Breakfast & Books

Posted February 23, 2011 by Heather in Breakfast & Books / 2 Comments

Breakfast & Books

So… this week’s breakfast was kind of interesting.  It was pretty busy when we got to Perkins, since we didn’t get our lazy butts there until noon.  We asked to be seated in our favorite waitress’s area (she’s the best waitress there), and settled in to our usual breakfast conversations.  Well, there was an older couple seated at a table next to our booth, and they were obviously not happy with how busy the restaurant was and how long it was taking to get their food.  I have to say that they might have waited all of 20 minutes for it, but that’s beside the point.  They were carrying on to each other about how much they dislike eating there and those kinds of things, and they were saying it loud enough that Eric and I could hear it without eavesdropping.  I wanted to turn to them and ask, “If you hate it so much, why are you here?”  I held my tongue, though, and tried to ignore them.  We actually got our food first, which I found amusing since the grumpy couple was there before we were, but we always get the same thing and the waitress can put the order in right after we’re seated.  When their food came out, the man started giving our waitress a hard time, asking what took so long.  The waitress was very nice and apologetic and explained that they were very busy.  Then I heard the woman ask the waitress if breakfasts counted as entrées.  Our waitress replied in the affirmative, and then the woman lowered her voice to continue her questioning.  She gave something to the waitress, who in turn came over to our table with this weird smirk on her face and said, “That woman wanted me to give this to you and ask if you could use it.”  I looked down at what she laid on the table… it was a coupon for a free kids meal with the purchase of any adult entrée!  I looked up at the woman, kind of stunned at first, and the woman said, “I wasn’t sure if you could use that.  We can’t use it, but maybe you can.”  I couldn’t believe it.  She thought Eric was my father!!! Eric is quite a bit older than me, but he’s certainly not old enough to be my dad!  Hahaha!  Oh my.  I tried to keep a straight face, thanked the woman and then turned back to Eric (who kind of had a horrified look on his face) and we finished our breakfasts without further drama.

Dow & Dubus III

After breakfast, we were off to our normal stop at Barnes & Noble.  I went with a particular book in mind that I read about on Twitter earlier in the day, but BN apparently doesn’t carry it in dead tree form.  So I started my usual browsing instead and ended up buying these two books, and adding four others to my wish list.  There were so many other books I wanted to buy today, but I’ve been trying to keep my book buying on an acceptable budget (is there an acceptable budget for books?) and I’ve been very good about it.

I mentioned The Autobiography of an Execution by David R. Dow in my Breakfast & Books post two weeks ago as a book that I was putting on my wish list.  David R. Dow is the litigation director of the Texas Defender Service and a professor at the University of Houston Law Center who is using this book as his argument against capital punishment.  It sounds very interesting to me and I can’t wait to hear that argument from a lawyer’s point of view.  I will probably be reading this book very soon.

I just learned about this second book from Twitter a couple of days ago.  Townie: A Memoir is by Andre Dubus III  and tells of his childhood, growing up in a depressed Massachusetts mill town and the events that led to his need to start writing.  I love reading memoirs, and I really enjoyed reading Dubus’ House of Sand and Fog.  His memoir sounds very, very interesting.

Then, of course, for every book I purchase, I end up putting two more on my wish list.  I found four books today that sound really good.  Two of them are science-oriented, one is another memoir that sounds quite interesting, and the fourth is a novel about gender identity.

Wish list books

  • The Philosophical Breakfast Club by Laura J. Snyder is about four 19th-century scientists:  William Whewell, Charles Babbage, John Herschel and Richard Jones.  They were all students at Cambridge at the same time (1812) and they started the Philosophical Breakfast Club as a way to discuss science at a time when it was still an underdeveloped field in academics.  The author is a Victorian science expert at St. John’s University, so I think this book is going to be a good read.
  • The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer by Siddhartha Mukherjee, as the title states, is a biography of cancer.  It chronicles the history of the disease from its first appearance thousands of years ago through our battle with it today.  Mukherjee is a physician, researcher and science writer, and I’ve heard a lot of great things about this book recently.
  • The Memory Palace is by Mira Bartók, who is an artist and children’s book writer.  This is her memoir about being raised by, and eventually being forced to run away from, her schizophrenic mother.  It sounds heart-breaking, but extremely interesting.
  • Annabel is a novel by Kathleen Winter about Wayne, born a hermaphrodite, who grew up in a remote town in Canada.  Only his parents and their neighbor (a midwife) know that Wayne was born both male and female, and though his parents decide to raise the baby as a boy, the women continue to secretly nurture his female side.  Annabel is the name he has given his “shadow-self”, the result of this quiet, feminine upbringing.

So, today was a pretty good day.  It was cold, but sunny with blue skies; we had some funny (slightly insulting) drama at breakfast that gave us something to discuss on our way to BN; and I bought two books and found four more I’d like to buy.  Oh, and I ate my ENTIRE breakfast today… two sausage biscuits, two scrambled eggs, two slices of bacon and a big pile of hash browns.  I usually throw in the towel after eating a quarter of the last sausage biscuit, but not today!  We ate at noon, it’s 10pm right now, and I’m just starting to get hungry again.  I have to admit that I was pretty physically uncomfortable while walking around the bookstore, but it was worth every delicious bite.  Hahaha!

Until next week, happy reading!

H.L.

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