ancient grains, breakfast, eggs, food, humor, It's a teff life

True Grit vs Ancient Grains


The Dread Mask of Quinoa. “Scourge of the Incas & Bane of Lake TiticacaQuinoa, if you look into it, isn’t even a cereal – – it’s just a pseudo-cereal, and has been linked by scientists to the “Ancient Curse of Pitseed Goosefoot.” (Pitseed Goosefoot is a real thing, believe it or not.) (And extremely uncomfortable for ancient people wearing sandals.)

Some people in my household believe we need to eat “ancient grains” for breakfast, instead of starting your day like a civilized human being, with coffee, home fries, eggs, toast, and bacon.

I’ve had a lot of time to think about this, as a semi-pro historian, as I sit chewing.  And chewing.

And chewing.

Did you ever think, that the people who came up with these ancient grains, pretty much all ended up as mummies?

And their civilizations are in ruins.

Why?  Because they couldn’t hear their enemies coming, over all the crunching.

I mean, the Babylonians, Tlaxcaltecas, Chaldeans, Assyrians, etc. are all gone, daddy, gone.

There’s no coming back from a bad breakfast.

Bulgur attack. (Bulgar? Is that spelt right?)

They lost their birthright for a mess of pottage.

Does that even sound like a good idea?  I mean, I don’t even know what exactly that is, but who wants something called “a mess of pottage” first thing in the morning?

They could no longer communicate, too busy chewing, their molars worn down, and couldn’t shout warnings like Nebuchadnezzar, Ashur-etil-ilani, Cyaxerxes, take heed and  beware!  Vigorous tribesmen who’ve had a proper breakfast are storming the gates, whilst our dispirited guards still sit at table, chewing! ” 

Just try yelling that out, with a mouth full of pottage.

All they could do is mumble, and try to find the darned belt for their bathrobes, while they were overrun by tribes with chariots and bacon.

Nomadic tribesmen swept in from the steppes, because their horses were attracted by all the cereal, and their riders were highly caffeinated and restless.

And the bacon-eating nomads were immune to many of the era’s plagues, because mosquitoes and rats were repelled by their greasy appearance and nitrate-laden blood.

This is just a hypothesis, really.   The Tower of Babel?  Same deal.       C. B. C.  Cereal-Based Chaos.  And just overwhelmed by choices:  whole-grain, steel-cut, stone-ground, rolled, millet?


According to the caption in the art museum, this stylish farmer is sowing Millet, a type of birdseed apparently.


I’m going to keep working on this, tentatively entitled “Guns, Wheat Germs, and Steel” or alternatively, “Gums, Germs, and Steel-Cut Oats” something like that.

But first, I’m going back to bed, until it’s lunchtime.


Eat your cereal, Mikey.


8 thoughts on “True Grit vs Ancient Grains

  1. When I got to “is that spelt right?” I finally laughed out loud. This is one of the most humorous pieces I’ve read in a good long time. It’s not snarky; it’s funny.

    Of course, I happen to have grown up with eggs, bacon, and homemade cinnamon rolls as the breakfast gold standard, so I’m predisposed to laugh at some of the food-foolishness abroad in the land. I will eat baked oatmeal, and make it from time to time, but any oatmeal that includes cinnamon, nutmeg, eggs, maple syrup, fruit, and nuts, is almost out of the breakfast category, and heading toward dessert.

  2. Glad I’m not the only messy breakfast’er, it usually involves a sponge and going to work in a soggy shirt. And it’s just too early to look up again what the heck “pottage” might be. It just won’t stick in my memory. To my shirts, yes.

  3. Thanks for the laugh, this morning. My only concession to the “let’s eat healthy for breakfast” fad is using egg whites…. though I think I defeat the purpose when I cover them with gooey cheese and side it with real bacon (and not that terrible turkey stuff either!).

    • I’m glad you got a laugh out of it.

      I’m actually more open-minded about breakfast than I let on. For years, whenever we’d go “downstate” ( NYC region), we’d try to find “that diner that makes a delicious egg white omelet.” Nobody remembers the diner’s name or what highway it’s on, it’s kind of a quest, like finding Bigfoot. But I remain hopeful.

      Maybe when I find that diner, Bigfoot will be in the back booth, drinking decaf.

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