Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Cooking or Baking (01/04/07)
TITLE: Mardi Gras In October
By joe hodson
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Greeting me at the doorway was a tall, foreign woman. She wore beads and a plastic, green derby hat. In her hand she held a bucket perfect for collecting gold coins. The cafeteria stunk like poison. My mouth started to water. Back in the kitchen someone was cooking up a hot batch of either Cajun food or mustard gas. My nose followed the scent to the cook standing behind the sneeze guard. Beside her stood a tower of prepackaged containers, bursting with beans and rice. She handed me one with a grin. She recognized me from a week before when I misread the date of the Mardi Gras party. I stormed in, waving my plastic, gold coin, and demanding, “Give me my Jambalaya! Where’s my Who-hash?!” All the cooks were thrown into utter confusion, and ran to get the kitchen manager. Some one forgot to inform them that Mardi Gras had changed months and was moving north to Columbus, Ohio. “We don’t have your Who-hash, sir. We don’t even know what that is. Now please calm down.” The rented security guard mumbled something into his walkie-talkie. Finally, one of my coworkers told me, “Mike, the Mardi Gras lunch is next week. Didn’t you read the memo?”
No matter, that was water under the bridge. I sat down with my food at a lonely table in the corner of the room. The inside of the non-biodegradable container was drenched in sweat from Gumbo steam. Rice and beans were thrown together with some mysterious meat. The King Cake was a burnt cinnamon roll speckled with green sugar crystals. The food presentation was flawless. All week I waited for this very moment in time. I pounced on it with my fork like a wild animal.
I took two bites and dumped it in the trash.
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