CHEF Gordon Ramsay and I had a lot in common this week - and it's got nothing to do with whipping up a batch of seafood linguini served on a bed of freshly picked garden salad all lightly drizzled in a mixture of balsamic-based something or other.
No folks, I'm not beginning to cook like Gordon Ramsay, I'm beginning to sound like Gordon Ramsay. Which is better than looking like him I suppose.
And it's all thanks to one nasty little kitchen appliance.
This crappy little electrical appliance goes by the oh-so-innocent-sounding name of "The Sandwich Maker".
Let me be clear from the outset on this one, there is nothing innocent about this appliance.
Oh sure, it all sounds great when you're standing in the small electrical aisle reading the enticing directions on the side of the box.
"Easy to use - at the flick of a switch it will heat up in seconds - the red light will indicate when it's ready for use - comes with a full warranty". Impressive.
If only hubby had come with the same directions, it could have saved me a lot of time and trouble over the years.
But that's just the advertising jargon to lure you in.
I mean to say, what starved-for-time woman who hates cooking wouldn't be tempted into buying an appliance that can feed her constantly "starving" kids while claiming in big bold letters on the lid of the box, "No cooking required"?
When it comes to my all-time favourite three little words, you can forget the "I love yous" the "You look greats" and the "All day parking", give me the "No cooking required", that little phrase does it for me every time.
So naturally I bought one. And naturally I didn't buy the ridiculously expensive top-of-the-line one (why waste shoe money), I bought the little cheapie.
I proudly brought my new sandwich maker home and showed it to the kids.
All went well until it was time to clean the thing. Gooey cheese and bread had somehow baked itself into the grooves, and also around the edges of the sandwich maker, and also all over the kitchen bench and it wasn't going to budge without a fight.
Standing at the sink contemplating chiselling the stuff off I started channelling Gordon.
The instruction booklet had clearly stated, "To clean, simply wipe the non-stick surface with a paper towel". Wipe with a paper towel?
What moron wrote this #@%*? Obviously one who had never tried to clean a #**&%)* sandwich maker.
The word "simply" had no business being on those instructions.
And don't talk to me about the non-stick surface.
If that #*!!#%ˆ surface is non-stick, I'm a size 10 and my kids are angels.
There was also an unexpected find waiting for me on the underside of my sandwich maker.
Etched in small print was the wording, "Do not immerse in water".
Okay, two things wrong with this.
Firstly the wording was on the bottom of the appliance (probably put there by the same %!##*!! genius who wrote the instruction booklet) and secondly, if you have to put a warning like that on your appliance it's a safe bet I'm not the first frustrated cheese toastie maker who, out of sheer desperation, has considered soaking the wretched thing in the sink.
Time once again to do an incredibly accurate Gordon Ramsay impersonation.