Artist in Residence – Quarantine Diaries, Episode 3a: Pursuit of Pie, Part 1: The Case of the Recused Rolling Pin

“Holmes…”
“Yes,, my dear Watson?”
“Did you move the rolling pin?”
“The rolling pin, Watson? We have such an object?”
“Yes, indeed, Holmes! Every well equipped kitchen has one. It is instrumental in baking a pie.”
“Are you baking a pie, Watson?”
“I am attempting to, yes.”
“I see. So that is why you are cutting up every apple in the bowl, then…?”
“Not every apple, Holmes, be reasonable. The recipe calls for nine.”
“Nine? This is not excessive?”

“The recipe calls for nine. But that must stand and juice right now, and I ened to roll out the crust. Did you move the rolling pin?”
“From where?”
“Well, it was… right…” Watson gestures impotently at a drawer. “I THOUGHT it was in there. But it is no longer so.”
“Are you sure, Watson?”
“It is a rolling pin, Holmes, not a toothpick. Or a clue hiding in plain sight. It is a perfectly ordinary rolling pin, and I need it to roll out the…”
“What does it look like?”
“What does it LOOK like? It looks like a rolling pin, Holmes, for Heaven’s sake. What else would it look like?”
“Yes but is it a classic one with two handles, the kind you se portrayed in cartoons as brandished by an aggrieved wife against a cowering husband, or one of those long thin ones? Is it marble, or wood? Is it…”
“Holmes. It’s a ROLLING PIN. You’ve seen it before.”
“I may or may not have done. I may have seen A rolling pin and not THE rolling pin. It might have been borrowed, and returned to its owner. Is it your mother’s rolling pin?”
“I think we owned a rolling pin of our own, Holmes. Be kind enough not to bring my mother into this.”
“Have you looked in the…”
“Yes.”
“And in the…”
“Yes.”
“And have you checked…”
“Yes, yes, YES, Holmes. I have looked in all the obvious places. Our rolling pin is not anwyhere… what is that, Holmes?”
“It is a glass jar.”
“I can see that. Why are you handing it to me?”
“In the absence of the proper desired implement one must make do with what is at hand. I aassume you are already too deep into making this pie to abandon it now?”
“Well, yes, all the ingredients have been…”
“You need to roll out the pastry?”
“I do, yes…?”
Holmes gestures. “Not my thing, you understand, but if you must. Use the glass jar as an erszatz rolling pin. Be carefull you do not push too hard. We do not want injuries. I am not squeamish, but I do dislike blood in my pie.”
“But what about the rolling…”
“Watson, we have not engendered a tame black hole in the kitchen. The rolling pin – which as I am sure you agree you have not used frequently in recent times – is probably relegated to some place where such rarely used things recuse themselves to in order to stay out of the way. I am prepared to make you a bet that you will find the recused rolling pin precisely in the moment when you are not looking for it and have no need for it. In the meantime, you need to roll out the pastry? Here’s a glass jar. Be careful.”
“Of course. I shall make everyeffor to do so. Thank you, Holmes.”
“Watson…?”
“Yes, Holmes?”
“Get a move on. Now I can smell apple pie, just by thinking about it, and I need you to complete the task at hand. Rolling pin or no rolling pin, I will have pie.”
Part 2 to come…
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Artist in Residence – Quarantine Diaries, Episode 3a: Pursuit of Pie, Part 1: The Case of the Recused Rolling Pin — 7 Comments

  1. I had taken this for a bit of classic-era Holmesiana, and am therefore wondering why Watson is attempting to bake his own pie rather than relying on Mrs. Hudson or whichever Mrs. Watson might have been in place at the time. (The reference to rolling pins in cartoons doesn’t quite eliminate this interpretation, as Holmes could plausibly be referring to magazine or newspaper drawings.)

    Although I suppose it could be occurring during the events of this hitherto unknown episode….

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