My mom loves me unconditionally. I know this because I accidentally threw away her biscuit pan and she didn’t commit filicide (the formal word for offing one’s offspring, which I felt really uncomfortable searching Google for).
As keeper of our family buttermilk biscuit recipe, my mom is the only one capable of wielding the biscuit pan and harnessing its full power, the power to create biscuits that no mortal mouth can resist.
My mom takes her biscuit-making responsibilities seriously and even travels with her biscuit pan. Her biggest fear, beside snakes, is being caught off-guard with an unfamiliar pan of unknown cooking properties. “Cooking in a strange oven is hard enough,” she says.
Her biscuit pan is tried and true, or at least it was before I threw it in a trash compactor. It had been passed down from my grandmother to my mom and had a waxy patina from decades of Crisco applications.
Usually, I’m not one to destroy a priceless family heirloom, but my mom and dad came to visit us one weekend and my mom packed the pan in a cardboard box which she set right beside the kitchen door, which also happened to be right beside our kitchen trash can, in the same spot I normally stack overflow trash that needs to be taken to the dump. I just assumed that box was full of overflow trash and put it on the back of the truck, and now our priceless family heirloom resides somewhere in the Cleveland County landfill, with seagulls flying gracefully overhead.
My mom thought I was kidding when I told her I had thrown that box away. When she realized I wasn’t, a look of panic momentarily washed over her face before she quickly regained control of her facial expression and tried to laugh it off. “Oh, well, it’s only a pan,” she said.
But I felt terrible. That biscuit pan was a symbol of all that was right and true and honorable in the world. Sure, some of the biscuits produced on it probably contributed to the family’s cholesterol problems, but that’s a small price to pay for having a superhuman mom, one who laughs in the face of adversity and fights the world’s evils with one pan of buttermilk biscuits at a time–even if it’s a new pan without the Crisco patina.