After reading Jane Smithie, mumbletypepeg and Lucy Mercer’s posts about entering their essays to win $10,000, I couldn’t help but throw my hat in the ring and approach this from a completely different angle. The premise of Anthony Bourdain’s contest is to answer the question, “What does it mean to cook food well?” in 500 words or less. Here’s my spoof:
A bunch of Neanderthals are sitting around in loincloths lamenting over Rockovia’s lending practices. Some of the cave dwellers are facing floorclosure. Winter is coming and there’s a distinct chill in the air. There isn’t enough food to go around. Even the cave kids are getting bored playing papyrus, schizophrenics and stones.
Moerowhah (do not try to pronounce this at home; you have to trust me that this is what everyone called him) is a loner, off in the corner (as usual), rubbing two sticks together for his own amusement. Unbeknownst to him, he will be revered and remembered in cave drawings as the originator of match.com.
Suddenly, in the distance, a wild boar appears on the horizon.
Moerowhah now has a five-alarm fire on his hands and looks for redemption. To deflect attention from his growing inferno, it strikes him that there is no other choice but for the beast to become the object of fear and ridicule. In short, the animal must become the decoy. Otherwise, Moerwhah will be forever fucked. And not in a good way.
“Meat!” he screams, as he points at the clearly confused animal.
With little more than crude weapons (that until this moment, were used for grinding up twigs and the occasional poisonous mushrooms), the leaders of the group begin hurling sticks and rolling rocks (the beer came later) at the boar’s head. Bowling was invented. And so too, was the name of a brand of deli meat.
Moerowhah stoked his fire in anticipation.
After 673 innings, the boar finally lost on account of rain and a fielder’s choice. The cavemen returned to the dugout exhausted, but with prey. The boar was so heavy, they had to drag him while on their knees.
“Meat, Prey” they chanted.
Hand Drew Floyd Webber felt the lyric was incomplete but suffered in silence as most creative types do and quickly retreated. He flounced to his trailer, refusing to emerge until he had a song in his heart and a guaranteed
20% 50% return on revenue.
By now, the flames no longer performed lap dances. The hot coals emitted a smoky scent that reminded the men of their hunger. For the first time in months, they felt warm.
Moerowhah took his cue, knowing it was now or never to get his name scratched in the wall of fame. Elvis would later steal his thunder with a tune of the same name.
Instinctively, he began to pull the animal towards the fire, knowing that the opportunity to be well respected as a medium for change was rare. Single handedly, he hoisted the boar atop the fire. The cave dwellers gathered closer, entranced by the
sparks aroma of sage and the hint of wild blueberry.
star chef was born.
The scent of the cooking meat drove them into a creative frenzy. Webber’s first hit musical, “Meat, Prey, Love” was produced and directed by James Hameron and holds the record for winning the most Stony Awards in the history of Bloodway.