Saturday, June 2, 2012

Dining as Routine

I'm at home for the summer, spending my days with my daughter. Our day is divided into chunks of time where we focus on household chores, academic pursuits, and general fun. Two weeks ago we each began the day by making a list of five goals we would like to achieve in June. Writing two blog posts a week is one of my goals. I want to gain some momentum with this blogging business.

Today I thought I'd share an excerpt from John Feinstein's book A Season on the Brink, which gives readers an insider's look at legendary college basketball coach Bob Knight. The idea for this post percolated in March as I listened to Coach Knight provide color commentary for the Big 12 Men's Basketball tournament, and I kept thinking about the following passage in the book:

At home, the team eats in the student union, in an elegant third-floor meeting room. Everyone, players and coaches, wears a coat and a tie - everyone except Knight, who usually arrives in slacks and a sweater. The players sit at a long table and eat spaghetti, hamburgers without rolls, scrambled eggs, pancakes, and ice cream. They drink orange juice or iced tea. The meal is always the same, home or away. Everyone gets vanilla ice cream - except Knight, who gets butter pecan.

Initially I thought the pregame meal was ridiculous. The meal makes no sense. It's something a father from the 1950's throws together for the kids when mom is out of town. Where are the vegetables? Then I started to reflect on the meal and the purpose it served, and then I began to reflect on my own dining eccentricities. Specifically, I thought about my lunch ritual at school. For the past two years, 98 percent of the time I ate the following for lunch.


Yogurt and Uncle Sam cereal. Uncle Sam cereal won't have prominent placement in most cereal aisles. It will be tucked away from the sugar-infused throng of traditional breakfast cereals. It's a stodgy cereal consisting only of wheat flakes and flax seeds, healthy goodness to fuel the body. Some of my colleagues probably think I'm crazy. Some probably marvel at my monastic allegiance to this meal. You would think that a food blogger would mix up his lunch routine. Today I'll close my post by listing three reasons this lunch routine.

1. At school I get only 15-20 minutes to eat lunch, and since I hate to rush a meal, I choose something that can be casually enjoyed in the allotted time. Time (specifically, lack of time) stresses me out. I don't wear a watch because he ticking of a clock and the realization that my days are numbered evokes stress and neurosis in my bones.

2. This lunch routine provides me with self-discipline. I love to eat, and who knows what I would look like if I ate whatever the hell I wanted to eat for lunch. I'm already a little heavier than I'd like to be, so I tether my health to this anchor.

3. I think, the stress of being an introvert in front of a classroom of teenagers dulls my appetite. I don't require a big meal, and I prefer to be light and nimble in the classroom.

I just wanted to get the blogging ball rolling with this post.

take care,

muddy waters


1 comment:

Evadactyl said...

Your minimalistic lunch is also why you're healthier than a majority of the teachers at WHS.