Thinking about hamburgers. Thinking about foods I enjoy. Thinking about being introduced to those foods. Thinking about my dad. I remember going with dad to Tommy’s. I didn’t like it then. Kids like plain food. Though simple; Tommy’s is far from plain. The basic burger with fresh tomato and lettuce and the famous chili in the burger. Simple but so good. There was a family outing to El Tepeyac—pork aplenty, fresh salsa, beans and house-made chips. (1, 728 reviews on Yelp. 4 stars). Too hot, too spicy. Today I could happily live on El Tepeyac and Tommy’s. There is one strong link between burgers, chili and comfort that links childhood comfort and contemporary delight.
The chili-size at Bob’s Big Boy. Dad missed segments, seasons and years of my life there was a season we frequented Bob’s Big Boy. Always the Chili-size and a brownie for me. I don’t remember what dad got. I remember that we talked. I still enjoy a good chili-size and I wonder if in part it’s because my senses recall the delight of those first experiences.
My memories disappear faster than snapchat photos so it’s tough to remember first experiences. The first taste of a Butterfinger; first bowl of Capn’ Crunch, first Halvah, Gyro, Baklava…the list goes on and on. Yet I remember when I fell in love with onion and bell-peppers atop a pizza. I was alone for a week in Manhattan. Walking the city, hungry, I stepped into a little café and bought a slice of pizza. So simply straightforward but so richly delightful.
Thinking about burgers I want to chart my favorite foods. A food time-line of sorts. So much I don’t remember. Once in a while though a tasty treat will make connection with those neurons linking sense and memory. If I linger there long enough; there it is---Baklava, yes, perhaps, the Greek Market.