Lunch is a strange meal. Breakfast is usually part of a lurching process of starting the day. Dinner usually has a certain satisfaction associated with either relaxation or letting your guard down. But lunch is weird. You stop everything that you’re doing, have a meal, and then start up where you left off, before taking time for lunch.
Lunch is also a social thing. It starts out when you’re a kid. You have breakfast and dinner at home, but lunch is that meal you have with all the other kids at school. You start looking over at what all the other kids have for packaging; lunch boxes, brown paper bags, and the occasional lucky bastard who gets a thermos with something warm and yummy. In turn, everyone else gets to see what taste your parents have in food packaging. Then comes the examination and critique of the lunch contents; bologna sandwiches, cold pastas, salads, the every-so-infamous mystery meat, and who’s the lucky kid whose parents sneaks their kid a cookie for dessert. You ask questions. “What’s that?” “Are you gonna eat that?” “Can we trade?” It’s a social affair.
This moves on into adulthood, but with more complex dance steps. “Let’s do lunch!” Where do you want to eat? What do you want to eat? Should it be a grab n’ go or will it require reservations and good behavior? Let’s not forget the art form of trying to delicately balance the transfer of food from plate/bowl to mouth while keeping at bay the strange magnetic attraction the food seems to have for your clothing. “Look, Bill’s wearing his lunch. He must’ve had a couple of martinis.”
Heading into the 40th year of my existence on this twirling ball, I’m slowly coming to the realization that I hate lunch. That whole thing that your grandmother tells you about how time flies the older you get, well, it’s true. For me lunch is becoming more and more of a time suck for what seems like the progressive dwindling of hours in a day. I usually try to keep it simple and quick. I usually try to keep on doing whatever it is I am doing while I’m eating lunch so as not to loose pace or concentration. What bugs me most about lunch is that afterwards I always want to sit back and relax, but I can’t. I’m always in a hurry to get it over with, unless of course if someone’s offering me a martini.