Are you new here? Thanks for stopping in! For an explanation of this alphabet theme, see my first NaBloPoMo post.
Today, the Encyclopedia of Me brings us to the letter E. And E, of course, has to be for Ethan Hawke.
(Mmmm.... Ethan Hawke...)
Kidding. Just kidding. Really. He may be one of my favorite imaginary boyfriends (certainly my longest-standing one), and it is his birthday today, but he got the November 6 post during NaBloPoMo last year, so I really don't need to document my love for him yet again. Ethan, you are beautiful, but today it is not about you. (Call me!)
Instead, then, E is for eggs*. Fascinating, right? Maybe I should have stuck with Ethan after all.
Some people (read: my sister) are under the misguided impression that I am a picky eater. Me? Picky? That's just plain nonsense. I have a rather short and very specific list of things I do not eat, and that list has been the same for decades: mushrooms, bratwurst, beer, artificially cherry-flavored anything, most types of fish, and eggs.
OK, so beer probably hasn't been on the list for decades (I didn't start drinking that early). Also, I can think of several other things I'm not particularly fond of (cauliflower, bell peppers, malted milk balls), but I wouldn't go so far as to add them to the Official Dietary Blacklist.
Eggs, however? Really not a fan. No matter how hard my mother tried to remedy that.
Despite what my mother undoubtedly thinks, I do not feel she did a particularly bad job raising me. Yes, she could have done some things differently (what parent couldn't, in retrospect?), but overall, I think I turned out reasonably well, and I can only assume she had something to do with that. I'll even admit that certain long-standing rules of hers were probably a pretty good idea at the time. For example, making me drink three glasses of milk each day before I could have soda or Kool-Aid was not a bad plan for a kid who didn't get much calcium elsewhere (never mind that I drink more wine than milk these days). Not letting us play on the roof was also a fairly reasonable rule, I suppose, even if it did make her seem like an overprotective killjoy at the time. One rule I will never understand, however, was the rule about Sunday breakfast.
Sunday breakfast was the one and only meal that my parents routinely prepared together. Every week after church, my mom would make scrambled eggs and hash browns while my dad fried the bacon and manned the toaster. We'd sit down as a family and eat together while Big Band classics played on the radio. And every week, along with my toast and bacon and hash brown, my mother would force me to take a bit of eggs.
This went on for years--every week the same fight...
"I don't want any eggs," I'd say.
"Just a couple bites," my mom would reply.
"But I don't like them!" I'd persist.
"Eat them anyway," she sighed.
As we all know, eggs have had an inconstant reputation. One year they're the wonder-food; the next they're maligned as evil. I really don't know where they stood among nutritionists at the time, but it wouldn't have swayed my mother anyway. I doubt this was about nutrition.
I really don't fault the woman for insisting I eat eggs. Kids turn their nose up at food all the time, often without even trying a bite. But I had tried scrambled eggs. Every week I'd tried them. Did she really think I'd change my mind any given day?
I actually learned to use the egg standoff to my advantage. I wasn't allowed to leave the table until I finished, even if it meant my plate was the very last item cleared from the table. I got out of post-breakfast cleanup duty more than once by deliberately waiting it out. That one bite of eggs was even worse cold, but at least I didn't have to dry the dishes that day.
Eventually, my mother gave up and let me win the egg battle. I think she may even have deliberately blocked it from her memory. When I'm at their house on holiday weekends, she'll offer me eggs, and I'll look at her, eyebrows scrunched in confusion, and say, "Mom. When have I ever liked scrambled eggs?" "Oh. That's right," she'll reply, as if she's completely forgotten my childhood... or at least the part that involved her force-feeding me scrambled eggs once a week.
I guess it's not so absurd to think I'd come around, though. There are actually some forms of eggs I will eat... Mini-quiches, deviled eggs... Huh. I guess the list ends right about there. For a brief period as a kid I liked fried egg sandwiches, something that sounds completely revolting to me today. But I'll no longer reject an entire piece of French toast just because the batter fried a little thick in one spot, so who knows what the future may hold.
Beer, though? I've given up on that battle. And as long as there's still wine, I think that's perfectly OK.
* I swear I decided on this well before Abbersnail made egg sandwiches her "E" post. Abbers, quit reading my mind, would you?