I was a young, young boy. It happened so quick I could almost barely, somewhat remember it: The singular moment that defined my existence. The time I ate my first Meatball.
Swedish they were...What? Did you really think it was going to be just any meatball? Oh no no no!!! They were definitely Swedish alright; they were bought from Ikea.
I was in kindergarten. The lush, joyous laughter of children colored the air with a sweet scent of innocence as I traipsed across the playground. I spotted out of the corner of my eye, an eye, staring at I with a stare as wide as a fly's. It was Sid, the kid with a grin spread across his face like butter on a biscuit. His glare stretched its gripping hand through the pale afternoon sunlight. Below his chin was – weirdly enough for a kindergartener – some stubble, and bellow that stubble was his lunch. In it was a brunneous concoction of well-balanced, delicately spiced spheres of consumable objects.
He kept his gaze affixed as I flicked my eyes down and up, between his babyish, toddler-ish, teenage-y face and his succulent foodstuff. He picked up one of the juicy objects with a tiny tined tool and slowly bit a piece off. Squish, the brown roll of food whispered to me in a seductive voice. Sid chewed and chewed and chewed, the juice dripping down his face.
"Playtime is over! Come inside boys and girls!" sang the teacher from her pastel colored doorway.
The ethereal connection between me and Sid's food snapped like a tight wool thread as Mrs. Ruben's voice sheared through it. I ran to class with my mind half in and out of reality as I daydreamed about the scenario that had just passed. I must know what that rotund entity of saturation was, I thought to myself. I had decided to ask the teacher...
"Mrs. Ruben? Sid was eating this...thing...what was it?" I batted my eyes innocently, hoping to manipulate her to do give me the information I wanted.
She stared at me for 4 minutes and 33 seconds before replying, "I don't know why don't you ask Sid?" She swiveled her head 180º like an owl and bellowed, "SID!!! GET YOUR PLUMP BUTT HERE BEFORE I GET MY 12 GAUGE AND SHOOT IT OFF YA!!!"
Sid arrived with a juvenile skip, "What 'chu want, gurl?"
Mrs. Ruben took a deep breath to calm herself, "This young man here wants to know what you've been stuffing down your constantly overflowing pipehole."
Sid stared at me, and with a voice that cracked the sky in two, his words seemed to resonate off the heavens:
I nodded slowly, and time drawled as he said the second word.
BOOM!!!!! I was Fus Ro Dah'd. I flew across the room. My back slammed viciously against the opposite wall, causing a cacophony of clashes as frames of students' artwork crashed to the floor. His words seemed to throw me like a wet paper towel.
Suddenly, I didn't want these "Swedish Meatballs" anymore. The mere sound of their name nearly killed me! I shook the blurry whirls out of my vision and turned my eyes upwards just to be met with the harrowing sight of Mrs. Ruben charging at me at a breakneck pace. Armed in her hand was a furcated weapon with a single Meatball skewered through it.
"YOU WILL EAT THESE!!!"
Eat them? Eat them?! I didn't know you eat them!! I thought you just mashed them with your teeth and used various esophageal muscle groups to push it into your digestive tract; nobody said I had to eat them!!!
"NO, MRS. RUBEN!!! I SHAN'T!!!!!"
I pulled out my .40 cal Glock 23 and went wild.
[Blast this for effect]
POP!! POP!!! BLOCKA BLOCKA!!!! BANG!!!! F'TAANNNNGGG!!!!! BLOCKA!!!!!
She dodged my barrage of bullets as she blabbed out demonic battle cries and berated me with authoritative commands. She reached me right as my Glock clicked empty and thrust me against the wall, cracking the wooden frame and nearly bringing the classroom to rubble. She forced my mouth open with her bony fingers and waved the spiny metal stick with a meatball over my mouth.
She stuffed the metal stick down my throat. Not just the meatball, but the whole skewer. I gagged and nearly vomited as she forced it harder and harder down into my stomach. Finally, I had eaten it.
[Stop music here]
Mrs. Ruben, Sid, and the entire class stared at me from all directions as I gulped down the juicy mass. An eerie silence washed over the room, and suddenly, a frigid breeze from the East pricked our skin as ice crystals formed upon the ceiling – even though we were inside. I looked down towards my belly. It began to glow a soft golden glow. Then, light rays burst forth and blinded Sid in the eyes. The light began to pervade every corner of the room, then the school, then the county, before imploding back into its own epicenter, my stomach.
"Is it over?" Mrs. Ruben asked.
Slowly, I nodded.