Monday, October 28, 2013

After-Breakfast Dessert?

Dear WIBC, 

How about a bowl of Maple Brown Sugar Life, Fresca Black Cherry Soda, and two Whoopie Pies while reading People Magazine? What do you consider appropriate reading material for breakfast-time? What about the Cereal-to-Whoopie-Pie Ratio? What if the Whoopie Pies were made with Whole Grain flour? Could the Whoopie Pies be considered an after-breakfast dessert? (This was not MY breakfast. It was eaten by someone in whose dietary and intellectual habits I have a vested interest. Is that allowed?) 

-Blake's wife

Guest Committee Member David Death:

What is Breakfast? Before we ask what is breakfast, we must first answer "why is Breakfast?"

Why is Breakfast? Breakfast is to start the @&$!#!% day. Nay, to OWN THE @&$!#!% DAY. To destroy our enemies with speed and precision. We must ATTACK with stealth and cunning, we must be acute and FULL OF @&$!#!% APTITUDE. Because our ENEMIES ARE WAITING. 

So, What is Breakfast? What gives us the power and strength to obliterate the @#!$ out of the day? NUTRITION!  Vitamins and minerals. PROTEINS. MILK. MUSCLES. SLAM DUNKS.

What isn't Breakfast? What doesn't keep you TOUGH AS @#!$  Two cakes separated by HELL. HELL is  a place on earth, and it's made of that white sugary, strength-stealing, white shit in the middle of two gingerbread cakes delicately sprinkled with more sugary white shit. DELICATE IS NOT STRONG. Whoopie? More like Whimpy. THIS MUST NOT GET NEAR YOUR BREAKFAST. 

What are your enemies eating for Breakfast? Whoopie Pies? NO. They crush the biggest Whoopie Pies (1.062 lbs) with their brains while eating BANANAS and PROTEIN and some @&$!#!% JUICE. Did you eat a Whoopie Pie for breakfast? You are WEAK and you will be CRUSHED. You must be strong. Did a loved one eat a Whoopie Pie? THEY ARE WEAK. You are weak because those closest to you are WEAK. They cannot protect you. Some eggs-on-a-bagel-eating $%&!$@#!$!# will SNEAK INTO YOUR DAY and make it AWFUL, because he is your enemy and you are WEAK, but he is STRONG BECAUSE PROTEIN.  

Because this is the most important @&$!#!% meal of the day. 

Recommended reading: THE INGREDIENTS OF PROTEIN.

Co-chair Jessy:

The What Is Breakfast Committee would like to communicate the utmost respect for Vested Interests and Other Forms of Love, and is certainly very happy for you and yours. But, no, that's Not Breakfast, Blake.

The What Is Breakfast Committee is very loud and very certain:

Maple Brown Sugar Life Cereal, Fresca Black Cherry Soda, Two Whoopie Pies, and People Magazine Have Never Been Nor Shall They Ever Be Breakfast.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Second Breakfast Redux

Dear What is Breakfast Committee,

I wasn't that hungry this morning when my Cream of Wheat came to meet me at the breakfast table, so I took a few bites and ran.  Now it's 11:29 and what I did not really do at 7:30 is coming back to haunt me in the form of a raucous stomach chorus.  I am considering eating some peanut butter crackers with some water (it's all I have to drink at work) while listening to Peter, Paul and Mary.  Will this be Breakfast? 

Thanks and a hearty handshake!

Dear Breakfaster,

I am delighted to receive a question for which I can deliver such a confident verdict. I must refer you to Guest Committee Member Steve’s brilliant ruling on a second serving of toast and coffee occurring more than forty-five minutes after the initial serving of toast and coffee. In this landmark case, it was determined that, although toast and coffee is most certainly Breakfast, there is only “a forty-five minute window wherein you can consume Breakfast, no matter the activities undertaken between the first and second food engagements.”

According to this precedent, I must inform you that your meal is Not Breakfast. What you have is a special kind of Shitty Lunch known as Sad Desk Lunch, or SDL. SDL is an epidemic that began during the Great Recession when hard-working employees nationwide began to fear leaving their desks, opting instead to pretend to be diligently working through their lunch breaks, while actually focusing on a podcast or, as you mentioned, Peter, Paul and Mary. While lunch is technically outside my purview as a WIBC member, I encourage you to consider a more substantive noontime meal. It’s not as important as Breakfast, but it’s still pretty important.

May a turkey sandwich or a BLT find its way to you next lunch break,
Guest Committee Member Lesley

Dear Breakfaster,

Guest Committee Member Lesley (and, by association, Guest Committee Member Steve) makes an excellent point: This seems like too long a gap to be considered a mere Pause in Breakfast. However, I'd like to raise an additional argument for this being Not Breakfast: the possible Second Breakfast in question is peanut butter crackers, which do not qualify as First or Any Subsequent Breakfast. Because, crackers.

I heartily approve of you eating something at this point in the day, but I do not want you to suffer under the delusion that that thing is Breakfast.

Kind regards,
Co-chair Jessy

The What Is Breakfast Committee regrets to inform you (except not really because it is our only job):

Peanut Butter Crackers and Water Consumed Three Hours and Fifty-Nine Minutes After Original Breakfast are Not Breakfast.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Bloody Breakfast?

To those of you who have been waiting to eat Breakfast for the past six months, we apologize, as usual, with a small amount of sincerity.

However, we have a shiny new Guest Comittee Member to make up for it. Guest Committee Member Jonathan loves Breakfast and rules, so he is highly qualified in his affections. 

And we have a question to answer that comes up in my own life on a weekendly basis, so let's scurry to the inbox:

Good morning fair and reasoned breakfast jurists,

During a recent visit to Chicago, I enjoyed a Bloody Mary at the Bongo Room within customarily acceptable breakfast hours (say 6am to 11:30amish). Said Bloody Mary was surprisingly heavily garnished with a speared meaty cube of salami, equal amount of cheese, pepper, and olives.  Assuming the mix included either tomato juice or V8, was this Breakfast?

I’m including a picture for your convenience (please also consider the slice of lemon and lime), though I hope you will not disparage me for taking a picture of my food.

Kind regards,
Gary Windle

Dear Mr. Windle,

Although I had hoped my inaugural post as a guest member of the What Is Breakfast Committee would occur under sunnier circumstances, it is with a heavy heart that I regretfully inform you your Bloody Mary is Not Breakfast.

Let us begin with the facts:

1. The Bloody Mary is delicious.
2. The Bloody Mary is a drink.

It is with only a modicum of trepidation that I assert the following: a drink is not a meal. Yes, in rare circumstances, a drink may act as a meal, much as the vice president becomes "acting president" if the real president has to undergo a colonoscopy. If you are not able to consume solid foods, and must thus have someone put a cheeseburger and fries into a blender, you are consuming liquids as a meal replacement. If you drink Slim-Fast as a meal replacement, well, you are doing just that. You are utilizing a "meal replacement." They wouldn’t call it a meal replacement if it were a meal. That’s not my opinion, that’s just how words work.

But I shouldn’t dwell on the abstract. The Bloody Mary depicted in your e-mail—and, on the picture, I should note: I appreciated it. Show, don’t tell, right?—is very, very well-appointed. I see cheese, salami, olive, citrus, and, for some reason, a jalapeno shaped like a cherry. Indeed, had you had a greater quantity of these meats, cheeses, and fruits, you might have found yourself with a breakfast on your hands. Unfortunately, all the food skewered on the rim of your glass is, at the end of the day, "garnish." Delicious though they may be, they are ultimately nothing more than decorative flourishes. What you have, sir, is a very fancy drink and no Breakfast.

Mr. Windle, thank you again for your correspondence, and I do hope that next time you’ll order some eggs—I don’t want you to drink on an empty stomach.

Guest Committee Member Jonathan

Hi Gary,

This is difficult for me because—as many friends, lovers, and bartenders in the greater Chicago, Fort Collins, DC, and Boston area know—I love a good Bloody Mary. Like, if my mother asked me (as she always does when I say I love an inanimate object), "Are you gonna marry it?" My answer would be a resounding, "Yes! Or I would, if our archaic judicial system would just catch up to my desires!" (Although, in the interest of full disclosure, I believe I also gave the same answer re: Tetris and those little tape bracelets you can wear to make gift wrapping easier, so.)

And this looks to be a glorious Bloody Mary indeed. Although the photo doesn't tell me about its internal spices, I can almost taste the olive, jalapeno, and the chunk of cheese, and I can almost smell the piece of meat-thing that I would quickly pass on to one of my dining companions.

But Guest Committee Member Jonathan is right: it's a drink. And the density of a Blood Mary is not thick enough to push it into more controversial Breakfast Smoothie? territory. 

Sorry, Gary. A Blood Mary, on its own, is just a Bloody Mary.

Better luck next time,
Co-chair Jessy

The Committee reluctantly declares:

Even an Especially Well-dressed Bloody Mary is Not Breakfast. 

(But we do hear that they pair exceptionally well with many egg dishes that are Breakfast. And hangovers.)