The supermarket’s called Freshboy Slim’s. Today’s special is used grapes. A bird flies in and everybody goes nuts. A guy yells, “We’re all gonna die you bitches!” He dives into a display of oranges, then farts. The oranges roll all over the place. An architect carrying a model of downtown Houston slips on an orange and falls face down into an ice-cream cake shaped like a fat kid. A midget sweeping the floor inexplicably performs kung fu on a doughnut as male cheerleaders jump for joy. An announcement is heard: “Somebody catch that bird! Reward! Loose change and Pepsi! Chop chop, douchebags!” A beautiful cross-eyed woman named Ralph enters with a sock puppet named Sarsaparilla. Sass says, “Where the Chunky Soups at?” Nobody answers. The bird takes a dump on the midget’s head, so the midget starts karate-chopping chicken cutlets. An old woman pegs the midget on the head with a can of string beans. Two cheerleaders throw a third in the air and he does two flips and lands on his penis. Everybody goes totally nuts.
A policeman enters. No one wants any trouble, especially Sass and the unconscious midget and Ralph and the farting guy who dived into the oranges, so everyone dummies up and acts normal. The policeman’s naked, except for his hat and his nameplate.
“Your chest,” says Monsieur Cootch, Freshboy Slim’s assistant manager, “It’s bleeding.” Cootch wears a fake beard that touches his feet. The officer says, “I’m naked, Einstein. Where am I supposed to pin my nameplate? To my nose? What are you, an idiot?” Cootch hands the officer thirty packs of Blue Blowout Bubblicious. “You, my friend, get a lot of free gum for that idiot remark. I am loving that boldness.” The officer yells “Touchdown!” and spikes the gum on a child’s head. Then he tries to clench five Soap Opera Digests between his ass cheeks.
This is when Howard Dean arrives. Dean rolls up his sleeves and says, “Prices are going up and the Republican wing of the Democratic Party’s in my trunk. So … price check on the weapons of mass destruction!” No lie—the place goes absolutely berserk. Dean signs some cartons of sherbet and splits. Everyone’s moved, except the midget, who snores. When he regains consciousness, the midget feels vaguely patriotic. Without explanation, he realizes the importance of political activism, the soothing nature of laughter, the sadness of random disadvantage, the smoke of deception, and the weight of responsibility. He knows he’s getting older and he can’t slow it down. He reminds himself to—
Out cold again. Again, the old woman—yams this time.