by Fred Haynes
The term “breaking bread” has been traditionally known as eating/sharing a meal OR simply put, breaking/tearing a loaf of bread by hand instead of slicing. Fast forward centuries to present, we still “break bread” but under far different circumstances with gluttony, extreme eating, crash diets and in sad cases, there is no bread to break with extreme hunger.
The human body being a living machine cannot operate properly or sustain functionality without nourishment. Humble beginnings and lack of financial resources often resulted in hunger pangs and empty bellies. Just think of the kid in school who never paid attention, couldn’t concentrate, seemed zoned out, acted out, etc……it could have been the result of hunger. Don’t believe me? Skip your morning coffee or bypass that bacon burger dog that you have for lunch and see how body & mind react. Hunger Pangs are brutal on the mind and the body.
During my childhood before the days of microwave and quick foods, our home contained this stuff that I like to call “cost-efficient food”…better known as generics (semi-consumable food) on a few occasions. Basically, it’s cheap food with a cheap taste and a cheaper after-taste. I’m not just talking knock off products that you see in the stores today.
– DAMN the marketing.
– DAMN fancy labels
– DAMN the gimmicks & characters.
– and DOUBLE DAMN the taste
I’m talking white, green and black labels…direct and to the point. Don’t believe me, see the pic above or google “70’s generic food labels”. It was no surprise to see canned goods simply entitled “Stew” OR a rhomboid shaped cans of “Luncheon Loaf” (which ironically had no listing of ingredients…so trying to figure the contents was that much more mysterious) OR cans of “Peas”. My parents used to say either you eat it or go hungry.
Not that I’m putting my family business out there, but that’s how it was sometimes for a few families. Hell, some of you know more about it waaaaay more and waaaaay longer than me…so don’t you dare laugh, LOL. It is ironic, however, that my mother would have a stash of Pepsi’s (name brand) in the house and pops kept had name brand ice cream, Snickers, Brach’s candy, Hostess products, etc. What did my siblings and I have? I’m glad you asked.
– Knock-off, fake ass Tang powdered orange drink that never fully dissolved into the water as the powdered bubbles floated to the top – pop/soda that didn’t have a tab to open and needed a can opener.
– government cheese. Probably the best damn thing they created or shared with its citizens. This here cheese….the real deal. I know my words sounds like complaining, but it’s really not. The main thing is that we ate together as a family after mom prayed over the food and the fact that I understand the struggle is real.
Getting back to the main point..does Hunger Pangs makes you eat strange thangs? Possibly..I mean..if you were accustomed to eating chicken for years and you haven’t eaten in a week, then….an unorthodox meal is offered to you, would there be an edible boundary? What if the tender vittles offered to you is a braised chipmunk on a bed of sea weed or a crispy camel-hump sandwich? Would you eat it? If not, why? How long would it take to yield those pangs? Or would you just go hungry. I’d probably eat that camel sandwich if it’s chopped up nicely with red onions, Swiss cheese and a decent dressing.
Sometimes, I think we might be spoiled in America based the vanity foods we collectively that just doesn’t make sense and by the amount of food that we waste. Stuff like deep fried Twinkies, baked baloney loaf stuffed with cream cheese, etc. Think about this, in some 3rd countries, anything that eats, breathes, poops, outside of fowl, beef, fish and pork is getting cooked & getting ate up (improper English, LOL) either out of necessity or it’s a tradition: dogs, cats, rats, giant spiders, monkeys, etc…them marks are not safe. Hell, in some countries, the natives will go up to a cow, shank a straw in its neck, drink its blood and will send it back to graze like nothing happened.
As a test, I want all to refrain from eating for 3 days to get a conversation started between your mind and belly. What is it that your mind won’t let you eat? Would you really let air bubbles play hunger pang ping pong in your guts because of palatable pride?by