the bag of veggies over the other, I reached for a knife — a wicked sharp segregated one better suited to steaks than stems (OK, OK — I know it’s a serrated knife. But my family is fond of malapropisms — segregated knives, ovulating fans, and phrases like, “That’s intramural to me.” And I just spent time with my sister from New Hampshire, where “wicked” is the adjective of choice for anything that’s very whatever).
Multi-tasking is really not good for us. The brain is only capable of working on one thing at a time — when we do eight things at once, we’re simply switching our focus off and on rapidly, which fools us into thinking we’re handling it all simultaneously. Multi-tasking is an especially bad idea when distracted knife use is involved.
Next thing I knew, I was jumping up and down, rather athletically, clutching my nearly-severed finger and yelling “Oh! Oh! Oh!” (now, that is not what my family and my neighbors claim to have heard, although I assured them later that obscenities would never pass my lips, despite severe injury). The cucumbers and beans went all over the floor before I realized that jumping up and down was likely a rather silly course of action to take in a bleeding-to-death situation.
The finger slowly healed as the dill slowly shriveled and died. We ate the beans for a week, the cucumbers got slippery and squidgy in the back of the fridge, and no pickles were produced. Don’t know if I can ever look at dill again. Or pickles. Or that sunhat.
Clearly, it’s all my husband’s fault.