Of cheapskates and hearing aids!


“What, what, why are you calling her a cheapskate? She is a bit funny (as in weird funny, not haha funny!) at times but she’s not a bad person really,” insists my mother as we all stare at her in puzzlement. We haven’t been calling anyone anything. In point of fact, we’ve not been discussing people… only food! And then it strikes me – we’ve been discussing cheesecake recipes and my mother, whose gradual loss of hearing has led rise to some hilarious misunderstandings, has heard it as cheesecake and is protesting that the lady in question – a distant relation – is not a cheesecake… I mean cheapskate… I mean I’m getting confused now!

Her son-in-law, my husband has derived a good deal of enjoyment from these situations and constantly tries to get a rise out of her! She is a good sport however and gives as good as she gets!

On one occasion, when I have a particularly annoying visitor who invariably manages to get under my skin with her very retrograde views, my mother seems to be quite calm about the whole thing and doesn’t react to anything the lady says – even when they are most irritating! The lady leaves and I ask my mother how she manages to tolerate her so well. “Oh, I just take off my hearing aid when people like her are about, you know.Then I don’t have to listen to them. It’s a very useful thing to be deaf sometimes,” she announces blithely! Trust her to make the best of any situation that life throws at her. When life throws lemons at her, my mom’s policy would be to why stop with making just lemonade, let’s go the whole hog and make lemon meringue pie and cheesecake and lemon rice and a lemon pickle to go with it and extract every possible ounce of juice out of the lemon!

This selective deafness seems to run in the family. Another elderly relation, married for many years, rarely hears what his wife says to him. When he has to, however, like when she speaks very loudly right next to him and he cannot ignore the message, he turns to her with an expression of the utmost surprise, “Huh? Oh, were you speaking to me?” – by which time she’s given up in frustration. But sit right across a large room  from him and ask him in soft tones if he’d like a drink, the “yes” comes without him missing a beat!

I have some problems with my ears a few months ago and check out my hearing. The audiologist certifies it as one hundred percent perfect hearing. I tell him I am very glad because deafness runs in my family and I had been a bit worried. “Oh, don’t worry. You might get there yet,” he assures me – even he seems to think deafness is no bad thing! I am now engaged in studying these various relations of mine to see in what ways deafness works for them – pointers to my own future course of action, maybe!

In the meantime, here’s the lemon cheesecake that my mom loves and comes from some of the lemons life has thrown at her!

One of the easiest dessert recipes, it’s a throw it all together and whizz creation…

EASY LEMON CHEESECAKE

  • Ginger or digestive biscuits – 5-6 – crush with just 1 tsp butter and press into the bottom of 4 cups
  • Paneer/cottage cheese – 100 gms – cold
  • 100 gm cream cheese – from the frig
  • Sprite or Fanta – 100 ml – cold
  • Juice of one lime
  • Sugar – 1/4 cup or Splenda – 4-5 sachets.

Whizz the paneer in the blender along with the sweetener.

Add the fizzy drink, continuing to blend.

Add the cream cheese and the lime juice and blend till well mixed. Pour into the cups and refrigerate overnight till set.

Decorate with lemon zest or mango puree as a topping.

This one aint no cheapskate, I’m tellin’ ya!

(Pic: Courtesy internet)