by Annie McGee
A memory of family, peanut butter, pretzels and observing.
|I first remember eating peanut butter and pretzels in the basement with my brother while listen to Colm Wilkinson sing.
I watched my brother as I have learned to watch others. Pushing thick tortoiseshell glasses up the narrow bridge of a too long nose, small sounds emanating from him as he tried to clear his throat. He was at an awkward angle for it, feet dangling over the back of the couch, head resting on a cushion. His foot was jiggling sporadically, half a beat behind the music.
He held in his skinny hands a jar of peanut butter, and by his side, a bag of pretzel rods rested precariously. The bag crinkled a bit every time he breathed.
I watched fascinated, as long fingers reached into the bag, absently rooting for a pretzel. He always looked almost surprised when his fingers brushed one, pulling it from the bag, intact. He would swirl it in the peanut butter, almost caressing it, before popping it in his mouth.
He would pause then, savoring the influx of salt, and smile slowly as he chewed, then swallowed almost reluctantly, triggering a repeat of action and reaction.
This went on for five or so minutes, before I pulled myself out of the chair, and went off to find my own pretzels and peanut butter, so I could leave my brother to his bliss.