Today started with waffles. This isn’t that unusual. Most days, at least most days on the road start with waffles. I don’t know who started it. Some enterprising analyst at Marriott, I imagine. He’s sitting at a broad glossy table in a board room, late in the evening, working out the kinks of the Courtyard concept with a handful of recent vintage MBAs. They are working on breakfast ideas, faced with the data that their target audience wants something hot with syrup, faced with the limitation of no chef, no kitchen to speak of. They rack their brains, can’t come up with it. The enterprising analyst leans over and breathes out “waffles”. He pictures a waffle maker laid out on a buffet. It’s well received.
And so first Courtyard, and then all the Marriotts, and then everywhere else, got these waffles. And I eat them. Just about every day. This morning I ate waffles in a non-descript corner of
Hotel breakfasts are essentially all like this. The amount of wood and marble in the lobby determine the price. At the Century Center Marriott in
Lunch was Gyros on a greasy table along
Only coffee of the day was Starbucks, too late in the day to fend off headaches, but early enough to fend off nausea.
By dinner I’d made it to
I was craving something sweet, and spotted a Dunkin Donuts next to the hotel. Dropped in for a Cruller to eat in my room. Bought two. Stale as small, light pieces of cardboard. An interesting match for the hotel room, perfectly acceptable but with the faint trashiness I associate with prom-night rentals.
Everything I ate today was built for speed. Everything I ate was designed to evoke emotion through trickery, at the lowest cost possible. Today, I ate capitalist food, and didn’t mess with the artists. It made me want to cook, to shop somewhere with lots of green things, to explore home, and revel in the retreat of not being on the road. It made me want to pluck something from the ground and eat it, raw and unadorned. Tomorrow I lunch here, and set off for