Sitting in class, he found himself amazed how the successful application of the words juxtapose, pejorative and convention made it abundantly clear these people were serious scholars. Try as he might, over the course of a lifetime he never would discover non-academics offering such tidbits of wisdom as, “Ghetto simply meant neighborhood. It only became pejorative in the 20th century.” Or, “I was just thinking about the ridiculous modern conventions which require us to see differences where there aren’t any.” Or, “More than simply two women having coffee together, the author juxtaposes timeless love with unsustainable passions of the flesh.”
These scholars, in their own right, were a group deserving marvel. They believed they would boldly lead humanity to the Utopian future that always sits ripe for the picking, if people would only reach for it.
Returning from a brief break, he happened upon a group of these beings that had surrounded his chair with the never-ending favorite discussion topic of Americans–diet. Quelling his nausea, he sat down and calmed himself with the reminder that the subject usually provided uncommonly hilarious statements, most often centering around rationalizing some form of a stunning lack of discipline. These intellectuals didn’t disappoint. Below is a record of the dialogue.
“Yeah, I tried doin’ the whole cook-everything-for-the-week-on-Sunday-to-try-to-eat-healthy-during-the-week thing. It just didn’t work. I ended up wasting a lot of the food.”
“Me too. I always start the week off strong, but by Wednesday I get bored with the food.”
“I agree. What I didn’t like was having to thaw things.”
More proof that the saying was true–“If it isn’t one thing, it’s another.”
At first, like everyone, he was only slightly annoyed. As time ticked on, however, his curiosity grew. What made them such positive people? After all, they could no longer eat bread.
He couldn’t live without bread. Really, he couldn’t–he had checked. Right on the Hot-n-Ready box it listed bread as an ingredient. What could he possibly eat instead of pizza on weekends? Next he lifted the stack of pizza boxes off the top of the trash can to retrieve the wrapping on his most recent McDouble; sure enough, the material encasing the all-beef patties and cheese was bread. Even if he was able to find a pizza substitute, there is no way he could give-up his lunch and dinner staple. Not finding ‘bread’ on his Canadian Hunter whiskey bottle, he thought he was in luck. Nope. Mr. Google decreed that ‘rye’ was another word for ‘bread’.
Flustered, he shouted to the night, “How do they do it?” He couldn’t figure how the new wave of gluten-free eaters were able to stay so positive when life had handed them such a lemon. Then it hit him. Gluten itself must contain the answer. “What even was gluten?” he wondered. On his way to discovering its chemical signature he deduced the simple truth: Gluten must contain a healthy amount of realism. It had to.
Yep, life made sense again. Until now, he had found himself unable to make sense of the situation. He couldn’t believe that for the last year he had actually felt bad about himself when he was around glass-half-full gluten-free crowds. With his discovery, though, he could remorselessly return to his simplistic worldview. “Finally!” he exhaled, collapsing onto his couch.
Make no mistake, the afflicted’s resilience is remarkable. It’s just that now he knew it wasn’t difficult to be positive–what with an ingredient lacking.