The press is all agog about how there are plans to make that old instant meal, beans on toast, even more instant. There were lots of anguished comment in the papers about how people are now getting so lazy that even opening a tin, emptying the contents into a pan, heating the beans and then adding them to some toast is now beyond them.
So the plan is to make something you whack into the toaster and then just eat. I'm not sure how they can stop the beans from all sliding off the bread into the innards of the toaster, but they must have some kind of super, techno, way that they are dealing with this. I've a horrible feeling it will end up being like a Pop Tart but with beans in. Which is deeply scary.
Everybody seems to be taking a "galloping laziness" view on this one, but I think the truth is different. The thing about the new age beans on toast is that one person can cook enough for themselves, at the time when they personally want to eat.
When we had beans on toast it was as a family. Mum would come home from work and open the tin and make tea whilst dad sat next door reading the paper and making sure he was well versed in world events (the role of fathers everywhere it seemed to me). Then we would all pile into the kitchen and consume the bounty that mother nature and Heinz had provided for us. I would get told off for not wanting my beans actually on the toast (I prefer to eat it separately - OK?) and then mum and I would wash up whilst dad and sister sat next door watching TV and making sure they were well versed in events in Crossroads.
This new version of the food means that you can feed you, yourself, at any time you like. The individual portions mean that there is no need for everyone to sit around the table at the same time. Instead family members can scuttle down into the kitchen in a convenient commercial break, prepare the stuff and then zoom back to their own telly or computer screen. This removes the need for conversations like:
"How was it at school today Rob?"
.. and so on. Sometimes I fear for the future.