We couldn’t find them anywhere.
We looked in the fridge, I looked in my car, we looked in their freezer and they were nowhere to be found.
The sweet potato casserole we had delivered earlier in the day had gone missing from my nephew’s refrigerator and there was no plausible explanation other than this…
Minga, my wife’s demonic alter ego, was out and she had sabotaged our second Thanksgiving meal of the day.
It was bound to happen, the poor casserole had been plagued with conflict since Wednesday afternoon when I had peeled sixteen sweet potatoes to start on my delicious creation.
Yvonne (not Minga), had cooked down some bacon into bits and had suggested that this year I add it to my pecan-brown sugar-butter-flour crumble topping. My mother had frowned on this since sweet potatoes are her favorite and she didn’t get the nuance and layer of flavor added by the bacon. When I suggested to Yvonne (not Minga) to not include the bacon, apparently I unleashed the beast.
I keep forgetting that pork fat, yellow Pine-sol and my existence are her triggers.
Minga was summoned and once Minga is out it is difficult to send her back from whence she came. Unfortunately, I had not recognized that Minga was in the room. Having now lived with Yvonne for over twenty-five years and her alternate personality becoming such a fixed staple in our lives, Minga had learned how to hide from me in plain site behind the guise of a sweet Yvonne.
Since we were not hosting Thanksgiving this year and we were transporting food, Yvonne volunteered to pack the food. That should have been my first clue. Yvonne would never volunteer to do this with a fresh manicure on her carefully polished nails. Minga was out and about.
I should have known. Yvonne (now Minga) had such a vivid smile on her face and all the while she was saying to the bacon bits and mashed sweet spuds – ‘If I can’t have you, no one else will have you baby…’ channeling her best Yvonne Elliman from Saturday Night Fever.
So as dinner preparation was underway, we began to look for the casserole and realized that it had never made it to its intended destination. In all likelihood, it was still in my refrigerator at home – thirty plus miles away.
Family Thanksgiving Day 2014 was not to include sweet potatoes and Minga was the culprit – as always bringing her demonic behavior to our lives and ruining what could have been a perfect day.
Later as we got home and we were unpacking the barrage of leftovers we had brought over for a weekend of food debauchery, I noticed how Yvonne was holding on to the container of bacon bits with a wicked smile on her face that voiced her inner Gollum as she said, ‘…my precious…’
That image stayed with me throughout the night as I longed for sleep to find me. Had it been Minga? Had it been Yvonne? Did I have a new entity to contend with now? Was I in my own Three Faces of Eve dilemma? Who truly sabotaged the delivery of the casserole?
This morning brings no answers as Yvonne, Minga and the possible Newbie sleep. The only thing that brings me comfort is knowing that the casserole is in my refrigerator along with the crumble topping and the bacon bits.
I have the tools to defeat the enemy or at the very least to pacify whatever beast is lurking behind my wife’s sweet smile.