• Brunch Recipes for When Your Therapist Is on Vacation

    By Bizzy Coy

    Published August 1, 2016 in The New Yorker's Daily Shouts
    Link to original
  • So, your therapist has gone on vacation. Don't despair! This is the perfect time to host a lovely brunch for your family and friends. Just follow these five easy recipes, and you'll forget about the Dr. Flannery-­sized hole in your life in no time.

    Simple Hash Browns

    Grate four to six medium potatoes and dice a small onion. Mix together and fry over medium-high heat in two tablespoons of oil. Season to your mother's taste.

    While the potatoes cook, hash and re­hash your last session with Dr. Flannery. Why didn't he remind you of his return date? Why didn't he ask you to confirm your first post­-vacation appointment with his assistant? Maybe he's not on vacation at all. Maybe he's breaking up with you. He's probably in his office right now, meeting with better, cooler patients, while you're making dumb hash browns to avoid the discomfort of introspection.

    Ditch the entire pan out the window before it can ditch you.

    Fluffy Ricotta Pancakes

    Stir together one and a half cups of flour, two tablespoons of sugar, two tablespoons of oil, three teaspoons of baking powder, one teaspoon of salt, one egg, and one cup of milk. Fold in three-quarters of a cup of ricotta cheese. Do not overmix, or the batter will be confused about whether it even has the capacity to love.


    While waiting for the pancakes to turn golden, check Dr. Flannery's social-media pages to see if they're still set to private. They are. Wonder where he went on vacation. If he comes back with a tan, is it O.K. to mention it? Is he travelling with his family? Does he have a family? Why didn't he take you with him? You know it's unorthodox, but he could have at least offered. You wouldn't have accepted, of course. You understand healthy boundaries now.

    Serve with butter, fruit, and syrup.

    Egg Scramble

    Whisk together six eggs and three tablespoons of heavy cream. Pour into a nonstick pan. Toss in a handful of jilted goat cheese and some melancholy chives.

    Stir continuously, raising or lowering the heat depending on your level of outrage. Dr. Flannery said that you could call him in an absolute emergency. What constitutes an absolute emergency? The smoke alarm is blaring and the eggs are now a raging inferno on the stovetop. Are the flames symbolic of your anger at Dr. Flannery? Or of your anger at your parents? Aren't those really the same thing? If you call now, will you get billed extra at the end of the month? Why don't you own a fire extinguisher?

    Ignore the fire like you ignore your feelings.

    Perfect Crispy Bacon

    The flames have spread to the living room and you're all out of pans. An entire pound of bacon, and no pans! Consider knocking on Mrs. McCracken's door and asking to borrow one. No, that's weird. Nobody owes you a pan. You have to find the pan on your own, in your own time.


    Also, what if she asks what you need the pan for, and you tell her you're making brunch, and she gets offended that you didn't invite her, and you have to move out of the building to avoid ever seeing her again? You should cancel brunch altogether. This is a disaster. Everything you ever do is a disaster. Your life is a disaster.

    You're going to die homeless, panless, and alone, and it's all Dr. Flannery's fault.

    Lemon­ Basil Spritzer

    In a pitcher, combine lemon juice, simple syrup, crushed basil leaves, and sparkling water. Stir into a frenzy.
    Water. Suddenly, everywhere, there's water, streaming in through the windows, soaking your hair. The fire department is here and banging on your door. Mrs. McCracken must have called.

    Through the smoke, you think you see Dr. Flannery in the distance, wearing a Speedo on a beach in the South of France. He has a hairy chest. He looks kind of hot. Wait, that's not Dr. Flannery at all. That's your father. Oh, God.

    A firefighter drags you out the door as you clutch the sweaty package of bacon to your chest. He has kind eyes behind his goggles. Maybe he'll accompany you to the hospital and say, "Talk more about that" while the triage nurses assess your burns. Maybe he'll feed you pudding with a plastic spoon. Maybe he'll bring you back to the firehouse and let you live in a little blanket nest in the back of his truck forever and ever. That'll teach Dr. Flannery to go on vacation.

    Add vodka.