I can cook, but I’m not a master chef. One thing I have never been good at is peeling potatoes, and I am still what one could call a “hacker.” I will begin lightly under the skin of the potato and then descend deeper and deeper into the flesh of the potato. Moving to the next section of the tuber, I’ll start out lightly, and then dig deeper and deeper into the potato. When finished, the potato looks like I’ve taken a hacksaw to it in order to create and awkward piece of modern art. It’s awful.
To make matters worse for the potato, I’m not fast. I’ll slowly drag the blade down the side of the potato and roughly rip stray pieces of skin away from the vegetable. My mother, on the other hand, peels potatoes like a machine. While I’m still on the first strip of the potato, my mother has already peeled a field’s worth and has already began to mash them. I’m no potato peeler, but learning how is one of a few of my favorite (simple) things.