Saturday Night Social: What Do I Do With All These Gourds

Illustration for article titled Saturday Night Social: What Do I Do With All These Gourds
Photo: Fred Tanneau/AFP (Getty Images)

I am a modern woman with modern problems. For example, I have too many gourds, and I don’t know what to do with them.

My troubles began back in early April when my roommate and I signed up for a weekly CSA sourcing various produce from farms in Upstate New York. This was during the early weeks of the coronavirus pandemic, back when our entire understanding of the virus seemed to shift with each passing headline or beautifully designed fear-mongering Instagram post shared on all of our friends’ Stories. The latest telephone game combo at the time had us thinking that a) you could get covid from simply leaving your apartment building and b) if you bought masks you were taking them away from healthcare workers who needed them more than you, so in the absence of any real clue how to deal we signed up for a weekly delivery of fruits and vegetables in order to cut down our trips to the supermarket.

Both the pandemic and my general understanding of covid transmission have changed drastically since that time, as has my access to masks and PCR testing, but I’ve continued to sign up for CSA deliveries out of convenience. And it has been! Convenient that is. The only real complaint I have with this practice is with how many squashes they send me every week and what to do with them, specifically. Acorn, spaghetti, crookneck, butternut—I hate to say this about such gorgeous, shapely gourds, but I’m truly sick of eating them. I’ve tried roasting them, making stew out of them with lime juice and coconut milk—meals that would be fine a single time but that begin to wear on the girl eating them after months and months of the same old thing.

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So, help me. Please. How do you make delicious food out of squashes that is not roasting them or turning them into soup? Jezebel commenters, please… I need your help.

Freelance journalist (GQ, Esquire, Out, elsewhere), here on weekends

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DISCUSSION

lalaland77
lalaland77

Hi there. I would love any advice from Jezzies who have gotten out of abusive relationships in the past (beyond therapy). Books that helped? Did you try anti-anxiety meds? I’m six months out from separating and waiting for my divorce to finalize. Deep down I know it was the right move, but around the holidays, the regrets/divorce shame/“should I have stayed longer?” thoughts are crushing me (on top of law school stress!). I miss my in laws so much :(

I (27F) met my ex (29M) when I was 18. Eight years together total: dated for 6 years (3 LDR), engaged, married for a year, and then I left to stay with my family this summer for job reasons/needing space during COVID. He always talked about wanting to marry me, but over this past summer he revealed that he has never been “in love” (had romantic feelings) for me, and other couples in love are “just infatuated.” But he also said that if I “worked harder” or was more like my SIL, he might start to feel that way.

This was the final red flag for me. I was assaulted before we started dating, and I mentioned that to him a few months into our relationship. After we got engaged, he claimed that he thought the assault was just a “bad experience,” and he invited the assaulter to the wedding to avoid “awkwardness” in their extended circle of college sports teammates. The assaulter declined and my husband apologized and gets upset if I bring this up, but I couldn’t “let it go.” I asked to delay the wedding, but he said that if we postponed, he would break up with me (he was planning to move cities for me to start law school). A priest also encouraged us to go through with it, and we trusted him. I loved my husband and I’d wanted to marry him for years, and I couldn’t think of a “good” reason not to get married that my husband hadn’t dismissed as my fault—my “failure to communicate,” my anxiety, etc.

After we got married, he imposed an ultimatum of living far from my family to “prove my loyalty” to him, even though that area has the best job opportunities and my mom wants to help with grandkids. He also insulted my body during sex and then said he was just joking; he mocked my emotional intelligence (“oh, because you’re *so* emotionally intelligent”) when I said it is normal for men to have romantic feelings for their wives in most marriages; and he said that I was crazy and “should have been institutionalized” when I was depressed during our engagement. By the time he said the last bit, we were physically separated and I’d expressed doubts about whether I felt OK living with him. So he was angry and hurt, but I still felt like this crossed a line. The fact he never, for one moment, begged me to stay weighs on me: “would you have preferred for me to lie and say I was in love with you?”

He was faithful to me for 8 years, he stayed engaged to me when I was going through depression, his family is incredible, he had a great job/great friend circle, I loved him so much. We shared the same religion/general values. In his way, he wanted to make me happy. But after couple’s counseling and solo therapy, I divorced. I’ve gone through my mistakes a million times— I avoided him a lot during my first year of law school, I started drinking before sex to cope with the lack of intimacy, etc. But I could not have “worked harder” to make him fall in love with me, and he was so cruel to someone he promised to love and protect. The fact he never seemed to connect to me romantically, but still married me, blows my mind every day.

Eventually I want to remarry and to have kids. Obviously I feel like I have a much better sense of red flags to watch out for now. But currently I’m caught between being deeply ashamed about getting divorced, and knowing the situation was way too unsafe to risk getting pregnant (that’s what pushed me to leave). Thinking about what his friends/family makes it hurt more—I’m the “bad guy” since I filed and he hasn’t told any of this to his family, who I was super close to. My heart just hurts.