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June 28, 2006

Also, Now That I'm Thinking About It...

... I actually don't enjoy toast all that much. Just not a big fan of burnt, crispy bread. You want crispy bread, have a cracker.

That is all.

Posted by john at June 28, 2006 12:12 PM

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Jon Marcus | June 28, 2006 12:19 PM

Scalzi, you egotistical asshole! How could you even consider a cracker better than warm, buttery, lovable toast?!?!?!?

Raphael | June 28, 2006 12:22 PM

Any decent bread is crispy (as in "has a crust") at least on the edge.

Kero aka Kevin | June 28, 2006 12:23 PM

I think you are seriously under-rating toast. Perhaps you have only had it with butter? Well, sir, you are missing out if you have never enjoyed peanut butter on toast, with God's food melting on the warm crunchy bread, heaven. It also sounds like you have never experienced the wonderous joy of a toasted cheese sandwhich, with just enough catsup and mayo to create a tangy/smooth counterpoint to the warm sharp cheddar cheese within. Perhaps before you judge you should see toast at it's best not it's most common self.

Alex | June 28, 2006 12:24 PM

Now you've done it. I could put up with most anything you say, but slandering toast is over the line. I think the problem is your definition. "burnt, crispy bread" is not toast, its just ruined bread. "Toasty, crispy bread" on the other hand is one of the world's greatest pleasures.

Jim | June 28, 2006 12:37 PM

Especially with peanut butter.

Justine Larbalestier | June 28, 2006 12:38 PM

I'm with you, Scalzi. Death to all toast!

Kafkaesquí | June 28, 2006 12:43 PM

Dear John Scalzi,

You are now the enemy.


texaspatrick | June 28, 2006 12:50 PM

wow, for someone with a lot of work to do, you're one chatty mutha' . . .

Do I get a prize for being the last one to make this point?

John Scalzi | June 28, 2006 12:52 PM

No. And in fact, I did all my non-book work this morning so I'd have the rest of the day free to writer in the book. Which I will do... now.


Lars | June 28, 2006 01:06 PM

Republicans love toast; careful John.

He knows not what he says!

Adam Rakunas | June 28, 2006 01:18 PM

But what about Powdered Toast?

WaywardSailorGirl | June 28, 2006 01:19 PM

What?! How can one NOT like toast? It's one of the five basic food groups: toast, chocolate, coffee, tortilla chips and vodka.

John H | June 28, 2006 01:22 PM

I don't think I could respond to a post about toast. I mean, what's the point?


Natalie | June 28, 2006 01:33 PM

How DARE you?

*removes the Whatever from Bloglines*

Phillip J. Birmingham | June 28, 2006 01:34 PM


shana | June 28, 2006 01:46 PM

Tell me you don't have a secret desire to leave surprise toast messages for Krissy in the mornings?

Bill Marcy | June 28, 2006 01:55 PM

I blame Bush for toast!

He and his secret cabal of toaster manufacturers and bread producers are secretly plotting to raise bread prices all over the world!

SAP | June 28, 2006 02:16 PM

Right on, John.

Bagels are better than toast, anyway.

Anna | June 28, 2006 02:21 PM

Oddly, this post and the ensuing comments has made me want toast. Unfortunatly, I have a toaster-oven and not a toaster, so I can't make very good toast...but I'll take what I can get.

Kelly Brown | June 28, 2006 02:42 PM

Toast & Tea. It's like, well, the only true measure of civilization. When the aliens eventually land on Earth and start looking about for signs of intelligent life, they're specifically watching to see if we know how to nicely toast a piece of bread. If someone doesn't offer them Toast w/jam & Tea they're going to hump back to their chrome-y saucer and go back home and say, "Don't go to Earth as they haven't been down from the trees long enough to even offer us a decent cup of tea and some toast to go with it".

And then it's altogether possible the other aliens will say, "Well, that's not hardly frigg'n proper, is it?"

And the first one will say, "No, it's bloody not."

And forever after Earth will be thought of as a place where monkey-faced savages walk around cramming untoasted wonderbread into their faces with no conception of what a civilized, sentient being considers hospitality.

Sean L. | June 28, 2006 02:44 PM

Uhm. Does anyone find it deeply ironic this has more comments than the more intelligent and deep thoughts on blogging and comments?

I refuse to comment on toast.

captain_peleg | June 28, 2006 03:05 PM

This: "to writer in the book?"
has got to be the best verbing of a noun ever! I will go writer my online help topics now.

Oh, and I LOVE toast, with butter and cinnamon sugar.

Chang | June 28, 2006 03:06 PM


First off, I had toast just now. With Earth balance Soy Butter with Omega 3's! Fie on thee, Satan!

Secondly, I'm so glad to see someone else who when presented with a deadline, is given over to ridiculous frivolity and avoiding working. Right on! The mark of a great man!

Now, what was I going to do???

captai | June 28, 2006 03:06 PM

oops, the ? sneaked in there -- fumble fingers

Mark | June 28, 2006 03:06 PM

Are we talking about just regular toast fresh out of the toaster here? Or would you include french toast in your stated preference against toast? If the former, fine whatever. If the later, I'll just presume you've taken leave of your senses. :p

Oh and I'll second the notion that peanut butter on toast is wonderful. Though the peanut butter MUST be creamy (crunchy peanut butter is an abomination) and it's even better with banana slices and made into a sandwich. Yum.

Kafkaesquí | June 28, 2006 03:38 PM

Dear Sean L,

Irony? Irony schmirony. I laugh at your irony. Just look:


See? I laugh. At your irony.

Hahahaha! Ha!

Forget irony. Just eat your toast.


P.S. Bagels rock.

JonathanMoeller | June 28, 2006 03:45 PM

Toast can make for an adequate breakfast. However, it needs to be combined with liberal abouts of strawberry jam and cranberry juice for a suitable meal experience.

Besides, I prefer two slices of cold pepperoni pizza and a scotch on the rocks for my morning meal.

Michael Rawdon | June 28, 2006 03:51 PM

How about tasted cinnamon bread?

Toasted bagels?

Or do you prefer all your grain substances to be cold and limp?

Chris | June 28, 2006 03:57 PM

Yes, I'm sure you DO hate toast, Mr. Scalzi, the defiling of the pure, silken surface of the wonderbread with blackening carbon... I'm sure if you had your way, you'd round up ALL the toast and have it destroyed. Because you're just like Hitler.

And no pointless comment thread is complete without comparing the author to Hitler.

Nicole J. LeBoeuf-Little | June 28, 2006 04:06 PM

Mmmm, Pop-Tarts.

Anonymous | June 28, 2006 04:17 PM

You obviously have not been eating it properly. Toast should be only golden brown, no dark brown or black. And it should have butter on it (not that phoney spawn of saten Margerine!) with stawberry jam. Now just tell me you didn't like that! You have to like that! To refuse would be unamerican.

--- obsessive moron nutball.

Patrick Vera | June 28, 2006 05:20 PM

I prefer my toast to come out of a toaster-oven, as that way I can get my toast with melted cheese on top of Real Butter(tm) or peanut butter. Such creations are not possible with pop-up toasters or those conveyor things in restuarants.

Simon Owens | June 28, 2006 05:26 PM

Crackers are much more inferior to toast, and though both are essentially hard and rough in texture, they are both completely different.

Though I will say Cheez-Its are pretty damn good, and the wonderful thing about crackers is that they can go alone. The magic of toast involves having a full-course breakfast along with it.

Any responses?

lazybratsche | June 28, 2006 05:31 PM

I'm a bit surprised that it took all of 27 comments before someone Godwinned a thread about toast.

Seriously, wars have been fought over lesser issues.

Lars | June 28, 2006 05:35 PM

SAP: "Bagels are better than toast, anyway."

Bagels can be toasted.

Scorpio | June 28, 2006 05:52 PM

Very pretty redesign.

Hm. Your stance on toast is pretty wide-ranging. There are some kinds that are better than others.

clvrmnky | June 28, 2006 06:58 PM

Toast is merely the medium on which one can slather something greasy (or sweet). Crackers don't do serve so well at this, though they do exceed at underpinning a nice cheese.

Bread can be eaten all on its own, and some bread is really fine that way when fresh. That first slice of fresh bread hot from the oven is almost wasted with any sort of condiment.

Toast, on the other hand, only exists so that it can be made love to by a topping. Toast is _always_ on the bottom.

Naughty, naughty toast.

Mitch Wagner | June 28, 2006 07:07 PM

Toast is very, very naughty.

It must be spanked.

Byron | June 28, 2006 07:08 PM

Incorrect, sir! I think the British got this one right. You want to toast only on one side, leaving a sufficiently soft surface on the untoasted side for jam, etc. No cracker can match the jam retention of the soft side, while the toasted side provides the delightful crunch.

Josh Jasper | June 28, 2006 07:16 PM

Google "Ode to toast"

Denis Moskowitz | June 28, 2006 07:28 PM

Bringing a loaf of toast to the Rocky Horror Picture Show is always fun - pass it around to those around you, then when you get to the line "A toast!" the air is filled with bread for a glorious moment.

Brian Greenberg | June 28, 2006 07:45 PM

Oooh....you want to talk about toast, do you? If you had attended the University of Pennsylvania (particularly as a member of the Fighting Quaker Marching Band), you would have a very, very different impression of toast.

MWT | June 28, 2006 08:50 PM


I toast my sandwich bread not because I like toast, but because that way it'll melt the butter for me. Also, with the surface crunchied, it's easier to spread said butter once it's melted.

Toasted bagels are good too. I use those for bagel burgers (much better than buns!).

Soni | June 28, 2006 09:28 PM

Hmm...it seems to me that you have all missed a prime use of toast, and that is to save washing dishes. Toast makes a fine substitute for crockery when plating anything from random bits of grilled veg to fresh-out-of-the-pan scrambled eggs (one of my favorites). It can also be used to soak up leftover soup so as to forestall impenetrable soup crust on a left-out bowl. Mmmmm...toast.

A more civilized version of the trencher, toast plating is both profoundly delicious and serenely utilitarian-zen. And there's no washup afterwards.

Joe Rybicki | June 28, 2006 10:38 PM

Toast, and the quality thereof, is inextricably dependent upon the quality of the prime ingredient; to wit: bread.

Subpar bread (such as what one finds in most of Ohio, and I say this with the greatest amount of fodness for that Godforsaken place) yields subpar toast.

Conversely, exceptional bread -- such as one might find fresh out of the oven of a Sunday morn at any Great Harvest location in Chicagoland -- yields truly spectacular toast.

My theory is that the density of seriously good bread (especially as compared to the density of supermarket bread or, God help us all, focaccia*) allows for a more gentle, less invasive heating experience. The result is a finely crusted exterior (the fineness of the crust being key, as a coarse crust leads to uneven distribution of any topping that is or will soon become liquid) and a lovingly warmed interior.

When real butter is introduced to such a concoction, the results are just this side of divine.

And now I'm hungry.


*Lest I be set upon by focaccia lovers, I will allow that this spongy stuff, properly warmed and utterly drenched in fine olive oil -- and innocent of any toppings beyond salt and pepper (that's right, Mr. Italy, you can take your sun-dried tomatoes and shove them straight up your ass) -- is moderately palatable.

mensley | June 29, 2006 02:15 AM

I have to completely agree with Joe Rybicki. The quality and freshness of the bread determine the quality of the toast.

There's a strong exponential correlation here, as breads around the mediocre mean produce equally mediocre toast.

There's a quick falloff on bad breads, which produce dramatically more crappy toast.

However, there's a rising correlation for good breads, which builds slowly but eventually leaps skyward.

I've gotten into making my own bread, by hand, and the only reason I do so is for the sake of the toast it produces.

If you want a sandwich bread, commercial products will probably do better.

However, good homemade bread, sliced medium thinly, in a toaster, and toasted to a light golden brown on both sides, then spread lightly with real room-temp butter... aaaahhhh... there's nothing better in the bread universe.

That's one of my five favorite foods ever.

But generic toast made from generic bread... meh.

liz s | June 29, 2006 07:31 AM

The entire blog vs print discussion was just to provide an amusing context for this entry, wasn't it? You sir, are toastist.

ALthough to be fair, in order to get rid of toast all you have to do is leave it alone until it turns into a little pile of ash.


liz s | June 29, 2006 07:33 AM

The entire blog vs print discussion was just to provide an amusing context for this entry, wasn't it? You sir, are toastist.

ALthough to be fair, in order to get rid of toast all you have to do is leave it alone until it turns into a little pile of ash.


Brandon | June 29, 2006 08:10 AM

Toastr is teh suxor!!!


Ann Vallier | June 29, 2006 09:44 AM

Toast rawks! And fie on your strawberry jam, too! Apricot preserves are the way to go! (Unless one is in the mood for creamy natural peanut butter and wild flower honey. Ummm! Drippy, sticky goodness!) Bagels are good for holding scrambled eggs and the like, but lack for moisture retention and that crusty edge for holding back butter run-off. Better than bagels, though, are English muffins since they lack that annoying hole that leaks stuff down your wrist and are far superior at soaking up the good stuff. But better than English muffins are crumpets, since they retain the soft inside of the muffin while lacking the, sometimes, too hard back crust. (Umm! Drippy, egg-soaked goodness!)

Rats - now I'm hungry.

Anne C. | June 29, 2006 01:01 PM

After the reference to this post in "Blabbering Masses" post, how can I resist making a comment?

Firstly, thank you to the commenter who mentioned the conveyor belt style toasters. We had those in the dining hall at my undergrad and I have fond memories of watching my toast (or was it a bagel?) make it's little trek to the slide exit.

Secondly, I don't eat toast often, but I do like it when done well. I particularly appreciate it with tea.

Thirdly: "I mean, what's the point of buying a toaster with artificial intelligence if you don't like toast?" - Talkie Toaster on Red Dwarf

anonymook | June 29, 2006 01:37 PM

Toast sure, but how do you feel about Canada?

SAP | June 29, 2006 03:19 PM


If you must. The nice thing is that bagels can be enjoyed either way. Untoasted bread is just bread.

And tea is nice, but cannot be compared to El Popular Chocolate. Especially with toasted and buttered French bread straight from the oven.

mmmmm, heaven ...

Brian | June 29, 2006 03:37 PM

Hmm, I'd better add a comment here to keep this thread at 3x the number of comments as the thinky one...

John D. | June 29, 2006 10:20 PM

This reminds me of a story that happened to my brother a few years back.

We were at a diner late one night and he was expounding on his belief that toasting bread was evil. "the bread is already perfectly baked" was his mantra. So when he got his toasted corn muffin, only to warm it up enough so the butter would melt not for the taste, he took a big bite and promptly choked on it. Spewing bits of muffin and coffess all over the table and myself.

So let me warn you Mr. Scalzi. Don't anger the Toast gods! They will try to take you and anyone close out of the picture.

Personaly, I like the toast. But to each his own...

Therese Norén | June 30, 2006 03:04 PM

Mr Rawdon, how incredible American of you to think of untoasted bread as limp. A proper bread will be balanced on your finger, with nothing more than a bit of a sag. Your bread (and I have pictorial evidence of this) will drape itself around the finger. Feh!


Mrs. Wonderbread | June 30, 2006 06:32 PM

"I'm sure if you had your way; you'd round up ALL the toast and have it destroyed. Because you're just like Hitler.

And no pointless comment thread is complete without comparing the author to Hitler."

LOL that was funny! Arguing about bread though?? Bagels are good, crackers are better but toasted bread it best!!! Muahahaha. :P

Wendy | July 4, 2006 03:01 PM

It is the charring of the bread that makes toast oh so savory, my friend!

Anne C. | July 5, 2006 11:09 AM

Another toasty movie quote:

"Cracking toast, Grommit!"

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