Southern California may have the best climate in the country, but in return for consistently fantastic weather, we have to deal with periodic wildfires. Most years, the biggest threat we face from these fires is the possible loss of electricity, gas, or water. During one firestorm, the conflagration threatened to cutoff our utility service. I sent Kellie to Costco to pick up some extra provisions just in case we found ourselves without power or water.
When I dispatched Kellie on her errand, I thought that she would probably come back with some canned goods, a little dry food, a few bottles of water, a flashlight with batteries, and possibly some candles and matches. Shortly after she left, I felt badly about not going with her to help gather supplies. I imagined her battling the crowds by herself, fighting the hordes for the last bottle of water. Kellie, however, was quite resourceful. She found a way to avoid all conflict. Now, I don’t know if she misunderstood the meaning of the word provisions, of if she got distracted (she is easily distracted), but Kellie returned with wine and lemon cake.
I grew up in Massapequa, Long Island, a place that does not usually experience wildfires. For an Islander living in Matzah-Pizza, a major catastrophe is getting cut off from one’s supply of pizza and bagels. Maybe Kellie knew something that I didn’t about how to ride out a natural disaster.
In a literal sense, I guess that wine and lemon cake qualify as provisions; it’s just not what I had in mind. I can envision this entire scenario playing out as an episode of the Family Feud. Kellie is at the buzzer ready for the face off with a member of the opposing family. Steve Harvey, the show's host, is standing between the contestants; he delivers the challenge: “One-hundred people were surveyed; the top answers are on the board. Name something you buy to prepare for a wildfire.” Kellie slams her hand down on the buzzer and confidently yells out, “Lemon cake.” In Joey’s world, lemon cake is not in the top one-hundred responses, but this is Kellie’s World, and lemon cake is the number one answer, wine is number two.