Sunday, 24 June 2012

Piscine Ponderings and Cod Psychology!

When I wrote about my glut of smoked mackerel and yogurt on Friday, thanks to Husband's big shopping trip, I had some great responses about what to do with it.  From being rather overwhelmed with the prospect of having to use it all up, double quick, I went to being reassured that it really is OK to take a cavalier attitude towards use-by and best-before dates; I learnt that you can freeze yogurt, and I was given some good recipe tips.

What struck me most about the comments though, was Jane's response, "I would freeze either of those to have when I really want a treat.", because she had revealed something to me; I wasn't looking at that smoked mackerel as a treat, I was looking at it as a fishy nuisance.  Therein lies the problem of the BOGOF or the Twofer (the price of one).  It creates a culture of abundance, where what used to be a treat, becomes expendable.  I even  recently posted a link to an article in the Daily Mail about just this issue, and yet Husband still fell prey to the seductive lure of the Twofer. People in the UK succumb to an average of 6 such food offers a week, many of which get thrown away as they go past their expiry date, and that was about to include us.  Thanks to my readers, the mackerel did transform into a treat rather than a nuisance; it has already been nearly used up and enjoyed.  It wasn't so hard after all.

But it set me thinking: what else is there in my life which I perceive as a nuisance but which is really a treat?  I like to think that with my frugal mindset, I'm good at appreciating the joy of small things, but a quick look at my weekend shows that, like the mackerel, that's not always the case!  Gardening in the rain?  Well yes, it did seem rather a nuisance.  Er, no!  I spend a lot of my life indoors, so actually any opportunity to be outdoors is a treat!  Haircut?  Bit of a nuisance to have to spend more than I'd like and use up an hour of my Saturday morning? (If anyone can tell me a way to frugally maintain my short hair that doesn't involve Husband and his clippers, I'd love to know!) No!  The Hairdressers at my little salon are great fun, and it's an enjoyable way to spend time, if not money.  Giving up our living room so Daughter and friend can have a sleepover on the sofabed?  Husband definitely thought this one was a big nuisance!  Well actually, no! There is life beyond the living room.

So treat mentality became my focus this weekend!  Reframing or putting a positive spin on things never hurts, and if I'm blessed enough to have 400g of delicious smoked mackerel sitting in my fridge, life can't be bad.  (Although I will be avoiding consumable BOGOFs and Twofers in the future, unless I can be sure they'll be eaten.)

If you'd like more cod psychology, this whole fish debacle reminded me of the professional development course that Husband went on a few years ago, where he learnt about (and for all of about 5 minutes, was quite inspired by) the Seattle Pike Place Fish Co.  You can find out more about the four components: Be there, Play, Make their day, and Choose your attitude, here.  I guess my treat mentality is not so far away from 'choose your attitude'.  HOLY MACKEREL!

1 comment:

  1. Well said! We have these silver moments in life that could bring us joy, but too often we choose to brush them aside, because why --we'd really rather be sweeping, mopping or paying the bills? I think not. Thanks for the reminder to take the "treats" as they're doled out to us!