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Lou and Lucy's Leftovers

My friend asked me: What is the difference between dinner and supper?

Being a self-proclaimed food expert, and one who does very well in the food categories on Jeopardy, I, without a second thought, replied dinner is a more formal meal and supper is the casual meal. I was pretty much right, but there is a bit more to it.

According to the definition I found on the Web, supper is a light evening meal — served in early evening if dinner is at midday or served late in the evening after an early-evening dinner. Either way, it is regarded as the last meal of the day.

Dinner is the main meal of the day, served either in the evening or at midday. However, in certain regions of the U.S. (New England in particular), the words are used interchangeably, though, supper is the less formal term. Dinner is the chief meal of the day no matter what time it’s served. Dinner is sometimes given to celebrate something or in honor of someone.

So where does that leave lunch?

Lunch is a light meal inserted between larger meals. Basically, you can have lunch anytime. That’s a good thing because sometimes, on the weekends or vacation, I might have lunch as early as 11:30 a.m. or as late as 3:30 p.m. Or lunch might become supper, depending on how the day unfolds. I am glad to know I am not breaking any rules. I think you could even have lunch for breakfast. I suppose one would have to call that brunch. I’d say brunch is really dinner with a punchier name. Lets face it, after you eat brunch, you will skip lunch and dinner and go right to supper. Of course, you can generally have brunch anywhere from, say 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. This is all rather confusing.

And what about snacks? Where do they fit in? Why don’t we call them lunch? Or snunch? When you have snacks before dinner or lunch they call them hors d’oeuvres or appetizers.

This is all giving me a brain cramp. Where’s my lupper?

— Lucy

P.S. To the fan who left me a nice voicemail over the weekend of Feb. 23. Thank you. You put me in a much better mood for Monday morning and that is hard to achieve.

If I had a friend who asked me what was the difference between dinner and supper I’d think they were out to lunch.

All I know is that it’s supper time and the living is easy ... or is that summer time?

And as for that fan who left you a nice voicemail: What am I? Chopped liver? Which I do believe is an hors d’oeuvre. Which I guess makes me a snack man. So let’s do snunch sometime.

— Lou

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