Tag Archives: Gluttony

The Deadly Sin Series – Gluttony Finalists

Comburg, pulpit cover by Balthasar Esterbauer ...

Comburg, pulpit cover by Balthasar Esterbauer (1715) – Seven deadly sins: gluttony Deutsch: Comburg, Schalldeckel der Kanzel von Balthasar Esterbauer (1715) – Sieben Todsünden: Unmäßigkeit Latina: Gula (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Once, a long time ago, I had a daycare in my home.  Every day I felt blessed and a tad nervous caring for the little darlings entrusted to me while their parents went about their business.   I felt a little bit like that with this first round of the Deadly Sin Series (except none of you showed up drunk to pick up your “offspring” nor did any of your checks bounce).  But I digress.

These entries were fantastic.  I had visions of having to beg my bloggy buddies (both of them) and my followers (again, both of them) to submit an entry.  I was floored by not only the number of entries, but the incredible quality of the writing.

The judges, after much consideration, deliberation, consternation and more than  a few libations, have narrowed the finalists field.  I was hoping for 5 finalists, but there was a tie for second place, as well as fourth place, so I have included all 7 of the judges’ favorites.  You can vote for your favorite over on the poll – until midnight Saturday, May 19.

Here are the finalists – in the order their entries were received:

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

from She’s A Maineiac – a tale of a hot dog eating contest gone wrong

I always feel a roar in the pit of my stomach right before it starts. Could be nerves, I suppose. Or just hunger. Maybe it’s because I’ve prepared for weeks, sometimes months for this moment. I do the normal body cleanse, clean out all the pipes, so to speak. Then Ma clicks the stopwatch and it’s GO TIME. I’ve always been good at it. Ma says when I was a baby I would eat three jars of sweet potatoes, one right after the other,  then scream for more. I was always hungry, always crying.

My personal best is 53 hot dogs in ten minutes 56 seconds. The trick is lots of ketchup–helps them dogs slide on down smooth as melted butter. When I start, there’s nothing like it, almost a religious experience. My body takes over and I start inhaling them, sucking them down, filling myself up so fast I could swallow the entire universe if I wanted to.

Sometimes I can feel them staring at me, as much disgusted by me as they are thrilled by me. Let ‘em gawk. I don’t give two shits about them anyway. Once the first chunk goes down and my mouth is stuffed, it’s just me against the food. The goddamn food. And I always win. Always. Until the summer of 2005 in Coney Island.

I can pinpoint the exact moment it all when to hell for me. I lost my first contest. Lost to a girl from Japan who was no heavier than a sack of flour–looked like her entire body was nothin more than a pile of bones slapped together with some skin. I knew I was in trouble when she sized me up just before the buzzer went off. Her shifty eyes daring me, taunting me. I had half a mind to stand up right there in front of everybody and swallow her whole. I regret I didn’t get the chance. Not 10.32 minutes later, she had won. Beat me by five whole hot dogs. FIVE. And I was left to sit there like a stuffed pig, still choking. Ma wasn’t happy with me that day. There was big money at stake and she was already three months behind on the mortgage.

Soon Miyu was winning every contest, hamburgers, crabcakes you name the food and she was always at least five to ten ahead of me at the end. But this next contest was it. The prize was $10,000. Enough to keep Ma happy for a bit.

The buzzer went off and I did my thing. For hours at home I had practiced my new move. I could almost get two of them down my throat at once. But it was tricky. For a split second I’d almost stop breathing, like I was drowning in the grease and fat.  But I’d push on through cuz I had to. I had to beat that goddamn girl.

About a minute into the race I glanced down the line at Miyu, she was staring straight ahead, her eyes black and unfeeling, her hands popping the hot dogs in so fast it was a blur. She was in The Zone. I was falling out. In a stupid move I crammed three in my mouth at once and something happened. I knew it was bad. The screams of the crowd faded into this buzzing noise. Things began to get real hazy and I thought  I saw Ma standing over me, crying. I don’t remember standing up, or falling forward, smashing into the table, ketchup and mustard and hot dogs flying every which way. Soon the crowd was all around me and I was looking up at the sky, so clear and blue. So beautiful.

Like I could swallow the entire universe.

* * * * * * * * * * * *

1 Point Perspective  with Willie Prader, A Glutton For Punishment

Willie Prader, Private Eye – Deadly Sin Series –

“A Glutton For Punishment”

Willie Prader had a bad feeling about this one.  Like maybe he’d bit off more than he could chew.

The leggy blonde named Crystal had sauntered through the door and into his life just a week before.  For someone who made his living being observant, he should have learned by now – trouble was always blonde, and it always sauntered.

The job was simple.  She was convinced that her husband was cheating.  Willie’d been a private dick since Moses was a pup, but still had to wonder what kind of guy cheats on a bombshell like this dame.  She had the face of a starlet, and he couldn’t help but notice how her legs got together and made an ass of themselves.

Prader parked his battered Lincoln at the White Castle across the highway from the Palace Diner and waited.  The guy drove a ’68 Fleetwood, so he’d be hard to miss.  When Mr. Light finally pulled up at the Palace, Prader was amazed to find out just how hard to miss he actually was.  The guy got out of the Caddy and the chassis elevated like one the Impalas the kids drive out in L.A.  Only this car didn’t have complicated hydraulics, it heaved up because the guy who got out of it had to tip the scales at five bills or more.  He leaned down and checked his massive face in the little mirror on the door, then shifted his bulk toward the diner entrance.

Prader chuckled to himself.  He never would’ve guessed that a doll like Crystal would be married to a guy who looked like he was built when meat was cheap.  He leaned back on the Lincoln, lit a Lucky and watched across the lanes of blacktop as the round man somehow crammed himself into a booth.  The waitress was hovering at his table, spending too much time for someone who should be hustling up and down the aisle slinging hash for tips.   She laughed and smiled at him,  touching his arm as he shifted his attention between her and the glossy menu.

Willie decided to get a closer look at this little romance.  He jogged across the highway and stood in the shadows just outside the neon glow of the flickering sign.  He considered his surroundings, making sure he wouldn’t be too conspicuous.  He looked back up to the window and saw the booth was empty.  For a minute, he thought maybe he was looking at the wrong booth.  Just then, he felt the massive ham-hand grip his arm like a vise.  He was pretty sure the pain in his ribs was the business end of a Colt, maybe a Baretta.  The man-mountain pushed him toward the diner door and the barrel of the handgun kept him moving.

Light stared at him across the booth with tired eyes.  The waitress looked at Prader with just a hint of dull surprise after putting three platters down in front of the big man.  She smiled briefly at Light as she left.

“My wife sent you snooping” Light declared.  “She knows I’m cheating,” he continued, “but look at this plate of sausage and eggs with hash browns.  Do you have any idea how many points that meal is?  Sorry pal, but I can’t lose Crystal because of what you or some team of cardiologists tell her.”

Prader swore at himself as he lay bound and gagged in the trunk of the Caddy, probably on his way to a landfill.  If he got out of this alive, he’d need to listen closer to clients, especially the blonde ones.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

angrygorillaemissions with a story about Dexter:

It was getting near that time of day again. Dexter didn’t really recognize that it was nearly 4:30, like you or I would, but he knew it nonetheless. He felt it. Dexter watched a lizard scurrying under the couch. In his youth he would have chased after it, but now it bored him. He waved his tail impatiently and yawned, then climbed up onto the couch and let the peacefulness of the afternoon lull him. A truck rumbled by outside, and his ears involuntarily perked up. “No”, he thought, “This isn’t the sound Mrs. Hattock makes when she opens the door.” But still a pang of hunger struck him at the thought of Mrs. Hattock returning.

He mindlessly licked himself and found that his fur tasted quite delicious.

Then the familiar jingle of Mrs. Hattock’s keys searching for their place in the door reached Dexter. He sprung up immediately and ran to the door. He was surprisingly out of breath from this short flight, but paid no mind to his physical discomfort. He was fixated on meowing as loudly as possible until Mrs. Hattock fed him.

“Hello Dexter,” Mrs. Hattock began cordially, but Dexter was in no mood for small talk. He began to whine and rub himself against her aging calves, arching his back.

“I’ve got a treat for you.” She said, opening up a can of soft food. Dexter plunged his head into the can of soft food even while she tried to empty it into his food bowl.

“Now don’t be greedy Dexter.” She reproached. “My how fat you’ve gotten.”

She didn’t care that he was fat really. Neither did Dexter. The two of them needed this daily ritual. She loved to spoil him and he loved to eat. He swallowed his food quickly without really chewing it. It didn’t even taste good it mostly just felt good. It was more like an esophageal massage than a dinner.

In that moment they both thought they loved each other. Soon they would be both be gone, and neither one wished to contemplate what would happen if the other died first.

* * * * * * * * * * * *

Lindsey from rewindrevise with a tale of rehab relapse:

It had been three months since Allison had left rehab. She had just earned her 90 day sobriety chip, which had become a comforting worry stone as of late. As she sat in the reception area of her husband’s office, she flipped the coin between her thumb and forefinger all the while eyeing the handsome young man her husband has chosen as his assistant.

“I have Mrs. Taylor here,” he emphasized over the phone.

Why had he not called her Allison? The young man cleared his throat.

“No, she’s here.”

Allison continued to flip, flip, flip.

“He’s just wrapping something up…a meeting. He’s wrapping up a meeting,” he clarified. How long had this been happening, Allison wondered? How long had it been happening right in front of her eyes but she was too stoned to see it? Their sex life never had the kinds of stories she wanted to boast to her friends about. At first he blamed it on stress. He blamed it on the office.  Then there was the baby. Then there was her and the vodka. How long had it even been since they had…been? The longer Allison waited, the more her stomach sank. She could feel the urge coming. The sound of a train rumbled in the distance and once again she was reminded how much she hated this place. The 90 day chip was no longer soothing, but heavy, hot.  She looked at the clock…tick. She looked at the water cooler…drip. She looked at the young assistant’s coffee…and there she spotted them. A crystal bowl full of champagne and rum truffles.  The assistant caught her gaze and began wildly shuffling papers to distract her. He had not cleared the bowl in time for Allison’s visit. Was that what was making him nervous? She had showed up unannounced, but surely the wrath from her husband for not hiding the bowl of liquor truffles was not the complete source of the young man’s anxiety. No, this was the kind of nail biting, knee-bouncing, pen-tapping anxiety that comes with knowing a secret, one that is about to explode.

From behind the office door, a man’s voice, yelled, “I don’t care, anymore!”

Allison raised an eyebrow at the assistant and he squeaked out a high-pitched laugh. “Excuse me,” he said, as he quickly got up and let himself inside the office door. Before he quickly closed the door behind him, she could see the back of a man’s head, jet black, his shirt wrinkled from where it had been tucked in, untucked, and tucked again. He was adjusting his carefully rolled sleeves…and then the door slammed with the assistant inside…but not before the waft of that familiar cologne had escaped. That cologne she had smelled on her husband after business meetings and gold tournaments and galas. That cologne had almost replaced her husband’s scent. Only when he visited her in rehab, when she did not smell the cologne, did she realize it was a cologne that did not belong to him.

It was just Allison and the bowl now, Allison and the velvet truffles calling for her, Allison with the 90 day chip and the train rumbling and the cologne wafting. She no longer needed to see her husband. The assistant had told her everything she needed to know. Allison lunged for the crystal bowl, ripped off wrappers with her acrylic nails, and two by two popped glorious bursts of rum and chocolate into her mouth.

When Jim finally emerged reeking of that other man’s cologne, all he found was the 90 day chip in an empty crystal bowl.

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

Sean from  theequiaticbind  with The Unhappy Meal

At most fast food restaurants they enforce a rule called the two finger smile. This rule dictates that if you put your top two fingers next to your mouth, holding the fingers together like you’re making a gun out of them, and then smile, your smile needs to be the same height as the fingers. The strictness of the enforcement of this rule differs from restaurant to restaurant. I’ve been in some restaurants were the server has barely spoken let alone smiled and I’ve been to others where they smiled so much I became suspicious and in the end I left after asking for directions to somewhere I wasn’t going to.

One time though I was stupid enough to make a complaint. It happened like this:

It was a Tuesday afternoon and the restaurant I was in was fairly empty. Actually it was completely empty save for myself and the servers. One of the servers had on a red tie and a short sleeve shirt that denoted management.

I had ordered my meal, found fault with it and approached the counter.

‘Excuse me,’ I said. ‘I think there’s something wrong with my meal.’

My server said, ‘Yes, sir and what is the problem.’ He had a two and a half finger smile.

‘Yeah I bit into my burger and I suddenly had a very strong memory of being stood up for a date when I was sixteen by a girl who ended up with my best friend and broke my heart. I would have come and complained sooner but I’ve only just stopped crying.’

He nodded, ‘I see.’ He made a hand motion and the manager appeared at my side.

‘Yes sir, you were crying sir?’ said the manager with a three finger smile.

‘Yes. From eating your burger.’

‘Yes this is a common problem. You ordered an unhappy meal, sir?’

‘No, I ordered a happy meal.’

‘It’s a common mistake at the moment, sir, you see we’ve just started a new campaign promoting our unhappy meals. They’re a more depressing but healthier version of the happy meal. They also don’t come with a toy.’

‘Yeah I noticed that. Mine came with a small note saying that my glasses made me look a dork.’ I readjusted my glasses on my nose. ‘I like my glasses.’

‘They’re wonderful, sir.’

‘Okay then I’d like to change this for a happy meal then.’

‘No. That’s not possible.’

‘Why not?’ His smile had dropped to one finger status now. ‘You ordered an unhappy meal so you have to finish it. Company policy.’

‘I’ve left food unfinished here before.’ The smile dropped to half a finger.

‘What?’

‘I’ve left food unfinished here before.’

The manager turned to the server, ‘lock the door.’

‘Wait, wait, wait. What’s happening?’

‘You wıll eat the food you have wasted.’ The manager now had a two finger frown. ‘Eat it or there will be consequences.’

‘You’re a fast food restaurant manager. You have no power over anything in the real world.’

He smiled then, one finger, then two, three, four, his mouth stretching to five fingers then six then seven then eight.. He spoke in a voice that sounded like frying meat, ‘Eat.’

I looked down at the counter and saw the servers had gathered heapıng great piles of food there.

‘Eat,’ they hissed at me. ‘Eat.’

I reached over with a shaking hand and picked up the first of what looked like a hundred burgers. I slowly unwrapped it and began to chew, tears running down my face. The manager eight finger smiled at me, ‘enjoy your meal.’

 * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Julie over at gojulesgo with her  tale of a gluttonous mother:

Becky stood in front of the open refrigerator door, the numbness settling in to so much more than just her limbs. It started harmlessly enough, like it always did – with the leftovers. This time grilled chicken and green beans.  But the taste of the tender chicken got her mouth watering, and now she craved something crunchy to satisfy the churn in her stomach.

For a long time she believed that churn was hunger, afraid to believe it could be anything else. Now that she knew better, she simply let the numbness take over.  She grabbed the jar of mayonnaise from the refrigerator door, and the potato chips and rolls from the counter, before she could change her mind. Leaving the refrigerator door open, she smeared a generous dollop of mayonnaise on both sides of a whole wheat roll. She barely noticed the crinkling sound of the potato chip bag as she reached in and pulled out a fistful. She placed the chips on the roll and closed it, pressing the soft brown bread down with her palm to make sure the chips wouldn’t fall out.

She finished it in four bites. She leaned her ear towards the nursery. Still quiet. The only sound now was the hum of the refrigerator and the wild racing of her heart. The numbness was starting to fade and the familiar anxiety inched its way into her throat.

Well, it’s too late to save myself now, she thought, and dug out her secret stash of chocolate-covered pretzels from behind the crockpot. She glanced at the clock. 11:51am. She knew the pretzels would be gone well before noon. She had just popped the sixth one in her mouth, savoring the rich sweetness of the chocolate and salty crunch of the pretzel, when she heard the garage door open. Her heart stopped.

“Hello? Bill? Is that you?” she called, a tremor in her voice. She quickly stuffed the pretzels back in their hiding place and slammed the refrigerator door shut.

“Yeah, it’s me. They let us out early ‘cause of the holiday weekend,” Bill’s low, familiar voice replied. Becky breathed a sigh of relief, but her heart continued to race. She started wiping down the counters, so that it looked like she was cleaning when Bill came up behind her and placed a breezy kiss on her cheek.

“You smell like chocolate,” he said innocently. Becky laughed. “Oh really? That’s weird. I feel like I haven’t had chocolate in ages.”

Bill opened the refrigerator door and she squeezed her eyes shut, hoping he wouldn’t notice the missing leftovers. When had it become so easy to lie?

Bill shut the door and sighed. “There’s nothing to eat. Want to order take-out?”

“Sure,” Becky replied. “I’m starving.” Bill grabbed the phone and suddenly paused.

“When’s the last time you checked on Abigail?” “Um,” Becky hesitated, trying to remember how long ago it had been since she started her latest binge. “About 20 minutes ago?”

Bill wandered towards the nursery. He opened the door fully and a moment later Becky heard what sounded like the phone hitting the floor.

“Becky!” Bill cried, his voice almost unrecognizable.

Becky’s stomach dropped to her knees. She knew before she entered the baby’s room that something was wrong. And it was her fault. She ran into the room and then it all came up. The chicken, the chips, the pretzels. The reason her baby wasn’t breathing.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Katie with a story of food waiting in the dark:

In the darkness, the world shuddered. Light bloomed overhead, reflecting off of wrinkled plastic wrap, off of smooth lids to jars and jugs. The light beamed down through the levels, cut into rectangles by wire racking, eclipsed by drawers. One wall, covered in balconies populated by bottles swung away. Cold and light seeped from the world to fill the obtuse angle as it did in endless cycles.

The food was paralyzed in frightened anticipation, except for those that trembled for a moment before stilling under his gaze. He came at all hours, to look, to take. Some of the food had been there for a while; some was taken and returned, diminishing gradually. Some of it was not there long enough to get to know. There was a world outside the chill box. The food had been out there before each of them had been brought here, imprisoned, only to leave again to complete this reverse birth.

And all the while in that cramped darkness, a question plagued the food: was it better to be taken quickly, or to wait in that darkness that hummed sometime, to watch that wall swing away, those greedy eyes zoom in, searching. The question was only to pass the time. Eventually, they would all be encircled by those chubby fingers, all would end up in the maw of their jailer.

* * * * * * * * * * * *

 If your story didn’t make the cut – don’t be discouraged.  There were 3 stories tied for 6th place – so Honorable Mention goes to Lisa, Elyse and Peg.  All of the entries were unique, creative and very entertaining.

So here is the poll.  Good luck.  Remember the winner (U.S. only) gets a batch of my world famous chocolate chip cookies, a $20 donation to the hunger fighting organization of their choice, plus a $30 donation in their name to one of the organizations designated by Lenore (as specified by the winner).  If the winner is based outside the U.S. they will receive either a gift certificate to the eating emporium of their choice ($20) or an additional ($20) donation to a hunger fighting organization.

 

NEXT UP IN THE DEADLY SIN SERIES:  ENVY.  START WRITING AND AS SOON AS I REMEMBER HOW TO PUT THE SUBMISSION BOX BACK IN, I’LL DO THAT. OR YOU CAN ALWAYS E-MAIL YOUR ENTRIES TO ME.  THANKS FOR ALL YOUR WONDERFUL ENTRIES AND SPECIAL THANKS TO THE JUDGES.  THAT ROUND WAS TOUGH.

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Filed under 7 Deadly Sins Writing Contest, Uncategorized

Gluttony: Post 5

Gluttony

Gluttony (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Here are the final entries for the Gluttony portion of the Deadly Sins series.  Grab a beverage of your choice, put up your feet, and enjoy!

 * * * * * * * * * * * *

From Julie over at gojulesgo

Becky stood in front of the open refrigerator door, the numbness settling in to so much more than just her limbs. It started harmlessly enough, like it always did – with the leftovers. This time grilled chicken and green beans.  But the taste of the tender chicken got her mouth watering, and now she craved something crunchy to satisfy the churn in her stomach.

For a long time she believed that churn was hunger, afraid to believe it could be anything else. Now that she knew better, she simply let the numbness take over.  She grabbed the jar of mayonnaise from the refrigerator door, and the potato chips and rolls from the counter, before she could change her mind. Leaving the refrigerator door open, she smeared a generous dollop of mayonnaise on both sides of a whole wheat roll. She barely noticed the crinkling sound of the potato chip bag as she reached in and pulled out a fistful. She placed the chips on the roll and closed it, pressing the soft brown bread down with her palm to make sure the chips wouldn’t fall out.

She finished it in four bites. She leaned her ear towards the nursery. Still quiet. The only sound now was the hum of the refrigerator and the wild racing of her heart. The numbness was starting to fade and the familiar anxiety inched its way into her throat.

Well, it’s too late to save myself now, she thought, and dug out her secret stash of chocolate-covered pretzels from behind the crockpot. She glanced at the clock. 11:51am. She knew the pretzels would be gone well before noon. She had just popped the sixth one in her mouth, savoring the rich sweetness of the chocolate and salty crunch of the pretzel, when she heard the garage door open. Her heart stopped.

“Hello? Bill? Is that you?” she called, a tremor in her voice. She quickly stuffed the pretzels back in their hiding place and slammed the refrigerator door shut.

“Yeah, it’s me. They let us out early ‘cause of the holiday weekend,” Bill’s low, familiar voice replied. Becky breathed a sigh of relief, but her heart continued to race. She started wiping down the counters, so that it looked like she was cleaning when Bill came up behind her and placed a breezy kiss on her cheek.

“You smell like chocolate,” he said innocently. Becky laughed. “Oh really? That’s weird. I feel like I haven’t had chocolate in ages.”

Bill opened the refrigerator door and she squeezed her eyes shut, hoping he wouldn’t notice the missing leftovers. When had it become so easy to lie?

Bill shut the door and sighed. “There’s nothing to eat. Want to order take-out?”

“Sure,” Becky replied. “I’m starving.” Bill grabbed the phone and suddenly paused.

“When’s the last time you checked on Abigail?” “Um,” Becky hesitated, trying to remember how long ago it had been since she started her latest binge. “About 20 minutes ago?”

Bill wandered towards the nursery. He opened the door fully and a moment later Becky heard what sounded like the phone hitting the floor.

“Becky!” Bill cried, his voice almost unrecognizable.

Becky’s stomach dropped to her knees. She knew before she entered the baby’s room that something was wrong. And it was her fault. She ran into the room and then it all came up. The chicken, the chips, the pretzels. The reason her baby wasn’t breathing.

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

Now from Audrey:

 We wandered under the leafy, green canopy of palms, our shoes scuffing across the worn pavement walkway.  Wat Phnom, the “Mountain Pagoda” came into view and we made our way up a flight of stairs to the main stupa.  A huge Buddah statue rested in a darkened room and wispy tendrils of incense smoke wafted to the ceiling.  Cambodians were kneeling in prayer and meditation throughout the room.  With heads bent in respect we moved on to a shrine for the widow who had founded this temple site as a holy place 600 years ago.

Descending back to the main courtyard I espied dozens of monkeys scampering along the ground and through the verdant treetops.  Through the courtyard vendors were selling fruits and nuts that tourists were purchasing to feed the monkeys.  Throwing a handful of nuts into the grass would gather a drove of the little creatures.  They clearly understood how this system worked and eyed us over to see if we had any treats for them.

And then I saw him.  The fattest monkey I could have imagined with sitting on a stone pillar as if it was his throne.  He was at least 3 times the size of the others.  He slothfully slipped to the ground and padded across our path, his eyes puffy and belly dragging across the ground.  He had been watching some other monkeys nibbling on lichee fruit and swiped at them.  They ran off in a flurry of squeals and angry screams.  The gluttonous one plopped himself down on the ground with his precious fruit in hand.  Rolls of fat enveloped his hindquarters and formed a base around him.  And there he sat, king of his monkey tribe while we all stared at his largeness with mouths agape.

* * * * * * * * * * * *

 An entry from Katie:

In the darkness, the world shuddered. Light bloomed overhead, reflecting off of wrinkled plastic wrap, off of smooth lids to jars and jugs. The light beamed down through the levels, cut into rectangles by wire racking, eclipsed by drawers. One wall, covered in balconies populated by bottles swung away. Cold and light seeped from the world to fill the obtuse angle as it did in endless cycles.

The food was paralyzed in frightened anticipation, except for those that trembled for a moment before stilling under his gaze. He came at all hours, to look, to take. Some of the food had been there for a while; some was taken and returned, diminishing gradually. Some of it was not there long enough to get to know. There was a world outside the chill box. The food had been out there before each of them had been brought here, imprisoned, only to leave again to complete this reverse birth.

And all the while in that cramped darkness, a question plagued the food: was it better to be taken quickly, or to wait in that darkness that hummed sometime, to watch that wall swing away, those greedy eyes zoom in, searching. The question was only to pass the time. Eventually, they would all be encircled by those chubby fingers, all would end up in the maw of their jailer.

* * * * * * * * * * * *

And I leave you with this one from Elyse:

John couldn’t believe a Sgt. Friday clone was sitting across from him on the green leather ottoman, asking him questions.  Questions about his wife.  His late wife.  His lately late wife.  Her body was still in the other room, sprawled across the kitchen table across her laptop.

“When did you first notice the problem,” the sergeant asked.

“Problem?”

“When did she get hooked?”

“Uhhh, I’m not sure,” John responded.  “I guess about a year ago.”

“OK.  Did she come to bed last night?  Was her side of the bed messed.”

“It was always messed.  She hasn’t made the bed since she started her blog.  Not once,” he said, stifling tears.  “She’d get up as soon as her alarm went of and rush down to her laptop, shouting ‘how many likes do you think I got overnight?’  As if I cared.  She completely  stopped doing housework, gardening.  We used to fight about it – I mean argue.  Not fight.  I wouldn’t hurt her, Sargeant.  Just the other night she nearly burned down the house.  Blogging.  Writing a post for a goddamn blogging contest.  She heated up the oil and didn’t put in the scallops.  You wouldn’t believe what the house smelled like.”

“It’s the same old story,” said Sgt. Friday.  “They say the addiction is worse than heroin, worse than alcohol.  Worse even that reality TV.  They become gluttons for their posts, gluttons for the comments on their posts.  Gluttons for their other favorite blogs and the clever comment trails they leave for each other.  If I had my way, I’d outlaw it.  And the Word Press gang, well they’re the worst.” “

Word Press?  Isn’t that the free blogging site?”

“I think Word Press just cost you dearly.  We were afraid of this when we learned about their latest trick.” “

Huh?”

“Yes, John.  You may have a legal case against Word Press for what they’ve done recently.”

“I don’t understand.  How did a blogging site kill my wife?”

“Oh, you’d be surprised.  First they suck them in – this free blog crap.  Then they get them hooked.  Lastly, they rig it so that the bloggers become absolute gluttons, and just eat up other posts.  And then just today, they put the final nail in the coffin.”

“Nail?  What did they do?”

“Well, whenever a blogger comments on another blog, they used to have a choice.  There’s a box that says “Notify me of follow-up comments via email.”  It used to be you had to remember to check that box to get all the comments for a post.  Most bloggers don’t do that.  But bloggers who checked that  could get an email with all of the comments made on a blog.   Now,” said Friday, “well now the box is always checked unless the blogger remembers to uncheck it.   That represents so many blogs and comments, that, well something snaps.  Something in their swallower.  And then Word Press forces them to swallow comments even when they know they shouldn’t.  The bloggers?  Well they just know that no matter how many blogs and blog comments they swallow per day, they won’t be able to get them all down.  But they keep on swallowing, the gluttons.”

John looked up quizzically.  “You mean … my wife … she choked on too many blog comments?”

“Precisely, Mr. Watson,” said Sergeant Friday.  “Precisely.”

“I’m going to start a blog about this.  People need to know the truth about what’s killing bloggers” said John.

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

This has been ever so much fun – and the level of talent in these stories is incredible.  I am closing the entries for the Gluttony portion of the writing contest.  A huge thank you to all who entered

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Gluttony – Post 4, Your Daily Dose of Fun

Cindy, my slighty obese cat.

Fat Cat

Grab yourself a cuppa joe (and a dozen doughnuts – it is all about the gluttony, after all), and kick back to enjoy these latest offerings!!

First, from angrygorillaemissions

It was getting near that time of day again. Dexter didn’t really recognize that it was nearly 4:30, like you or I would, but he knew it nonetheless. He felt it. Dexter watched a lizard scurrying under the couch. In his youth he would have chased after it, but now it bored him. He waved his tail impatiently and yawned, then climbed up onto the couch and let the peacefulness of the afternoon lull him. A truck rumbled by outside, and his ears involuntarily perked up. “No”, he thought, “This isn’t the sound Mrs. Hattock makes when she opens the door.” But still a pang of hunger struck him at the thought of Mrs. Hattock returning.

He mindlessly licked himself and found that his fur tasted quite delicious.

Then the familiar jingle of Mrs. Hattock’s keys searching for their place in the door reached Dexter. He sprung up immediately and ran to the door. He was surprisingly out of breath from this short flight, but paid no mind to his physical discomfort. He was fixated on meowing as loudly as possible until Mrs. Hattock fed him.

“Hello Dexter,” Mrs. Hattock began cordially, but Dexter was in no mood for small talk. He began to whine and rub himself against her aging calves, arching his back.

“I’ve got a treat for you.” She said, opening up a can of soft food. Dexter plunged his head into the can of soft food even while she tried to empty it into his food bowl.

“Now don’t be greedy Dexter.” She reproached. “My how fat you’ve gotten.”

She didn’t care that he was fat really. Neither did Dexter. The two of them needed this daily ritual. She loved to spoil him and he loved to eat. He swallowed his food quickly without really chewing it. It didn’t even taste good it mostly just felt good. It was more like an esophageal massage than a dinner.

In that moment they both thought they loved each other. Soon they would be both be gone, and neither one wished to contemplate what would happen if the other died first.

* * * * * * * * * * * *

Next up  – Lindsey from rewindrevise

It had been three months since Allison had left rehab. She had just earned her 90 day sobriety chip, which had become a comforting worry stone as of late. As she sat in the reception area of her husband’s office, she flipped the coin between her thumb and forefinger all the while eyeing the handsome young man her husband has chosen as his assistant.

“I have Mrs. Taylor here,” he emphasized over the phone.

Why had he not called her Allison? The young man cleared his throat.

“No, she’s here.”

Allison continued to flip, flip, flip.

“He’s just wrapping something up…a meeting. He’s wrapping up a meeting,” he clarified. How long had this been happening, Allison wondered? How long had it been happening right in front of her eyes but she was too stoned to see it? Their sex life never had the kinds of stories she wanted to boast to her friends about. At first he blamed it on stress. He blamed it on the office.  Then there was the baby. Then there was her and the vodka. How long had it even been since they had…been? The longer Allison waited, the more her stomach sank. She could feel the urge coming. The sound of a train rumbled in the distance and once again she was reminded how much she hated this place. The 90 day chip was no longer soothing, but heavy, hot.  She looked at the clock…tick. She looked at the water cooler…drip. She looked at the young assistant’s coffee…and there she spotted them. A crystal bowl full of champagne and rum truffles.  The assistant caught her gaze and began wildly shuffling papers to distract her. He had not cleared the bowl in time for Allison’s visit. Was that what was making him nervous? She had showed up unannounced, but surely the wrath from her husband for not hiding the bowl of liquor truffles was not the complete source of the young man’s anxiety. No, this was the kind of nail biting, knee-bouncing, pen-tapping anxiety that comes with knowing a secret, one that is about to explode.

From behind the office door, a man’s voice, yelled, “I don’t care, anymore!”

Allison raised an eyebrow at the assistant and he squeaked out a high-pitched laugh. “Excuse me,” he said, as he quickly got up and let himself inside the office door. Before he quickly closed the door behind him, she could see the back of a man’s head, jet black, his shirt wrinkled from where it had been tucked in, untucked, and tucked again. He was adjusting his carefully rolled sleeves…and then the door slammed with the assistant inside…but not before the waft of that familiar cologne had escaped. That cologne she had smelled on her husband after business meetings and gold tournaments and galas. That cologne had almost replaced her husband’s scent. Only when he visited her in rehab, when she did not smell the cologne, did she realize it was a cologne that did not belong to him.

It was just Allison and the bowl now, Allison and the velvet truffles calling for her, Allison with the 90 day chip and the train rumbling and the cologne wafting. She no longer needed to see her husband. The assistant had told her everything she needed to know. Allison lunged for the crystal bowl, ripped off wrappers with her acrylic nails, and two by two popped glorious bursts of rum and chocolate into her mouth.

When Jim finally emerged reeking of that other man’s cologne, all he found was the 90 day chip in an empty crystal bowl.

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

Next up – Sean from  theequiaticbind

 At most fast food restaurants they enforce a rule called the two finger smile. This rule dictates that if you put your top two fingers next to your mouth, holding the fingers together like you’re making a gun out of them, and then smile, your smile needs to be the same height as the fingers. The strictness of the enforcement of this rule differs from restaurant to restaurant. I’ve been in some restaurants were the server has barely spoken let alone smiled and I’ve been to others where they smiled so much I became suspicious and in the end I left after asking for directions to somewhere I wasn’t going to.

One time though I was stupid enough to make a complaint. It happened like this:

It was a Tuesday afternoon and the restaurant I was in was fairly empty. Actually it was completely empty save for myself and the servers. One of the servers had on a red tie and a short sleeve shirt that denoted management.

I had ordered my meal, found fault with it and approached the counter.

‘Excuse me,’ I said. ‘I think there’s something wrong with my meal.’

My server said, ‘Yes, sir and what is the problem.’ He had a two and a half finger smile.

‘Yeah I bit into my burger and I suddenly had a very strong memory of being stood up for a date when I was sixteen by a girl who ended up with my best friend and broke my heart. I would have come and complained sooner but I’ve only just stopped crying.’

He nodded, ‘I see.’ He made a hand motion and the manager appeared at my side.

‘Yes sir, you were crying sir?’ said the manager with a three finger smile.

‘Yes. From eating your burger.’

‘Yes this is a common problem. You ordered an unhappy meal, sir?’

‘No, I ordered a happy meal.’

‘It’s a common mistake at the moment, sir, you see we’ve just started a new campaign promoting our unhappy meals. They’re a more depressing but healthier version of the happy meal. They also don’t come with a toy.’

‘Yeah I noticed that. Mine came with a small note saying that my glasses made me look a dork.’ I readjusted my glasses on my nose. ‘I like my glasses.’

‘They’re wonderful, sir.’

‘Okay then I’d like to change this for a happy meal then.’

‘No. That’s not possible.’

‘Why not?’ His smile had dropped to one finger status now. ‘You ordered an unhappy meal so you have to finish it. Company policy.’

‘I’ve left food unfinished here before.’ The smile dropped to half a finger.

‘What?’

‘I’ve left food unfinished here before.’

The manager turned to the server, ‘lock the door.’

‘Wait, wait, wait. What’s happening?’

‘You wıll eat the food you have wasted.’ The manager now had a two finger frown. ‘Eat it or there will be consequences.’

‘You’re a fast food restaurant manager. You have no power over anything in the real world.’

He smiled then, one finger, then two, three, four, his mouth stretching to five fingers then six then seven then eight.. He spoke in a voice that sounded like frying meat, ‘Eat.’

I looked down at the counter and saw the servers had gathered heapıng great piles of food there.

‘Eat,’ they hissed at me. ‘Eat.’

I reached over with a shaking hand and picked up the first of what looked like a hundred burgers. I slowly unwrapped it and began to chew, tears running down my face. The manager eight finger smiled at me, ‘enjoy your meal.’

The deadline is fast approaching for the Gluttony phase of the Deadly Sins Writing contest.  Entries will be accepted until midnight (EDST) 5/4/12.

If you have not submitted an entry but would like to assist with judging, please let me know…this is going to be tough!!

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Gluttony – Post 3

Jacques Callot, The Seven Deadly Sins - Gluttony

Jacques Callot, The Seven Deadly Sins - Gluttony (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Crank up the Keurig, people – here is another sampling of the great entries in the “Gluttony” phase of the Deadly Sins Series writing contest.  Read about the 7 Deadly Sins writing contest here.  Read Gluttony – Post 1 here and Gluttony – Post 2 here.

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

First up – Jonathon

“I want more,” the blubbery young boy commanded. He was huge and round with beady sunken eyes and a puffy pink-lipped mouth. Devoid of clothing,grease stains covered his face and body. He hung from the rafters in a contraption allowing him to hover over a dirty dinner table once filled with food.

Beneath the boy, a tiny blond-headed girl swept garbage off the stone floor. She kept her head down and her mouth shut while her brother fed himself into obesity.

A large, pointy-fingered hand smacked the back of the girl’s head,and she turned to find the evil witch looking discontent. “He said he wants more.” The old, ugly hag with a long nose, no hair, and yellow crooked teeth pointed up at the boy sucking on a barren chicken bone and continued. “Get him more.”

The door to the tiny house burst open, and the old hag and girl turned their attention to the silhouette of a tall figure standing on the stoop. “Gretel?” it asked.

The blond girl nodded her head at the figure.

Coming into the light, a woman in a red cloak entered and surveyed the scene. Seeing the fat ,round boy, she pointed at him and looked back to Gretel. “Hansel?”

Gretel nodded again.

“Who do you think you are?” The witch shoved Gretel out of the way, causing the frail girl to fall to the floor with a cry.

The red-cloaked woman pulled out a sword as the hag approached and shoved it into the vile woman’s gut. “I am Redd, and I bring Death.” As the witch’s life faded, Redd flung the sword and the hag’s corpse flew off the blade into a wall. Turning to the little girl, Redd sheathed the weapon and offered a hand. “Are you okay?”

“Yes,” Gretel said while taking the warrior’s hand. “Thank you.”

“I want more!”

Redd and Gretel shifted their attention to Hansel and watched in horror as he transformed into a huge maniacal blob with massive arms and legs turned claws. In the middle, his mouth opened wide with rows of sharp stained teeth chomping at the air in hunger. As Hansel grew,the straps of the device gave in and he fell on top of the dining table with a smash. From the wreckage,Hansel crawled out and roared in anger,“HUNGRY!”

Without hesitating, Redd grabbed Gretel and rushed out of the house, jumping onto the back of her white stallion Alphonse. As Redd rode away, Gretel glanced back to see the homely gingerbread house being devoured by her monstrous brother.

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

Next, an entry from Susan

  A Seafood Lover’s Losing Battle with Gluttony

Technically, he wasn’t dying despite his assertion that he was on death’s doorstep.  He groaned miserably and declared that his stomach was about to burst wide open.  She wasn’t surprised as he had eaten enough food to satisfy two, or perhaps three, people of average appetite.

Every time he overate like this, he swore it would be the last time.  He had asked her more times than she cared to remember to not let him order the all-you-can-eat buffet or the largest, greasiest item on the menu.  She fulfilled the promise time and time again, encouraging him whenever they went out to dinner to order more wisely.  On occasion he heeded her suggestion.  But all too often, as was the case this evening, he did not.

“Why did you let me order the fried seafood platter?” he asked her accusingly.

She should have been upset with him for making her responsible for his gluttony.  She wasn’t angry, but she couldn’t manage to muster any sympathy, either.  After all, she had suggested he order the broiled shrimp and scallop dinner.  Scallops and shrimp were two of his favorite seafood delicacies, and he enjoyed them broiled.  However, nothing sated his appetite as much as fried seafood.  The lure of the fried platter, heaped with flounder, clams, shrimp, scallops, and deviled crab was too much temptation for him to resist.

As if all that greasy, fried seafood was not enough to make one sick, he had also partaken of the cole slaw and French fries which accompanied his dinner.  This was to say nothing of the two pieces of cornbread slathered with butter that he had consumed while waiting for his dinner to arrive.  It was no wonder that he felt sick.

“You didn’t have to clean your plate,” she reminded him sweetly.  As least she hoped her words were perceived as sweet to his ears.  She didn’t want to add insult to injury by letting him know how much she was secretly enjoying his pain.

That thought fled her mind, as he continued to heap blame on her.  “You know seafood isn’t good leftover and I couldn’t let it go to waste.  We should have split it. Why did you order your own dinner when you knew this was plenty of food for both of us?”

“I ordered my own dinner because I didn’t want fried food,” she reminded him.  “I would have been happy to split a broiled platter with you.”

“Broiled seafood is not the same.  You should have talked me into ordering the fried shrimp and scallops.  That’s what I really like the best. I would have been quite happy with that.”

“Yes, of course, it’s my fault,” she mocked him, all sympathy have fled her.  “I forced you to order the fried platter and I insisted you eat every bite.”

He scowled at her, and then grimaced as a sharp pain coursed through his digestive system.

She smiled.  “I believe you are getting your just desserts,” she said.

“Dessert?” he said with joy in his voice.  “Dessert is a good idea.  Hair of the dog, you know.”

* * * * * * * * * * * *

 And an entry from Chris at awispofsmoke

It was early in the morning when I was awoken by the most startling dream. During the night, I reluctantly conjured images of my apartment door being kicked in by an unknown knife-wielding assailant. I sprinted toward the foyer to stop the intruder and we engaged in a hand-to-hand melee, knocking over a vase my aunt had gifted me as well as a coat rack and umbrella stand I obtained from the flea market. An attempt to utilize a parasol in my defense was foiled and I was overpowered by the stranger. He knocked me unconscious where I experienced a brief dream within a dream in which I was the captain and sole passenger of a sinking ship carrying cheese.

Some time later, I awoke in the original dream world and found myself lying in a tub filled with ice. My body was numb and shaking uncontrollably, rattling the ice against the cast iron walls of my bath. I could feel no pain but was horrified at the sight of frozen blood, which had coagulated around my abdomen. I awoke once again and found I had returned to the real world, only to be greeted by the silence of my empty apartment and the crushing loneliness it implies.

Feeling peckish after such an ordeal, I head to the kitchen for a proper breakfast. I find myself craving prawns and mayonnaise, but decide that is better left for lunch and instead prepare a simple serving of toast and conserves. I open the cupboard above the sink and rummage though the various jams and jellies available. The strawberry jam seems particular luring, so I pull a knife from the drawer below and twist open the lid.

I notice a bit of staining on the knife and toss it into the basin before grabbing a clean one. The blade sinks easily into the jar, swirling around, scooping and spreading the mixture onto my toast. Taking a large bite while sitting down at the table, I notice an odd texture in my breakfast choice. The taste also seems incorrect. At first there is a light sugary flavor, but it is immediately replaced by a harsh iron zest that makes my jaw ache.

I force the bite down without fully chewing and look back at the jar on the counter. As the chewed disgusting mass works its way down my esophagus and into my stomach, I feel a sharp and debilitating pain within my torso. I clutch the region through my shirt and nearly collapse to my knees as a red stain fills the fabric that is weaved between my fingers. I look around for aid but see only droplets of blood scattered about the kitchen and hallway. My one free arm desperately drags my body toward the fridge, leaving a large swath of blood in the wake of my feet. I manage to shimmy myself up against the ice box and pry open the door. It is my hope that freezing the wound will numb the pain enough for me to make it to a hospital.

The freezer is completely barren, save for several stacks of empty blue ice trays. I look back at the jar on the counter, then at the breakfast on the table. My vision  blurs as I slowly cascade into the growing puddle of blood at my feet. As I gradually slip into repose, I am again reminded of the silence my apartment bares and the crushing loneliness it begets. I reach out into the dimming dawn, toward the toast and jam, hoping for one last bite.

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Gluttony – Post 2

Gluttony, of the seven deadly sins. By Jacob M...

Gluttony, of the seven deadly sins. By Jacob Matham. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

All right, kiddos – go fire up the coffee pot and get ready for the next installment of “Gluttony”.

If you want to read about the Deadly Sin Series – Writing contest click here.  To read the post containing the first batch of entries, click here.

All right – got that coffee?  Then enjoy these fabulous entries.

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

First up – Sandy from Rest of Our Days

The Deadly Sin of Gluttony and the Happy Meal

I picked up the tray from the counter, piled high with food. This was a lone trip. A quick stop of convenience to refuel from the long drive.

I would need to find a table to check my e-mail—the place now had free Wi-Fi. As I scanned the fast food establishment, a single empty table became my destination. I weaved through the bolted down tables, avoiding the kids running noisily through the aisles, chicken nuggets drenched in dipping sauce in one hand, fries in the other.

I plunked my bum down on the hard seat and sat staring at the mound of cardboard containers in front of me. Carefully opening each package, adding ketchup and salt. Placing the straw in the massive cup of Coke.

Had I really just said yes when asked if I wanted to Large Size my order?

Oh yes, indeed, I had.

I really only wanted a small hamburger and a few fries. Something to sustain me. Fuel me.

But the meal sat untouched. A pile of fries like Everest with salt sticking to each little stick. A massive paper cup, the size of a milk jug, full of sugary Coke. A leaning tower of two all beef patties oozing special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions over the sesame seed bun.

As the ditty played over and over in my head I looked up at the circus surrounding me.

Fat people, skinny people, all ages, all sizes. Men, women and children squirming in their chairs with mounds of food in front of them. Some sitting with excited expressions as mommy placed the Happy Meal in front of them, opened the ketchup pack, put the straw in the drink. Saving the toy until they ate all their food. There was even a full size clown to add to the circus atmosphere over by the Playplace.

Most people were mindlessly chomping. Taking big bites from their large sized orders. Not talking. Just staring in the distance as the noise swirled around them.

As I watched them, it seemed as if each bite they took got bigger and bigger and the food appeared to be inhaled. Bite. Swallow. There didn’t seem to be a lot of chewing going on. From where I sat, I could see the line for the drive-thru window getting longer and longer. The atmosphere of gluttony descended over me. I felt like I was in an alternate universe.

Visions of starving kids in Africa came to mind, dying from lack of food. As my brain transposed the gaunt faces with the faces of the chubby kids in front of me, the soulful, begging eyes remained the same. The same pleas to “help me” were wordlessly conveyed. These kids in front of me were dying from too much food.

I picked up my tray of uneaten food and dumped it in the garbage can conveniently located by the door.

As I pushed through the door to leave, I stepped around a pudgy, teary-eyed little boy holding a broken toy from his Happy Meal.  “It’s ok”, said the mom. “We’ll get another one next time.”

* * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Next Up:  Darla from She’s A Maineiac

GLUTTONY

I always feel a roar in the pit of my stomach right before it starts. Could be nerves, I suppose. Or just hunger. Maybe it’s because I’ve prepared for weeks, sometimes months for this moment. I do the normal body cleanse, clean out all the pipes, so to speak. Then Ma clicks the stopwatch and it’s GO TIME. I’ve always been good at it. Ma says when I was a baby I would eat three jars of sweet potatoes, one right after the other,  then scream for more. I was always hungry, always crying.

My personal best is 53 hot dogs in ten minutes 56 seconds. The trick is lots of ketchup–helps them dogs slide on down smooth as melted butter. When I start, there’s nothing like it, almost a religious experience. My body takes over and I start inhaling them, sucking them down, filling myself up so fast I could swallow the entire universe if I wanted to.

Sometimes I can feel them staring at me, as much disgusted by me as they are thrilled by me. Let ’em gawk. I don’t give two shits about them anyway. Once the first chunk goes down and my mouth is stuffed, it’s just me against the food. The goddamn food. And I always win. Always. Until the summer of 2005 in Coney Island.

I can pinpoint the exact moment it all when to hell for me. I lost my first contest. Lost to a girl from Japan who was no heavier than a sack of flour–looked like her entire body was nothin more than a pile of bones slapped together with some skin. I knew I was in trouble when she sized me up just before the buzzer went off. Her shifty eyes daring me, taunting me. I had half a mind to stand up right there in front of everybody and swallow her whole. I regret I didn’t get the chance. Not 10.32 minutes later, she had won. Beat me by five whole hot dogs. FIVE. And I was left to sit there like a stuffed pig, still choking. Ma wasn’t happy with me that day. There was big money at stake and she was already three months behind on the mortgage.

Soon Miyu was winning every contest, hamburgers, crabcakes you name the food and she was always at least five to ten ahead of me at the end. But this next contest was it. The prize was $10,000. Enough to keep Ma happy for a bit.

The buzzer went off and I did my thing. For hours at home I had practiced my new move. I could almost get two of them down my throat at once. But it was tricky. For a split second I’d almost stop breathing, like I was drowning in the grease and fat.  But I’d push on through cuz I had to. I had to beat that goddamn girl.

About a minute into the race I glanced down the line at Miyu, she was staring straight ahead, her eyes black and unfeeling, her hands popping the hot dogs in so fast it was a blur. She was in The Zone. I was falling out. In a stupid move I crammed three in my mouth at once and something happened. I knew it was bad. The screams of the crowd faded into this buzzing noise. Things began to get real hazy and I thought  I saw Ma standing over me, crying. I don’t remember standing up, or falling forward, smashing into the table, ketchup and mustard and hot dogs flying every which way. Soon the crowd was all around me and I was looking up at the sky, so clear and blue. So beautiful.

Like I could swallow the entire universe.

* * * * * * * * * * * *

 Finally, this gem from 1 Point Perspective :

Willie Prader, Private Eye – Deadly Sin Series –

“A Glutton For Punishment”

Willie Prader had a bad feeling about this one.  Like maybe he’d bit off more than he could chew.

The leggy blonde named Crystal had sauntered through the door and into his life just a week before.  For someone who made his living being observant, he should have learned by now – trouble was always blonde, and it always sauntered.

The job was simple.  She was convinced that her husband was cheating.  Willie’d been a private dick since Moses was a pup, but still had to wonder what kind of guy cheats on a bombshell like this dame.  She had the face of a starlet, and he couldn’t help but notice how her legs got together and made an ass of themselves.

Prader parked his battered Lincoln at the White Castle across the highway from the Palace Diner and waited.  The guy drove a ’68 Fleetwood, so he’d be hard to miss.  When Mr. Light finally pulled up at the Palace, Prader was amazed to find out just how hard to miss he actually was.  The guy got out of the Caddy and the chassis elevated like one the Impalas the kids drive out in L.A.  Only this car didn’t have complicated hydraulics, it heaved up because the guy who got out of it had to tip the scales at five bills or more.  He leaned down and checked his massive face in the little mirror on the door, then shifted his bulk toward the diner entrance.

Prader chuckled to himself.  He never would’ve guessed that a doll like Crystal would be married to a guy who looked like he was built when meat was cheap.  He leaned back on the Lincoln, lit a Lucky and watched across the lanes of blacktop as the round man somehow crammed himself into a booth.  The waitress was hovering at his table, spending too much time for someone who should be hustling up and down the aisle slinging hash for tips.   She laughed and smiled at him,  touching his arm as he shifted his attention between her and the glossy menu.

Willie decided to get a closer look at this little romance.  He jogged across the highway and stood in the shadows just outside the neon glow of the flickering sign.  He considered his surroundings, making sure he wouldn’t be too conspicuous.  He looked back up to the window and saw the booth was empty.  For a minute, he thought maybe he was looking at the wrong booth.  Just then, he felt the massive ham-hand grip his arm like a vise.  He was pretty sure the pain in his ribs was the business end of a Colt, maybe a Baretta.  The man-mountain pushed him toward the diner door and the barrel of the handgun kept him moving.

Light stared at him across the booth with tired eyes.  The waitress looked at Prader with just a hint of dull surprise after putting three platters down in front of the big man.  She smiled briefly at Light as she left.

“My wife sent you snooping” Light declared.  “She knows I’m cheating,” he continued, “but look at this plate of sausage and eggs with hash browns.  Do you have any idea how many points that meal is?  Sorry pal, but I can’t lose Crystal because of what you or some team of cardiologists tell her.”

Prader swore at himself as he lay bound and gagged in the trunk of the Caddy, probably on his way to a landfill.  If he got out of this alive, he’d need to listen closer to clients, especially the blonde ones.

There is still time to get your entry in – I’ll be collecting “Gluttony” entries until midnight, Friday May 4.

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