Short Story Of the Day (flash fiction) – Fresh Spam by Bill Chance

“If you had to identify, in one word, the reason why the human race has not achieved, and never will achieve, its full potential, that word would be ‘meetings.”
― Dave Barry
 

Mural, Deep Ellum, Dallas, Texas


 

I have been feeling in a deep hopeless rut lately, and I’m sure a lot of you have too. After writing another Sunday Snippet I decided to set an ambitious goal for myself. I’ll write a short piece of fiction every day and put it up here. Obviously, quality will vary – you get what you get. Length too – I’ll have to write something short on busy days. They will be raw first drafts and full of errors.

I’m not sure how long I can keep it up… I do write quickly, but coming up with an idea every day will be a difficult challenge. So far so good. Maybe a hundred in a row might be a good, achievable, and tough goal.

Here’s another one for today (#75) Three fourths there! What do you think? Any comments, criticism, insults, ideas, prompts, abuse … anything is welcome. Feel free to comment or contact me.

Thanks for reading.


Fresh Spam

The group came into the restaurant. They were obviously businessmen, with the proper suits, uncomfortable shoes, and thin ties. One was young, the other three gray.

The waiter took their orders.

“I had the oxtail soup last week,” said one of the older men. “It was quite good. Can I have another order off the same ox?”

“Absolutely, sir,” said the waiter without hesitation.

“I see the special, Spam and eggs,” said the younger man. “Is your Spam from a can or do you make it fresh?”

“We make a fresh batch every morning using the finest organic ingredients, all locally sourced,” replied the waiter.

The younger man smiled and the others nodded – appreciating their apprentice’s knowledge of fine dining and his insistence on being treated in the manner he deserved.

One man was having difficulty making his choice. He asked the man to his left, “I say, have you tasted the stew?”

“Yes,” the man said, “I’ve tasted it twice. Once going down and once coming up.”

“I should order something else then?”

“Absolutely.”

Finally the orders were made, the dinners brought out, sent back because they were too well done. Upon return they went back again for more heat. The third time was the charm.

Between the tinkling of silverware on fine china bits of conversation escaped.

“I heard you this morning and wish you wouldn’t whistle at your work.”

“I wasn’t working, Sir; only whistling.”

“I thought you’d be married by now”.

“I proposed to one girl and would have married her if it hadn’t been for something she said.”

“What did she say?”

“No!”

The other two began to argue.

“But if you will allow me to—-”

“Oh! I know what you are going to say, but you’re wrong and I can prove it.”

Drinks were ordered and refreshed. One man was sticking to ice water, “When one is really thirsty, there is nothing so good as pure, cold water.”

Another replied, sloshing an amber liquid in a heavy glass “I guess I have never been really thirsty.”

The conversation turned to gossip about their coworkers that had not been invited.

“His versatility is amazing.”

“I thought he was stupid.”

“That’s just it. I never met a man who could make more different kinds of a fool of himself.”

“HarHarHar!”

Cigars were produced, two smoked, two merely chewed upon.

The subject kept returning to finances.

“Money! There are a million ways of making money.”

“But only one honest way.”

“What way is that?”

“I didn’t think you would know,” was the answer.

“The true secret of success, is to find out what the people want.”

“And the next thing is to give it to them,” suggested the young man.

“No it is to corner it and sell it in dribbles at the highest price.”

The dessert tray was brought around, covered in obscene combinations of gorgous treats piled up in an artistic arrangement. The most attractive waitress was given this duty. Each man asked careful questions about every sweet offering and they all smiled broadly at the melodious answers. But, in the end, they declined, moaning and rubbing their bellies and feeling upstanding and noble at turning down such temptation.

The bill came and a slightly generous tip was added. The cost was handed off to the company, though no real business had been discussed.

The four parted ways on the sidewalk outside and all proceded home except the youngest who had the stamina to meet some friends at a bar and make a night out of it. They all had the same thought, how dull their co-workers were, and how lucky those men were that he was around to pull their fat out of the fire.

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