At Home

Meatloaf Sandwiches: A Victory

Last night after work, as I walked along our street towards home, the Beast called to ask me to pick up season three of Deadwood. He also suggested that I give my dad a call because Joe Morello, a jazz drummer best known for his considerable time spent playing in The Dave Brubeck Quartet, had passed away on the weekend.

My dad plays the drums too (quite well).

And Joe Morello is my dad’s favourite jazz drummer.  And jazz is something that features fairly heavily in my pop’s life, and, as a result, in my life too. The Dave Brubeck Quartet, the Modern Jazz Quartet, Oscar Peterson and Dizzy Gillespie, among others, provided me with the soundtracks to my youth (side by side with a heck of a lot of Bach and some of my mom’s favourites including Kenny Rogers, Anne Murray, The Boss, Patsy Cline and Kris Kristofferson.)

One of my earliest memories is falling in and out of sleep on the couch looking at the Christmas tree while the third cut of Keith Jarrett’s Köln Concert played softly. I remember crying too–not heavy tears that run down your face or anything, just the sort that well up in your eyes a bit.  And when I squinted, the tears made the multi-coloured tree lights reflect and refract in all sorts of beautiful ways.

I don’t remember why I was crying.  And despite the tears, it’s a memory that brings me comfort.

Anyway, my dad took the news better than I expected (he cried when Buddy Rich died when I was in grade seven). And he promised to toast Mr. Morello later that night with a touch of Glenmorangie.

When I got home, I heard peculiarly loud punk-like music playing from upstairs, which is where I found the Beast doing his last set of push-ups.

Foodie:  Look at you!  How many did you do?

Beast:  65.

Foodie:  That’s amazing!  (Going in to give him a congratulatory hug)

Beast: WAIT!  I still have to do my cool down.

As the Beast pushed me away, he picked up a book from the countless stacks of shit in the bedroom.

Foodie:  This is how you cool down?  With Nietzsche?  This is one of the funniest jokes you’ve ever made.

Beast:  All my jokes are funny.

Foodie:  What is this terrible music?  Is this what you always listen to when you do your push-ups?

Beast:  It’s Iggy Pop.  And no, sometimes I do them to various requiems, like Mozart’s, Verdi’s or Brahams’.

Foodie:  Aren’t requiems death marches?

Beast:  They put me in a mournful state of mind.

Foodie:  (Pause) Want to see my new running shoes?  They’re going to help correct my over-pronation problem which will in turn help cure my sore knees, butt and feet.  I am so excited I could scream!

Beast:  Whoa.  Those look…like running shoes all right.

Foodie:  I know they’re ugly but the fact that they’re functional is what’s important here.  Still though, why are the functional sort of running shoes always so hideous?

Beast: Don’t take this the wrong way but the people who those shoes are designed for–people who actually want to run–generally have bad taste.  For them, these shoes represent the height of good design.

Foodie:  Why don’t you come with me to the video store?

Beast:  If I do, I’m not going to change out of my work out clothes (a stained t-shirt and jogging pants from Chinatown that Nick Edwards gave him.)

Foodie:  I don’t care.

Beast: That means I don’t have pockets for keys or a wallet.

Foodie: That’s fine.

Beast: Okay. I’ll go.

Walking to the video store.

Foodie:  I thought about these goddamn meatloaf sandwiches all day!  I can hardly wait.  What are you putting on yours?

Beast: Butter and ketchup on white bread. Done.

Foodie:  I think I’ll toast my bread and just put on a little dijon mustard.

Beast:  Disgusting!

Foodie: No it isn’t.  And I might slice some dill pickles on the side.

Beast: Gross!

Foodie: Not really.  Think about all those chacuterie platters with meat pâtés and stuff like that.  They all come with mustard and cornichons.  Our meatloaf sandwiches are practically the same thing.

Beast:  All I know is that I have to eat within the hour.

Foodie:  Are you starving?

Beast: Yes, but it’s also really important to eat within an hour after working out.

Foodie:  Really?  Who told you this?

Beast: Nick Edwards told me and his friend who’s the personal chef for a Toronto Raptor told him that the Raptor does this all the time.

Foodie:  Let me ask you something: do you equate your push-ups with the intensity of an NBA player’s workout?

Beast: I bet the music I listen to is more intense.

Foodie: (Silence)

As soon as we got home we headed straight to the kitchen.  With few words, we prepared our appetizer of “Artisan” tortilla chips, guacamole and salsa.

We nibbled on this while getting our individual meatloaf sandwiches under way.  I sliced my meatloaf nice and thin and, just as I’d planned, smeared my toasted white bread with a little Dijon mustard and chopped up a dill pickle for the side.

The Beast took a more Beast-like approach: he sliced big, thick wedges of that meat loaf and piled it high on his slices of white bread, which were smothered with butter and ketchup.

Although we approached our individual meals with slightly different methodologies, we both heartily agreed that this meatloaf sandwich dinner was one of the best meals of all time.

Foodie: ***1/2

Beast: ****

Categories: At Home

2 replies »

  1. WHOA.

    2 things:

    1) Your dad plays drums and you never told me? That’s a pretty crazy looking setup he’s got there too. Brilliant.

    2) Those sandwiches. Goodness gracious.

  2. Another paradigm of masculinity has been defined–one that I can really get behind–and I am glad I saw it here first before it gets co-opted by some lifestyle journalist and trotted out for desultory Sunday morning café conversation by wastrels too feeble to hew to its dictates. Punk rock, pushups and philosophy! The three pillars of manhood for the new millenium. Drop and give me twenty, because shi* is about to get real.

    And then a good solid meal less than an hour afterward. More good advice that I have started taking. I feel better already.

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