The Easy Way

 Just in case you thought I was kidding about my progress here.

Just in case you thought I was kidding about my progress here.

If you're like me, it isn't always easy to sit back, relax, and take the easy way out. Even the tiny things get me: microwaving that frozen pizza I bought months ago because it was on sale for dinner instead of cooking (wait, should that go in the oven?). Choosing to watch yet another episode of The Office, a show I have seen probably 20 times through, instead of reading a chapter of Infinite Jest, a book I have yet to finish despite starting it literally five years ago. It feels like the bad guys of the universe score a point when I admit what I often already know: I'm just too tired. So I stubbornly attempt to resist until I burn out, not unlike a dying star.

Lucky for me, I have people in my life who remind me that it's okay not to overachieve or die trying. A few days ago, on my return from a whirlwind trip home to Pittsburgh, Colin offered to make dinner -- a new recipe for étouffée, a dish we'd only ever had out, specifically at Louella's Southern Kitchen (a must have if you're ever in Chicago's Lincoln Square). When I walked in the door that afternoon, having planed, trained, and automobiled my way back home, the whole apartment smelled like all things good in the world. Dinner was delicious, and I hadn't done a thing besides take the path of least resistance and say yes when Colin offered. (See Monday's post for more proof that he always knows best or get the recipe here if you're tired of reading me gush about the man.)

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During my trip, I had a couple of books loaded on my Kindle that I knew I needed to read. But sure enough, as soon as I walked into Midway Airport, I went straight to the Hudson Booksellers and bought a copy of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. Did I feel sheepish walking out of the store? Sure thing (and not just because of the price). Did I feel like I was somehow cheating at life by choosing to read a short, easy book instead of a long, complicated one? You bet.

But did I maybe just maybe tear up when I found myself back in that world and then finish it way too quickly (much like that étouffée)? Absolutely. And I loved it. Because sometimes, it's okay to take the easy way.