Monday, January 19, 2009

The Evantine Order for the Very Calm Life: Rule One

The Oracle, many years past, needed to describe what things, apart from righteousness and peace with God, conspired, when present, to calm the life on which they smiled. Those easily recognized things in the life of the Oracle, were jotted down and naturally became ten rules and with them the Evantine Order was born. The monks who submit to these regulations are a pious lot and easy to mark out from their fellow man by the wide grin on their countenance. This manuscript was found, marked with the coffee stains of centuries, taped to the wall above the author's computer desk. It is quite possibly the oldest copy of this wisdom in the hands of scholars today. We asked the author if it were and he said. "Yep."

What is the first of these guides to guideless man? This is.

Thy larder, aptly so named, shall be ever plenished with butter and bacon.

It sounds simple enough. Butter and bacon in the house, at all times, no exceptions. Why? If you can find a better repository of heavenly flavored fat, we will add it to the list.
No, margarine will not do. Margarine is evidence that the lower classes have been given too much money. They will buy a product on symbol alone. Is it vaguely yellow and does it come in a paper wrapped rectilinear form? Does it melt when heated? This is sufficient evidence that it must "taste" the same. It is cheaper. It looks like butter, but in fact is an idol, a graven image of the True which primitive and backward people have not the sophistication of discernment to measure.
This class of humanity thinks that if something bears the symbol of a reportedly good flavored item (say steak, or butter, or coffee) it will report not through the tongue and its taste buds but through the helpful symbol reader. Language becomes the real. These people think that Applebees really is a "neighborhood bar and grill". It has "stuff" up on the wall and handy pictures in the menu to be sure that your symbol reader will read steak when that animal product piece of gristle shows up at your table. Thus, since apple pie is known to be the All American Wonder dessert, the round pie shaped piece of sheet rock and apple sludge that your mother or wife made, is good. If the pie had something claiming to be a crust, the symbolist taster comments on what the symbol demands, flakiness, oh my yes, the flakiness. What passed their lips, tongue and taste buds without pausing for conversation, was oven hardened Play-Dough.

Tasters taste, they do not read their food.
Tasters who have seen Heaven opened in the form of butter and bacon will accept no substitute.
Because fat, well, fat satisfies. And butter and bacon are the Platonic form of fat.
It is a basic food group for those who love life. All lesser forms of fat are moved by sensibility to cost (and the ratio of taste lost to coinage saved is unsustainable) or fear ("I will become fat and die").
The Calm Life does not fear. It welcomes a fat death if you did not become fat on symbols. The Calm Life knows what it is enjoying and the path that enjoyment walked to pleasure. And if there were a hundred dollar difference between butter and margarine, it would just mean that the Calm Life would have to wait until you could afford it.


Matthew N. Petersen said...

"If you can find a better repository of heavenly flavored fat, we will add it to the list."

Good cream?

Daniel Bakken said...

Hear hear! You forgot to specify that the bacon be of the thick sliced variety. Who wants to eat bacon you can see right through?

Evan B. Wilson said...

Amen to cream, Matt but it has not quite attained to grease consistency.
Amen on the thickness of bacon, Daniel.
I did not comment on bacon as much as butter perhaps thinking bacon was self evident but the neophyte to the Evantine Order must realize that the lean portion of bacon it merely an armature for "that which matters".

Heather said...

Butter?! Blech! Don't even give me margarine that 'tastes like' butter. Literally it gets up my nose. Same with cheese, nasty stuff. Just milk gone bad.
Bacon should be thin and crispy.
Or does this only apply to men? Especially the desire to not be concerned about weight.

Brian Martin said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Brian Martin said...

Two more votes for real food!

As an aside, we have definitively concluded that there is no "real" bacon in Japan.

jon said...

Your post makes me think of a scene from Grumpier Old Men that I always liked:

Grandpa: Well let me tell you something now, Johnny. Last Thursday, I turned 95 years old. And I never exercised a day in my life. Every morning, I wake up, and I smoke a cigarette. And then I eat five strips of bacon. And for lunch, I eat a bacon sandwich. And for a midday snack?

John: Bacon.

Grandpa: Bacon! A whole damn plate! And I usually drink my dinner. Now according to all of them flat-belly experts, I should've took a dirt nap like thirty years ago. But each year comes and goes, and I'm still here. Ha! And they keep dyin'. You know? Sometimes I wonder if God forgot about me. Just goes to show you, huh?

John: What?

Grandpa: Huh?

John: Goes to show you what?

Grandpa: Well it just goes... what the hell are you talkin' about?

John: Well you said you drink beer, you eat bacon and you smoke cigarettes, and you outlive most of the experts.

Grandpa: Yeah?

John: I thought maybe there was a moral.

Grandpa: No, there ain't no moral. I just like that story. That's all. Like that story.