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Bread Carrying Bread

by melpomene whitehead

Look at him. His name is Mr. Toasty, but he could be Mr. Smith or Mr. Stewart. He is "everybread," he is the man of any woman's dreams. He is bread carrying bread.

Mr. Toasty was illustrated by Ward Schumaker for the Columbus Bakery, and I'm sure that the Columbus Bakery was just looking for a catchy illustration. What they got was an icon for the 90s, a personal jesus for the carb-craver, a true savior.

Gaze upon the face of Mr. Toasty. The look of simple whimsy on his face belies the fierce determination that is evident in his stride. Perhaps his is the look of serenity that comes with the knowledge of a "job well done," for here is Mr. Toasty in the actual act of doing his job, literally "bringing home the bread." Mr. Toasty is not weighed down by the worries of today-- his face exhibits the glow of a carbohydrate high. On the form exhibited here, bread carrying bread on bread, the golden butter that surrounds Mr. Toasty forms a halo, elevating Mr. Toasty to his deserved status of bread-god.

Although Mr. Toasty resembles a slice of WonderBread, I think of him more as a 9-grain: earthy, rich, dense, textured and varied.

I wonder what Mr. Toasty thinks about the baguette he carries. Is it a pet or food? If it is indeed food, does he feel the same guilt we humans sometimes feel for partaking of a meat that is genetically close to us, or particularly cute? Is the baguette a lower form, or are they not even of the same genus?

I can imagine a conversation between Mr. and Mrs. Toasty. Mrs. Toasty calls him at his job (does he work at the Columbus Bakery? Or just shop there?), giving him a long list of things to bring home. "And dear! Don't forget the bread!" she intones. "But honeybun," says Mr. Toasty, "I never forget the baguette!" Everyone laughs and embraces. It's like a Felini film, or a Greenpoint Bank commercial.
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