Monday, September 29, 2008

[Fiction] My Falafel Journey

I had just finished watching my fourth hour of television when I noticed a deep grumbling in my stomach. All that TV had made me hungry and I had a strong craving for some greased-up falafel. Perhaps this primal craving had begun when I was watching the Simpsons, or maybe when I watched Batman Begins, but for whatever reason I knew that I had to get some low-quality falafel fast. And I knew just the spot.

I hopped into my Toyota, put the windows down, turned the Flobots up and was off. I coasted down US-41 while contemplating how bloody hot it was in November and why Florida had no winter when I noticed the car next to me was trying to get my attention. I wasn’t in the best part of town and the person in the other car didn’t look very educated (his lack of a shirt and shave spoke volumes…) but I turned to listen to him anyways. “Ey boy, how you get to the Wal-Mart?” As I attempted to stifle my laughter I told him how to get there and he headed out. My thoughts of Falafel had now moved on to a reflection on Wal-Mart and all the things that it represented.

Wal-Mart was really the epitome of America. It is a behemoth of a store with cheap, disposable goods at a low-price. I strained hard to think back to the last time I had come to Wal-Mart. It had been in the midst of another snack-driven delirium and I ended up finally going there at 2 in the morning. When I got there I was shocked to see that the parking lot was completely full and that people were trudging along buying various trinkets and novelties as if it were 3 o’clock in the afternoon. This small-town sized building held the cheapest goods money could buy and the lowest paid workers money could afford. I couldn’t help but feel a pang of sadness for all of those people I had seen in Wal-Mart—all of them looked overworked and completely burdened down by their own troubles. Was this really what the American Dream was all about?

I was jolted back from my daydream to find that I had finally arrived at Uncle Mo’s Kebab Palace. I went in and immediately looked for something to quench my thirst. I couldn’t find any crab juice so I grabbed a Mountain Dew instead and then finally ordered a falafel. As I took my first bite into the sub-par sandwich I couldn’t help but wonder what life would be like without falafel.

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