Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Breakfasts at the Prindle

The happiest part of my happy days at DePauw is my breakfast every weekday morning out at the Prindle Institute, where I have one of my two offices (the other one is on campus in the Philosophy Department suite in Asbury Hall).  For the last several months, I've been having breakfast every day with Linda, our assistant director, and Nicki, our graduate intern.

I'm usually the one who arrives at the Prindle first, and I busy myself in my office until Nicki comes to announce to me that she and Linda have arrived and it is time for breakfast!  Occasionally, if I'm absolutely beside myself with eagerness for our breakfast, I pace around by the front door (accumulating beneficial steps counted on my pedometer) and peer out to the parking lot for the first glimpse of their arriving cars.

We each bring our breakfasts from home, or else keep the supplies for them stashed in the cupboards and fridge of the Prindle kitchen.  Linda's breakfasts have the most variety and are of exemplary healthfulness: a hard-boiled egg, or an egg poached in her little-microwave-poaching device - and some kind of fiber-rich cereal, and fresh fruit (blueberries, an apple).  Nicki and I have no variety at all.  Nicki has Lunchables, which actually look more appealing than they sound, as she spreads her crackers with herbed creamcheese and thin-sliced turkey.  I have half of a grapefruit with one packet of sugar and half of a toasted Ezekiel-brand whole-wheat English muffin, topped with some Amish cheddar cheese from the Bloomington farmers' market.  Once you start eating the Ezekiel-brand muffins (introduced to me by Linda), you can never go back to Thomas's, which were for decades my English muffin of choice.  After Ezekiel-brand, Thomas's is like eating air.  An Ezekiel English muffin stays with you for hours.

So we assemble our breakfasts.  Then we eat them together, perched on the Prindle counters.  We talk over all the MANY MANY developments in our lives since we departed from each other's company yesterday afternoon or evening (Nicki and I walk most evenings, with her dog, Henry).  And then we are ready to start our day.

I find myself remembering one of my best-loved passages from Winnie-the-Pooh:

"When you wake up in the morning, Pooh," said Piglet at last, "what's the first thing  you say to yourself?"
"What's for breakfast?" said Pooh.  "What do you say, Piglet?"
"I say, I wonder what's going to happen exciting today?" said Piglet.
 Pooh nodded thoughtfully.  "It's the same thing," he said.


  1. I love the way Pooh thinks, and you, too, dear Claudia! Breakfast is my favorite meal. I could eat breakfast three times a day.

  2. Thank you, dear Clara.

    Correction: it was NICKI who introduced LINDA to Ezekiel-brand English muffins, and then Linda who introduced me.

  3. From the time I was 12 until just recently, I hardley ever ate breakfast. I always was the last one up in the morning and the first one ready. I hate getting up early--I hate waking up in general! But, in September, Eliza's competitive gymnastics schedule meant three nights a week she didn't get home until 8:30 and the other two nights were crazy with other activites and homework. The idea of a family dinner seemed out of reach, but I didn't want to let go of having time to share a meal with my family. So, I started getting up an hour earlier than usual and making a family breakfast every morning. It has been quite an adventure. We have savory on Monday and then sweet the other four mornings and I have tried dozens of new recipes. I've asked most of my friends for their lists of favorite breakfast foods and when I meet a new person, I almost always ask them what they eat for breakfast. It has been a great adventure. My favorite: Red velvet pancakes with cram cheese sauce. If you google it, I recommend making the sauce with extra liquid so it is more like syrup and less like icing. And, you don't need the food coloring. Brown velvet tastes just a delicious. So, I was quite delighted to see your breakfast appreciation post. The last thing I think about before bed now is about what I am going to make for breakfast. It makes for yummy dreams most of the time. So, keep those breakfast suggestions coming...home made or Blue Door made...I'm always looking for inspiration.