I published this essay on July 7th, 2011, on my old blog, which will eventually pass into the great Internet beyond. It’s one of my favorites, so I’m reposting it here with a few edits.
“I was twelve going on thirteen when I first saw a dead human being. It happened in 1960, a long time ago. . .although sometimes it doesn’t seem that long to me.” —Stephen King, “The Body”
When Dan the Manager got busted on a coke binge, the Steak ‘n Shake gang wasn’t surprised. We had all left St. Louis after high school; I was living in New York, Josh in Virginia, Jack in North Carolina. Over vacations we visited our adolescent haunt, sipping milkshakes and polishing off bowls of bright red chili. Yet, even a steakburger topped with guacamole and chopped onions and pepperjack cheese couldn’t bring back …
On my old blog, I posted installments of “the Columbia diet,” a description of all the foods I ate over the course of a week. My intention was to record what kinds of meals a college student in New York City consumes on a regular basis, as well as to mark the differences between the diet of an endurance runner and the average Columbian. Now that I’m at Oxford—and, for the time being, walking and weight-lifting and riding a recumbent bike instead of running—I think it might be interesting to keep a similar log. How does a (graduate) student eat in Oxford?
Saturday, November 16th:
For breakfast, I made a packet of Quaker oatmeal, apple and blueberry flavor, and mixed in a spoonful of rhubarb and ginger jam. I walked to the town of Binsey and stopped at a pub called The …