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Wednesday, May 7, 2008

The Revenge

posted by on May 7 at 12:59 PM

Because I’m in Portland, and because it’s the morning, and because my stomach is empty, I visit the Whole Foods near the largest used and new bookstore in the world. At this time of the day (a Sunday), breakfast is presented in the Prepared Foods Department. This section of the market happens to be empty; the trays of food are under bright lights; steam rises to the glass of the sneeze guard. After packing a small to-go box with warm scrambled eggs and sausages, I proceed to a row of checkout counters. All are empty save one. It’s manned by a young chap whose right arm is complete and left arm incomplete—it ends where once a forearm sprang. I hand the chap my box, he weighs it and informs me of the price. I dig in my pockets, find a note, look up, and see the most disturbing thing: balanced on the fleshy stump of a backarm is my to-go box.

Says the amputee: “It’s so warm, it feels so good. I don’t want to take it off. Can I keep it there?”

He finally sees that I’m in a state of shock. My scrambled eggs and sausages are warming his stump.

I hand him the money; he hands me the box.

My revenge for his revenge: I ate and enjoyed the eggs, the sausages, and the ghost of his forearm.

RSS icon Comments

1

Haha, this reminds me of this one crazy time when I...

Oh screw it, you win.

Posted by El Seven | May 7, 2008 1:01 PM
2

Charles Mudede, if you weren't an otherwise creepy motherfucker, I would love you for this.

Posted by Conchis | May 7, 2008 1:03 PM
3

That is probably the most elitist thing about Portland, the way the warm their stumps like that. Bunch a fuckin' economists, those people.

Posted by elenchos | May 7, 2008 1:16 PM
4

Maybe he's an Iraq war vet? If so, way to show your appreciation.

Posted by Joe M | May 7, 2008 1:17 PM
5

i'm assuming his arm wasn't in your food. And if not, it's the same as holding it in your hand.

dude, get a life.

Posted by Jeff | May 7, 2008 1:19 PM
6

What ever happened to the good old days when people felt shame for being freaked out by people with disabilities? At least you didn't call him "retarded".

Posted by quilsone | May 7, 2008 1:26 PM
7

I... am I missing something here?

Really. What was the weird thing here? Clerk is holding your food (albeit not with a hand), clerk comments that it's nice and warm (I've had other clerks at places like Whole Foods say things like "That looks good!" which is chummy but not inappropriate), you pay for your food at eat it.

What's the revenge here? Why is revenge an element? This wouldn't make any more sense if it was like, "I went to the bookstore, and I bought a book about cars, and the clerk was a JEW. Sweet revenge!"

Posted by Christin | May 7, 2008 1:34 PM
8

It sounds to me like the clerk recognized that you found his arm "disturbing" and was reacting to that. Pretty funny guy.

Posted by PJ | May 7, 2008 1:34 PM
9

Looks like we know one person at the stranger who doesn't have the amputee fetish

Posted by vooodooo84 | May 7, 2008 1:37 PM
10

Why is Chuckie in my town? Who invited him? I thought we still shot Marxists on sight.

Posted by Graham | May 7, 2008 1:40 PM
11

Would you have been less disturbed if he'd handed it to you using a prosthesis?
For future reference, the Zupan's farther west on Burnside also employs a young man who has one complete arm and one ending mid-forearm. He's not a checker yet, so you're probably safe. Maybe you should stick to cold foods just in case.

Posted by Gary | May 7, 2008 1:44 PM
12

ewwwwww! you know what i hate? when fat black guys touch containers that hold my food. i don't even like the idea that there are fat black guys stocking food at the supermarket. actually, i hate that fat black guys exist in a world that also contains my food. gross!

where's MY revenge???

Posted by skinny half-armed white dude | May 7, 2008 1:46 PM
13

If it makes you feel any better, your checkout person wasn't a pregnant lady.
Jesus christ, Charles. I normally *like* your posts. The only way you can live this one down is by topping it with something more horrible. I'm sure you'll try.

Posted by RL | May 7, 2008 1:49 PM
14

@11

"Would you have been less disturbed if he'd handed it to you using a prosthesis?"

If it was me? Yes.

Posted by Hernandez | May 7, 2008 1:49 PM
15

That's OK, Chuckles. He pissed on your food when you weren't looking.

Posted by Bwana | May 7, 2008 1:50 PM
16

You are all reacting to the writer, not what he wrote. If (practically) anyone else had written about this experience there would be sympathy galore. It would be just as gross if the guy had wanted to keep it on his hand. "Can I keep it there" EWW.

Posted by snap | May 7, 2008 1:50 PM
17

he made Charles uncomfortable & if he held it in a hand that would be a no no also. "your food feels warm can i keep it there" is creepy. people who work where you buy things shouldn't act like they are your best bud.

"wag of the finger" to him.

he he .

Posted by PC | May 7, 2008 1:59 PM
18

First, why are you eating at the virulently anti-union Whole Foods?
Second, so you felt that he was somehow intentionally putting you off your food? Is it possible that by feeling disturbed you mean that you felt fear regarding his lost member and his request for warmth? Could it be this fear was unacceptable to your conscious mind so you converted it into anger and then projected it onto him as hostility, thus justifying your revenge? Allowing you to feel good about your revenge and thus superior to him?

Posted by LMSW | May 7, 2008 2:01 PM
19

@16
No, I am not reacting to the writer. The sentiment expressed in the post is actually just awful.
Favorite CM post: http://slog.thestranger.com/2006/01/the_lost_wolf .
Least favorite post: this one. FWIW, I'm pretty sure #8 has it right. Charles' disgust was obvious, the clerk was making the best of it.

Posted by RL | May 7, 2008 2:02 PM
20

I hear you, Chuck; stumps make me almost as uncomfortable as facelessness, or Whole Foods.

Posted by jackie treehorn | May 7, 2008 2:09 PM
21

@10

Then why did it take so long for the Red and Black cafe to close. Did you ever get a look at those damned Communists? Jesus Christ, I couldn't stand that place.

Posted by Sir Learnsalot | May 7, 2008 2:27 PM
22

I agree with 17. This was creepy. No one says things like that. And yes, if a clerk was holding my food in his hand and saying "it's so warm, it feels good, can I keep it there" I would be repulsed.

Posted by Fnarf | May 7, 2008 3:41 PM
23

He was probably groping your food through the box with his phantom limb.

They can do that, right?

Posted by Mr. Joshua | May 7, 2008 4:25 PM
24

you're a fucking douche bag chuck!

Posted by jackass | May 7, 2008 7:00 PM
25

Charles, what a godawful post.

@21: There was no Red and Black Cafe. There was a Black Cat Cafe, and a Red and Black Books. Is that what you are talking about? If so, they were not Communists but Anarcho-syndicalists.

Posted by Uh okay | May 7, 2008 8:06 PM
26

should have eaten at The Shack on Alberta.

Posted by sweetums | May 7, 2008 8:33 PM
27

Says the amputee: ďItís so warm, it feels so good. I donít want to take it off. Can I keep it there?Ē

Says the amputee: ďItís so warm, it feels so good. I donít want to take it off. Can I keep it there?Ē

Says the amputee: ďItís so warm, it feels so good. I donít want to take it off. Can I keep it there?Ē

Fuck. Chuck is a dick and the amp is the victim?

Posted by elenchos | May 7, 2008 10:42 PM
28

everyone is mean mean mean.

Posted by ace | May 8, 2008 12:19 AM
29

@25 Black Cat Cafe and Red and Black Books were both in Seattle...I doubt PDX had similarly named duo.

And, I'm w/Charles on this one...that would've creeepd me right out.

Posted by gnossos | May 8, 2008 1:44 AM
30

Totally creepy.

Posted by Sha | May 8, 2008 7:45 AM

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