If "Food & Wine" were published by Larry Flynt
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From: Peter Langston <psl>
Date: Mon, 5 May 97 16:58:09 -0700
Subject: If "Food & Wine" were published by Larry Flynt
[From the imaginary Letters column of an imaginary "Food & Wine" magazine
published by Larry Flynt... -psl]
Forwarded-by: Keith Bostic <firstname.lastname@example.org>
I read your fine magazine eagerly each month, and one of my favorite
features is the letters you receive from your readers. I always enjoy
hearing about their exploits, but until now I never thought anything like
that could ever happen to me. However all that changed last Friday night,
when I had one of the most incredible experiences of my life, and felt I
just had to write and share it with everyone.
It was about 10:30 PM and I was sitting in my dorm room going over some
boring math homework that I really didn't feel like doing. Normally there
is pleny to do on Friday nights at my college, but it was the first day of
spring break and the campus was practically deserted. Since I couldn't
afford to go to Florida with my buddies, I was forced to spend the vacation
on campus by myself. I was fully expecting a rather dull week of nothing
but studying and watcing TV.
Anyway, I was concentrating on my math book when suddenly I heard a loud
bang and a screech coming from outside. I rushed to the window to see what
had happened. On the street below I saw a white minivan with the words
"Carlo's Italian Restaurant" on the side. The van pulled slowly to the side
of the road, obviously suffering from a tire blowout. Relieved at an excuse
to break up the monotony of my studying, I decided to go outside and see if
I could be of any help.
As I approached the van I could see the driver, an overweight, brown
haired woman who introduced herself as Gail. We both examined the flat tire
and I asked Gail where she was heading. She said she was supposed to deliver
an order of Italian food to a party, some rich eccentrics who lived in the
upper part of town, she said. But the party had been cancelled at the last
minute and she was returning with their order. She said she didn't think
there was a spare tire in the van but I suggested that we take a look
We went around to the back of the van and Gail opened the rear doors.
A warm rush of steam came from inside, carrying the rich scent of fresh
tomato sauce and Italian bread. In the cargo area were trays and trays of
lasagna, meatballs, and pork smothered in sauce. A stack of pizza boxes lay
to one side, and I could see what looked like a case of beer towards the
back. Never in my wildest fantasies had I seen anything like the banquet
that lay before me now. After living on lousey school cafeteria food for
the past two months, it all seemed something like a dream come true.
Gail looked around and said she couldn't find the spare tire. She
sighed, giving me a strangely seductive look. "Well," she said, "I guess I
won't be able to get back to the restaurant for a while. It would sure be
a shame to let all this food go to waste." At that, I knew something
incredible was about to happen. Gail manuvered her pudgy frame into the back
of the truck. I couldn't believe my eyes as she began unwrapping the
mountain of food before us. "Here," she said, handing me a huge tray of
lasagna. The dish was warm and heavy and full of rich Italian smells. When
I looked back I noticed that Gail had started without me and was already
busy with a large, greasy pepperoni pizza.
I sat on the edge of the van and removed the tin foil from the lasagna
tray. I peeled the foil back slowly, carefully, revealing the hot pleasures
within. The sauce oozed like lava around the melty mozarella cheese, and
pools of oil were everywhere. I ran my finger along the edge of the plate,
and then gently through the heart of the food, delighting in the warm,
slippery feel of the pasta underneath. After a few minutes of working my
fingers in and out I removed them and slowly licked off the sweet-tasting
My sense of hunger heightened, I lifted the tray closer to my face. My
hands sank into the center of the lasagna, scooping out huge globs of pasta,
sauce, and cheese. I lifted the food to my mouth and stuffed it sloppily
into my waiting hole. I chewed and swollowed deeply, my eyes closed in
ecstacy. My entire digestive tract tingled as the food made its way down my
esophagus and into the pit of my stomach. Incensed, I grabbed hungrily for
the lasagna, stuffing my mouth till it was about to burst, choking it down
so fast that it almost hurt, and stuffing my face again. In a matter of
minutes I had lapped up the entire tray, licking it clean so as to get every
I stood up and caught my breath. After such a feast I was sure I could
eat no more, but the sight of several open pizza boxes soon had me going
again. Reaching out, I tore off about half of a huge 15 inch pizza covered
with pepperoni, mushrooms, and sausage. I folded the thick dough and thrust
the pizza mouthward, alternately chewing at the crust and then sucking in
the tender, cheesy filling. My mind in a blissful daze, I spent the next
several minutes in this position, until I had devoured every last mouthful.
By this time Gail had discovered the beer, and she handed me a tall,
frosty bottle. I wrenched off the cap and lifted the beer to my mouth,
pouring it eagerly down my throat. As I drank in a frenzy, beer spilled out
the corners of my mouth and dripped onto my face, neck and clothing.
Oblivious to the world, I continued consuming the brew like a madman until
every drop was gone.
Finally, I could take no more. Grasping my stomach, I stumbled towards
the grass on the side of the road. I opened my mouth and burped into the
warm night, longer and louder than I had ever done before. The substance of
my belch seemed to hang in the air in front of me, thick with the aroma of
pizza and beer. I burped a second time, then lay on the soft ground and fell
into a deep, satisfying sleep.
When I awoke several hours later, Gail and the restaurant van were gone.
I never saw them again after that night, but the fond memories of our
encounter will stay with me forever. Perhaps someday I'll meet Gail again,
and if I do I'll be sure to write and tell you all about it.
Name and address withheld by request
© 1997 Peter Langston