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Omaha Magazine

Not Funny: Bacon and Eggs and Tortilla Chips...and Thanks for All the Fish

May 29, 2020 11:41AM ● By Otis Twelve
Otis Twelve column photo

So, I was sitting at the kitchen counter munching on some flaxseed tortilla chips, half watching a news channel nervously—hey, anytime you’re watching a news channel you should be at least a little nervous, right? Anyway, suddenly I started thinking—yeah, I just started thinking. Like most people, it’s not something I do regularly—thinking, that is. But there I was, sitting, thinking, munching. I looked at the flaxseed tortilla chip held lightly between forefinger and thumb, and it came to me. These chips were the real expression of an old expression. They were “food for thought.” At that point I changed the channel to Ghost Hunters and I kind of stopped thinking.  But now I know what to do if I ever need to think again. Buy more of those chips.

I’ve run into a few other food clichés the last month or so. One morning, I had my toast ready to go. I had the bacon done. I am very good at bringing it home, by the way. I reached into the carton…and oh, no! There it was, a childhood memory come to life. You see, back when I was very young, I overheard my dad talking about a guy who worked for him, saying he was trouble, and comparing him to a bit of spoiled food. Thus, whenever that guy dropped by the house, I eyed him with apprehension, worried that he might suddenly crack and spill his huge yolk all over my toys. Anyway, I was in the middle of putting together my Saturday breakfast when my memory manifested itself…there it was, a “bad egg” for real. As for that problematic employee, I did notice how he always tried to butter up my dad. It did him no good. My dad was as cool as a cucumber.

For years I ate an apple a day. But I realized there were some doctors that you didn’t want to keep away, like those with good Sunday tee times. So, the apples fell away…though not far from the tree.  

I remember once telling someone who was trying to get me involved in Amway to go away, I had bigger fish to fry. And that made me wonder if it was inherently better to fry larger fish. I mean, are small fish not worth the effort? And exactly how much bigger a fish could I fry? My frying pan did have its limits after all.  At some point I simply can’t fry any bigger fish even if there are bigger fish to fry. I will say that I loved Albert Finney in Big Fish, but other than that, I think bigger fish are overrated.

If I go to the grocery store and buy a lemon, that’s good. If I go to the car dealership and buy a lemon that’s bad. If I’m handed lemons I make lemonade, but not without sugar in the morning, sugar in the evening, sugar at suppertime. So, pour some sugar on me. (What does that lyric mean?)

Hey, when I’m stuck at home, and I’m not counting my chickens, I think about food a lot. That’s the way of the couch potato. 

Otis Twelve hosts the radio program Early Morning Classics with Otis Twelve on 90.7 KVNO, weekday mornings from 6-10 a.m. Visit for more information.

This article was printed in the June 2020 edition of Omaha Magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.