If you don’t hear from me after today, it’s because The Great Ice Wars of 2012 have finally reached their inevitable conclusion and I’m lying dead on the kitchen floor.
What are The Great Ice Wars of 2012? I’m so glad you asked.
You see, it’s New Years Eve which means the entire family is in party prep mode. For my mother, this means decorating everything in sight (I’m serious: we have bedazzled ice buckets). For my father this means making ice.
Mind you, we have a perfectly nice ice warehouse across the street (actually I think it’s some kind of beer depot but as a skilled laborer, I’m never sent on beer runs) that sells bags of ice for a few dollars.
They’re already frozen and ready to go, and the best part is if you don’t buy them until just before the party, you don’t have to store them until just before the party. We have a regular sized refrigerator in the kitchen, a mini refrigerator on the 4th floor next to the roof deck and a small freezer in the pantry but still, there is never enough room on New Years.
This is because every year my mother decides to try “just a few” new recipes. This year, a “few” happens to be twelve. We had a family meeting to discuss everyone’s New Years Eve duties a few nights ago and my dad tried to convince her to scale back but he was, as usual, unsuccessful.
In the interest of keeping the peace, I got her to turn over three recipes to Yours Truly (chili, ceviche and bacon-wrapped dates) but I’m still preparing for a blow out somewhere between noon and 8:00pm when the first guests arrive.
Because of the ice. A few days ago, my dad started stockpiling.
And by “stockpiling,” I mean he’s been emptying the ice tray in our freezer into a large plastic garbage bag, which he’s storing in the freezer in the pantry. My mom didn’t realize he was doing this until she attempted to extract some actual food from the freezer.
“What is this?” she demanded.
“Pop’s ice bag,” I replied. “He’s making ice for the party.”
“Why is he making ice when he could just buy ice across the street? We don’t have room for this here!”
“He doesn’t like their ice.”
“What is wrong with their ice?”
“It’s not as good as our ice, he says. It sticks together. Plus it’s been melted and refrozen a hundred times. And he doesn’t like the shape of the cubes.”
(I wish I was making this up but I’m not. My dad takes his role as bar tender very seriously.)
“Well this is ridiculous! Tell him to get rid of this! We don’t have room for it. I’ve never heard anyone complaining about the quality of the ice at our parties!”
I’m not sure whatever happened to my dad’s ice bag after that. I’ve found, after nearly three decades of New Years Eves, that it’s better not to take sides and to retreat to one’s bedroom as often as possible.
I’m really hoping that The Great Ice War of 2012 resolves itself before tonight, however, because TWD’s entire family is coming.
Yep, you heard that right: his kids, his parents, even his grandmother from Queens.
And even though I’ve spent enough time with them at this point to know that they have plenty of their own quirks, their quirks seem somehow… less quirky. By which I mean less crazy. Almost charming, even.
In fact, I’m pretty sure they don’t argue about ice.
Did I mention that this will be the first time our parents will be meeting one another?
(And on a related note, is 8:30am too early to start drinking?)