Round 22

Mr. Muthafuckin’ eXquire – “Cockmeat Sandwich/Pissin’ Between Train Cars”

I’ve fought 3 times in my life. Only twice would a punch land to my face.

I’ve lost once. Two kids sucker punched my friend Ethan and I. Ethan laughed about it. I was heated. Kid would have gotten his if he didn’t run away. He’d have gotten his if my glasses hadn’t fallen off.

I don’t pretend to be a badass. I’m not. Far from it, actually. But I’d never fight like I’d fight today. I’d never come so close to losing on Thanksgiving Thursday. My foe kicked me in the ass. We traded jabs until the fork hit the plate.

Collared greens, sweet potatoes with marshmallows and brown sugar, rice, turkey, ham, roast beef, potato salad, green beans, macaroni & cheese. And more. Much more. Stacked on top of one another. Three layers on my plate.

Potato salad on turkey. Turkey on turkey. Sweet potatoes on sweet potatoes. Ham on rice. Rice on rice. As I pack my plate, their juices and seasoning seep into one another creating one Thanksgiving juice. Hidden under the food like the underground railroad.

Round 22 rang at 4 p.m. I could barely make the plate upstairs without spilling the food. The damn plate nearly split in two. I don’t blame it. My grandmother has actually invested in stronger plates over the years because she knows how we eat. She suggests we double up just in case. With the way I take control I should have used the double plate. Surely my fork will go through one plate and leak.

I sat in my seat with the Dolphins-Cowboys game beginning. I wasn’t watching. I was eating. I love eating. This is the only meal of the day so I have to make it count.

I have a strategy but when it comes to Thanksgiving I sometimes lose composure. Often times I eat one section at a time. Save the drink for last.  It’s the best strategy. The drink fills you the quickest. The food doesn’t.

As I take apart my meal limb by limb I get closer to the white paper plate. Fork holes everywhere. Thanksgiving juice leaking. Dammit, should have double plated.

I dig into the rice. Yellow with small beans. The turkey is dripping of juices. The ham as pink as it was before it was cooked. The roast beef leaks like a bachelorette at Chip n Dales. There’s not a dry food product on this plate.

The collared greens and green beans are the whores on my plate. Delicious in nature, but actually nutritious due to vitamin content. How could something so good for me make me feel so bad?

Today I’m a glutton and everything will be soaked into my stomach. I mean everything. I scrape my plate for the first time. Forgive me Buddha.

I’m allergic to gluten, but today I’m eating macaroni & cheese. I haven’t in months, but I make exceptions for my Grandmother’s food. It’s better than I remember.

I look at my plate in hopes for cornbread. The perfect sponge to soak up the juices left on my plate. I expected cornbread and received none. Where is my goddamn cornbread?

No need for complaining now. 20 minutes deep and I’m at the tail end of my meal. The potato salad is heaven. The sweet potatoes to die for. They’re my favorites so I save them for last. They’ll leave me with the taste to keep going. Enough for a second plate. Maybe a third. In an hour at least. Fuck if I want my stomach to explode. I haven’t been going to the gym this year.

Four forty-five. My cousins children are pissing me off. The itis has left me with an upset stomach. I haven’t slept much. Thanksgiving Thursday is supported by my unprepared nature. Did I think I could go to bed at 4 a.m., wake up at 10 a.m. and not fall asleep at some point during the day? And with Thanksgiving Thursday the next day? Who am I kidding?

I’ll lay in my grandparents room. Close my eyes for a brief second. A short nap should do. 15 minutes is a brief knockout. If I don’t recover and get another plate, I lose; If I sleep too long I’ll never recover.

I nap.

“Mikey you awake?”

“Damn nigga, were you drinking last night?”

“This is just a bad case of the itis. Niggeritis.”

I hear them. They haunt me like a fat bitch eating my dinner plate. My cousins expect more from me. They shake me. I struggle.

“We’re leaving soon.”

I recognize the voice. It’s my little brother. I peel one eye open. Wipe the coal from the other. Look at the clock. 7:45. Fuck.

I roll over. This can’t be life. After 22 rounds of fight I leave this thanksgiving with one plate eaten? A fat plate, true. Scratch that. A nigga plate. Three layered plate is enough for 2 normal plates at least. But this isn’t me.

I sit there. I’m disapppointed in myself. My defeat. Have I actually lost? There has to be time.

I go downstairs. My cousins make fun of me for sleeping. So do my aunts & uncles. I’m a ball breaker so I deserve this. Before I ask if we’re actually leaving, I make my move.

Pass me another plate.

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About realmikeclark

23-year old Journalism & Psychology graduate of the University of Connecticut.
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One Response to Round 22

  1. Pingback: All for one and one for all…and if I’m going to suffer, so are you | realmikeclark

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