Monday, November 1, 2010

Are you a hog?

I don’t mean the type chomping on acorns and sauntering through the woods. Let me explain.

I know people who receive things like great treats, awesome deals, information, or fab prizes and they hide those babies under lock and key so they can keep all the goodness to themselves. I know other people who will share whatever they have even if they are down to their last cup of coffee or thumb-sized cookie.  I grew up in a (predominantly) generous family. A lot of the women in my family cook so my history was frequently woven with the sharing of recipes and stories to accompany those recipes. People in my family are also generous with time and what they are willing to invest in other people. This is the model I learned. This is the model I will pass along. I had a previous neighbor who clearly grew up in the household of “share nothing” as if all our resources were precious and it was the Great Depression. No, she was not struggling with finances. She just did not like to share.

Are these behaviors innate? Or are they learned? I am sure you know people who fit into both categories too. The categories I like to title Hoggers and Sharers.  

I think sharing is the best bet. I don’t mean share your knickers or the last bite of pasta on your plate (unless you want to, of course.) I mean the overall general concept of sharing. I think being stingy is par for the course in certain circumstances. Like when you are two years old and haven’t been told yet. I think stingy at the adult level is odd. And sucky.
Listen, if you don’t want to share things with other people, you might have a great reason. My Mom used to hide things from me when I was a kid because well, I liked to explore in her jewelry box and help myself to things I liked. There were many things I liked. I went exploring in her jewelry box often. Perhaps everything fetched out of there did not quite make it back. She declared a brief moratorium on sharing jewelry with JennyMac. But it didn't last because my Mom is a Sharer.

Years ago, I worked with a woman who often brought desserts to the office. By now, you all know I liken myself a baking maven, so I loved seeing (and sampling) her creations. Once for a holiday party, we both made some taste treats well-received by our colleagues. Many people asked for our recipes and once, while sharing mine, she was in earshot.

Her: You just freely give out your recipes?
Me: Yes. (I know I have a weird look on my face as I reply because, after all, the request is for my recipe. Not my liver, or plutonium, or a kilo of heroin.)
Her: That is so generous of you.
Me: I actually got it from a cookbook so….
Her: (whispering conspiratorially) When people ask me for my recipes, I often leave one ingredient out.
Me: Blank stare
Her: Isn’t that coy? She winks.
My mental response: Yes. That is coy. Since apparently coy now means idiotic and juvenile.
Me: (out loud this time) Oh, so you are one of those women?
Her: What women?
Me:  A recipe hog. You don’t want to share the good stuff.
Her: I work really hard on my recipes and I don’t want people copying them.
Me: Good thing Ina Garten doesn’t feel that way! (And then I laughed.)
Her: (Slightly pouty face but thinks I am joking) Those are my recipes!
Me: I totally hear you, Betty Crocker! (I laughed more. And scurried away because I just learned who my least favorite co-worker was: The Hogger.)

Now, if you are hogging Halloween candy, well, that is a different story. I know you are only doing it to protect those around you, whom you love dearly, from getting cavities. 

46 comments:

Matty said...

Yep, I'm on the sharing side. When you know or find a good thing, pass it on.

Of course, unless it involves chocolate. Of course.

Jinksy said...

Oh, I'm a sharer - handy hints included, when it comes to recipes - like don't try to use super-fresh eggwhites if you want to make Royal Icing - it will never reach piping consistency! LOL :0)

Linda said...

Excellent post! I pretty much love you for this. ;-)

I've recently opted to rid myself of some of the "hoggers" in my life because they're just so darn negative and toxic. We as women shouldn't be like this with one another. It erodes the sisterhood and promotes the "mean girl" mentality.

Thanks for being a fellow sharer and sharing your thoughts on this!

Herding Cats said...

I don't understand people who refuse to share recipes. We ALL got the recipe from somewhere - so give it up!

Shana said...

Great post.
And Linda is right about getting rid of the hoggers in one's life!!
I am a sharer. Sharing recipes is the best... and I always ask later on if the person actually TRIED the recipe!!

Erin said...

Sharing is caring! Unless it is some sort of infectious disease-then people can keep it to themselves. The Halloween Candy had me cracking up-thankfully I bought just enough for ToT's and don't have a lot of leftovers.

Talia said...

I am most certainly a sharer -- I share coupons, recipes, helpful hints and great finds/buys. You name it, I share it. Otherwise, what fun is it?

I laughed when I read your post. I have a sister who leaves an ingredient out as well. Hello?? I think that is just well, mean.

Great post!

Eva Gallant said...

I'll share my knickers before I'll share my chocolate!

Big Fat Gini said...

I'm a sharer. I don't really see any reason not to be.

And honestly, what does one have to gain by not sharing a recipe? Do you really want to be the only person in a four county area who can make chicken spaghetti? Because I don't know about you, but I don't have time to make a batch for every person who has the indecency to die in the hopes that I'll make some for their family (talk about rude).

I hate rudeness. It always makes me want to say, "Hey, wow, congratulations on running over that old woman in order to get a closer parking spot. Way to rock at life."

The Boob Nazi said...

That's a little ridiculous! I can't believe she'd leave something out.

Pseudo said...

"sharing is caring." Little expression from my kids' growing up days.

Your coworker is ridiculous. If she wants to be a hog she should just announce she doesn't share her recipes; rather than let someone spend an afternoon making something that won't turn out. Totally bad karma.

mama-face said...

i grew up in a hogger family. i had no idea this was the case until i met my husband and i've been a sharer ever since.

not share a recipe? really? sheesh. i would be stunned and flattered if anyone wanted a recipe of mine!! (so not the point).

Kristina P. said...

Can I be a hog and a sharer?

Caty said...

when you said she left out an ingredient, that made my mouth drop open. I guess I'm naive enough to still believe people can't really be that mean. Once again, I'm proven wrong. I am SO glad you share your recipes, though. I (and my friends too) have enjoyed everything I have baked from your recipes I used

singedwingangel said...

OH I am a sharer, much to my mom's chagrin. I share my house with people who need a place, my food my everything.. well cept my hubby lol THAT I am a hogger about

Marcy said...

So this happens at my office quite frequently. Someone (who will remain nameless) bakes something or brings something in to share (usually b/c she is obligated to for an event, or boss's day, etc.) At the end of the day, boy, every morsel that hasn't been eaten is taken home. I am of the belief that if you make something for work you leave it at work to be enjoyed by coworkers, even if it is the next day. It drives me crazy. We also have other departments close by and sometime she will put her treats in our conference room (rather than the shared breakroom) to be sure only our department can indulge. That's hoggy and selfish...

AmyLK said...

I must be doing something right with Son cause he shared his Halloween Candy with me. Of course, its all the stuff he doesn't like but its Chocolate!

Pricilla said...

Good heavens. What an idiot. I am always complimented when people want my recipes.
*sigh*

M-Cat said...

There are about 2 things that I actually make/bake. Every single time, I am asked for the recipe and I gladly share. What's the difference if someone has your recipe. That's just dumb keeping it to yourself. Whatev

Nitmos said...

Sharers annoy me. Makes me feel guilty for hogging. I don't need that kind of guilt.

KittyCat said...

I think being a "hogger" is form your up bringing.
If you dont tend to have much, your more than likely not the sharing type of person.

I am not big on sharing.
: (

Kristy said...

I'm a sharer. And, you know, before I had a kid, I would think, "Oh, moms have to always share their food and stuff - that sucks!" And, it so doesn't matter. I'll give him anything off my plate.

Ed said...

"I liked to explore in her jewelry box and help myself to things I liked. There were many things I liked. I went exploring in her jewelry box often."

Two things...
1. Seems your definition of the word "Sharing" and how it differs from "stealing" depend on the property ownership rights.
2. Leave out the word "jewelry" from the paragraph above and it reminds me of fun times from my past.

MommaAmma said...

I will never understand hoggers. We all know the recipe can be exact but it's the love that makes it taste so good. That and good hand washing prior to prep.

And don't get me started on people who look at you like you want to steal their baby when you ask where they got a piece of clothing. Unless you stitched it by hand, someone's bound to find it!

Christopher said...

the recipe for my famous mac-n-cheese is written right on the side of the box for everyone to see

injaynesworld said...

In a civil society community needs must be balanced with individual needs. People who are concerned about the good of the community, meaning that everyone has enough to meet their needs are sharers. People who have an "I got mine, the hell with you" attitude watch Fox. ;)

I'm a bleeding-heart sharer. If others are doing without I can't enjoy mine. It's the old "What would Jesus do?" question.

I would have enjoyed coming to your house for dinner.

Elz said...

Who would leave out an ingredient when giving a recipe? Just don't give it out if you're going to be all pissy about it...I'm a sharer, definitely.

Maria said...

What a dweeb! I am glad you called her on it...I think sharing is necessary and wonderful; for both the person giving and the receiver...I bet someone was mean to her...

K A B L O O E Y said...

I was a covetous, hogging kid, so I try my best to be a sharer now. And I'm raising a sharer.

Little Ms J said...

I'm a total Sharer. I share recipes, my home, my clothes, my trinkets.. even my crankiness.

You're welcome, world.

:-)

J.J. in L.A. said...

I had to be a Hogger, growing up, because if my brothers got their hands on the occasional Sunday morning donuts (a realtreat), for example, I wouldn't get one.

I'm now a Sharer. Usually. We live 1 block from a donut shop, and NO ONE gets my occasional donut. ; )

My name is PJ. said...

Yeah. I never understood people who won't share recipes. It's such a desperate attempt at drama.

the walking man said...

I was sitting in a room full of Halloween candy that i paid for and to be honest I didn't touch a single piece, Thought here was plenty I just let it go kind of like poetry, steal it, it makes little difference, I can always bake up some new.

Mom Taxi Julie said...

I'm a sharer of most things. I don't give out my mother in laws recipes though since those are family recipes. If it's from anywhere else I'll share :)

You can keep the candy! My daughter gave me all her almond joys yesterday and I ate like 4 or 5 of them after starving myself all day. Guess it will balance itself out haha.

DaisyGal said...

I love your posts...seriously.
Every time I wonder "what should I write about" there you are....you're awesome.

I am a sharer, I share where I bought it, how I made it, The answers to the test, the best route to the mall...the things I am learning about potty training, etc.....how fantastic X***anx really is. LOL

thanks for SHARING. :)
xo

Mommy Lisa said...

Umm, WHAT? Why wouldn't you share recipes? That is just dumb.

And I totally call Ina Gaarten's turkey lasagna recipe (free at FoodNetwork.com) mine now because I upped the amount of crushed tomato by one small can and added more basil (1 tbsp) into the cheese mixture with the flat leaf parsley! And I usually use more garlic too - depends...sometimes I even add some oregano, but then I cook the sauce longer. ;)

I'm CRAZY like that.

Mommy Lisa said...

OMG to Marcy with the Peanuts avatar!

We have the SAME co-worker.

She also takes home any leftovers from group lunches that were catered in ... and if you order off a menu for the catering she orders the MOST she can and takes what is left home too.

Vikki said...

Loved this post! Why does it take us so long to learn that half the fun of having something is sharing it with someone else? (Unless it's my french fries...in which case, back off and order your own...)

secret agent woman said...

It depends on what it is. Food I share readily - I love to cook and go all out for my guests. But I'm a little more skittish about money, having grown up in a family where money was carefully guarded.

Myya said...

I love sharing my recipes, it is such a form of flattery. I also LOVE receiving recipes too! I have a friend who makes an amazing fruit salad & she WILL NOT share her recipe. Drives me freakin nuts! She always offers to bring it anytime we have a gathering together but STILL, share alreay you big recipe hog!!!

Midwest Mommy said...

I believe I'm a sharer.

Tiffany said...

That is ridiculous! I'm a sharer for sure. BTW, I know I haven't commented lately, but I've been reading! ;)

Black & White said...

Your blog is so refreshing to read! I look forward to down time and checking in to see what you posted once a week or so- you seem to be a pretty amazing lady :)

Black & White said...

Your blog is so refreshing to read! I look forward to down time and checking in to see what you posted once a week or so- you seem to be a pretty amazing lady :)

Babes Mami said...

I'm a sharer all the way! I even share my family secrets if I like the person! I'm a hog with people who I don't like though. I guess that's kind of strange but I don't know why people I don't get along with want my cards lol

Intense Guy said...

Leaving out an ingredient in a recipe is so ridiculous - you almost have to hate this person...

*takes swig of haterade*