Friday, December 4, 2009
Now that I'm jobless and subsisting on a diet almost entirely of PB&J, I'm constantly reminded of a story from childhood. Back when I was a young boy in Rhode Island, I lived across from what I considered to be my second family, the Lowmans. It seemed like I split my time evenly between the two homes. Some of my favorite things about lunch with the Lowmans were the peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Forget the bitter wheat bread that my mother used, the Lowmans had white bread, sweet and fluffy. And forget the boring grape jelly of my household; the Lowmans wouldn't settle for anything less than strawberry jam. A revelation. Back at home, my mother's sandwiches were fine, but they seemed plain and usual. Sure, they were lovingly cut into four squares, but they lacked the exotic, sweet tongue smack that the PB&J from across street always elicited.
Fast forward some years later. I've long since moved away and I'm visiting my old friend, The Lowman's son, my blood brother. As we reminisced about our good ol' days of summer fun and PB&J's, I discovered he had a very similar impression of the sandwiches, only in reverse. As it turns out, he was a great fan of my mother's sandwiches. He relished the savory taste of grape jelly and wheat, the caring way they were cut, and the double layer of peanut butter. To his mind, his family's PB&J's were bland and boring, but my family's sandwiches were exciting and new!
It just goes to show you, there is truth in the old adage, "variety is the spice of life." Sometimes, trying something new opens up exciting new perspectives. As for me, I still prefer strawberry peanut butter sandwiches on white bread, but I've borrowed my mother's technique of spreading peanut butter on both sides to add another layer and to stop the jelly from seeping into the bread.
The best of both worlds. Bon Appetit.