January 8th, 2012

Flavored Calories.

Note to self: Eat a good breakfast.

There. It's mentioned in a place where I'll see it tomorrow.

I need to appreciate breakfast foods more. I ate less typical breakfast food as I grew up, to the point where I got through high school mainly on leftovers. This is good because my parents are good cooks and wanted to make sure stuff got used, but it was a bad habit because I distanced myself from typical breakfast foods. Somewhere along the way, probably in college, I burned out on pancakes -- I almost never have them anymore -- and there was a period where I liked Special K cereal until the recipe changed, and I didn't like that nearly as much. Stopped getting it. (I tried Special K again years later, and liked it more that time, but didn't get back into the habit of getting and eating it.)

One of my typical college breakfasts was -- you'd better not think I'm going to say "beer"! -- a generic brand of Grape Nuts topped with a berry-flavored yogurt. Filling and a satisfying combination of crunchy and smooth. Also plenty of noodles, yes sometimes Ramen (still sometimes Ramen, honestly) but also pasta from bags, which I could boil up in my dorm room because I had a portable, plug-in pot. Maybe that was a little better for me than the Ramen, but not the healthiest. At least I survived.

Overall, over the years, I haven't gravitated towards breakfast foods. And I need to get over that. I need to find more things that taste good for me in the morning. I'm happy to say I've expanded my breakfast horizons to, finally, grits. Got a big box of Quick Grits and have been finding out how satisfying those are.

This entry was brought on by me figuring that I probably eat too much late, and not enough early. My, um, bathroom needs in the morning (that delicate enough?) are probably a sign of that. Anyway, last night I was wondering whether my dinners are too big. Then tonight I had somewhat cheap steak, .87 pound for $5.55 (marked down from $7.00), and had about one-third of it along with a salad. Portion control, I said to myself. That steak should yield three total servings of meat. But more importantly, even though I know how important breakfast is, I've acted like I don't know that. Break that inertia, Chris! Eat well tomorrow morning, and the next morning, and the next. Maybe even go out occasionally and treat myself to pancakes. Try to like them again. And like more breakfast food in general.

OK, now I'm curious, so I'll ask: any offbeat breakfast foods you all have eaten?

Oo! More deets! (...meaning I wanted to write more.) A surprisingly large number of my 1990s breakfasts were comprised of soup. People seem to rarely have soup for breakfast. I think this is a shame. Warm, filling, good things like that...
Whale fluke

"A long sentence is worth the read"

Novelist Pico Iyer speaks of the pleasure and the, as he argues, necessity of the well-written, well-composed, long (long, long) sentence:

...I'm using longer and longer sentences as a small protest against — and attempt to rescue any readers I might have from — the bombardment of the moment.

...many of us in the privileged world have access to more information than we know what to do with. What we crave is something that will free us from the overcrowded moment and allow us to see it in a larger light. No writer can compete, for speed and urgency, with texts or CNN news flashes or RSS feeds, but any writer can try to give us the depth, the nuances — the "gaps," as Annie Dillard calls them — that don't show up on many screens. Not everyone wants to be reduced to a sound bite or a bumper sticker.

Enter (I hope) the long sentence: the collection of clauses that is so many-chambered and lavish and abundant in tones and suggestions, that has so much room for near-contradiction and ambiguity and those places in memory or imagination that can't be simplified, or put into easy words, that it allows the reader to keep many things in her head and heart at the same time, and to descend, as by a spiral staircase, deeper into herself and those things that won't be squeezed into an either/or.