All I want is some ketchup. Nothing fancy. Just ketchup.
You can’t eat fries without ketchup. It’s just not done.
I ask the waitress one more time but rearrange my words for greater effect.
‘These fries look mighty lonely. How about some ketchup? Please.’
The ‘please’ is an afterthought. Her answer makes me want to take it back.
‘Mister, we’re out of ketchup. Tough luck. Sorry.’
Her ‘sorry’ is the sorriest thing I’ve ever heard. She doesn’t even mean it. The fries are still in a metal basket, getting cold, losing their crispiness.
It’s time to talk to the management.
I see the waitress and a greasy-haired guy flipping burgers. There has to be somebody else. I walk to the counter. My fries go with me. I can be charming and convincing.
‘Excuse me! I’d like to see the manager.’
No ‘please’ this time.
The greasy-haired guy turns and looks right through me. He calls out to the waitress.
‘Two cheeseburgers for table five.’
I didn’t know I was invisible.
‘Get me the manager!’
Nothing like a voice booming with authority. The waitress bursts my bubble.
‘He’s sick. Didn’t come in today.’
I’m left with my fries and no clue what to do. That’s when I see a door with a sign.
I’ll just have to help myself.
I sneak in, like an agile ninja, determined to save my fries from a tasteless death.
There are too many shelves, too many items, too much to search through. I start low and then look higher. I see a red bottle at the top. Could it be?
I forget it’s a shelf case and not a mountain. I lose my balance and fall. The shelves topple down on me.
A broken arm, a broken leg, soggy fries, still no damn ketchup.