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I contemplate the humble potato

by David S. Atkinson

I sit in my air-conditioned box suite at Madison Square Garden and contemplate the humble potato, that ambitious squishy sack of malevolent grub-like tuberousness, as if my life depended on it…for it very well may.

The potato, that murderous sneak who pursued me here, hidden in the provided sporting arena concessions. Chips, wedges, and even potato matter concealed in flour buns. Pursued me no doubt in an attempt to catch me unaware and extinguish my life.

My time is better spent contemplating the potato than the lobster. That ineffectual crustacean merely rattles its chitinous plates on the local news in outrage over power plant closings and socialist runs for city council positions, claims Fisher Price and Tonka have sold out America in exchange for Polident bond futures.

No, the potato is the imminent danger – with its overpriced organic schemings and plottings, directing from the tangible dark humanity’s overthrow.

Its maggoty vacuum hose tentacles: the ones that probe from the burlap dusty lower places, fixing midterm elections and toddler beauty pageants with secret B movie mad scientist intelligence. I’m reminded of the deep-throated reverb maniacal laughter of elephants in the Kansas City Zoo.

The potato rots its oily-blacky ooze, decomposing Nebraskan whole wheat Vaseline slickyness, which metastasizes and mortalizes all deep-fried Crisco foodstuffs from within its lair in a Masonic plywood kitchen cupboard.

I contemplate its aid to wintertime high-octane slug collectors and obese bellybutton thieves, mortal enemies of man. The potato, kin to telemarketing rasping demons that dwell in the cotton candy-filled wastelands where circumcised cowboy clowns once carved betel nut husks into dimes. Elders of russet filth, gnomes of Trinity College term-end report cards, Velveeta foil wrappers of crinkling Sundays.

I feel sour milk nightmare on my dehydrated, starchy tongue and know the menace hiding below Flagstaff and in the antediluvian mud temple of synchronous sin in Idaho.

So, in league with Ron Popeil and his circular Bedouin empire of porcelain welfare cheats (both my current Madison Square Garden box suite guests and immediate assistants in destroying the starchy assassins via consumption-oriented mastication), I contemplate the humble potato…and its unquenchable powdered Slim-Fast drive for murder.

I only hope it isn’t too late.

David S. Atkinson is the author of Bones Buried in the Dirt and the forthcoming The Garden of Good and Evil Pancakes (EAB Publishing, spring 2014). His writing appears in Bartleby Snopes, Grey Sparrow Journal, Interrobang?! Magazine, Atticus Review, and others. He spends his non-literary time working as a patent attorney in Denver.

Lead image: “so, how are you holding up?” (via Flickr user Solo)


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