02/14/2013 11:21 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

An Easy Question for Fans of Breakfast Cereal, a Difficult Question for Fans of Being Lazy

For the second installment in his monumentally important series of essays, writer Tim Mattingly will be breaking down and analyzing another of the universe's most difficult hypothetical questions. So put your thinking caps on. This one's about self-motivation. And love. And breakfast cereal...


A Lazy P.O.S. vs. A Tasty B.O.C.

If we can be sure of anything, it's that choosing a lifetime supply of cereal and milk would be a fiscally responsible decision. Any serial cereal eater will end up spending a pretty penny on those magnificent milk-soaked morning cuisines. A lifetime supply would save you thousands in the long run. And a magically replenishing supply of any brand? That alone should give any cereal enthusiast goosebumps. Plus, with a lifetime supply of milk, you would never wake up in the morning, pour some cereal in a bowl, open the fridge and be suddenly reminded that life is stupid.


On the other hand, if you are an avid cereal fan (like myself), there is a good chance that you are lazier than the average person. I only assume this because cereal is just about the easiest meal one can possibly make. Don't get me wrong, cereal is delicious. I love it. But my consistent consumption of it hinges almost completely upon the fact that I am too lazy to take the time to make anything more substantial.

Therefore, I will posit that laziness is a somewhat common characteristic of the cereal aficionado community. Likewise, not wanting to do the dishes is a somewhat common characteristic of the lazy community.

So having to decide between these two options puts the serial cereal eater in quite a pickle. Because dishes that magically wash themselves would be ridiculously convenient, wouldn't they? If you are anything like me, there is probably a Leaning Tower of Dirty Plates, Pots, and Glasses stewing in your kitchen sink at this very moment. That old macaroni from last night is going to crust onto that pot and even though you are certain that your dishwasher does not have the power to effectively clean it, you're going to shove it in there nonetheless. And you'll keep it in there through three separate wash loads before you decide to finally give in and manually take it out. To throw it away. And buy a new pot.


My bitch.

Now, I haven't really thought out the exact way that this dish magic would work. But let's assume that the minute you are done eating, the dish will just poof itself clean and you can put it back in the cabinet. Aside from the obvious convenience, this would allow you to have just one of every type of dishware, which would be nice I guess, leaving you with a bunch of extra cabinet space. This extra space could be used to store all the boxes of cereal you will still be paying for.

I considered option one for a brief moment, but my decision ultimately came down to this: As much as I would love never having to do dishes again, the avid cereal fan in me simply can't pass up an opportunity to have every brand in the world at my fingertips. My love of cereal trumps my love of not doing things.


The top of my fridge. Yes, I eat a lot of cereal. Yes, that is Crown Royal and Ketel One next to them. Yes, I realize you're judging me.

With a lifetime supply of cereal and milk, you'd be saving hundreds of dollars a year and you'd have infinite choices of cereal to boot. Granted, you would still have piles of dirty dishes in your sink. And you would have even more dirty cereal bowls than usual, since you would most likely be using your cereal-replenishing powers 24/7. But at least you would have the luxury of knowing that those dirty bowls, while unsightly and acting as a constant reminder that you will need to wash them someday, were absolutely necessary to your enjoyment of an unprecedented variety of delicious breakfast cereal.

Personally I'd eat nothing but Oreo O's. Remember those? They don't make Oreo O's anymore. Oreo O's were great.

P.S. B.O.C. stands for Bowl of Cereal in case you didn't guess. By the way, following the P.S. with another abbreviation looks weird, doesn't it? It looks like P.S.B.O.C. Which I guess would have to stand for Pretty Satisfying Bowl of Cereal. Kind of redundant though. Every B.O.C. is P.S., am I right? AM I RIGHT?

If you enjoyed this, you can read more of my essays at

Also, your own responses are encouraged. Feel free to comment.