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Tuesday, January 6, 2004   |    Fiction

Our Disastrous Brunch

by Ken Krimstein

The inexplicable ruination of the BROILED PINEAPPLE RINGS had the precise fingerprints of the Illuminati all over them. Or was it the anti-Illuminati?

At any rate, it was clear that the mystical alignment of the seven rings spelled out apocryphal meanings that someone, someone very, very powerful didn’t want spelled out. So palms were greased, influence was peddled, and the turning off of broilers was forgotten. Inedible? Yes. Secret society? Need I say more? Disaster number one.

As for the MACEDOINE OF PEARS AND MELON BALLS IN PORT, anyone could see how the same guys who hid the alien spaceship in Roswell, New Mexico, would have been all over that one. The defilers of the melon balls were clearly the same organization behind all the doings up at Groom Lake, Nevada, the men and women behind the sunglasses who sport all-access privileges to Area 51. One need not dip too deep into the literature to see just how paranoid these UFO co-conspirators can be, especially when it comes to brunching. (Think about it: that famous forgery of the flying saucer? That was a photograph of TWO PIE TINS TAPED TOGETHER.)

The facts are these: We bought those melons crisp; we know how to tap a melon with the best of them. No, the vandalization of our prized dish leads to only one place — that super-secret arm of the N.S.A. responsible for safeguarding UFO secrets. They messed with my melons. No doubt about it. Disaster number two, traced.

Next, what’s the first thing you think of when you think of SHIRRED EGGS? Exactly, the Trilateral Commission. These insidious world leaders were simply not going to sit idly by as little ramekins and cocotte dishes are dolloped with fresh eggs. They have a vested interest in scrambled eggs, sunny-side up eggs, even poached eggs. They will not blithely allow shirred eggs into a brunch unmolested. Doing so would put the new world order in question. The nefarious agents of this super-secret organization didn’t let us account for the thickness of the ramekin, resulting in an untraceable act that caused an unreliable estimation for the retained heat of the tiny casserole, and causing the delicate eggs to cook just too damn fast. Disaster three. Mission accomplished for them. Any questions?

Regarding the FLAT PERRIER, the LIMP CHIPS, and the TEPID COFFEE, well, all the evidence points toward NASA. I mean, if they could fake the entire moon landing, they certainly have the resources to sabotage a brunch at our home, don’t they? (Oh, and don’t go asking Buzz Aldrin for any corroboration on NASA’s innocence regarding the flat/limp/tepid conspiracy. Buzz’s part of the cabal.)

It’s a scary world out there to hold a brunch in. We tried. We really did. But there are forces at work, invisible hands that can mess up even the most resolute entertainer. And don’t think that by opting for something simple like pancakes or lox and bagels you’ll be able to dodge these evil ones. Their tentacles reach long, and they reach deep. Nobody is safe. Be warned. Be vigilant. But, whatever you do, don’t back down.

Ken Krimstein has published cartoons in The New Yorker, Punch, The National Lampoon, and The Bulletin of Atomic Scientists. His writing has also appeared on McSweeney's, and The Morning News, and he has read as part of “Trumpet Fiction” at KGB bar in New York City. You can visit Ken at kenkrimstein.com.