The Food for Thought Issue
Quick as a Flash - Week 3
Fact and Fiction
It’s week three, and I’m excited to bring you another issue of the newsletter. Welcome to the Food for Thought issue! The first part will be acknowledging (or at least alluding to the idea of) food, and the second part will encompass thoughts.
Next week will be Halloween, so you can look forward to the Creep Show issue!
“So your coworkers think you’re a delight, the manager wants more accuracy in your reports, and the client was impressed by your sales pitch!”
“…Did you just compliment sandwich me?”
“It’s more of a hot dog: you shouldn’t think too hard about what’s in the middle.”
Apricot and Apathy
“Whose idea was it to invent jelly? Crushed sugary fruit mixed with even more sugar that you smear on carb-loaded bread?”
“Someone who loved us very much, I bet.”
“Love? Is love putting someone in a diabetic coma?”
“Look around you. Does anyone really want to be awake for this?”
“Oh my lord, I’ll have a slice of what you’re making.”
“I’m not making anything.”
“But I smell pie?”
“Oh, I lit a candle. It’s scented.”
I looked at the offending item.
No. I was not going to stand for it! I took out a Sharpie and corrected the affront to nature.
Put Your Heart into It... Or Don't
“So I’m crafting emotion-based pies. This is the first of dozens.”
I pierced the brittle crust and ignored the gray filling, settling the forkful into my mouth. “Oof. Sorry Mitch, but it’s bland as hell.”
“Thanks. It’s ennui.”
“Don’t care if it’s French. Still a disappointment.”
“We were like two peas in a pod,” he said. “Inseparable since age six. Someone even prophesied we’d meet the jaws of death at the same time. Obviously not true, though. Abdu’s gone, and I don’t know what to believe.”
“Well,” said Death. “I have some good and bad news for you.”
Doubts and Overthoughts
He looked into the mirror and could only think to himself, “Is my nose too big? Are my eyes too far apart? Or are my eyebrows too close?”
The flames crept across the carpet, hissing and licking at the bathroom door.
“Would I look better blond? Should I get contacts? What color would look best on me?”
Smoke wafted in through the gap beneath the door. Wood began to split and crack.
“Should I work out more? Maybe less? Can I pull off stripes? Should I have some work done? Lip injections, maybe? What about a tattoo?”
The fire burned through the edges of the door and slithered in and around the frame.
“Why do I look so bad when I’m sweaty? Pretty sure there’s a way to make your whole body sweat less. I should look into it.”
The blaze continued its hellish march throughout the room, unabated.
“Burns are bad for your skin. Should I change lotions? Is there a better one for uneven skin?”
The fire ravaged the entire house, but in the ruins stood a skeleton staring at a mirror that hung on the only wall that remained standing.
“Are my bones too white? Should they be whiter?”
I don’t know what I did to pull you into my orbit. Perhaps it was the way I smiled and actually made an effort to pronounce your name right. It took me over a dozen tries, but eventually, I nailed it. Your grin at my disbelief when I heard you say I got it right will never leave my mind.
Our first meeting was not exactly flawless. We had run into each other, literally, and your ice cream sundae ended up all over my shirt. There’s still a hot fudge stain on it, by the way. And much like my thoughts about you, I can’t be rid of it.
What have I done, exactly? Was it the times you had to sit and explain that the word or phrase I used was problematic? The hours you spent linking me to wall after wall of text explaining why I can’t use “that word” anymore? I must have spent hours learning about ancestries that were not my own, living experiences I will never have.
Was it that time I smoked in your car? I made the mistake of assuming that was okay because I do it in my clunker all the damn time. But I couldn’t help but notice how your nose crinkled as you slid all the windows down to free the vehicle of carcinogens. I should have just thrown out the whole pack right then, but I didn’t. I get cravings and have needs. Maybe it’s selfish, but I’m still me.
Was it that last fight we had? You, for once, made a mistake and forgot my birthday. We had plans and everything. You had insisted on it, even when I told you I didn’t usually celebrate. But when you came over the next day and found me sniffling on the couch, pretending nothing was wrong, you seemed as pained as I did. You insisted I tell you who hurt me. So I did. And then things got heated.
You talked about how overly sensitive I was, and how dare I raise my voice. And I did raise my voice. But sometimes, friend, we can't always speak nicely to those who've wronged us and try to sweep it under the rug with no effort to fix things. You taught me that. It's stupid, and it's petty. But it hurt.
It's 3AM right now. And it hurts.
We haven't spoken in a week. The sun will rise in a few hours, and I'll still be awake, wondering why you're no longer in my orbit. But since it bothers me so much, I have to ask: was I actually in yours this whole time?