Which is more a telling sign that your civilization has crested and is about to batter itself into oblivion on the rocks of history: an excessive pursuit of leisure, a la the decadent court of Caligula, or a tendency towards self-flagellating, obsessive internal criticism – which, come to think of it, occurs mainly in societies with too much leisure time on their hands?
I ask that question because it seems to me that the on-going backlash against brunch, that often-indulgent midday meal, is an example of that latter tendency; a society that lambasts brunch is one which is spending far too much time gazing into its own psychic entrails.
Which, then, is worse: self-indulgence or self-obsession?
Seeing as this article is essentially a wrap-up of central Guadalajara’s best brunch spots, you can easily guess where my sympathies lie. They lie where they do in part because I, as a veteran of the nocturnally-inclined restaurant/bar industry, “breakfasted” for over a decade well after 11 a.m., sometimes as late as 3 p.m. If restaurants decided to adhere to some forgotten bylaw hidden in an arcane hospitality Constitution that mandates breakfast food be served between, say, the hours of 6 and 11 a.m., I’d have been left eggless and heartbroken on many occasions. Brunch was my savior and I give it my heartfelt thanks.
Those that hate brunch do so, I think, because they conflate it with what they perceive as its dominant participatory demographic: the spoiled leisure class. To my mind, that’s like objecting to the gin-and-tonic because of its association with the British Raj.
Another common complaint about brunch I’ve heard whispered on the online monoxide breeze is that its fare is often unimaginative and predictable. To which I say, between bites of my eggs Benedict, so what? When I arrive at 1 p.m. at a restaurant not having eaten anything for 13 hours, one thing my palate isn’t is discerning. I need egg-heavy, rib-sticking sustenance, not fennel shavings.