I grabbed a package from the proffered plastic tray. A compulsion to say yes, even though I don’t care much for bagged pretzels
But since the pretzels sat before me, my mind decided to make meaning.
It unearthed memories of airplane snacks:
that leered from worn seat-back trays
as I was encapsulated in ventures fashionable.
I was not going to eat that snack.
I will not eat that snack.
…I might eat that snack. It was free and I was ravenous and I just wouldn’t eat later.
And then I would fail. I ate the forbidden pretzels or peanuts or bland bag of wafers. And Eve’s Apple was always markedly unremarkable.
Pretzels. Can you think of a more boring food? Specks of carb-y cardboard with a noncommittal amount of salt. Why did I waste my calories on that? Surely the Russian girls with cheekbones like knives did not eat airplane snacks. And I was catapulted into an intimate plane of revulsion.
Today, I ate. My tongue toyed with the reliably opaque taste of pretzel. The little foil package reflected the early sunlight, glowing a retro shade of red. My husband dozed next to me.
Am I still processing these memories in a meaningful way?
Or is my mind in the clouds, drawing thirty thousand foot meaning from half an inch of wheat and salt?
The pretzels are now just pretzels. Does a part of me cling to the time they were twisted miniature sins?
What do I write about now that I am healed? Now that my relationship with food is smooth, uncomplicated vanilla.
My ears pop with the repetition of my lamentations.
My prose and proverbs have started to feel flighty.
The plane is about to land.