Monday, May 4, 2020

Some Handles

SOME HANDLES look like the sweater you just got back from your big sister after she borrowed it. They’re stretched out and worn-looking before you ever even put them on. You think you can smooth out the wrinkles or stretch out the bulges, but the more you work at it, the worse they look.

SOME HANDLES are a hand offered to shake, but maybe we feel that shake as a warning: The coming kiss of the rim is bound to be just as rough as the touch to that hand. 

But some other handles are the hand offered – palm up – that you take into yours with the promise that you are going to be gently walked -- hand in hand – to a very pleasant encounter with a waiting rim.

Some lugs are bugs. Some of those bugs are parasites. Ticks. And like ticks, they appear to have dropped onto the pot in a seemingly random manner with no aesthetic consideration of balance or composition. From there they parasitically and immediately suck the life from an otherwise healthy pot. 

But some lugs are symbiotic, and to those lugs the pots take a liken. They share the pot’s surface and the whole of the pairing is greater than the sum of either part. They enhance the glaze in ways the surface couldn’t have done without them in place. 

SOME HANDLES were following too closely when the pot in front of them jammed on the brakes. Sometimes the ensuing wreck is catastrophic. Other times such a fender bender can create interesting results. Without that accident we may never have known that the bumper could even fit there.
SOME HANDLES are like your favorite rich butterscotch topping….on your favorite fettucine. 


Switching metaphors mid-stride here, I have a friend who once told on her husband, “He came downstairs wearing a plaid shirt over plaid pants. I asked him ‘Howard, why in the world are you wearing that shirt and those pants together?’ He answered that they were both his favorites.” Well, duh. 

But I see it with handles all the time. Fettuccini w/Butterscotch. We like ‘em both. Not so much together. Beautiful pot. Beautiful handle. Terrible match.

SOME HANDLES are like….
….Remember that junior high Health Ed book wherein they had a picture of two stick figure men standing side by side – a big man with a little fig leaf and a little man with a big fig leaf? So the publishers of the Health Ed book tried to make it clear (bless their hearts), much to the relief of a few 7th grade boys, that size doesn’t matter.

But it does with handles. And proportion means even more.

SOME HANDLES are invited by their pot to a seat at the table. In the case of these handles, the pots exhibit a concave to which a handle might offer a convex echo. Those pots have an empty visual space inviting a handle to fill it. And for their part, the handles observe the formality of the setting with its full complement of silverware paraded in its proper place, the linen napkin, the china plate – and those handles shape themselves into the proper dressy attire before sitting down to dinner….

….Or maybe the handle observes a casual setting and therefore adopts a more easy-going style. Either way, the handle wasn’t an afterthought. The pot was made with the handle ever in mind. The invitation was sent, the handle arrived in time and in place.

Some handles have nice pots attached to them.

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