“if you build yourself a myth, you’ll know just what to give….”
The line above is from a Beach House song called “Myth,” one of my favorite songs of 2012. And recently, it’s set me to thinking…..
We all build a personal mythology. But how much of your life is dictated by the mythology that you’ve built, and how much of it is what you really want it to be?
As an example… .for many years, part of my personal mythology was that I don’t cook. That I don’t know how, that I don’t want to know how, that it’s just not something that I do. (If God had wanted me to cook, He wouldn’t have created restaurants.) This is a not a mythology that I built alone, but it was clearly part of how I was defined.
It took quite a while for me to change the attitude. I started off small, literally….I like to throw parties, and I like to serve interesting hors d’ouvres at them. So I learned to make party food. It helps that I have friends that are fantastic cooks-they always help me out when I can’t quite figure out how to do something that I want to do. And the reality is, I’m a pretty good cook. I have a creative streak a mile wide and a decent sense of what flavors go well together. (And “The Flavor Bible” to use as a reference, a gift from one of my foodie friends.) I’m good at figuring out efficient ways to expend my efforts. (Do I want to make puff pastry from scratch? Or would I rather just buy it?) And when I wanted to cook the first meal in my newly renovated kitchen last year, I learned how to make chicken piccata, one of my faves that I had never even tried to make. And served it up with a fantastic tomato-avocado salad that I created on my own.
I think it pays to review your personal mythology periodically, and see if it’s still valid. Do you not cook? Do you hate your job? Are you just not “athletic”? Do you think you’re having a bad hair life, or that you’re just not stylish? Maybe some it might have been true once, but isn’t so much anymore.
On the flip side, I recently tried bell peppers again, to see if they’re still yucky. And they are….because some things just don’t change.