The Baker, The Butcher and The Brewer, Part Three – The Butcher 3
After the pig slaughter the Butcher picks some of the best cuts and cooks them the same day with onions in the pan. Wine is customary.
In his case the bitter chemicals filled his brain cavities, turned his face merry and his voice cold. He walked about the office doing his usual business and could see people crumbling under his word. They were blindly scared. They never thought rationally. He could not fire another person in very long time for he would appear weak and angry at the world. Then they would fire him. Emotions often defeat rational thought. He was happy and nothing was more frightening to the world than a happy sociopath.
He was born in a small town. It was so small that he couldn’t fit in. He was a fine dresser and mocked for it. He wanted to rape this naked boring town. He was unable to integrate with the local folk.
His environment’s inability to entertain abstract ideas was suffocating him. His parents were filled with liquid dreams of him achieving everything they couldn’t. Buying the house next door and starting a company that would cultivate apple trees. They lived in the apple capital of the world.
He lived in a parallel universe. All the merry apple growers in town hovered around a deep dark hole in the ground full of whiskey. All progressive people did the same but the hole was full with apples. The biggest event of the year was apple harvest. The trucks came in, took the apples into the good warm world and money flew into town. As long as this system worked these two groups of people swarmed around their holes in the ground with zero interested in what is beyond the sign, name tag, at the edge of town.
The young Butcher entirely blocked this apple illusion from entering his head. He didn’t see anything but the road and didn’t think of anything but escape. He wanted to travel and reach a place of anonymity where he could do wrong and vanish into a faceless throng.
His parents. They were fine. But not refined. Both counted the years to retirement. Both loved to do nothing. Both loved light beer and fatty food. Daddy loved to root himself on the couch. Mom was loosing her sight, hence carrying around a giant magnifying glass with a red handle, like a private detective. He felt like chicken slowly roasting away, with the only thing coming for him, the gravy and mashed potatoes. Well two things.
He was standing still when the world was speeding ahead into the exciting future. He fabricated a job offer in the city and moved in the beginning of summer. He had to eat a lot of cheap potatoes before he reached the layers of freshly baked bread. At least it was not apples.
He worked in restaurants, stores, warehouses, hotels. Life was far from pink. It was more like pink knife held so close to his throat that he could often smell the steel. But he was happy he was in motion. He took his own decisions and he paid for them.
Somewhere along the way he landed a job in an art gallery. He just answered the phones and told abstract lies to the visitors about the art. Turned out his lies sold the useless creations of spoiled rich kids. He wasn’t a sales person so he didn’t know if someone bought something. But the word of his visitations got around. People came back to thank him and sent him gifts. He laughed his teeth off about the people sending him presents for talking them into buying common junk. He didn’t notice his own potential. He didn’t make commission. On the contrary he made close to nothing from that job. He had to work a second so he can buy enough potatoes. His colleagues made the same as him and spend it all on mind-numbing and brain-destructive drugs and spirits. If they had something left they spend it on apples to compensate. Every time he saw an apple on a desk in the gallery it evoked the same feeling. He was not sure if it was a smile from home or a warning from hell. One or the same.
His boss noticed the gifts. Most importantly she noticed his gift of a ruthless business mind. A new position on a higher floor was into the bureaucratic channels and soon would come out on his end. He believed that the bureaucracy needed a little push.
His boss was a pretty young lady as ruthless and as goalless as him. Her weakness and predictability came from her countless addictions. Alcohol, cigarettes, drugs and sex were indispensable weapons in her war against social discrimination of homosexuals. She wasn’t obtrusively social about it but her parents were edgy.
All it took for the Butcher was to buy her a drink, drunks love when you buy them a drink, and act a little metro-sexual. They promptly started comforting their animal needs. She even told her parents she was back on the good team and had a boyfriend. He took her home after she made love to a whole bottle of vodka. He even bought her apples for the next morning. He never touch them himself; he had someone in the store double bag them for him. She thanked him infinitely.
all chapters: The Baker, The Butcher, and The Brewer
more by PETER ODEON
photograph by Zoe Magee