Tuesday, September 20, 2011

I'm Still Here Leaning Towards This Machine

“This is a fucking kid’s game.” Jack said.

Pete focused on the metallic ball ricocheting off the round pegs that were adorned by rings of flashing red lights. He shouted as the sphere exploded towards the rubber-lined walls that made the sound of a hen cackling on impact.

“If it’s so easy then why aren’t you any good at it?” Pete remarked, “Not to mention, this one has a military theme.”

“Are you fucking kidding me? It’s called “Chicken Run” and there’s an old man in a white suit chasing hens.” Jack replied.

Pete took his hands off the two red buttons that were symmetrically placed on the sides of the game. “Dude, that’s the fucking Colonel. He’s dead. Don’t disrespect him.”

“Is that why he’s wearing all white or why he’s been immortalized as a cartoon, Pete, because he’s dead? A zombie cartoon Colonel that sells chicken— sounds deserving of respect.”

Pete clenched his jaw as he went back to his game. He pulled the spring-loaded plunger and shot another ball in to the Colonel’s hen house. His eyes lit up like the first time he saw his father bring home that red and white striped bucket of steaming chicken laced with 11 herbs and spices. The secret before “The Secret”.

Jack had a problem and Pete knew exactly what it was. He had no comfort in his life. There was no understanding. His entire childhood was spent on fast food that lacked backbone.

That wasn’t his fault though. It was his parents’. Bouncing around from drive-thru to drive-thru looking for something that would complete them. They weren’t going to find it with a McDonald’s Big Mac, an Arby’s Roast Beef sandwich with horsey sauce or even a Taco Bell $.99 meal deal.

Their lives lacked truth. Ignorance was no longer bliss. It was fucking heart break.

But how do you shine a light in to the darkness of a man’s soul? Trying to explain that all that someone knows is wrong would be a slap in the face. What can be done?

Pete knew though. He remembered something that he once learned in Sunday School about speaking the truth. Pete was taught that Jesus once gave a great sermon, a sermon on a mount that freed the masses from their backwards thinking. He knew that he must be Jack’s savior and show him the way, the truth and the life that would only run him about $5.99 a meal with free refills.

“Jack, do you believe in salvation?”

“Like Jesus forgiving me of my sins.”

“No, nothing like that. Experiencing truth in its purest form.”

“Well, that depends on what your version of truth is.”

“In this situation Jack, there’s only one truth and if you knew it you wouldn’t speak so harshly about the Colonel.”

“Pete, I know you’re from Kentucky dude, but please don’t tell me that the Colonel is going to save me from my sins.”

“What’s your favorite fast food restaurant?”

“I don’t know man. Probably Checker’s. They’ve got awesome fries and the shakes are cheap. KFC just doesn’t really do it for me man. I’m sorry.”

The final ball of Pete’s pinball game slid through the red and white striped flippers uncontested, for he now knew that his friend would never lead a life of fulfillment, only a facade of contentment while being consumed by appetite depravity.