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New Month, Fresh Start

(post, Su T Fitterman)

Today is the first of the month. Otherwise known as Give Me Please among the twits. As in, Give Me Please My Pocket Money. You see, for two years now, the twits and I have lived on a budget. And we have learnt that in order to successfully do so, we must pay for everything we possibly can in currency: it’s remarkable how the list of necessary purchases shrivels when one is forking over cold, hard cash. (It did take the chief twit one year to learn that VISA is not a foreign word that means, “I’ve run out of pocket money so I’m using plastic, but since I don’t see the statement, it doesn’t count.”)

So back to the first of the month: I go to the bank and withdraw a princely sum, to be distributed between the twits and myself. I manage the food budget, so I keep the bulk of it. It’s no mean sum that the twits receive: their pocket money pays for all non-essential items or services. Teen twit banks his and tries to chisel the grandparents for more; tween twit sticks hers in her wallet, to use for the odd movie or when she must pay half the replacement cost for say, a lost cell phone or mouth retainer. (Yeah, I’ve been called heartless from time to time; somehow I’ve learned to live with it.)

Me, I see that first day of the month as a fresh start to eat within our means yet stay as unprocessed and organic as possible. Today I’m heading down to the docks for some fresh-off-the-boat halibut. One pound will do it. Brush on olive oil, grind on pepper and salt, sprinkle chopped Italian parsley. Cook at 425º ten minutes or so, then serve with shaved fennel and roasted red peppers gently tossed in a shallot vinaigrette plus short-grain brown rice. Done.