Ok. I’ll admit it. I’m a bit of a breakfast snob. If I’m not at home knocking out homemade French toast, pancakes, omelets, or my scrambled specialty — eggs, cheddar, mushrooms, spinach & salsa — then I want to have something solid to start my day. (Cereal just isn’t a morning option for me. Not sure why, but it’s become more of an after-dinner snack… but I digress.)
Monday through Thursday, I’m all about Corner Bakery. For years, I’ll pick up an order of their Swiss Berry Almond oatmeal (served cold btw, with fresh strawberries, blueberries and shaved almonds) and eat half on Monday and the other half on Tuesday… repeat for Wednesday & Thursday (needless to say, I simply walk to the counter and smile — they know what I want).
On Friday, it’s Subway. I always get their egg sandwich flatbread with pepper jack cheese, tomato, pickle, black olives and hot sauce. After I add a bottle of OJ to complete the combo, it’s $3.96… money well spent.
Today, as I was about to take a bite of my Friday delicacy, I noticed a small piece of green pepper peering at me from the edge of the sandwich. It looked evil, pure evil — the devil incarnate of the vegetable world mocking and challenging me from the comfort of its bread bed.
I’ve always hated the taste of green peppers. Not yellow or red, mind you, just the green ones. I guess you can call me a veggie racist as just the site of one of those green abominations makes me want to grab the blender and grind it to a pulp.
So, there we were – me and the menacing, minuscule infiltration of unwanted green pepper staring me down. In that dark moment of despair I had two choices: 1) Scream like a baby and pitch the entire sandwich as if Jared himself had personally tainted it. Or, 2) Remove the 1/8″ x 1/8″ pebble, forget it ever existed, and get back to breakfast.
In that moment, it occurred to me that, far too often, we (the human beings – not the vegetables) focus on everything that’s wrong with the world as opposed to everything that’s right. Unfortunately, this tendency is ingrained within our DNA. For us mere mortals — the unenlightened beings — it is a consistent, conscious battle to direct attention towards the entire picture, not the speck of Ragu that made its way onto the canvas.
My challenge for you is to concentrate on the 99% of what you love about your surroundings and those who grace your life and withhold power from the 1% you loathe. I’ve set this challenge for myself and will be taking it on with strategic abandon.
While I hold the best of intentions for winning this war, the outcome is uncertain. What I do know, however, is that, when the smoke cleared, I proactively pulled the pepper from it’s pure, provocative place of petrified persistence (that’s about as many p’s as I can string together that result in some semblance of a sentence) and proceeded to enjoy my processed egg delight.
And, that my friends is all we can do — savor the small victories as they happen. Because, ultimately, life is about the sandwich, not the pepper.