When Cooking Makes Me Mean

published Jun 16, 2015
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I generally have a pretty even-keeled temperament. I’m not prone to angry outbursts or major meltdowns. I’m not wildly laid-back, but I’m also not hyperactive. My fuse is neither short nor long — just your average fuse, folks!

But sometimes being in the kitchen brings out the worst in me. Here’s how.

Cooking stress makes me snappy and irritable. When I’m stressed in the kitchen, my tolerance evaporates, my patience dwindles, and my goodwill dies. Small annoyances loom large. Helpful suggestions feel like pointed criticisms. The joy of cooking is nowhere to be found.

But the thing is, when I feel myself going all Hulk in the kitchen, I can usually trace it back to not doing one or more of the things I know I should do, like clearing adequate work space before starting, putting things away instead of putting them down, or cleaning as I go.

If I neglect one or all of these things, before I know it I’m chopping vegetables on a cutting board that’s halfway off the countertop, there are food scraps and ingredients everywhere, I just knocked a bottle of vinegar to the floor, and I can’t find the oven mitt. Where is the oven mitt?! Talk to me in that moment and I will probably emit some sort of barking noise. (I’m sorry. I know it’s not your fault!)

Stress from bad cooking habits is my trigger point, the thing that makes me twitchy and touchy. Is there anything that makes you, well, a little mean in the kitchen sometimes? Do you ever feel territorial when your partner cooks, for example, and inevitably say things you know sound condescending? Is there something that tweaks your nerves to their breaking point?

The Habits That Keep Me Nice in the Kitchen