By Ezra Klein
Stop it. Seriously. Enough with the letters. I don’t want another “FINAL CHANCE” or “LAST OFFER.” You send one every week. I let my subscription lapse half a year ago. I’ve moved on and it’s time, Cook’s Illustrated, that you did too.
Look, I don’t want this to be weird. I don’t want to have to change my address or start divvying up our friends. I know you wouldn’t want it to end like that. So let’s just be honest. Some couples grow together. Some grow apart. We grew apart. I changed. And as I changed, you stopped giving me what I needed.
An example? Fine. But you’re not going to like it. Remember back in May, you tried to tell me how to make a quick tomato sauce? No, it’s not that the recipe wasn’t good. It was, you know, fine. But it felt like you weren’t trying anymore. A whole article about tomato sauce with all sorts of twists and turns and you finally let me know that the secret was adding a bit of onion before cooking the sauce? Onion? You mean like everyone already does whenever they try to make tomato sauce?
That was, frankly, insulting. There’s nothing wrong with onion. I like onion. You know that. But onion isn’t a tomato sauce secret. That’s like saying the “secret” to good sex is a partner. Or genitals.
When we first got together, the whole coy thing you did was cute. I liked hearing you tell me about all the things you tried before something actually worked. But the act got old. It stopped being cute. I wanted you to just get to the goddamn point already. Worse, I developed a sneaking suspicion that you might, well, be lying to me. That you were sexing up your stories to make them more interesting. You couldn’t honestly have only thought to add onion at the last minute. That’s insane. But you’d never admit it. It began to seem like you didn’t really trust me. Didn’t trust that if you were just yourself, I’d still be interested.
And so here we are. What? Am I seeing someone else? Ugh. Let’s just not do this. It’s not about that.
You’re not going to like it.
Fine. It’s true. I’ve been hanging out with Bon Appetit. But it’s not serious.
Oh Jesus, don’t look like that. I’m not saying we don’t have a chance. Your buttermik pancakes really look pretty good. They made me miss you a bit. And I appreciated your efforts to get all that oil out of my Spanish tortillas. I know you worry about my health.
Maybe we just need some time apart to remember what we like about each other. But that means, you know, some time apart. So stop writing. It’s bad for both of us.