Saturday, March 1, 2008

Modern Man Meets Chicken

From the archives of my life with my very funny mate. This story took place about 4 years ago.

I told him the knife would break, but of course, he insisted that he knew what he was doing. Normally, he is a very competent man and I feel confident leaving him alone in the kitchen, sharp objects and all, but today he wasn’t getting good reception from brain central.

Shoulders raised, torso pushed forward, my boyfriend stood over the mighty frozen block of chicken breasts, jamming the knife in what he was sure was a gap between two distinct pieces. I nervously warned him to be careful and insisted he stop putting his body weight over that knife for fear the fowl mess would slide from beneath him and we’d end up in the ER. He is a sensible man, so he leaned back on his heals and stood staring into the metal sink, planning his new attack.

Suddenly, his eyebrows shot up and he exhaled a happy “Hey,” and he walked away to retrieve something. This man was clearly on a mission by the sound of his happy clomping. My usually quite civilized, suit wearing, real estate selling mate walked into our kitchen barefoot, in jeans and a white undershirt with a small sledge hammer in hand. I looked at him and told him it would not work.

So, of course, he reassured me that it would. Taking a manly stance as though he was about to bludgeon a wild beast, he gripped the knife still jammed in the icy chicken and came down on the handle with three even hits. One!...The entire counter shook...Two!...The knife sank in further...Three!...The pile of drying dishes threatened to take a dive, so he paused to catch them with a quick elbow block.

At this point, I stood with one arm across my waist, the other propped on it at the elbow, covering a grin with my hand and trying hard to swallow the screaming laughter in my head. I suggested that, once again, this was not a good idea, and that if he persisted he would only succeed in breaking the knife. Eyebrows raised and gathered, smug pouty lips turned down in a mock ‘Good Fellas’ fashion, he informed me that his knife could take it. And with that, he raised his weapon, brought it down and watched the wooden handle of his unbreakable sturdy knife come clean off the blade just as he was half way through the phrase, “I told you so.”

I bit my lower lip hard, covered my entire mouth with my hand hoping to keep the roaring laughter in my throat at bay, released my face and crossed my arms. The bewildered look on his face lasted but a few seconds, and then my Herculean genius marched out again in search of...oh, yes... the pliers!

Hard as I tried to contain myself, I belted out a resounding belly laugh as I watched him berate our dinner, one hand pushing the chicken iceberg and the other gripping tight his pliers, pulling and cursing like an enraged medieval knight in battle. For a moment there I thought he would throw the blasted thing on the floor, hold it down with one foot and draw the blade out like King Arthur and the sword in the stone!

Thankfully, the chicken gave up and his Excalibur came out. He held the broken blade in the pliers, launched a few more curses at his conquered adversary, and then turned to look at the blade. With a sad expression in his eyes he said in a soft childlike voice, “It was my favorite knife.”


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The NONEXISTENT Rockway Press Short Story Contest

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