I made a post on Instagram recently that gained a bit of curious attention. I posted about going for a run and enjoying it. Now, most people who know me are aware of my true apathy toward sports. I understand that the idea of me going for a run seems surprising, but I would like to dispel the notion that I am completely unable to be athletic. I have actually made three athletic achievements in my lifetime. And two were for running, you bitches. Read on.
My Sports Achievements
Grade three. We were having a “fun day” at school near the end of the year, and one of the activities was a race on foot. (I don’t know that I needed to specify that it was on foot, but I don’t talk personal sports experience very often so I’m not totally sure what I’m doing right now.)
Now, even at nine years old I knew that I didn’t like sports–I had a fight once with a kid in Phys Ed over whether I could actually use the goalie stick to play forward in floor hockey (I learned that I could not). But for some reason I got that fire going, and I took this race as an opportunity to show myself that I had the power to be sportsy if I wanted to, maybe. And that if I were being chased by my first period (my biggest fear in grade one) I would be able to outrun that menstrual no problem. So I ran like a hybrid of Forrest Gump and Jim Carrey in The Cable Guy, until I felt that ribbon snap over my gross striped t-shirt. I got the blue ribbon. I was a blonde bullet.
Fast forward some amount of years. I’m playing indoor soccer in PE, which was the sport I sucked at the least. Normally my MO in soccer was to stay far away from the ball, while acting as if I were ready to dive in at any moment. I’d halfheartedly jerk my body to the left or right when the ball came near, feigning disappointment when I couldn’t quite reach it. “Oh, shoot! Almost had that one.” Unfortunately for me, I was put in the net as goalie. Why the teacher did this, I STILL DON’T KNOW. So I squinted at the onslaught coming toward me, threw my noodly arms in front of my face, and waited to die. But through my protective noodles I saw a beacon of light as my Big Crush came jogging toward me, doing the soccer version of dribbling the ball (you know). I braced myself for a broken nose and prayed that he was into artsy loners. But after he kicked the ball, it miraculously ricocheted off my left knee and away from the net. He immediately proposed and I became the queen of PE.
When you were in high school, were you forced to run a hellish 3-10 000 km run at the end of each PE class? I was. We’d run up the hill from our school, through the forest and out the other side. I was typically part of the group that leisurely strolled out of the forest last, running exactly none of the time.
Every class I’d see my friend Sasha jog past us like an Olympian, always being one of the first people to finish. I can be a Sasha if I want to, I thought one day. I can finish first. So the next class, I stood at the front of the line staring far off into the forest. I was fucking serious. I knew what was at stake (nothing). As soon as I heard the word “go”, I ran like a woman in a bad horror film, away from faint voices in the distance yelling “Katie, pace yourself!”
But I would not. I knew the number one rule for running was to run your ass off without slowing. I ran even when Sasha passed me, even when I felt a pain in my side and a cramping in my butt. The landscape blurred into streaks of green as I whizzed past and I dreamed of the gold medal I would obviously be getting. As I neared the last stretch of the trail, my gait slowed to what looked like drunken lunging and the earth started to tilt. My torso rode on top of my legs which now seemed to be operating on their own like a wind-up toy. I looked around the finish line and saw only a handful of students. I had done it. I was a Sasha.
That’s what I was thinking when I rolled down the hill into the girl’s bathroom to puke.
If you’ve ever tried the Oat Fudge Bars at Starbucks, I don’t think I need to say much. They’ve got a chewy oatmeal cookie layer sandwiching thick swirls of chocolate fudge. And it turns out they’re really not that hard to recreate.
If you’re like me, you crave new recipes. You’ve probably been making the same Christmas bars and cookies for the past fifty years! And actually, that is OK. Christmas can be about tradition. But maybe you’re going to Sally’s Big Cookie Party soon, and you just have to show up those bitches who have *~secret family recipes~* that they will never share with you. So you rip the cover off a plate of Oat Fudge Bars and slowly begin a story about your great-great-grandma Starbuck who has passed down this bar recipe through generations.
Or whatever. Just try this OK?
Oat Fudge Bars
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
- 1/2 cup white sugar
- 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
- 1 large egg
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 and 1/3 cups rolled/old fashioned oats
- 1 and 1/4 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1 cup sweetened-condensed milk
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
Preheat your oven to 350F.
Line a square, 8×8 inch baking pan with foil or parchment paper, letting it hang over the sides for easy removal. Grease with butter. Set aside.
In a large bowl with a wooden spoon or spatula, beat together the butter and sugars until they’re friends. Add vanilla and egg and mix until fully incorporated. Add flour, salt and cinnamon. Fold in the oats.
Spread 3/4 of the oatmeal dough into the bottom of the pan to create a base layer. Set aside the remaining dough.
In a medium pot over low heat, melt together the chocolate chips, sweetened condensed milk and butter. Once you’ve stirred the mixture together and it’s a smooth consistency, pour over the oatmeal layer, spreading the fudge out to the sides.
Grab that oatmeal dough. Scattersmall handfuls of dough (about a tablespoon) evenly over the fudge. They will spread out as they bake, but will not completely cover the fudge. You want to see that chocolate on the top of the bar.
Bake for 25 minutes until the cookie layer looks about set. Try not to over-bake these or they will not be the Green Giant treats that we all know and love!
Let cool completely before cutting. Disobeying this order will result in goopy, ugly bars. (They’ll still taste delicious though.)
If you try this recipe, please comment below and let me know how many you ate. You can use a pseudonym if you want.