I had strawberry tarts this morning, paper shells piled high with fruit and jam and whipped cream. American Gods buried in sugar. If you're going to eat an American god, that's the way to do it. Springer meringue pie, anyone? How about a nice plate of Oprah-fingers, or maybe a J-Lo Jiggler? Double-Britney sundae, with the works? (You have to get all your calories at dessert, because the main course is American Family Soufflé: warm, wholesome, and so insubstantial it floats off your plate.)
On my way to work, I ran afoul of an American devil: Honkifer, Lord of Traffic. There had been a fender-bender a few blocks down, and the intersection was full of angry people. Some asshole kept blasting his horn every few seconds. This sparked off a series of admonitory honks, which, in turn, set off a lot of shouting. To make matters worse, I was stuck between two conflicting soundtracks. On the left, I had the Grateful Dead, and on the right, pseudo-classical elevator pap. Donning my headphones, I began to dig in the storage cubby for a tape. I came up with ROCHESTER PHILHARMONIC YOUTH ORCHESTRA - 1995 WINTER CONCERT. No way. I threw it back and dug deeper. Something pricked my index finger, but I moved past it, to find BSO - SMETANA - MÀ VLAST / 1998 X-MAS B.CAST / MOZART - RONDO ALLA TURCA (?). I popped that in, trying not to think about how late it was getting.
Half an hour later, I was en route again. Five minutes after that, I found my parking spot taken. Is this how blasphemers are punished in the modern age?
For lunch, I had salmon-and-Gaiman cakes with cabbage flowers on top, washed down with Yoo-Hoos from the Lucky Stop. Jim hovered over me as I ate, obviously angling for a taste.
"Those smell great. What are they?"
"Salmon cakes. They're just okay."
"Really? Because they smell fantastic."
He hung around a little longer, like a puppy hoping for a scrap. I concentrated fixedly on my meal until he went away. Later on, I told Mike about the incident. We shook our heads and exchanged "Unbelievable!"s.
"I think it's been Jim stealing from the fridge," Mike confided, "and I don't think that's all he's been taking."
"Mm." I shrugged noncomittally. I didn't want to be drawn into a serious discussion. Jim probably does help himself to the occasional (or not-so-occasional) calculator or box of pens, but I don't think it goes deeper than that.
Mike took the hint, and started throwing out ideas for Sunday afternoon, instead. We decided to do a late lunch somewhere, followed by cards and/or cribbage, depending on who comes.
Back home, I had a light dinner: oyster crackers with chick-pea paste and paper curls, and a spinach salad with bacon, egg, and book. I ate it in front of the TV. It felt like a good place to eat American Gods. (Shame American Idol wasn't on.)