Issue # 1 / 18
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Catherine Roberts Leach
by Britt Leach


I eat in a little restaurant near my home once a week. Excellent service, huge portions—excessive, obscene portions really. I sit where I can see the gray plastic trays where dirty dishes are piled and can see how much food is wasted. I have what they call a Garden Burger and right at eight french fries each week. There are more than eight fries on my plate, of course; but I only eat eight. I also have a lemonade in a to-go cup even though I drink my lemonade while at the restaurant. Their standard glasses, those hard plastic things, retain the odor of their dishwashing detergent, so I ask for the to-go cup. I always sit at the counter.

Right above me is a large format TV monitor that only shows advertising. Spas, hair extension products, hair salons, manicure parlors and a bridal salon called Tease. There’s a logical stripmallprogression there, it seems: from the salons and spas to the bridal parlor. And for that time after the wedding, there’s an ad that promises to teach pole dancing to amateurs, those who haven’t chosen pole dancing as a career. That could be a bride or someone who wanted to become a bride and who possibly carries a portable dancing pole with her on dates.

For the bride, the pole would be in the bedroom, the couple’s bedroom, is my guess. Which, continuing the logical progression, brings us to an ad for a company that can provide a couple with an ultrasound video of the baby—the baby derived, from spas, hair extension products, salons, manicure parlors a bridal salon called Tease and effective pole dancing.

I’ll repeat that: an ad for a video of a baby in the womb. A graphic of fetus with umbilicus.

I had seen all the other ads but I discovered the ultrasosund video only recently as I was sitting at the counter eating lunch; and I wasn’t happy with being forced to look at amniotic fluid, graphically presented, while attempting to eat my Garden Burger and eight french fries. In fact, it was quite distasteful to me, stressful even; and I mentioned it to the manager, at length. But she couldn't really do anything about it she said. Something about a company that chooses the ads, said the restaurant’s owner didn’t mind and that no one else had complained.

I also mentioned the sexual tone of all the ads and their contribution to babies and thus to overpopulation and global warming, particularly the ad for pole dancing. “Let’s keep it out of the suburban bedroom and in our strip clubs where it belongs,” I said. "It’s putting exotic dancers out of work! And more importantly, we're making too many babies! Think of the fire and rain! And your portions are too big. I sit at this counter every time I eat here and see all the food you throw away. It’s obscene! Think of hunger and homelessness! And those ads are obscene! I'll have a Garden Burger and hold the amniotic fluid if you don’t mind!”

As she was walking away she said that I should really talk to the owner. And I think I heard her say, “Or somebody.”

Other diners were beginning to look at me, more than usual, so I asked for my check. I’d lost my appetite. My eight french fries wasted. I mean, even if you don’t agree that spas and salons and hair extension products and pole dancing contribute to babies and that babies contribute to overpopulation and that overpopulation contributes to global warming, you could at least agree that ultrasound images don’t belong in a restaurant.

I'll speak to the owner when I see him.



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Spam I Have Loved


"Be proud, while naked."

"Good morning; my tits wait you here."


ohrwurm: song you are unable to get out of your head. (Ger. "ear worm.")


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