What the fuck is up with scones? A muffin, I understand. A muffin is a nice plump soft cake-like flavored breakfast treat, best when fresh, and even better warm. It makes total sense to me. Wake up, coffee, muffin: Cool. Not necessarily my “thing,” but okay, fine.
Then you have the scone. I actually heard they were originally invented by accident (which isn’t that hard to believe). Honestly, who the fuck mixes together all the ingredients from your basic muffin or cake, along with some cool mix-ins, and then consciously decides to add whatever it is they put in them to make them into the solid brick of extra dry and tasteless sheet rock they are? And who the fuck decided that, upon the making of the first-ever scone, this was an acceptable breakfast item? It’s so obviously a mistake. Nobody could’ve baked that thing and then been like, “Perfect! It’s just what I was aiming for!” or “No, dammit, not dry enough! More flour!” I mean seriously people, what the fuck?
So, several years back me and El-P were living maybe six to eight blocks away from each other in Brooklyn. The hood had your average handful of bodegas, one or two decent spots for some coffee, pizza, Chinese, etc. The kinda place where, when new businesses came and went people would notice. Like, “Oh they’re opening a bagel spot there….. Oh, this sandwich spot is closing,” etc. Anyway, so this new place opens up a block from El’s, between our cribs, and their specialty? Scones. Yes, that’s right, an entire store owned and operated for the purpose of selling scones. They had coffee, sure, but their main item was in fact the ever-curious scone.
Naturally, our collective reaction was something like, “What the fuck? That place sells scones? Like, that’s it? That’s the store?” Our second reaction was, “That place will be gone in six months.” However, like any community-oriented members of society when the store finally opened its doors we soon found ourselves saying a phrase I never thought I’d ever have to say in my life: “Let’s check out that scone spot.”
Sure enough… Warm scones for all, and tons of flavors, chocolate chip, peanut butter, berries of all nations, and the list goes on. And while I wasn’t a huge fan of the scone in theory, how can you turn it down when it’s right there? So, all of the sudden, I was thrown into this several-month period of my life when I found myself eating scones at least twice a week. I’m not even sure I liked them, they were still weird, still dry as ever, yet this store somehow made them seem like I should be accepting them into my normal inner-mind’s breakfast-menu (of which they had never been a part before). Like, I never before had found myself waking up and thinking should I go get a bagel, or maybe some diner food, or maybe a scone, but now a scone was not only an option, it was an option that was begging to be taken advantage of merely because of the odd nature of the shop. In short, I felt I had to eat the scones because I had never seen a scone-store. I wanted to understand the scone, because it was now obvious that someone out there was taking them incredibly seriously — seriously enough to think it was a good idea to cough off some cashola on some BK store-front real estate based entirely on their faith in their scone recipe.
Anyway, eventually the store closed, (as I’d assume most scone stores would). Admittedly, I kinda missed it. There was definitely a moment of “did you see the scone spot closed?” (Another phrase you wouldn’t think you’d ever need to say, along with any other phrase that includes the term ‘scone spot’”.) However, I can’t really say that I ever reached that point of truly understanding what business the scone had in the breakfast world.
And I still don’t.
Me and El also eventually moved out of that neighborhood.
But my question is, what’s up with scones?
P.S. I should add that if my story seems open-ended it’s because it is. My quest continues. Scones remain a giant question mark in my life. I don’t understand them. Help me.
Aesop Rock’s None Shall Pass (Definitive Jux) is in stores now.