One of the ways I’m rapidly turning into my father is that I cannot stomach an overpriced breakfast (other ways include frequently going for ice cream alone and walking onto my patio first thing in the morning with no pants). It’s one of the reasons I’m not a big believer in brunch—I refuse to pay exorbitant amounts of money on breakfast items (I’ll make an exception for chicken and waffles), especially when eggs cost, what, $5.00 a dozen on the high end? In what world is paying $15.00 for two eggs, bacon, and my choice of toast (and not even any sort of breakfast potato) just because “they come from a farm” an ok thing? No, thank you.
This aversion to overpriced breakfast is one of the reasons I love Five Points Restaurant, a good, old-fashioned diner that serves reasonably priced, no-frills breakfast items, and most importantly, serves its beverages in those giant red, what I’ll go out on a limb and term “frosted,” tumblers I associate with the best kind of run down, but great pizza parlors. Five Points has become a regular tradition after my weekly tennis games, and while dining there over the summer, I witnessed something inspiring.
The time? 9:30 AM. The gentleman in question? A grandfatherly type eating with his wife on vacation from Tennesse. The inspiration? 9:30 AM on a weekday, and this guy is chowing down on a whole, goddamn spaghetti dinner: huge plate of noodles covered in red sauce, three giant meatballs, and a heaping side of garlic bread. It looked and smelled delicious, and I guarantee didn’t have one artisanal ingredient. Juxtaposition? His wife happily eating a waffle.
Now, I’m well aware that the distinction between “breakfast,” “lunch,” and “dinner” foods is an arbitrary societal contrast meaning absolutely nothing—eat what you want when you want (I’m partial to a Saturday morning breakfast of cold pizza—my very favorite pizza, DG’s in Forest City, PA, tastes better after marinating in the fridge overnight), but there’s a certain give-no-f**ks quality to what this guy did. A burger I wouldn’t have batted an eye at. WIngs? Sure. But a full spaghetti dinner? This man deserves an award.
I’d forgotten about 9:30-spaghetti man until this past week while I was doing work at a coffee shop one morning. Another grandfatherly type came in and ordered an entire loaf of banana bread with his coffee. He proceeded to eat the whole loaf over an hour while happily coloring pictures of loons in an adult coloring book (I know it was an adult coloring book because the cover said so…and I know the bird he was coloring was a loon because he told a woman who asked). I’d love to eat an entire loaf of banana bread while coloring. I mean, I’ve 100% eaten a whole loaf of banana bread in one sitting (my brother makes phenomenal chocolate chip banana bread that rarely lasts 24 hours), but that’s in the comfort of my own home. And again, while there isn’t anything wrong with overeating or coloring in public, not many people under 70 would put themselves out there in this way.
Anyhow, this has just been a longwinded way to say that hopefully, I’ll be eating more breakfast lasagna and entire desert loaves in public soon and that if they ever resurrect the “real men of genius” commercials, these two men should be contenders.