CHEAP EATS John Campbell’s Irish Bakery is famous for its scones and pasties. My friend the Maze is famous for grinding his way through medical school and then choosing to work in publishing freelance, at that. A feat of audacious and lively present-tensitivity for which he will forever be cemented into my heart, no matter how many crumbs he leaves in my car.
We have this sweet new routine where he runs across town to USF, where I play soccer Sunday mornings, and that way we can both be smelly and sweaty when we go out for breakfast. The camaraderie is killing me. But what are you going to do? If it wasn’t that, it would be the bacon.
Which reminds me: I’ve been challenged by my current favorite online suitor to write a song about bacon. And I use the word challenge loosely. This guy has no idea! By the way, I am famous online, completely separate from my in-print and on-stage famousnesses, for being one hot bacon-obsessed chick.
Datingwise, I have an unfair advantage over my g-g-girlfriends, and it isn’t that I stutter. Having been on both sides of the surface of the pond, I know exactly what bait to use. Bacon. The advantage is short-lived, however. I get all the bites in the world, but can’t keep anything on account of tiny tits.
I keep three very very separate mailboxes in my e-mail program: one for friends, one for Cheap Eats, and one for online dating. When that so-called "bacon explosion" rocked the Internet a couple weeks ago, all three mailboxes filled up simultaneously with links, invitations to barbecues, and pictures of the divine rolled-up weave of sausage-stuffed bacon, which, I admit, was one of the sexiest things I ever saw.
Me? Write a song about bacon? That’s like asking a kitten to be cute. As anyone lucky enough to have heard Sister Exister’s obscure first album, Scratch (available at cdbaby.com, ahem), knows, my songwriting has been, shall we say . . . a wee bit chickencentric, with occasional brave forays into eggs, and butter.
Predictably, my second solo album, about one-third written, is all about heart disease. But not the kind that comes from high-fat diets, no, the kind that comes from online dating.
Whateverwise, as much as I would love to bring all three of my bacony famousnesses together by writing a date-commissioned bacon song right here in Cheap Eats … well, to be honest I would but, incredibly, I’m drawing a blank.
So by way of stalling for rhymes, John Campbell’s Irish Bakery is famous for its scones and pasties, and me and the Maze stocked up on both. We got three scones ($1.50 apiece), a sausage roll ($3), and a beef pasty ($5).
They have glass cases just filled with piles and piles of these delicious looking things, and other things, like bread, sweet tarts … They have soup, breakfast sandwiches.
What they don’t have is anywhere to sit, except for the bar next door, the Blarney Stone, which is a great bar, so you know, with soccer on TV and all, but we were both running low on dollars and didn’t feel like feeling like we had to drink, so we took our greasy brown bags of goodness around the corner to my car. My new car. My beautiful new car. My clean and beautiful new car.
And I put on the classical music station and we ate and talked and passed the pasty and talked and laughed and just generally steamed up the windows. Everything was great! Actually, I didn’t think the scones were anything special.
They are "traditional" scones, and, I know I know, we’re people. We tend to dwell on the past, to go on living in it. Ergo: traditional = special. But I personally can’t afford to think that way or I will dry up and blow away. To me they were scones, and great, and the pasty, by virtue of being something new, was special: ground beef in gravy with carrots, onions, and potatoes all wrapped up in this sopping greasy flaky crumbly pastry dough.
Which I am still picking out of my seats.
And the camaraderie is killing me. But what are you going to do? I live in a world that defines itself, and its parts and people, historically. It’s a song. About bacon. And it’s over now, so stop dancing already and wish me weight.
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L.E. Leone’s new book is Big Bend (Sparkle Street Books), a collection of short fiction.