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Food for thought

Barry Smith

I saw Muhammad in an order of nachos.Yep, Muhammad, the Prophet, right there in my order of nachos. His lips were formed by slices of black olive, and they explained to me that it was not his idea, the killing and the bombing and the hatred and so forth. I believed him, as I could see both the passion and sadness in his jalapeno eyes.His sour cream turban was flecked with bits of ground beef, giving itsome real foreshortened perspective, and I was thankful that I’d ordered the Nachos Grande and NOT the Nachos Supreme, as those come with pork green chili. That would have been awkward.Why, I wondered, possibly aloud, in a world where Jesus appears inspaghetti dinners and Mother Teresa in cinnamon rolls, do I see Muhammad in an order of nachos? Does this make me some sort of a terrorist? Or a terrorist sympathizer? Hey, I love my country… I just wanted a snack.&quotTerrorism is very subjective,&quot the plate of nachos said. &quotConsider the history of your own country, the violence and genocide and repression and global strong-arming. And this is in no way a justification of the violence carried out in my name.&quotWaiter!&quotEverything OK here, sir?&quot the waiter asked. &quotAnother beer?&quot&quotActually, these nachos are bringing up some points that I’m eitherintellectually or emotionally unprepared to deal with. Plus, the beans are a little cold.&quot&quotOh yeah,&quot he replied. &quotThe Nachos Grande. Can I bring you something else from the bar menu?&quot&quotHmmmm … how are the mozzarella sticks?&quot&quotI like them a lot, sir, though some people have complained that they occasionally arrange themselves on the plate in a way that resembles Hitler.&quot&quotWell, how about the buffalo wings?&quot&quotVery spicy. Slight chance of seeing Charlton Heston,&quot he replied.&quotYou mean Charlton Heston as Moses?&quot&quotNo, just Charlton Heston.&quot&quotI’ll pass, then. Egg rolls?&quot&quotVirgin Mary.&quot&quotThat’s the last thing I need. Pot stickers?&quotPol Pot.&quot&quotYeah, that would make sense, I guess. How bout the fried calamari?&quot&quotThat’s a little unpredictable,&quot the waiter replied. &quotIt’s new on ourmenu, and so far we’ve had reports of L. Ron Hubbard, Karl Marx and Rasputin. Not at the same time, of course.&quot&quotDo you have any appetizers that don’t resemble someone famous?&quot I asked.&quotHmmm … good question. Lemmee see …&quot he said, running his finger slowly down the menu. &quotUmmm, no, I guess not, now that I really think about it.&quot&quotAll right, then … just give me whatever you have that looks like John Lennon,&quot I said, sliding the barely-touched nacho plate towards him.&quotAnd I’ll take that other beer now, too.&quotBarry Smith, an Aspen-based freelance writer, moves his lips while writing this column, and hopes you do the same while reading it. E-mail him at barry@irrelativity.com or visit his Web page at http://www.Irrelativity.com.


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