Thursday, March 17, 2011

Less Than An Hour


More than the blink of an eye but less than an hour. The bagel with cinnamon and raisin. $1, for one day old, toasted. Two pats of Land O' Lakes butter. I can't open the packet of butter. A half-inch or so square, the kind of butter a diner or coffee shop gives you, the kind often, but not always, sitting in a container with some ice. I cannot finesse my fingertips to bend the corner of the square to roll back the foil covering. Is it age? Is this a sign of a budding neurological impairment that is simmering within me? Is it butter-packet-opening faulty design? I try using my teeth. I want to rip, smash, destroy the butter package, a la Tony Soprano, because of the horror of those earlier questions. It opens. Magic. The bagel has cooled to the point of losing that magic moment; the butter sits there, unmelted. I refuse to open the second package of butter. Calories? Revenge? I force-spread the butter onto two sides of the bagel. I Skype with my brother for more than 19 minutes. I eat the bagel, now cold, crunchy, a day old, with ice tea.

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