Good morning. I had an incident with a piece of brown bread the other day and it got me thinking. I know, first of all you're probably wondering, what in the hay-zoo is brown bread?
When I was a kid, every Saturday night we would have beans. Beans and hot dogs. Or beans and hamburgers. Or beans and pork chops. I don't really know what it was with beans, but there they were. When I was really little, my mother would make them from scratch in her big bean crock. They would cook all day in the oven and when she took them out, man, I can still smell them.
And then she would open the can of brown bread. I suppose it's called molasses bread in some places, I'm not really sure. I do know it's thick, and sweet, and sometimes has raisins in it. I also know it's steamed and not baked. It's not "traditional" bread, and I don't really know how to describe it. But it was always there on the table on Saturday night.
Having moved down South, I've had to give up a lot of food I took for granted when I lived in the North East. Fresh quahogs, fried clams with bellies, plums without pesticides, coffee milk, johnny-cakes, Twins Pizza, spinach pie, dough-boys -- the list is endless -- and brown bread.
Anyway, my mother found a can of brown bread at the local supermarket one day. She called me right away, nearly giddy with joy. "You'll never guess what I just found at Lowes Foods." When she told me brown bread I nearly cried. She was of course, making beans and hamburg for supper, and wanted me to come for dinner. I didn't feel good and I didn't want to take the chance I would give whatever malady I had to my father (his immune system is compromised) so I begged off. However, I told her to save me a piece of brown bread.
She sent me a chunk later that night. Probably around three slices if I cut it just so. However, what I did was leave it on the counter. Saturday, Sunday, Monday. Finally, Tuesday night I cut off a slice and smeared butter on it and inhaled it in one bite. I left the rest for another day.
I've found the reason for prolonging my self-gratification is I'm afraid. I'm afraid if I eat that last piece, I'll never have it again. Even though I have my own can in the pantry. How twisted is that?
I did it with books the other night as well. I finally put the Kindle reading app on Monster's lap top so I could finally read books in bed. (I still don't have a real Kindle -- go figure. Santa can you hear me?)
So after I put the Kindle app on the lap top, I trolled through the stacks of books on Amazon. I hit several categories. I found so many books I have wanted to read for the last however long, but I didn't buy any. I've been saving money so I could buy them. I have lots of money so I could have bought as many as I wanted, but I didn't.
You know why, I wanted "real" books. Paperbacks. Okay, so maybe my "lots of money" was only $20 bucks and e-books are wicked cheap and I could have bought at least 15 books. But somehow, reading in bed constitutes turning pages, bad light, and twisted pillows. The thought of reading off a computer screen in bed totally turned me off. What gives?
I didn't buy e-books because I wanted paperback and I only had enough money for one or two, so in turn, I didn't buy any. I couldn't make up my mind which "One" to buy so I put it off.
Do you do this? Do you prolong your self-gratification for whatever reason? Or do you just "go for it"? Have you ever had brown bread?
Anne Gallagher (c) 2013