Sample: Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley’s Easter Frankenfurters
In heartfelt thanks to the Lord that all is well, start a simple meatloaf for Easter dinner:
- On Maundy Thursday evening, remove 185 pounds of ground chuck from the ice house and place it in a large bowl of cold water. Change the water every half hour through the night and into Good Friday.
- It will take all of Friday for the meat to thaw. On Holy Saturday, combine 105 cups of fresh bread crumbs with 55 cups of milk. Saut. 110 onions, 200 carrots, 115 celery ribs, and 440 cloves of garlic in oil. With your bare hands work 55 cups of ketchup, 230 eggs, 220 teaspoons of smoked paprika, the milky breadcrumbs, the sautéed vegetables, anda few dashes of Worcestershire sauce into the meat. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- From here on out let every move you make in your kitchen reflect your tendency towards overreach. Animate the ingredients with the Fierce Pleasure of Creation, using your private parts in formative concert with the large implements in your kitchen drawers.
- When, in the midnight hour, you pause in your exertions to examine the mess, believe for just a moment that you see in it a bit of hair and eyeball.
- Yes! Make it so! Rush to the graveyard and unearth body parts. Returning to the kitchen, add them to the bowl.
- Hasten to your library and steal from German ghost stories.
- Form the muck into an eight foot bipedal loaf, and place it in the center of a really big baking pan. Decorate the loaf with red pepper, tiling together eyes, nose, mouth, and hair.
- Dress the loaf with dill.
- Through hours of grey rain pattering dismally against your leaded glass windows, lean over the pan, breathing directly into the loaf ’s mouth. Ventilate so much that you feel senseless.
- Actually fall senseless, letting the early morning Angelus bells awaken you. Look into the pan. By the sun’s first light you will see that the loaf will have formed a yellow, translucent skin stretched taught over eight feet of muscle and arteries.
- But wait. The globular yellow eyes are watery. And the meat’s breath offends; you must have added an eternity of garlic. Worse, the loaf is “dressed,” yet its coat sleeves are too short, and its pants are high-water.
- Oh, Alchemical Failure! For this you deprived yourself of a good, long sleep and prayer time?
- Flee the God-forsaken kitchen. In your haste, forget to latch the kitchen door. Scamper to your chamber bed. Fall prey to nervous fever.
- When a few hours later you return depleted and hungry to the kitchen, find the pan empty.
- IT. IS. RISEN!
- Allow a Cold Dew of Panic to collect on your forehead.
- In the time it takes your perspiration to bead, your meatloaf will have learned to speak three languages. That and it will have developed a desperate desire for someone to hug.
- Hear from outside in the square the sound of human bones being crushed.
- See the neighbors gather around a fresh corpse. Notice your meatloaf sneak into an alley.
- Call out to it. Lo, though it is awash in freakish terror, when it hears you a smile will wrinkle its cheek. “Mon cher pére!” it will snort in roughly your direction, followed by “Yo soy tu Adam!” and “Es frayt mikh dikh tsu kenen. Nu?”
- Quickly, step into the square and beckon the meatloaf. Do whatever you can to stop its aimless loveseeking. Offer it safe haven. For heaven’s sake, promise it a bride if you must. As it lurches eagerly towards you, blubbering all the while, thrill at the sight of its unhooked emotion. To your humble surprise, respond from your heart with Boundless Paternal Love.
- But then catch a whiff of rotted meat.
- When the meatloaf pitches itself sloppily to your feet, walk tidily away.
- It may bellow and yowl, but grief is Inescapably Part of Existence. Hearing the fuss, the townsfolk will surround, bludgeon, and stab the meatloaf. No need even to pay them.
- As soon as everyone has left the square, retrieve your inanimate animate, dragging it into the ice house to chill for 30 minutes. Cold meat passes through the grinder so easily.
- All men Hate the Wretched.
- Still, the wretched are Good to Eat. Gently shape the re-ground chuck into roughly 185 foot-long frankenfurters. Grill and serve with potatoes and a festive salad.
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This is from NIETZSCHE’S ANGEL FOOD CAKE: And Other “Recipes” for the Intellectually Famished, a gift book available in hardcover, paperback, and Kindle.