Breakfast may be the most important meal, and it may be the first alphabetically, but it is not my favorite. I suppose that way back in the day of sugary cereals and Pop Tarts, I may have had a little different appreciation for fast breaking. Each of us three brothers were allowed to pick our own box of toasted puffs of corn, wheat or sugary sugar. With a prize inside. Whether there was ground glass in the box as well, if there was something that spin, hop or fly it would come home to be opened by one of us in a flurry of not so much hunger as need for something that spun, hopped or flew. Marshmallows, crunchberries? Nice additions, but I wasn't there for the taste.
This was the necessary start to a day that would eventually bring me to lunch and dinner. And that afternoon snack. And the inordinately ritualized Two Cookies of the Day. Breakfast was a starting point. I had my eyes on other things. Other meals. Other food.
My parents tried to make that breakfast thing more appealing to me. One of the ways they made an effort was by insinuating the concept of brunch into my life. This meant a bigger range of options, and Eggs Benedict. My father, who was prone to flurries of culinary expertise, was in charge of that operation. I can still hear him waxing rhapsodic about Hollandaise sauce. Of which he was, by all accounts, a master. So Sunday mornings, breakfast got pushed back an hour or two while brunch became an event. An event that included eggs. Which landed me squarely on the outside. Maybe I should have mentioned my issue with mushy food. Oatmeal, bananas, eggs. Notice a pattern? There are a lot of breakfast foods that fall into the mushy category. Eggs Benedict was essentially a monument to mush. Whenever that egg poacher showed up on the stove, I knew I was going to be relegated to the side. I made the best I could by having a crisp English Muffin and maybe a slice or two of Canadian Bacon. Crunchewy.
So I hung on the edge of the breakfast pool. It's where I find myself today, much to the chagrin of my wife who would be happy to celebrate in that realm of morning meal, if only for my reticence. Sure, I have my bowl of cereal five days a week because I need to have something to get me to the other side of the day, but the idea of anything more complex or mushy leaves me wishing that I would have eaten more at dinner.
If only my father would have inserted, between the egg and the muffin, a plastic toy that could spin, hop, or fly.