Saturday, April 30, 2011

Big Mac Daddy of all Things

Arriving at the rendezvous point, a local McDonald’s® restaurant, renowned way-station for ‘delicious food to fit your lifestyle’®, I found Bubba to be every bit as earnest as he was plus-sized. I dare say even the Great One, no stranger to eccentric prophets, may have overplayed His hand with this gap-toothed denizen of saturated fat emporia. As I gazed at the corpulent splendor poking out from beneath a woefully short wife-beater T-shirt, I wondered, was it possible this dude could transcend his abysmal dietary choices and offer up metaphysical pearls? Only time, as they say, would tell and the veils of time were giving nothing up. I grimaced as the elastic waistband on Bubba’s too-snug running shorts struggled against the improbable girth of its occupant. Surely God wouldn’t spoil my lunchtime appetite with a wardrobe malfunction? Playing it safe, I kept my eyes glued to the tape-machine.

What follows is as un-redacted as a Dead Sea Scroll, hold the pickles. I poked absently at a McDonald’s® Strawberry Triple Thick Shake™ as Bubba’s trance-like state seemed to seize him mid-double-cheese. Quicker than you can say happy meal, his face went rigid. I experienced a sympathetic chill-burn from my own frigid confection. The voice was like nothing I’d ever heard before, something akin to Alvin and the Chipmunks meeting Sir John Gielgud.

“Greetings. My name is Arbitron. I am an ancient spirit with a yen for morbidly obese hosts like the one that sits before you now, Mr. Rathsbone ‘Bubba’ Bovinsky. I have come to speak to you, of all things, on the matter of your recent 911 Ground Zero mosque flap.

Please be warned, you are constructing, not so much a place of worship or a cultural center, as a New World Temple Mount--the name preferred by Jews and Christians or if you prefer the Muslim name, Noble Sanctuary. That is, a super-duper-in-yo-face-sacred space against which the various Judeo-Christian traditions can vent their spleens in a Murderous Compact of Redoubled Monotheistic Grandstanding, flaming planes optional.

The term 'Ground Zero' is far more apt than you realize. It has a ring of climactic nihilism, the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end or what we in the spirit world like to call impending deep doo-doo. Seriously though what put the sudden oomph in your collective death-wish to construct a jihad-flashpoint in the heart of NYC? Why not erect a billboard of Jesus mooning Mohammed? You might even paint an ADA-approved bulls-eye on the site to assist virgin pilots fresh from paper-mill aviator academies. I believe the appropriate sound mandala is oy vey!”

Arbitron continued, “Though the great elders of the universe are rarely advocates for secular late-capitalist alienation and its attendant neon sprawl, we’re thinking this corner of urban space-time would be better served by a McDonalds®, thus spreading your deaths across a series of manageable whimpers as opposed to one big loud bang. Hence my recent theophanic manifestation with Bubba via a burning hot Big Mac--no sooner had he opened the biodegradable blue wrapper (open sesame seed!) than I launched into what only can be called an uncanny rendition of Charlton Heston. The shredded lettuce went everywhere. Bubba fell to his knees in a slurry of McFlurry®. His Supersize® fries went flying in the air. Though his distress was real his appetite, thank God, stayed true. He is now my terrestrial agent for averting Armageddon. That’s right: the 911 site is to become a Ray Kroc Memorial Garden.”

As though on cue, Bubba’s eyes opened like an overstuffed Dollywood marionette. In his own voice, he bellowed, “Clogged arteries of the world unite! Renounce the Ham-burglar of yore. Shake off your chains of befuddlement, your hypertension and join me in this crusade!" Some guy with a face-full of Deluxe Angus Third Pounder® burped at a corner table. A startled baby began crying near the jungle gym.

Unfazed by the bored reaction to Bubba’s jeremiad, Arbitron pressed on: “Bubba has received my marching orders and I can assure you they are slathered in superfluous calories and supersized urgency. The world has never needed the common man’s gargantuan appetite and patent disregard for roughage quite so much as it does now.”

At that moment, Bubba jerked upright before once again going limp. Was it a mild coronary event or the rapid departure of some insanely wise ethereal entity? I couldn’t be sure. Seized with a powerful craving for my own weird religion (a 1/3 Lb. Texas Toast Bacon Cheese Thickburger®) I turned off the recorder. There was a Hardee’s® around the corner.

I wished Bubba good luck and implored him not to make a pig of himself with the dollar menu. After all there’s only so much inter-dimensional meddling one man’s heart can take.

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