I made myself lunch this past weekend; two eggs over medium with a piece of toasted, buttered potato bread. This meal is very familiar to me. It takes less than ten minutes to prepare and is one of the three meals I know how to cook. The other two meals I can cook are chicken cutlets with a baked potato and peanut butter/honey sandwiches. I got the sandwich recipe from my grandma. One side peanut butter. Equal side of honey. Toast bread. Cut in half. Eat.
I don’t usually have to cook for myself because I still live at home. My mom is a great cook. I sometimes call her before leaving work just to ask, “What’s for dinner”? She cooks everything from Pot Roast to Lasagna to Tacos to Quiche to Roast Pork. Which I think is the same thing as Pot Roast.
I once got upset when I arrived home and no dinner was prepared. My mom had worked the night shift at the Nursing Home, her body overcome with lethargy. She was too tired to cook. Rightfully so. I looked at her sleeping on the couch…
I turned my head.
The dinner table was barren.
I rolled my eyes and stomped up the stairs. I cut holes in the stomachs of all my mom’s favorite dress shirts. I felt bad and realized this was extremely immature behavior. I walked back down the stairs, kissed her on the forehead.
I stared at her as she slept. She looked like a baby cherub.
That night, I ate some toasted peanut butter and honey sandwiches.
Getting back to lunch this past weekend. 2 eggs were frying in the pan. One piece of toast was heating up in the toaster. The key to cooking is timing. The toast needed to be finished just before the eggs. I needed 45-50 seconds to butter it. The eggs couldn’t cook too long because I like the yolk a little runny. I waited. I popped up the toast before it was done. I didn’t want to burn it. The toast was warm, but still white. I like it more browned. Let me toast it 30 more seconds, I thought. I clicked back down the toast in the toaster. I looked at the eggs. I cut the two eggs in half with the metal spatula. I flipped one of the eggs. The impact of the flip broke the yolk. I felt like a failure. I flipped the other egg; another broken yolk. I poured myself a glass of tap water and took a sip. I leaned against the counter.
My dog, named Christy, limped into the kitchen. She is a Golden Lab; going to be 13 years old this September. We live by the train station. She limps to fit in with the other ghetto dogs that linger by the tracks. Her gold necklace reads, “LEGENDARY”.
Hi Baby, I said. I didn’t say it in a romantic way or anything, I said it in a high pitched voice that goes up and down like a wave. It makes her wag her tail.
I looked at the eggs, waiting. The toast popped up. Oh no, I thought. I had forgotten about the toast. It would surely be burnt because it cooked for another full cycle. I looked into the toaster. The bread was black. It’s still salvageable, I assured myself. Deep down, I knew it wasn’t. I smothered the bread with my sister’s “Smart Butter”. It tastes pretty close to real butter, but not as salty. I looked at my dog who is a human-food-addict [HFA]. She begged me for food with her innocent eyes.
I ate the burnt toast. I threw the dog a piece of the crust. It’s not that bad, I said. Saying it helped me convince myself. Her “Legendary” necklace clanked against the metal garbage can.
Realizing you’ve let the toast cook for too long is the same feeling as when you realize you’ve slept past your clock’s alarm. You say, “Let me toast the toast for 30 more seconds”, just as you say, “Let me get 10 more minutes of sleep. Then I’ll wake up.” You don’t do either. Or maybe you do both. I’m not going to make generalizations.
**The burning of the toast incident actually happened on Saturday. For this blog entry, I debated whether I should re-inact the burnt a piece of toast. I decided against it because I didn’t want to waste a piece of bread. I thought it would make the house smell like smoke causing my mom to think there was a fire.