I’m warning you beforehand, what I’m about to say is going to seem utterly ridiculous:
My mother once told me that I could conquer the world if I ate a decent breakfast. The whole world. All because of breakfast.
See? I tried to warn you.
Anyway, to this very day I’m still not sure how this meal can make conquering the world possible, but my mother never lies.
I remember the day she told me, I was having a devastating morning. I was about to take an entrance exam into the sixth grade. And this was a big deal because earlier that year, I’d failed fifth-grade—which drained my confidence.
But back to breakfast.
Mama made the greasiest meal. Three eggs, cooked in fat from a Maxwell House can, bacon, potatoes, grits, and toast hearty enough to sand the hull of a battleship.
I passed my test. I made it to the next grade. And eventually, my confidence began to improve. Thusly—and I’ve always wanted to use that word—I can
only assume that breakfast played an important role.
Since then, I’ve always believed in the first daily meal. I ate a good breakfast the day I got married. A big one. That day, the waitress kept bringing me plates of pancakes.
“You must be starving, honey,” she said.
I smiled. “Thusly,” said I.
But I was only nervous-eating. Truth told, they weren’t even good pancakes—the blueberries tasted like freeze-dried goat pellets.
I also ate a big breakfast the day I got fired. My boss called me into his office and chewed me a new nose-hole. He said things so hateful I can still remember them. I quietly walked out of his office before he finished speaking.
I went to eat breakfast. I read the paper, I watched the sunrise. I had one of the best mornings I’ve had in years.…