Everyone’s heard of that “breakfast is the most important meal of the day” thing right? Well, that may be the case, but it’s seriously hard to remember that when you’re half asleep and not even hungry from getting up early in the morning. I, for one, find it so hard to make myself do anything in the morning, much less eat a whole meal. To show how that whole breakfast thing plays out for me on a school morning, I wrote a brief ‘sketch’ inspired by Evan Hunter’s short story, “On the Sidewalk Bleeding“.
She shuffles into the kitchen, the grey stone cold on her bare feet, the rays of sunlight harsh on her just-opened eyes. Plopping herself ungracefully onto the leather seat of the metal chair, then placing her chin in the cradle of her hands, letting them keep her drowsy head up from drooping onto the table and falling back asleep. Listening to her mother bustling around at the sink and stove, she waits for her breakfast.
“I think your bagel is ready, take your plate and go get it from the toaster. Make sure you get a fork too, don’t just sit around waiting for me to do everything for you”, her mother scolds her from her position in front of the frying pan. Lifting herself up from the chair with a great heave of reluctance, she clumps over to the counter and clasps the cool metal handle, pulling open the wooden drawer of cutlery organized in neat sections. Reaching into the forks, she pulls one of them out after grabbing a chopstick, then turned around to the toaster and span the knob at the bottom, making the bagel pop up. Next, she stabs it with her chopstick before letting it drop onto her plate and placing it back on the counter waiting for her mother to finish filling it up, then collapsing onto her chair again.
A plate of food set down in front of her with a clatter on the glass table. Her eyes dart down, breaking her tired, blank stare at the green numbers on the microwave slowly changing from 7:09 to 7:10. The smells hit her first; the salty and creamy, and the sweet and juicy of her sunshine-yellow scrambled eggs, toasted bagel bursting with big blueberries, and chunks of golden kiwi. She gently lifts a heavy fork up from the table and stabs it into her egg, the fluffy cloud gently making way for the blunt prongs, before lifting it up towards her mouth and closing it around the bite. Again and again, the mechanical motion of up and down, up and down. Halfway through her eggs, she feels the ceiling tremor, the sound of heavy clomping above her — her brother is awake. As she hears him practically skipping down the stairs, she takes a deep breath, readying herself for his approach.
“Ha, ha, I don’t have to go to school today! My school doesn’t start till next week so you have to get up really early every day but I don’t,” she heard his smug little voice say before sitting down on the seat across from her in front of another exact same plate of what she had already started eating. Too tired to even say anything, all she does is grumble around a mouthful of egg.
When she finishes them, she places the fork down lightly, leaning it against the edge of her plate before reaching down for the warm crust of her bagel and biting into the combination of dry and juicy, salty and sweet. Then the fork is needed once again, this time stabbing at the glistening gold kiwi chunk, bring it to her mouth, letting the gloriously sweet juice flood her taste buds. As each bite enters her mouth, she grows more and more awake, readying herself for the long day of school ahead of her. Placing her fork on top of her empty plate, she lifts herself off of the chair with a new energy, putting the plate in the sink, then turning away and walking out of the kitchen.
Featured Image: here