2 days ago
08 August 2009
I feel good about egg salad
There is a wonderful passage in one of my favorite books. It is from Someday This Pain Will be Useful to You by Peter Cameron, and in this sequence James is having a kind of heavy-duty discussion with his lovely grandmother. She decides they should move onto another topic, such as lunch, and asks James, "How do you feel about egg salad?" James replies, "I feel good about egg salad."
For some reason this passage resonates with me. Why is it? I don't really know, except that it seems to me that James' answer is one in keeping with his character-- but a quirky and unusual answer also. Most people would answer, sure egg salad is fine, or whatever they think about having it for lunch that day.
It reminds of of a very frequently asked question when someone visits another person. Guests are usually asked, "Would you like something to drink?" or "Can I get you a diet coke/water/scotch/slurpee?" What people usually answer if they don't want a beverage is "No, I'm fine." I always want to say I didn't ask how you were--I asked if you wanted a fucking coke. Anyway, perhaps my current obsession with this passage from the novel can be related to the ways we answer ubiquitious questions.
Sometimes I try to answer questions with real answers, but it's kind of exhausting. But I'm happy to have a character to read about who seems to share my prediliction for pondering these silly questions, and answers.
(image by katrine kalleklev, unrelated to post)