I don’t understand brunch. Why would I want to wait in line for a meal when I could have just eaten breakfast, without waiting, an hour earlier for half the price? Brunch does have some benefits over breakfast, though. You can drink copious amounts of alcohol early in the day without any societal blowback. Sure, it’s a loophole for a rule that probably shouldn’t exist in the first place, but a loophole none the less. I don’t normally like mimosas, so I usually opt for the Bloody Mary. These are the two most acceptable alcoholic beverages to have before noon for some reason. I think it has something to do with their resemblance to breakfast juices. I’m going to test that theory and ask someone to crack an egg into a glass of beer the next time I’m invited out to brunch.
It’s also a much fancier meal than breakfast. I rarely talk about how good my breakfast is. Even if it’s the most delicious thing in the world, I won’t comment on it. Breakfast’s job is to get into my face, down my throat, and give me several hours of energy in a cost effective manner. If it shows up on a plate, the presentation isn’t an issue unless it’s formatted into a smiley face or Mickey Mouse. Brunch is an entirely different and much more serious animal. It’s garnished and brought out with all kinds of dustings and drizzled sauces. The next time you’re at a brunch spot take a look around. How many people are taking photographs of their food? The answer will always be way too many.
It just isn’t the same as other meals. I once heard someone standing in a long brunch line say “this is ridiculous” and I realized how different their life was from mine. I had recently seen a person pooping on the subway and that was the closest thing to ridiculous I had experienced that weekend… and I still just sort of tried to rationalize it. I figured they were probably running out of options and time. The people that go to brunch all the time are a little different from the people who do not. If you “do brunch” a lot, things are probably going alright for you. I bet they don’t have brunch in Liberia or the Congo. Brunch means that you caroused all night on Saturday and didn’t get up in time for breakfast. Brunch means you took it easy all morning and are probably going to spend the rest of that day taking it even easier.
I’m starting to become convinced that rich countries have an issue with fetishizing food. This is the second time I’ve felt compelled to comment on it.