Today, posted on the website Good Enough Mother is my weekly Sunday column for the parenting site. This week’s is about the crazy stuff that celebrities have said that informed me that . . . I just need to sit down and write my own book. In that column I reference the need to write a letter to the amazing inventor of the Crock Pot, thanking him. This is that letter.
Want to see the article on GEM? See the Column Here: Good Enough Mother: Our Story Begins: I Need to Write a Book!
Our Story Begins
Somewhere in CA 95762
Naxon Beanery Company
C/O Rival Crock Pot Company
Medford, MA 01757
Dear Mr. Naxon:
I write this letter to you in absolute and abundant praise of your ingenuity. What I know started as simply the “Naxon Beanery” in an attempt to help your family with their own cooking necessities has become so much more. More than you probably ever knew when you put that brilliant mind to the task of solving a simple dilemma.
I will admit, as little as 5, even 10 years ago, I looked at your product – changed in name to “Crock Pot” after being bought by the Rival company – as a simple accessory. This was the thing I broke out when we needed a large batch of baked beans when I was a kid. When I lived in Texas it was the very thing we mixed Velveeta cheese and chili-pepper infused tomatoes in to make queso. It was forever the thing of holidays and tailgating parties.
But three years ago, in what was a stroke of brilliance, my parents bought me the newest incarnation of your invention. It was at that time that I became the only parent in our home. Don’t get me wrong, I did a lot of the cooking already, but I had someone to wrangle children. I had a wife at home when I had to work late, which was quite often. No . . . I never gave your invention a second thought.
Now, though . . . oh, you brilliant, unsung man . . . that invention melts my heart like the processed cheese food I used to burn on its sides. Your “Naxon Beanery” turned “Crock Pot” is my savior. It tops my list of favorite kitchen appliances, closely followed by the toaster and the Reynolds’ company’s invention of a Crock Pot Liner. That, Irving, my lovely, lovely, man, was the piece de resistance to the genius that is your invention. That avoided having to instruct my children for the millionth time how to scrape the burnt and caked-on-foods from the sides of your product.
You see, Irv . . . can I call you Irv? . . . I went from agonizing over dinner to realizing that this beanery, this mastery of ceramic and aluminum, was far more than its humble appearance presents. With a mixture of spices, root vegetables and potatoes, I can have a stew ready in 8-10 hours with the meat falling apart. I can season ground turkey or hamburger and have spaghetti waiting. When I put meat in the bottom with the right mixes I can have a delicious Salisbury Steak that falls apart when you cut it. I even barbeque a brisket or Tri-Tip. I can cook chicken, fish, hell . . . people even cook French Fries in the damn thing!
My job creates massive amounts of time when I cannot be at home on-time. But putting that food, having Minestrone soup ready even if I’m not . . . means my kids eat and don’t call to bug me. Well . . . they call and bug me, but it’s never about dinner. Except sometimes it is, you know, they’ll ask if they can have seconds and then I get home at like 9pm and there’s no food left. Growing twin boys and a 14-year-old daughter still at home. But you get the point, after all, there’s no bugging about what they’re eating for dinner.
I know this comes across a bit like a love letter to an appliance and its maker. Rest assured it’s not that kind of letter. But this product, your beautiful, beautiful little combination of crock and heating elements, is nothing short of the greatest parental invention of all time.
I, you see, have no chef like Salma Hayek and no outdoor wood-fired pizza oven like Gwyneth Paltrow. I like my share of meat and chicken and carbs and don’t care a whip about gluten and am not able to rely on my staff to pick up my slack. If I forgot, on one particular day, to make dinner, or if I had to work 12-14 hours, which does happen, and hadn’t used your product my kids wouldn’t eat. Well, to clarify, they’d eat everything that they shouldn’t until I got home and then it would be too late to eat or they’d be too full to eat what they should.
Regardless, you get my point. Pizza ovens and chefs be damned! Your appliance, Irv, that lovely, sparkling, slow-cooker of yours is the savior of my household. Please don’t be offended when I tell you that I don’t use it every night . . . and don’t feel like I’m cheating when I break out the food processor or the grill. I turn my crock pot around and hide it in the cupboard so it doesn’t see. But planning my day, my week, my meals . . . it’s just easier because of it.
That, Irv, is because of you and your spark of brilliance.