Sunday, 5 October 2008

Can you guess who this pancake is dedicated to...?

The world is flat. Flat, flat, FLAT. Flat as a pancake my friends.

And I am the butter that slides, melting, across the top, yellow-white into clear, softening everything it touches. Artery-coating. I am the syrup, spreading, soaking in, sweet and teeth-rotting, delicious and insulin spike-inducing. Waiting for that first knife cut. Flat and flabby-minded and waiting.

I am conservative. A simple dish found in most every town in the nation--in a restaurant or on your own breakfast table. I am all about Small Town Values. Don't ask me what those values are--I'm not sure I can tell you. I'm sure they involve pancakes, though. I'm too full of sugar to think clearly. But I am here to support you. Swallow me and I'll give you all the energy you need to keep going.

The world is a pancake, I tell you. Easy to pour. Heating up. I may be soft and fluffy on the inside, not much substance, but everyone knows the pancake. What's not to like? I am all you really need.

Never mind that the wheat that makes up my middle is imported from Mexico, where European agribusiness owners pay workers a pittance to work from morning's dark to dusk and there is no respite, just a long line of more waiting to take their place as lives dissolve--they are the water that makes me moist. Please ignore the fact that the syrup isn't maple but flavoured corn syrup, made from corn subsidized so well by the American Government and foisted so heavily onto the world market that farmers in Africa can't make a competitive profit and are forced to abandon the family farm and move away to the city, where it's crowded and hot and dangerous. And cousins and life-long friends are far away, some of them slowly starving, still clinging to the fields. I am here to sustain you--does it matter so much where I came from? Will you think these thoughts as you bite, anyway? Likely not.

You're not thinking any further than the plate. No, I know for a fact that you will enjoy this moment. I will fill your belly with a pleasant warmth and you will feel the comfort of home and love and all that is decent and right with the world. The flat world. Created by God. Don't worry--those books that say otherwise will be taken from the shelves soon. All you need is a cookbook. A pancake cookbook. What else could give you such a golden smile? I am all you need. I AM.

So embrace me! Let me change you with my comforting sameness. Let me be the food that you buy when you go to the grocery store, this week. Yes, I know I cost half again as much as last week, but I'm worth it, don't you think? Eating all of that other food out there can be dangerous--pesticides and additives and migrant workers. You don't need that in your life. In the lives of your children, born and unborn. All you need is me to nourish you.

Won't you vote for the pancake? I know you will. Because you love America. I know you'll support me. All the TRUE Americans support me. So enjoy your meal, America.

Oh, the bill? Don't worry. I'm expensive, but I'll make you a special deal, because you're a hard-working member of society. Don't worry about the high tax on that bill. I'll give you some money back.

Put it to good use, friend. Buy more pancakes.