The Sated Gourmand: Parts II and III

Part II: Two Weeks Later

Doug Feltz, food critic, sits in the dining room of La Vida, a Mexican-Armenian gourmet bistro, visibly shaken. He is wiping copious amount of his flopsweat on the tablecloth. He tries to take out his pad of paper to write notes on the décor, but his hands are shaking too much. He belches.

“Oh, you idiot,” Feltz mutters to himself. “Why did you have to eat before—?“

“Buenas noches, Monsieur,” says the waiter, popping up out of nowhere and startling Feltz. He is the same Frenchman from two weeks prior, although he now just happens to be wearing a sombrero and poncho. “The menu tonight is a series of amuse-bouche hors d’oeuvres with ‘salsa picante’ and ‘caliente chipotle sauce,’ whatever that is, in a—“

“Look, I’m sorry to be rude,” Feltz interrupts. “But aren’t you the same waiter from two weeks ago?“

Monsi—Señor?” the Frenchman says. “No, of course not señor.”

“Look, you’re speaking in a French accent and—yes, I can see your double tuxedo under that poncho,” Feltz says. “You clearly are the exact same French waiter from before.”

“Uh—“ the Frenchman stumbles. “No, I believe you’re mistaken monsieur.”

“Well, look, whatever,” Feltz says. “I happened to eat some Chinese food before coming over and I—I have to go. I can’t have that whole incident happening again.”

Incident, ‘mi amigo’?” the very clearly French waiter, says.

“I vomited all over your face for at least ten minutes,” Feltz says.

The French waiter looks perplexed.

“You really don’t remember?” Feltz says.

The French waiter shakes his head.

“Well, okay,” Feltz says. “Either way, I’m leaving.”

“Nonsense. Monsieur, me and my ‘amigos’” the waiter says, gesturing to the wait staff, “will be bringing out brioche chèvre ‘tortillas’ in just a moment.”

The waiter then claps and begins dancing in a very poor, French rendition of a Mexican hat dance, which distracts Feltz until the tortillas arrive. Feltz sits at his table, alone for the moment, trembling nervously and talking to himself.

“Why did you have to eat the Chinese food? You fucking idiot…” he says, absentmindedly grabbing a tortilla and dabbing his flopsweat with it. “Okay,” he says, composing himself. “Just don’t eat. You don’t have to. So don’t.” Thoughtlessly, he rips off a piece of the tortilla and tosses it into his mouth.

He chews.

He swallows.

“Oh no,” Feltz says to himself. The wait staff emerges from the kitchen just in time for Feltz to begin vomiting roughly a ten-gallon hat worth of puke into their general vicinity. His vomit fills the room and begins flooding out into the nearby street, splattering on cars, whose drivers begin vomiting all over themselves and out of their windows, causing passersby to slip onto the vomit-slick ground, where they too begin vomiting upon themselves. Those walking dogs vomit into their dogs mouth, who begin vomiting back into their owners mouth, in a sort of spectacular game of vomit tag.

The head waiter comes out to an exhausted and shriveled food critic crawling through his own river of puke, and shouts:

Fuck you, Doug Feltz!”

Part III: A few hours later

Doug Feltz, food critic, weeps openly into his tablecloth. He is pounding his head repeatedly onto the table where he is seated in the dining room of Oshiri, a Japanese-Italian fusion restaurant.

God­-damnit! What the fuck?” Feltz shouts. “Why would I eat a hoagie before coming—“

Monsieur-san,” the waiter, who is very clearly still the same Frenchman, just now wearing a kimono, interrupts. “I—“

But Feltz has had enough.

“Stop it! Stop it!” he shouts. “I won’t be part of this cruel joke any longer! What did I do to deserve this? Really. I’m not even sure who I am anymore. I mean, apparently I have a wife and family, but I barely remember them. If I’m a food critic, then I’m an awful one, because I don’t remember ever going to a restaurant where I wasn’t completely full before the first course. And why do you keep showing up to these restaurants?” He points accusingly at the waiter. “I feel like I was just invented for some sick man’s amusement. Now stop this at onc—”

Someone stuffs a rigatoni sushi roll into his mouth and both of Feltz’s eyeballs shoot out of his eyes. Vomit rockets out of the empty sockets. And his ears. And his asshole.