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Who's That on TV?
A woman with her hair dyed half blond half blood, she shuts the kitchen door and says, “They can hear us.” With one finger tapping her nose she says, "They can smell us."
A SHORT, VERY SHORT, THANKSGIVING STORY
We’re running out of potatoes tonight, but that’s the least of our problems. Rake, big-waxed-head Rake, boney-chopstick-arms Rake, he runs into the kitchen and goes, “What’s the main gonna be then?”
And Janet clacking her heels from the main corridor, this main corridor twelve doors away from the Oval Office, Janet, My Lamb Is Too Pink To Be Well Done Janet, I Report To My Superior Who Reports To Someone Who Reports To The President Janet, she slaps a hand on her hip and says, “What’s the difference with a chicken anyway? None of them can fly, right?”
True. But neither can you, Janet.
Get a job as Head Chef at the White House and you need a good reason behind every cut of meat and pinch of spices.
My phone is ringing in my pocket, I point a finger to the ceiling and to Janet I mouth, “We can fix this.”
On the phone, my boy is asking if he can ask a question and I say, no need to ask just ask along. And, my boy, he says, “Is that what vegan food does to people?”
There is a scream coming down from the corridor. The sound of shoes getting closer stomping on the floorboards. Then a guy with a blue suit, a white shirt and a hole in his hand the size of a teaspoon wobbles in. He’s dripping his filthy blood all over my kitchen floor.
On the phone, my boy says, “Are you watching this, or what?"
My boy, I told him this will be a late Thanksgiving for us. The president and his family get a full belly first, we’ll all eat later. I told him dinner is as good as lunch. If I’m late we’ll have turkey for breakfast tomorrow. I promised.
If everyone could just enjoy a nice medium rare beef steak with chunky sweet potato this would be just another meal. But no, it can’t be, can’t it?
Rake is sharpening the biggest knife we have and says, “Shoot a pigeon and shovel it inside another cabbage, that should look like a turkey, right?”
Even the first vegans stopped being vegan because, hey, if everyone now is on a palaeolithic diet eating seeds and shitting crumbs that’s not cool anymore and they might as well go back to shovel an entire rage-free henhouse down their throats. But not our President. He had to set up this big ceremony and free Big Miles. Big Miles, the last turkey at the White House. They shook hands, Big Miles the Turkey said, “Thank you.” He said, “You won’t regret this, Mr President.” And the President, he crossed his heart, he was vegan now. Boy scout oath.
On the phone, my boy says, “Is vegan food why the president looks like that?”
And more people are running into the kitchen now. Slipping on the floor and hiding behind the hobs.
There’s a shot outside. A woman runs inside barefoot with her hair dyed half blond half blood. And she shuts the kitchen door. Her hair the colour of a butcher’s apron at the end of a shift, with a finger squeezing her nose, she says, “Shhhh”.
And Janet, she shakes her head and says, “Did you just shush me, bitch?” And Half-Blood hair, whispers from inside her throat, “They can hear us.” With one finger tapping her nose she says, “They can smell us.”
Still on the phone, my boy says, “Dad, Jesus turn the TV on.”
And to Half-Blood hair and everyone hiding in my kitchen, I say, “What is this, Jurassic Fucking Park, Thanksgiving Edition? Get the fuck out of my kitchen.”
Janet switches the TV on. And, yes, of course, there’s a TV in the White House kitchen. You might get a glimpse of distress in one of the President's speeches. He looks the colour of toothpaste, and you chop, chop extra iron in the shape of liver and spinach. He starts looking all slim and boney, and you knead a sourdough bread to puff him up.
My boy on the phone says, “Dad?”
There’s a tap, tap, tapping at the door. Pecking. Drilling holes. Small little holes popping all over the wood. Blood on the floor everywhere.
On the phone my boy, he says, “Why does the president looks like a turkey?”
And on the screen, chocked in a double-breasted coat, the big Oval Office window at the back, bloody Big Miles the Turkey is addressing the nation.
Our door springs open, and a bunch of turkeys with floppy snoods, black sunglasses and the feeling of someone who’s really, really, really pissed off, they all screech their claws into the kitchen.
On the TV screen, Big Miles is saying, “Find a hole big enough to hide. It’s time to murder turkeys no more.”
Two of the turkeys look at boney-chopstick-arms Rake and squint. They shake their head, and snoods, and beaks. Good old boney Rake would make even a cannibal squeamish.
Big Miles, his beak beaking the microphone, he says, “A wooden spoon will scoop out what’s left of your guts. Your souls.”
Then two turkeys grab Janet from her feet, Janet who’s screaming so much all the glass windows are shaking, Janet telling all turkeys to go fuck themselves. And one of the turkeys looks at me and says, “You’re the head chef, right?” He says, “It’s time to turn the big oven on.”