Many times as people get older, they tend to get thoughtful. Perhaps they’re more inclined to remember simpler days, before the weight of responsibility began crushing them.
They long for lost youth, lost loves – memories good and bad often come flooding back, keeping them awash in mixed emotions.
My main concern each day is figuring out what I’m going to eat the next day.
Although I’m acutely aware the world is in upheaval and these are extremely dangerous times, the last thing I discuss with my wife before going to sleep is the chow I’ve got lined up the next day, when I’m going to eat it, and where the feasts will take place.
It’s a system, and one I’m damn proud of.
Now, before I explain my process, let me be clear: I’m not a glutton.
I don’t put on sweat pants and a tee shirt and spend the day sitting on the couch eating turkey legs like Henry VIII and watching Dr. Phil (although Hank probably wore breeches and hose, because kings rarely wore sweats back then. Also, Dr. Phil was not carried by the Tudor Cable Company).
In fact, I’m a fairly healthy eater – all things considered.
I’m a vegetarian and I stay away from fried foods, so there’s a lot of grub I can rule out immediately.
And that’s why it’s so important that I plan ahead.
During the week I usually eat breakfast, lunch and dinner at home.
That means there will almost always be oatmeal or fruit in the morning, vegetables in the afternoon and something centered on hempeh in the evening.
Hempeh, by the way, is modeled after tempeh but is soy-free and considered a “superfood” thanks to its hemp seed base.
And before you make a joke about hempeh no, you can’t get high from it.
It doesn’t roll well at all and I can’t even keep it lit, so I stopped trying to smoke it a long time ago.
On weekends, though, my wife and I will go out to lunch and occasionally – if we want to be like the cool kids – we might dine at a restaurant at night.
Saturday and Sunday breakfasts are also special.
And by “special” I mean we eat grits and fake sausage.
Fake sausage tastes something like “real” sausage, except pigs don’t die for our enjoyment.
In fact, there are no deaths at all in the processing of fake sausage, unless it’s some sort of freak factory accident. (Should that ever happen, I’ll be the first to send thoughts and prayers to the victims and their families).
On the other hand if, for whatever reason, fake sausage and grits doesn’t strike our fancy, we might go for pancakes or waffles.
In an “either-or” situation I always choose pancakes because they’re softer and less aggressive than waffles, and sometimes I feel like waffles are judging me.
As for lunch and dinner outside the home, there are three specific places on our list.
One is a vegetable-centric restaurant, one serves Greek fare, and one is Mexican.
It’s important to note that the Mexican restaurant has something called
“octopus wieners” on the buffet, which I don’t think are the actual wieners of actual octopuses.
It doesn’t matter to me one way or the other since I don’t eat things with mothers, but I would’ve loved to have been in the marketing meeting when it was decided to name a food after a sea creature’s pecker.
In summation, planning out my dining options ahead of time frees up my mind to think about more important things – although at the moment I can’t think of anything more important than eating.
When I do, I’ll let you know.