After I became a food blogger, I decided I would try to be nice to people.
Of course, the world is composed of morons, so they ruin my plan to be nice to people.
However, since there are some quality folks out there who deserve my niceness, I would spare them my wrath and be as sweet as possible. I hope that, in turn, people return the favor. Nice people rock!
Have you ever had your drink purchased for you by the person in front of you at Starbucks? Me either, but I hear the exist–and they sound swell!
My parents told me they used to pay the tolls for the car behind them… but that was back when tolls were fifty cents and not six dollars. But still!
One of the qualities I find most nice is when you can relate to someone, even if for something minor. I inherited my “customer service” gene from my mom–aka, the ability to chat with anyone about anything which works particularly well in making small-talk at work–and it applies in everyday life as well.
It’s easy to strike up nice, friendly conversation with people if you can find a common link, like say, waiting in line during Black Friday and comparing your “must-buy” lists. Or telling a stranger in the Forever 21 dressing room that the top she’s trying on looks really good & you thought about picking it up yourself (even if it wasn’t really true–it’s still good to be nice to make her feel good).
And that’s my second point: people with no customer service genes whatsoever.
Case in point: people who can’t be nice and are incapable of being nice even for the little people, like myself.
There’s a girl in one of my classes that thinks she’s hot stuff. She parades in the class wearing her designer garb and professes that she’s dating someone famous but neglects to give a name. (Does anyone smell the overwhelming stench of BOLOGNA?)
Anywho, today, to be nice and friendly and chatty, I whipped out an assignment our class had been working on and the local sitters around me were talking about it. As they compared answers and “were we supposed to do these problems…?/how did you do number 25?” I decided to pipe in, being that I’m nice and customer service-y and all.
“Well, our teacher said we weren’t supposed to do those problems since we haven’t learned the material yet. I don’t even know how to begin to solve those. They look so crazy confusing and hard! What’s even going on?!” I said to lighten the mood and show them that they weren’t the only ones confused. You know, the common link.
To which the Juicy Couture snot–hereby called Juicy Snot–replied in the snottiest, most condescending voice EVER, “Actually, those are really easy. It was in the homework… if you did it, that is.”
To which another brown-noser and fellow Juicy Snot lover replied brattily, “Yeah, it was actually really easy. I didn’t have any problems with those.”
To which another dude (who presumably likes Juicy Snot) added, dude-brattily-like, “yeah, those weren’t too bad. I didn’t have trouble.”
To which I sat there, stunned to silence, thinking that I swore I came to school today but apparently I had walked into a gigantic, classroom-shaped toilet bowl with a bunch of steaming craps floating around me.
What happened to being nice? What happened to common decency? Or the little white lies that, personally, are a lot nicer to pretend with than the evil, ugly, and unnecessary truth that made me feel bad.
Even if you took five seconds to do over 50+ problems that took me over two hours and you spent the rest of your day talking to your pretend famous boyfriend, you could have at least spared my feelings in saying, “yeah, they were a little tough” or something.
I mean, seriously. I was trying to make small-talk and be friendly.
But the really worst part? My reaction to all of this wasn’t witty or cutting or anything cool. It was: “Oh, well I was drinking and sitting on my ass all weekend, so I didn’t bother doing the homework yet” which subsequently made me seem like an obese alcoholic but had the original intention of sounding like I was a cool party-girl who didn’t spend hours doing homework like those squares.
Nope. Fatass drunk.
Which isn’t true, by the way. I spent the weekend working and eating pizza. So partially true. Only one drink was involved, but nothing to deem me “cool party-girl” or “cool lazy-girl.” Just a small-talkin’ freakshow who, at times, is guilty of coming up with some AWFUL comebacks.
Happens to the best of us, I suppose.
So I came home and drank my sorrows away, pretending to be all hot and called Jessie and begged him to pretend to be famous. Just kidding, I made Homemade PopTarts. They’re like brain food.
Oh, and did I mention they’re easy? I’m talking use-what-you-have-on-hand easy. For myself, I made Butterscotch Biscoff, Chocolate Peanut Butter, and Classic Strawberry. But really, use any spreads/jams/fillings you have on hand. Canned icing also works beautifully as a wonderful drizzle.
1 pkg (2 rolls) prepared pie dough
Assorted ingredients–jams, jellies, spreads–you name it
About 1/4 cup canned vanilla icing
1. For the basic set-up, preheat your oven to 400 degrees F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil and set aside.
2. On a clean work surface, gently roll out one package of the pie dough and slightly stretch it out. Cut off the rounded ends so it makes a large square. From that, cut three even vertical strips, then cut those in half for a total of SIX rectangular sheets of dough. They should be about (roughly) two inches long and about an inch across–but obviously, math isn’t my strongest suit. Repeat with the other package of dough. You should now have 12 rectangular sheets of dough.
3. Place six squares several inches apart on the prepared baking sheet. Spread with desired fillings, leaving a small border around the edges. Top the filled dough sheets with a second, equal-sized piece of dough and gently press the edges together to seal using your finger. To be fancy, crimp the edges with a lightly floured fork. Poke a couple holes in the top with your fork, too.
4. Bake for approx. 10-12 minutes, checking every so often, until lightly golden. Do not overbake. Allow to cool on the baking sheet for about 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
5. Microwave the canned frosting for about 10-15 seconds or until almost melted. Drizzle on the tops of the PopTarts and top with sprinkles, if you like. Allow icing to set somewhat before eating. Best served the same day but can keep an additional day if stored airtight at room temperature.
Biscoff spread or Trader Joe’s Cookie Butter
1. Spread dough with a small teaspoon of Biscoff spread, then top with a small pinch of butterscotch chips. Continue as directed.
Creamy peanut butter
Milk chocolate chips
(I used chocolate icing)
1. Spread dough with a small teaspoon of creamy peanut butter, then top with a small pinch of chocolate chips. Continue as directed.
Seedless strawberry jam
White chocolate chips or yogurt chips, optional
1. Spread dough with a small teaspoon of slightly-softened strawberry jam. Top with white chocolate chips or yogurt chips if desired. Continue as directed.
As you can see, I sampled the Biscoff treat…
The best part here is the versatility, methinks. Sub any flavor jam (blueberry’s next in my book), curd (hello, lemon) or spread (Nutella, anyone?) and top with virtually anything. I mean, hell, you could make Snickers PopTarts if you wanted to. Just use whatever’s in your pantry or whatever your family finds most appealing.
And go compliment someone today. It makes them feel nice.
Have a great Wednesday!!