Monday, December 13, 2010

Say "I Hate You" This Holiday Season by Inviting Me to Brunch

Is there any worse friend in the world than the one who invites you to Sunday brunch?

Listen, friends: I work five days a week (I don't actually, but pretend I do). I have to wake up early Monday through Friday, drag my fat, hairy carcass out of the warmth of my bed before the sun is out, and sit at a desk fighting back sleep and seasonal depression while counting down the hours to lunch for a vast majority of my adult life. Most days, I have to program my phone to make the most annoying noise that it can at a time of day I would otherwise be imagining myself making out with Olympic Gold Medalist Dominique Moceanu. So why would you, as a friend who quote-unquote cares about my happiness, deprive me of this lone joy on a Sunday morning and rip me from the warm womb of blissful Moceanu make-out dreams in order to make me schlep out into the cold to eat berries and cream in a crowded restaurant of yuppies and insufferable new parents when I'd rather be not doing that, ever?

Now, doubtless to some of you this sounds as though I am eating with someone who is not really my friend. It may sound as though I am describing someone specific when I complain about having to eat brunch. To those people I say you'll be relieved to hear that I have not been invited to brunch by anyone in years, so I am not singling anyone out here. It is more like I am attacking the very idea of Sunday brunch between friends as the work-like obligation it seems, even though I haven't had to wake up for it in a very, very long time. It is as though I am taking a stand, as one may take a stand against the abuses of the TSA or dogfighting. This is a social issue, really.

I am frankly shocked at the ongoing popularity of brunch amongst people my age (19-27; humor me). Perhaps it is simply the word 'brunch,' which carries with it a feeling of adult sophistication; perhaps people who eat brunch are simply social climbers, aspiring members of the nouveau riche, assholes, etc. If one of your friends called you and asked, "Hey, this Sunday, do you want to wake up at 8:30 in the morning to do something that we could do at any other time during the day and probably with less wait time and more enjoyment?" you would definitely say, "Fuck no, I want to sleep an extra two hours, what the fuck do you think?" But instead, your friend asks, "Hey, do you want to get brunch Saturday morning?", and you inevitably answer that brunch sounds delightful, and choose a restaurant that your boss said serves good crepes.

Luckily for me, I'm not in any danger of being invited to brunch, partly because I don't have any friends, sure, but also because I live in Newark, New Jersey, a city where it is only safe to go outside between 3 and 5 P.M., and where "brunch" stands not for the meal between "breakfast or lunch" but rather for a particularly crunchy brick of crack cocaine.

But if, however, you were thinking of inviting me to up or down to brunch--if you were thinking, "Hey, maybe Jason would like to come into New York City, or over to Princeton, leaving his apartment while it's still dark out on Sunday morning, in order to babble like chickens about what our old roommates are up to"--well, think again. Asking me to brunch is just short of saying "Fuck you" to my face and then punching me. It's not that I don't enjoy the attention, but please, spare me the pain.

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