So what’s with all the baking imagery? Well, I fancy myself a baker. At times in my life I have even been paid to bake, like it was my job (What?!) But it’s not right now, which is unfortunate, but okay. I still bake and some days I think I might actually be pretty good at it. Other days I never want to do it again. I want to scrape the Kitchen Aid tattoo off my arm, throw all of my baking tools, utensils, and equipment away, pretend I never went to culinary school, develop a gluten allergy and play dumb when people use terms like autolyse and proof. Baking and I have an interesting, but not uncommon relationship. I have love-hate relationships with most things in my life, including myself. I might write about baking if I’m ever feeling like I’m not a complete failure at it. I don’t have a lot of pictures of myself because I don’t like taking pictures so I’m using old photos I have save on my phone of bread and other things to add some image breaks to the blocks of text.
So what’s with the name? A starter, or a sourdough starter, is an ingredient used in the baking of some breads. It is the component that adds sourness to sourdoughs. It’s made of flour, water and natural yeasts it gathers from the air around it (invisible yeasts). A liquid starter is more liquidy than a stiff starter; it contains more water. It’s a living thing kept alive by care and feeding, like a little, gooey baby. I have killed some starters in my life, kept some alive, brought some back from the brink of death, and started some unsuccessfully. I could draw some parallels between caring for a starer and caring for a baby but I’ll save that for another post. Starters are temperamental yet resilient. I kind of relate to them. The starter I have right now is named Charlie. He lives in a glass, hinged-lid jar on my kitchen counter. He’s doing just fine, for now, like me. I should probably feed him, and myself. We eat basically the same things – flour + water.
So who am I? I’m a 32 year old female who regularly lies about her age to the point of forgetting my actual age. I am in disbelief that I have existed for 32 years and, considering I have a very poor memory and don’t remember most of those alleged 32 years, am secretly somewhat convinced that I am not actually 32. I don’t have the means to prove this yet but I am working on it (I’m not). I have a strange relationship with reality and life as I know it because I can’t believe that this is it. I often have “This is Your Life”-type shocking moments of revelation when I remember I am a person, and I’m living and this is indeed my life. Not because it’s spectacular and amazing and so much more than I could have ever hoped for but because of the opposite. I can’t believe this is life. This is it? I still sometimes think my life hasn’t started yet, but it has. This is life and since it’s already started I better get started too.