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Wednesday, January 04, 2012

Ice Cream Sandwiches

I clearly remember the day a classmate sat across from me in the lunchroom with only ice cream sandwiches and milk for lunch. How envious I was. Wow. Just ice cream sandwiches for lunch, washed down with a small milk.

A full lunch at the time was 30 cents. Apparently, there was no law that said someone had to buy lunch and could not buy a number of ice cream sandwiches instead. However, such a thought never even occurred to us, much less doing it. Please note the plural on sandwiches, because, I believe at the time, they were five cents each. Which likely means that he had five plus the milk.

He sat and ate slowly, deliberately, and proudly for all to see. He was cool and calm, committing what he knew for us was unthinkable, a crime to us. This small act of defiance was huge to me at the time. Who would defy their parents and purchase only dessert for lunch? The fear of parental crucifixion would prevent me or anyone I knew from doing such a thing. This transgression pales by today's standards, where we have guns in schools and sex runs rampant. I was in the last class to have a dress code. But it was the late 1960s, and when your parents gave you 30 cents for a proper lunch, that is what you had, not desserts.

It would take adulthood to indulge in such an act without penalty. However, now I had a new hurdle - guilt. Prudence and good health precluded such an act, now to be seen as just foolish. Not to mention feeling rather ill from eating too much dessert.

Recently, I went to Knickerbockers with friends for an anniversary drink. They did not forewarn me that they would also indulge in an extraordinary dynamic duo, reminiscent of the high school episode. Knickerbockers offers truffle bleu cheese fries ($9.75) and Chocolate Soufflé for Two (made to order), both of which they ordered along with drinks.

They ate not with defiance or concern but with great joy, celebrating their anniversary. I sampled both and they were extraordinary, as they had represented. Pricey, but befitting a small indulgence. No sin, no punishment, no angst. Just like my classmate making a lunch of Ice Cream Sandwiches :)

Note: Knickerbocker Bar & Grill is a Village institution, established in 1977, located at 33 University Place at East 9th Street. They feature live jazz music on weekends. View their website here and their menu here

Related Posts: La Cote Basque, Pure Chocolate, Doughnuts, Hot Dogs and Fries, Trucks and Things, Bon Appetit, Chocolate Bar, Jacques Torres, Pommes Frites, Nathan's


Leslie said...

Love your story, and omgomgomg I really need to go to the Knickerbocker Restaurant for those fries!!! I'll meet you there anytime! Little treats in moderation ;-)

Brian Dubé said...

I guess I am going to have to indulge. After all, I was such a good boy in High School. I ate my proper lunch every day.

Freewheeling said...

Happy New Year Brian!

Sandra Jennings said...

Happy belated new year to every one, This is one of the best most appropriate and smashing blog post I have ever come across.I feel like taking cheap flights to New York for our next holiday destination after reading this.

Anonymous said...

Hellen and Harvey "You always have the most interesting spins on stories. This story brings back wonderful memories. The item to lust after in my lunch room was the famous scooter pie. Thank you for sharing our anniversary dinner; it was great,in fact, we should do it again, soon!"