After a year and half eating out for meals every day and night, I finally bought groceries for the first time since London Olympic qualifiers were still being played. Between that introduction and the title of this column, you may currently be thinking to yourselves, “Dear God, Rob’s been buying himself cheap hookers for the past 18 months.” Fair assumption, but untrue. I won’t be getting quite that literal, though I’d thoroughly enjoy figuring out what the prostitute equivalent of a Popeye’s Chicken value meal would be. Probably some sort of greasy hand job received through a glory hole, during which you can see the hand, and it’s supposed to look like a woman’s hand, because the nails are painted, but it’s clearly not a woman’s hand, because the manicure is terrible and more importantly the hand is bigger than yours. Then, at climax, someone punches you in the stomach. Feel free to leave your own fast food hooker equivalents in the comments!
It was easy to get hooked on dining out. Like “heroin” easy. The PGP crew always goes out to lunch, and my affinity for naps and general laziness perpetually prevented me from wanting to buy groceries to make dinner with, because by the time I arrived home from work I was too damn
exhausted pathetic to cook. So, rather than coming home and preparing myself a delicious meal, I would instead spend $7 on Chipotle. There I would sit, in the same restaurant every two or three days, slowly chomping away at my burrito, whose once bold and glorious flavors repetition had dulled into a soft cylinder of sameness.
At Chipotle, equally weary young professionals always surrounded me: people who had long considered sustenance one of life’s many annoyances and wanted nothing more than to expedite a thousand calorie ingestion as efficiently as possible. I could tell from their looks what they really wanted to do: drink, sleep, or both. Food was hindering that. JUST GET IN ME SO I CAN GO HOME AND SLEEP! That last sentence was where my food/sex life parallels started, by the way. We ate, and still eat, at Chipotle, because life is hard enough, cooking requires effort, and with the sun sets our ability to give a crap. Even a DiGiorno pizza was too great an inconvenience for me, because the three minutes of menial labor that flanked the fifteen minutes of cook time, during which you literally had to do nothing, were too much to ask. Besides, the Little Caesar’s Hot-N-Ready pizzas were cheaper, usually hotter, and, most importantly, always readier. Never underestimate the importance of readiness when ordering pizza. It trumps quality seven times out of ten. Who wants to wait patiently for an hour to feast on a delectable, artisan, gourmet deep dish pizza when they can unhinge their jaw and Linda Lovelace a Domino’s pepperoni lover’s in 20 minutes?
Cooking also meant doing dishes. Fuck that. That’s why, now that I’ve started buying groceries again, I use disposable plates, disposable silverware, and whatever else I can get my hands on that’s disposable. Deal with it, Earth. The planet has survived asteroids, ice ages, and giant volcanoes, so it can survive my carbon ass-print, which is what I refer to my carbon footprint as, since it’s born mostly of laziness. If there were disposable pots and pans to cook with, I’d use those too. Why haven’t we invented those yet!?!? My iPhone didn’t need a new OS as badly as I need to not clean skillets five times a week, dammit! The 21st Century has been nothing but a letdown.*
*Says the guy employed by the internet.
I’m over all of that now though, because I can no longer reconcile spending $14 to $30 a day on food. You know what’s worse than doing dishes? Using Coinstar, or rather, waiting in line behind a dirty hobo to use Coinstar, then inadvertently following that dirty hobo to the liquor aisle (because you’re both there for the same thing), and then basically just wondering what in the name of God you’re doing with your life. Truthfully, I missed cooking. I’m actually quite a good cook. I’ve worked in a few restaurants, and make possibly the greatest quesadilla known to man. I will not even bother to entertain arguments to the contrary. You can ask my ex-girlfriend, who is now engaged, actually. She loved my quesadillas. She begged me to make them all the time. Is it weird that I get sick pleasure out of knowing that even though she is completely in love with her fiancé, in the back of her mind she’ll always know that no matter how hard he tries, he’ll never make a better quesadilla than me? Take THAT, guy who makes my ex-girlfriend indescribably happy in every other way. You’ll never please her with a quesadilla like I could!
Once I started cooking again, I came to the realization that my sex life and cooking/eating habits aren’t so different. In fact, they’re incredibly and pathetically similar. To begin with, I generally have grand plans for both, and they almost always do not pan out. What starts as a planned multi-course meal that I probably prematurely boast about to many people, ends up being some slapped together nonsense wherein the side items are more enjoyable than the main course, which I inevitably eat too quickly and feel mostly discomfort after finishing. Either all of that, or I completely abandon any semblance of effort, get in my car, and just grab the first thing I see. Replace the food stuff with dirty words and you now know how using my penis usually tends to play out.
Then, of course, there’s drunk eating/fucking. That essentially boils down to me doing something I know I shouldn’t, whether it involves violently devouring three slices of Roppolo’s Pizza on Dirty 6th in Austin like I’m a ravenous coyote stumbled upon an unprotected nest of tender ducklings, or, you know, sex with someone I have about as much business penetrating as Mack Brown has coaching college football at this point in his life. That line, by the way, is currently as likely to get you laid in Austin as it is to get you a free meal. The point is that a good decision is rarely made, though when it is, I wake up the next morning thanking God I was not bestowed the fate I deserved, and then I offer to buy that girl whatever meals she wants. I haven’t seen The Lion King in a while, but is that the circle of life the incredibly black lion was telling his extremely white cub about? On a side note, between Mark Hamill and Jonathan Taylor Thomas, James Earl Jones and his deep African baritone sure have fathered some white ass kids in his movies.
Usually when I’m drunk and hungry/horny, either the regrettable scenario happens, or I get home and sit around alone, trying to make up my mind about whether or not I want Whataburger, and fall asleep before I can decide. The next morning I wake up half dresssed with my car keys lying limply in my hand. You can take a wild guess at what that metaphor refers to.
The above refers to jackin’ it.
If I’m really lucky though, I’ll end up eating a waffle, preferably with a girl who appreciates the inherent humor in the word waffle.