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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Humor  |  House: Booksie Classic
A man receives an unsolicited lesson after having his snack rudely interrupted.

Submitted: June 02, 2013

A A A | A A A

Submitted: June 02, 2013



“Are you insane!?”

Joe momentarily postponed the first delicious bite of his beef jerky stick to investigate the alarmed voice coming from behind him. Before he could even determine the source of the commotion, a hand reached out and slapped the succulent stick of meat from his palm, straight onto the convenience store parking lot.

“What the fuck?” Joe exclaimed. He glanced at the now-ruined snack on the pavement, then up at the food assailant. “What was that for?”

“That’s beef jerky, right?” inquired the meat-destroying stranger, pointing at the soiled sustenance. “Do you even understand what you were about to do?”

“Uh, yeah, I think I do. I was hungry, and I was going to eat that jerky so I’d no longer be hungry.”

“No, man, that’s not what I mean!”

“I don’t see how there could possibly be more to this. Work’s slow today, I needed a snack, and I bought some jerky.”

“Seriously, there’s more to this! And it’s my job to save the world from beef jerky.”

“Oh? Enlighten me.” Joe looked at the wasted $3.99 hunk again. Its ripples and veins seemed to form a sad face. He could almost hear the snack crying out in protest. Why, Joe? Why couldn’t you protect me? Don’t you want me? “I do,” he whispered. “I love you more than anyth-”

“The government, man!” The Treat Trouncer interrupted Joe’s heartfelt moment. “They’re using beef jerky to keep the man down. It’s all a crazy game, man. They’ve gone nuts!”

“I think you’re the one who’s gone nuts.” Nuts. Well, the jerky’s ruined. I could probably find some almonds to hold me over. The Goodie Gremlin did not share Joe’s concern for finding a new source of nourishment.

“No, no! See, do you know how jerky is made?”

“I assume they kill a cow and dry the meat.”

“Wrong. Listen to me, man. See, what they do is they load up a bunch of cows in a barn and make ‘em smoke a whole bunch of cigarettes.” Joe’s mind had wandered from almonds to fresh fruit at this point. “See, that makes ‘em all jittery and stuff.  They get this addiction and it makes ‘em irritable. All they want is the nicotine and they end up getting all scrawny and leathery. Like, you know anybody who smokes, man?”

“Huh, wha?” Smoke. Smokehouse. Ooh, those almonds sound good again.

“Yo I asked if you know anyone who smokes. Your mom smoke, man?”

“My mom? Uh, yeah, pack a day at least.” My mom made some damn good chocolate cake when I was little. Maybe I should call her up and get the reci-

“Okay so you know how she looks right? Probably all wrinkly and she smells like burnt pepper or something? Looks a lot like the jerky, right?”

“I suppose you’re right.” Aw, now I’m thinking about the jerky again. I wonder if I could rinse it off.

“See? There’s totally a conspiracy here man! So here’s the connection. You’ve gotta listen to this, man. So the government’s subsidizing the tobacco industry. Right? Kinda like how they subsidize corn?”

“Oh yeah, I watched a documentary on that once.” Hm, corn. Do I want corn chips? Those sound all right. Or corn flakes! Man, nothing better than some corn flakes.

“They’re doing that for a reason! You see, it comes down to the paper industry and wood industry and shit like that. There are lobbyists and politicians and everything. They want tobacco to be the number one drug in the country. And subsidizing it through cows is a great way to do that. Every time you eat that beef jerky, you’re supporting the tobacco industry. And you know why that’s bad?”

“High bovine cancer rates, right?” Dammit, thinking about the jerky again. That sweet, sweet jerky. I miss you so.

“No way, man! It comes down to hemp. They don’t want marijuana to be legal because it threatens the whole industry.” The Salami Slapper reached into his coat pocket and pulled out a small bag. He held it up, revealing the green buds inside. “You see, hemp is useful because-”

He didn’t get the chance to finish explaining before Joe confiscated the packet of weed and slammed the Jerky Jerk onto the hood of his patrol car. After handcuffing the suspect and locking him in the back seat, Joe returned to the jerky on the ground. He picked it up, pondered it for a second, and decided to go ahead and take a bite.

“This tastes like shit!” he said. “I’m going to save you for later when I have the munchies.”

After tucking the partially-eaten jerky away with the contraband, Joe hopped into his car and set course for the station, happy that the day had finally gotten interesting. 

© Copyright 2020 Brandon Rothfusz. All rights reserved.

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