pom couscous

pom steak

Stolen Eggs

by Sophie Kipner
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stoleneggs2.jpg

If I stole it, it would undoubtedly taste better. Ever since I was a little girl, despite the food on my grandpa’s plate being absolutely identical to the food I had before me, I would try to steal his. His food was tastier, stronger, more courageous and intelligent than my boring food. The bacon was crispier, the sausage was juicier, and the egg yolks were sunnier. My food stealing extended well beyond the typical English breakfast, with his bowl of canned pears submerged in heavy whipping cream, his perfectly buttered toast, his milky, sugary PG-tipped tea in his bone china cup.

I’d sneak my fingers across the table every moment he was distracted by a question from my grandma in the kitchen, or by what the news reporter was saying. But no matter how stealthily I moved, he caught me mid-pinch. He would reach his huge hands under the table and grab my other small hand, and squeeze it just enough.  He’d snarl at me every time, but always with an upward bend in his fake, forced frown. He’d bark and I’d jump, and it would end there, with an, “oh, alright then”. He did it just to shock me, as if chastising me for stealing outweighed the affection that fogged the room; he knew that my stealing his food was the highest form of flattery.

These days I find it slightly more annoying than flattering, when my friends take food from my plate without prefacing, May I? Could be because they aren’t my 5-year-old granddaughter. Could be because many years after my grandpa passed, I tried to rekindle the thrill of stealing by taking pieces of my brother’s turkey bacon from his plate. Although, stealing food from my brother had different ramifications than an under-the-table hand squeeze.

I started to ask people why stolen food always tastes better. Because it’s not yours, they would answer. Because if it’s already yours, you don’t want it as much, they would say. It wasn’t the ingredients my grandma bought from the little corner shop in the village in Yorkshire, the old wicker basket she carried them home in, the way the rain washed over her as she walked them home, or the health of the grass the chickens were raised on, it was the fact that the food was his. And no matter how many times I make eggs and bacon, they will never taste as good as they were when I stole them from my grandpa’s plate.

 

More of Sophie’s writing and sketches can be found on http://skiparound.tumblr.com.

Comments   

0 #6 murph 2011-05-21 03:49
this writer has such a lovely style. beautiful melancholy. musical rhythm. the works on her blog are equally enthralling and addictive. my only advice to her would be to keep writing. faster. more please.
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0 #5 Zoe Gillis 2011-05-17 04:42
I love this!!! Especially since I am a notorious food stealer, and it is true I only steal food from those whom I really love. I always say, "its a sign of affection". This story made me smile all over :-)
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0 #4 Nicole 2011-05-17 02:44
The eggs are always greener on the other side of the table... What a great story!
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0 #3 lilibena 2011-05-17 02:20
I love this little story! So well written and so deep at the same time.
It is so true. Maybe because we always prefere what we don't have...
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0 #2 Alison 2011-05-16 14:25
Such a lovely, fun story. It brings me back to my own childhood and puts a smile on my face, remembering my grandparents and the precious times we spent eating together. Beautifully written...love the yummy details! :-)
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0 #1 Edwin 2011-05-16 04:46
Very charming story. I never had a grandpa i envy my nephew who has my father as grandpa.
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