Image by Kirsty TG
I was cooking sausages yesterday as part of our dinner (it seems a stretch to call it cooking, though). These were quite fancy pork sausages ‘with kakadu plum and lemon aspen’ no less, but cheap, marked down to nearly nothing because they were on the cusp of expiring.
Now I don’t know what lemon aspen is and I don’t have much time to write this so I’m not willing to googling it. Right now, anyway. Later, when it’s the kids’ bath time and I want to look too busy to help I might 🙂
So I was cooking these in our grill pan and got to thinking how people are a bit like sausages, in that they are kind of made to be together. But that’s not actually one of the ways I was thinking of. These are:
Four ways in which sausages make me think of people
- We are all different, but are essentially the same. You’ve got your bratwursts and frankfurters, chorizo, black pudding, Chinese sausage, Goan sausage, Italian salamis, fancy concoctions you can get from the butchers and the supermarket cheapies that are getting fancier all the time. They all have the same form and consist of a package of ground meat encased in a real or synthetic skin. All come under the species of sausage. Similarly, people come in all sorts of shapes, colours, and sizes, while belonging to the same species of Homo sapiens. Also, most sausages, like most people, are quite nice.
- Going deeper with the difference/sameness thing; even if we are treated the same way, we remain our distinct and individual selves. Sausages are like this too. No matter how evenly you try to cook those things, they still when you turn them, each kind of settles in its own special way. Each likes to do its own thing. There’s no way to turn them all exactly the 90 degrees I would like to; maybe one will stay put that way, but the rest will curl or turn to 100, or 50, or 180 degrees. I can’t get them to cook exactly the same way, I need to treat them differently in order to get each one cooked all the way through. Children in a family are a bit like this: they might get the same treatment from their mum and dad, but each child will retain his or her own uniqueness. Untimately, both people and sausages can’t be given exactly the same treatment – both out of simple practicality and out of respect for their uniqueness. Which brings me to point #3.
- Each sausage needs to be treated differently in order to get cooked all the way through. Educators who support personalised learning and teaching styles know this about children too (in terms of educating them of course, not cooking them, let me keep my analogy straight here). Even with a pan of sausages all made the same way at the same time, this one, because it keeps rolling to the left, needs to be propped against the left-hand side of the pan. This one, to the right, and this one, needs to be propped between two others. In fact, the best way to cook sausages is not to treat them all like little hermits or individualist sausages, but to put them all together, respecting their differences, but also recognising that it’s precisely because of their differences that they do better when placed to cook alongside one another.
- Sausages and people do much better when they are together – the sausages with the sausages and the people with the people, that is. Sure, there might be a charism for a hermit sausage. One particular kind that needs to be made and cooked all by itself – I won’t google that right now as it’s not bath time for the kids yet. But on the whole, sausages, and people, do better when they are going through their lives together. In fact, its only together that they really find their purpose (does anyone make, cook and eat just one single snag?). And not just two or three sausages or people together that work best, but a pan-full, or in people terms, a community.
Usually when someone asks me what I’m thinking I say, “nothing” or “stuff”.Next time someone in my family sees me kind of space out while doing domestic chores and asks me what I’m thinking, I can now refer them to this post as an example of the long answer.