Living Matters: Culinary wings remain clipped

Life is too short to order the same old things from the menu. At least, that’s what I’m trying to tell myself.

We were at one of our favourite spots.

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“I might try the kale power bowl,” I said. “Or the ramen soup with tofu.”

“Really?” asked the husband. “You never eat tofu.”

“You’re right,” I said. “I’ll get the burger.”

This is how it goes. We have three favourite spots. And at each one, I tend to go with the same old, same old. No idea why I even ask for a menu.

The husband is much the same. Caesar salad at one spot. Unbreaded wings at another. Chicken chow mein at spot No. 3.

Never in a million years could I imagine him telling a server that he wanted the deep-fried pickles and a portobello mushroom burger. He’s not a deep-fried pickle kind of guy.

Still. Of late, I have been trying to convince him that we might consider spreading our culinary wings and thinking outside the lunch box a bit.

“What do you think of an egg white frittata?” I asked him the other day.

“I think I’ll leave that for someone else,” he said. “I’m having the wings. Unbreaded.”

Come on, I continued. Life’s too short to play it safe all the time. If we couldn’t, oh, jump out of a plane or take part in the running of the bulls, could we not, at the very least, try avocado toast?

“I don’t get that,” said the husband. “Avocado on toast? That’s just weird.”

OK, I have to say I agree with that one, but unlike the husband, I have been known to order pizza with something other than pepperoni. Sliced tomato on pizza? As far as the husband is concerned, even that’s an abomination.

We went out for lunch and perused the menu.

“Look,” I said. “They have some specials today.”

“How about the fried egg and pulled pork sandwich?” I said. “How about the bow tie pasta with green beans, water chestnuts and black olives? Wouldn’t that be thinking outside the lunch box?”
For a moment, I thought the husband would be emboldened and go for something new. He put down his menu.

“I’ll have the Caesar salad,” he told the server.

“Hold the croutons?” she asked.

“You got it,” he said.

The server looked my way.

“Burger?” she asked.

“Please,” I said.

So at this point, at least, we’re choosing not to spread the wings and opting to stay in the plane. We’ll make the leap another time. I just can’t say quite when.

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