I'VE BEEN SERVED

My Daily Journal in Federal Prison

Day 136

One of my self-imposed rules when eating out for breakfast has always been to order the biscuits & gravy whenever it is on the menu.  I don’t care if it’s a greasy-spoon diner or a chef driven, farm-to-table joint — if they have it, I’m getting it.  As a result, I’ve experienced the good, the bad, and the ugly.

I was intrigued upon learning that a “Country Breakfast” (biscuits & gravy, scrambled eggs, potatoes, grits, etc.) was one of the dinners served during the seasonal 5-week dinner menu rotation here.  Considering that the brunch served on Sundays is typically one of the better meals served during the week, I had high expectations.  After all, with biscuits & gravy, there are usually varying degrees of good to great, but it is a meal that is difficult to seriously screw up. Leave it to the Bureau of Prisons.

I think I’ve had this meal three times now since I’ve been here — the first of which set the gold standard.  The biscuits were hot, fresh, and recently dropped.  The gravy was peppery with a viscosity that was none to thick and none to light…and loaded to the hilt with big chunks of turkey sausage.

The second time that I’ve had this meal…there WERE no biscuits & gravy.  Only in prison, can they serve you a meal, without actually serving you the meal.  On that particular occasion, you got the eggs, potatoes, and bread, but not the main event.

Tonight, the gravy looked and smelled terrific…and the sidecars on the tray were heaped with all of the requisite accouterments…but they must have run out of flour because there were no biscuits, only whole wheat bread.  So, I tore up the bread into soft, crouton-sized chunks, stirred it all up, and dug in.  At first bite, I thought they had carved up roast beef into nice thin slices for the gravy meat…and then I realized that I was eating freakin’ bologna!! Bolognain gravy??  Yikes.  Surprisingly, it didn’t actually taste half bad, and it would have been more forgivable with some fresh biscuits, but just the concept of putting the lowest common denominator of deli meats into a savory gray is enough to swear off the meal entirely, and for the rest of eternity.

*

Lunch:  Baked Chicken, Salad with French Dressing, Mashed Potatoes & Gravy, Spinach

Dinner:  Biscuits & Gravy, Scrambled Eggs, Potatoes, Grits, Whole Wheat Bread

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