and again: the leftovers

May 8, 2007

I started reading nytimes.com and forgot to take a photo of the leftovers I brought for lunch today. It’s probably for the best — I heated up the meatloaf, mashed potatoes, and collard greens all in my little red bowl and ate them all together. It tasted great, but…ahem, wasn’t really that pretty to look at. So I took a photo of the aftermath.

Just for the record: yes, I am overly full and I ate it overly fast and I have a sweet tooth and have thought about going upstairs to snag some chocolate from the candy at the front desk reception. The only thing that is stopping me is the sheer embarrassment of taking a photo of mini-snickers and then having to re-live that moment here.

8May2007 - 11:20am

bbq 2.0

May 7, 2007

The leftovers. I tried to eat less, but I couldn’t and ended up being overly full and feeling guilty. Again, the guilt then prompted me to eat one cup of rice pudding from Kozy Shack. It’s like a prescription: take one cup and call me in the morning.

There are so many things that bother me about this: first, that the rice pudding I like is called “Kozy Shack” and comes in a plastic tub. No way that’s good for you. Second, I was totally not hungry and only had a sweet tooth because I have been eating those cookies lately and have developed (again) that reliable addiction to sugar that I worked so hard to get rid of last time. Third, even though I promised myself I would take photos of everything that I eat, I really, really, really didn’t want to be exposed on this one — which leads me to believe that I am carrying considerable shame about eating it. Why? Is it really so awful?

There is one thing I am learning, unmistakably: what you eat is an intensely personal thing. It’s hard not to feel completely naked as I post these.

7May2007 - 7:30pm

7May2007 - 7:35pm

another taste-free bagel

May 7, 2007

Ah. Monday morning and the traditional “bagel” completely free of any flavor or texture. This is such a completely different creature than the bagels found on the east coast — the best I’ve ever had were at Carnegie Deli in New York — that even calling it a bagel is misleading. It’s bread that happens to be in the shape of a bagel — a simulacra, ersatz and disappointing.

My bitterness might also stem from the fact that I forgot to bring leftovers in for lunch today, so I have to make do. I can’t bring myself to buy lunch when there is so much food at home, so here are the two bland items I’ve consumed today, wishing it were bbq. I dunno, how many times can I eat (and hate) these same foods before being hungry is the better choice? I seem to have no willpower when I am hungry — it’s an absolutely unbearable feeling that awakens in me this incredible urgency. How is it that it is so uncomfortable? Can you ever learn to not be bothered by it?

7May2007 - 9:00am

7May2007 - 1:30pm

we {heart} bbq

May 6, 2007

Some friends of ours got us a grill/smoker as a thank you gift about a half-year ago, and Eric has embraced smoking food with a joy and facility that give testimony to the manifestations of his gender. He wanted to smoke something this weekend (yeah, yeah…like we haven’t made all those jokes already) and we settled on meatloaf as the meat of choice. Then, uncharacteristically, Eric got all worked up thinking about the sides we could make: mac and cheese, cole slaw, mashed potatoes, corn bread, collard greens. He rarely ever asks for a specific food, so…you know, I went all out and we invited friends over to come and eat too much with us. They were more than willing.

This is the gigantic spread that we made (you are going to see many, many iterations of leftovers posted here, I imagine) . I also took a photo of my plate so you can see how much I indulged. I thought I would feel terrible about myself — this is not exactly low-fat food — but I had so much fun cooking it and sharing it, that the food-guilt seemed to recede. We’ll see how I feel in the morning.

6May2007 - 6:30pm

6May2007 - 6:30pm

Wasa-p?

May 6, 2007

Whenever I write programming — particularly when I am working on my C++ homework for class and I feel like I am in way over my head and I have no idea what I am doing — I have the urge to eat. I know why the stereotype of computer dorks always includes a can of Dr. Pepper and bags of salty fried things. Somehow, sitting on your ass in front of a computer writing things like:

node * new = new node;
new = head;
new = new->next;

which, really…well, it’s like trying to follow a really faint noise through parade grounds, just makes something as concrete and immediate as eating not just appealing, but almost an imperative.

I know, I stopped making sense about 200 characters ago. The point is that I love Wasa bread, and this was a particularly tasty variation — Wasa with cream cheese and smoked salmon.

6May2007 - 10:45a

waste not

May 5, 2007

I wasn’t really hungry. But there were these leftovers that I had made earlier in the week and if they didn’t get eaten, then I would have had to throw them away. Wasted. I made a decision I would just throw the leftovers away, because what does it really matter.

But, I guess it did matter to me, because here is the evidence. I really didn’t want to take a picture of this one so I didn’t have to think about it later, but once you start breaking promises to yourself, things get ugly fast. Then I ate another bit of cookie because I felt so bad about eating the leftovers that I needed something comforting.

Anyone noticing something kinda ridiculous about that? Yeah, that’s not humiliating.

5May2007 - 6:30pm

5May2007 - 6:45pm

o sole mio sushi

May 5, 2007

Saturday, we slept in forever: 10:30am. I can’t even remember the last time we did that. It was a good, good morning.

And so, later, I was feeling in love and expansive in my food choices — what worries of food when you have a great man?

The drug of choice was Mio Sushi, who serves the best sushi in Portland that I have found so far. This is the giant plate we ordered together and it was fabulous. For the record, we didn’t finish the whole plate. Also, I ate slower than I usually do which I took to be an auspicious sign…I even drank an entire two glasses of water which I hardly ever do.

I told myself when I started this project that I wouldn’t filter my internal processes — the idea was to create a judgment-free zone where I could simply observe the food I was eating and my emotional reactions to it. But I am finding that it is difficult not to be embarrassed — I mean, look at how much I notice what, how, when, why I eat what I eat. It’s hard not to escape the conclusion that I am seriously neurotic…which, you know, I pretty much knew already.

5May2007 - 1:300pm

the random dinner

May 4, 2007

Eric and I have gotten into the habit of watching DVD TV series shows on Friday nights because we are both so pooped from the week. Currently, we are addicted to “Angel”, which is a much better show than I expected it to be. I mean, I thought it was going to be one cliché after another but it turns out to be not only engaging, but rather complicated and intelligent as well.

So, yeah, I was tired and didn’t feel like cooking so I scrounged from the fridge and came up with this random collection of food…which I inhaled as quickly as possible even though I wasn’t really hungry. And then, of course, that cookie was just calling to me from the pantry and, despite a battle with my supposed talent for discipline, I ate the damn cookie. At least it wasn’t the whole thing. Still, I went to bed feeling like I’d really done something bad — you know that subtle cloud of self-hate that clings despite the rational dialog of my inner coach.

4May2007 - 9:00pm

4May2007 - 9:05pm

wok and roll

May 4, 2007

So, on Fridays, the Mac Hall Cafeteria gives all it’s special denizens a treat: the Wok And Roll!! stir-fry bar. It’s a flame-as-you-watch presentation, although the real show is the short-order cook tossing cabbage and tofu with a big sneer on his face that makes me believe he usually has a cigarette dangling from his lip. Smoking is, of course, banned on campus. Don’t you know that smoking KILLS? Of course, so does e. coli.

Is it more or less depressing that this is the highlight of the weekly menu? People wait in line for twenty to thirty minutes while the other less exciting stations like “Menutainment” sit vacant and lonely. You just cannot make these things up.

So, here it is, in all it’s stir-fried glory, about to be my lunch for Friday, May 4 at 1:53pm:

wok on baby

same soy time, same soy channel

May 4, 2007

This is day two of the wheat squares and soymilk. It tasted as unpleasant as yesterday, and I ate it just as fast.

I brought in the cereal and soymilk in an attempt to be frugal and make my life a smidgeon easier. Conveniently, I work in a place where the only food available during the day is from the hospital cafeteria. So, packing my lunch feels like a fairly necessary thing. The thorny bit is that I also commute to work by bus/bike every day so the packing and the transporting can get tedious fast.

Hence the box o’ cereal carted in with the soymilk. I tossed ‘em in my backpack and off I go –I don’t have to pack any breakfasts for a whole week! Problem is, as you can see, is that the taste calls to mind woodchips soaked in showergel. Still, I will continue to eat this breakfast until the food runs out — can’t waste anything! Oh no, that would be a sin.

The wheat squares are doing nothing for my hangover, by the way.

cardboard - day two


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