No, this post is not as morbid as it sounds, but I really feel that for you to understand its true scope, I have to lay it out in that order:
In May of 2002, I got a cat. Actually, I got The Cat, which became his name since nothing else would fit. From 2002 to 2014, The Cat moved with me a total of 8 times, 6 of which were cross-country moves. He never complained. He never got revenge. He was always my fellow traveler and best bud, and when he died this year of advanced lymphoma, I was, understandably, devastated.
One of The Cat’s favorite people was Courtney, my Seattle best friend, fellow cat person, and willing conversational companion with The Cat (he was a talker). Courtney knew exactly how it felt to say goodbye to a friend like The Cat, and for Christmas this year, she commissioned this from Cincinnati-based artist (and obvious knockout talent) Dylan Speeg:
1. She beat me at Christmas AGAIN.
2. I’m getting her back.
Courtney is currently knocked up and will remain that way until sometime around the first week of February. Her daughter is anticipated to be either a drummer or a soccer player, but either way she kicks like a boss and already has a terrific library at her disposal.
Because babies are notorious for keeping their parents desperately sleep-deprived and unlikely to cook decent, wholesome meals for themselves, I had planned to have an arsenal of freezer meals available to Courtney and her husband for whenever their daughter shows up.
Below is the starter list of meals to be delivered throughout January and into February. Which basically means here’s what I’ll be eating and freezing portions of for the new parents to reheat whenever they have an extra 30 minutes of lucid wakefulness:
And I’m doing this because Courtney is my best friend (also kind of because she keeps beating me at Christmas and THIS WILL NOT STAND, MOTHERFUCKERS). I’m doing this because for both of us, food — at least the kind that is delicious, nutritious, and made with care — means love. It means that someone is thinking of you. It means that someone wants you to feel warm, nourished, and thought about when you might be sitting wild-eyed in your living room after three consecutive weeks of sleeping for no more than an hour at a time, so how on earth can you be expected to purchase, prepare, and consume fresh meals?
Also because she beat me at Christmas.