The Saturday morning pancake breakfast is a family tradition that dates back to when it hardly counted as a tradition and was more just something we did because, well, there we all were and we had to eat something for breakfast.
The pancakes in question are sourdough, but before you Nourishing Tradition people get all excited, let me assure you that they must be made with white flour (a brief flirtation with whole wheat was quickly abandoned) and drowned in peanut butter and cheap bulk syrup. Large quantities of scrambled eggs and link sausages--not to mention a few types of homemade jam for when peanut butter and syrup begins to pall--round out the menu. The basic goal is to sustain everyone through a day of hard labor on the farm so that it is not necessary to stop for lunch.
Now that we have returned to the Family Compound, the number of people has reached the point that a Grownup Table and Children's Table are necessary. This is nice, because the older cousins will help the older ducklings with cutting up their pancakes. It also provides fodder for competition.
The oldest cousin (C1) is a ten-year-old farm boy, with the appetite that implies, and hence the ability to regard eating as a competitive sport and still crawl through fences. After our first Saturday breakfast, he went around tallying the totals consumed by the Grownups and by the Children, and announced the Children as the winners, having consumed the most pancakes. There was some dispute over the legitimacy of this title, as he had counted the twins as Children even though they sat near the Grownup table, but the main trouble DOB saw was that he had not been warned about the competition until it was over.
The next time we gathered, DOB was prepared to show how old age and treachery could overcome youth and a high metabolism. (Not that DOB's metabolism has slowed down much yet.) Carefully DOB selected the smallest pancakes from the platter, thus consuming more numerically, certain he would push the Grownup total over what the Children could consume, especially when you factored in that after tummyaches on the previous occasion we had forbidden D1 and D2 from eating more than three or four each.
But this week, C1 never went around to get the tally from each table. Instead, he merely proudly announced his *personal* total of fifteen, which DOB had not been able to manage even in small pancakes.
We await further devious maneuvers as DOB tries to get ahead of the rule-changing.