It’s been said that there are two types of people: those who eat to live and those who live to eat. As I sat in my pickup today eating a cold baked sweet potato and two hardboiled eggs for lunch, I realized I am definitely an eat-to-live kind of person.
I walk into a western store and deeply inhale the aroma of boot and saddle leather. I rein in my horse to admire a colorful sunset. I kiss with my eyes closed. I eat so my stomach will stop growling. The consumption of food is not a particularly sensational experience for me.
Everyone from weight-loss experts to gourmet cooks advise us to “light a few candles, set the table, take time to sit down and enjoy your freshly prepared meal.” Why in the world would I waste a match so I can eat a corn tortilla slathered with peanut butter and jelly in a half-lit room?
I guess I’m lucky, in a way. I can’t tell the difference between Seattle’s Best and Great Value coffee, my idea of meat in a meal is roast beef lunchmeat, and I can happily subsist on hot cereal twice a day. I have to eat something else for the third meal, or I’ll get burned out on oatmeal pretty quickly.
I’m a fair breakfast cook, because I believe going to work on an empty stomach is un-American. I’m happy to whip up a sauge and cheese omlette, percolate coffee, fry bacon and slice melon. After working for Ty Van Norman, who considers lunch an unecessary luxury and generally omits it from his daily agenda, I found myself pretty well weaned from requiring a noonday meal. I can take it or leave it. I prefer to take it, but I don’t suffer overly much in its absence.
As a result, I am usually ready to eat my hand by suppertime, and I certainly don’t feel like steaming spinach and cutting lasagna noodles, much less lighting candles and laying out flatware. I’m ripping granola bars out of their packages and slicing cheddar cheese with my pocketknife.
I sure do appreciate those in the live-to-eat camp, though. My college roommate and dear friend, Theo, and I liked to throw big dinner parties. She’s an excellent cook, so she’d direct the operations in the kitchen and I’d drink wine and stir things. I might have better luck finding a husband if I took a few cues from Theo. At least I like to clean. My floors are clean enough to eat off, if only there was anything to eat 🙂