H.P. Lovecraft on Eating Cheap
by Jane Hu
“I’m not, however, a heavy eater — take only 2 meals per day, since my digestion raises hell if I try to eat oftener than once in 7 hours. In winter, when it’s too cold for me to go out much, I subsist largely on canned stuff. I always get my own breakfasts, anyway — doughnuts and cheese. I have financial economy in eating worked out to a fine art, and know the self-service lunch rooms where I can get the best bargains. I never spend more than $3.00 per week on food, and often not even nearly that.” — H.P. Lovecraft to Robert E. Howard, 7 November 1932
“Speaking of industrio-economic matters — let me assure you that a 2-or-3-dollar-a-week dietary programme need not involve even a particle of malnutrition of unpalatability if one but knew what to get and where to get it. The tin can and delicatessen conceal marvellous possibilities! Porridge? Mehercule! On the contrary, my tastes call for the most blisteringly high-seasoned materials conceivable, and for desserts as close to 100% C12H22O11 as possible. Indeed, of this latter commodity I never employ less than four teaspoons in an average cup of coffee. Favourite dinners — Italian spaghetti, chili con carne, Hungarian goulash (save when I can get white meat of turkey with highly-seasoned dressing).”
— H.P. Lovecraft to Mrs. Fritz Leiber, 20 December 1936
From Selected Letters, Vol. 5 (first two quotes) and Fritz Lieber and H.B. Lovecraft: Writers of the Dark (meal ledger)
Jane Hu reads old things.