The first time I saw it, a woman in a sea-foam green vespa drove by me. She had a bumper sticker on her helmet that read: Boss B. I was hooked. There I was on the sidewalk wearing Costco UGGs walking a dog who doesn’t respect me. In contrast with the image of this regal lady, driving on a mermaid-colored device, wearing a trendy backpack, and rose-gold sunglasses.
“Hey Siri,” I asked my iPhone after the walk. “What is a Boss B.”
Ok, a Boss B is someone who takes charge of herself and her own future and embraces being a boss.
I studied. I practiced.
I ordered fake hair clips so I could transform myself into 5’4 of ponytail. With red lipstick applied accidently outside the lines, I snapped a selfie posing in front of a coffee shop. My facial expression read not too bothered but sexy, I thought. Posting to my Instagram, I used common Boss-B slang on the description: I’m coming for everything they said I couldn’t have.
Hours went by. Finally, two hearts came in. One from my parents; the other was from a squirrel who I didn’t know named @mrnutzs.
Through my studies, I found that a Boss-B is someone extremely busy. After Mass one Sunday my family all came over to my parent's for dinner. I stayed on my laptop while everyone ate.
“Hannah,” my dad asked while cutting into a chicken breast with a steak knife.
“—Too stressed.” I replied. “Slammed with emails.”
Really, I was Googling what the regulations are in Jefferson County to own a tiny horse in your backyard.
“… Was going to ask if you can pass the green beans?”
Boss-Bs don’t have time to pass table vegetables, but I did it anyway because I’m compassionate.
Weeks later, I went to the Marine Corps Ball with William. While boarding the ship, with hundreds of other girlfriends and wives, I passed out as many greetings as I had bobby pins in my hair. But there was one girlfriend who was different: Zarah.
Zarah looks like a millennial version of Marilyn Monroe. She is the type of girl that walks into a room and people remember her without knowing her. Or better yet, she is like that fish in the display tank at sushi restaurants that glows in the dark; you just can't stop looking. During dinner, she sat beside me, pulled a flask from her sequin clutch and asked, “Do you want some CVS wine?”
Finally, after my weeks of sleepless nights doing self-taught studies on how to become a Boss-B, here was one right in front of me. Fearless, Instagram influencer worthy, with hair volumized from root to tip.
After knowing Zarah, it’s not out of the ordinary for her to message me about a new project she has mastered: home decorating, a new career path, or some self-reflection on how the world works. Zarah has this special gift of being motivated by fear versus discouraged by it.
Six months ago, she sent me a photo of a loaf of artisanal-ish bread.
“Where did you buy that from, “I asked her.
“I made it,” she replied. “It is not there yet though.”
“How perfect do you need it to be?” I asked her.
“Like, Grandmas Italian bread loaf…I’ll play around with Rosemary.”
I came to find out, Zarah had been baking bread for months. Starting the hard way; mixing everything together, kneading it for 10 minutes, punching it down, proof, baking. Advancing on, she found a recipe online from NY Times that helped give her insider-trading level baking tips. Like using a cast iron pan, and letting it rest overnight.
Rosemary was not a hit she reported back. So, she played with different salt additives and yeasts that gave each loaf a different texture, however none were the one.
Her bread process took on a three-dimensional structure. One where she was designing the loaf in her head, re-designing the recipe with her hands, then using her senses after completion to re-design it again. Loafs turning out inedible never scared her away from trying again, and again, and again.
Her process gave me a deeper understanding into the mind of an authentic Boss-B. Remove the social media, trendy accessories, split-end free hair, and there is a different kind of courage. Not the kind I have watched in war movies, but something softer. As if long-term failure is more motivating than short-term success. Because the results leads to innovation.
“I did it,” she messaged me one afternoon with a picture. “It’s the perfect loaf.”
And it truly was. The signature soft holes were there along with the crispy artisanal outer crust and oven-browned edges.
“What brought this on though?” I replied to her.
“This hunt to make the perfect loaf…you could just go and buy it from a bakery.”
“…I knew I could eventually take something raw and make it beautiful.”
~Hannah King, Owner
ABC Provisions: feel good about what you're eating.