Tuesday, July 29, 2008

What happened to bread machines?

When my wife and I got married, bread machines were all the rage. All the other couples that we knew who got married at around the same time got one as a wedding gift. We thought about putting one on our registry but ultimately chose not to. Turns out that was a good thing, as we scarcely have room in our kitchen now for all of the various tools and appliances my wife uses on a regular basis to wage war against my weight loss efforts. We certainly lack the space for something like a bread machine that would take up space and never get used.

I was reminded of bread machines today because the dear Mrs. came home from the store with bread flour that indicated right on the label that it was "perfect for bread machines." I found it surprising, but maybe market research has shown that the people who still have bread machines are the people buying bread flour. I would have thought that bread machines were for the relatively unsophisticated bakers who don't realize that all-purpose flour, while truly serviceable for a variety of uses, is ideal for neither bread nor cakes. Either way, there certainly can't be that many bread machines in service any more, as it's been years since I've seen one of those silly looking loaves with a bottom crust on top and a hole torn in one end at a church potluck.

Of course, I'm just speculating here, and it could be that millions of people are still using their bread machines and loving them. I'm not much of an authority on what's stylish or trendy. The last bandwagon I jumped on was 29" wheels, and I'm pretty sure I was at least three years late to that party.

The reality is that I don't get out much. In fact today was the first time in three days that I've been out at all for more than a few minutes. Sunday I didn't leave the house until 8:00 p.m. when I took the garbage out to the curb. Then yesterday a quick trip to the grocery store was my only exposure to sunlight.

Not that this is typical--it's just that I've been horribly sick the last couple of days. Knocking on death's door, in fact. Well not really, but I have had a head cold. I knew it was coming, and I'm frankly thrilled with the timing. It seems that every time I train for a really long event, I get sick and have to take time out from my training. Last year this happened right before Lotoja, and I was actually on antibiotics during the event (not a good thing). This time it happened with five weeks to spare, so I should be completely recovered before the big race. I just wish that instead of a head cold it could have been a stomach virus--that way it could have at least helped me with my weight loss.