Uncomfortable Salad

Anne sliced into the tomato with the glee of a serial killer making their first ritualistic cut in a fresh victim. Her joy at splitting the red fruit (or, in her sister Sandra’s mind, vegetable) moved beyond Sandra’s border of comfort, and she stepped over to the refrigerator to get the lettuce out.

“Having fun?” Sandra asked, with attempted light-heartedness.

“Oh yes,” Anne said, quartering the tomato.

“What else should we put on it?”

“It’s a salad,” Anne said. “What do you think? Green pepper, salad dressing, cheese, mushrooms, any other interesting vegetables you have. It’s not that hard, Sandra.”

“Of course, of course,” Sandra said.

She pulled out the green pepper and feta cheese from the fridge, setting them on the counter before delving back in for red onion and cucumber. She had no mushrooms, as she hated the texture, and Anne knew this.

“You really shouldn’t keep your onion in the fridge,” Anne said. “It changes the taste.”

“Well, it keeps longer after you cut it.” Sandra replied.

“Maybe you should just plan to use it all at once then,” Anne said.

“Hmph,” Sandra grunted.

There was silence between them as Sandra washed the vegetables and put them in front of Anne to cut. She then took the lettuce and ripped it apart, placing it in a large bowl to mix everything together. She took the tomatoes from beside her sister, and Anne said, “Save the tomatoes for last, they’ll make it soggy!” She was just a second too late though, as the tomatoes slid into the bowl.

“Oh well!” Sandra said too cheerily.

Anne sighed and continued cutting. Sandra crumbled the feta in, and poured some oil and vinegar in a bowl to serve as the dressing. She then helped Anne with the cutting, the two of them working in silence. They both dropped the remainders in, and Sandra stirred the dressing with a fork while Anne retrieved two plates from the cupboard. She set them down, and Sandra served the salad, the two of them grabbing cutlery from the drawer and sitting at the table, eating in silence.


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