Going to bed on a full stomach.
I made the mistake of eating a huge pulled pork sandwich late last night. It was piled high like shredded cardboard headed to the recycling plant.
It seemed to be seared to culinary perfection. It smelled like squealing delight.
I smothered it with spicy BBQ sauce and inhaled it, possibly chewing but mostly swallowing it whole.
For good measure I gulped down a plate of fries rowing their way through a puddle of grease.
I washed it all down with a couple of Shiner Bocks to cleanse the pallet like a fine barley and hops sorbet.
As I took in the sounds of an 80’s band playing the likes of Cindy Lauper and Simple Minds, I felt an atomic rumbling in my gut.
It began slowly, like a hiccup of indigestion. I rubbed my stomach like some magic genie would magically make the pressurization subside.
Two more Bon Jovi songs and the bloating and tummy turmoil were fully engaged.
There was a thunder storm swirling inside my belly. It was angry and bellowing with fury.
What the hell was in that pulled pork?, I thought to myself.
The waitress did get it to us awful fast I mused, as a volcanic burst of tangy BBQ juice tries to launch itself out of my esophagus.
I imagine some cook, recently out on parole, coming out of the restroom with toilet tissue stuck to his fingers. I envision him laughing a maniacal pirate’s chortle, grabbing a handful of room temperature pork with his bare, toilet tissue covered hands, and slopping it on a week old bun.
“Order Up,” the eye patch wearing cook sneers downing another tanker of pirate’s ale.
Just then a badly composed AC/DC song ends. I imagine a dead Bon Scott rolling over in his grave.
I find myself thinking about a place to vomit. I scan my vicinity. It’s a labyrinth of picnic tables and concrete patio.
I cannot believe I am this uncomfortable. I just want to stick my finger down my throat and release the pressure like an intake valve on a submarine.
Somewhere inside my head, A Scottish Chief Engineer on the Star Ship Enterprise begins shouting. “Capn. the pressure is intense. She can’t take much more – before she’s gonna blow.”
The patio is packed with people. I eye the patrons wondering if I do explode, who will I soil first.
How bout the 20 something girl in front of me. She’s sucking down Marlboro Lights one after another like her face is an ash tray. I particularly like the way she holds her cigarette behind her, so the smoke doesn’t bother her friends.
As I suck down nauseating gulps of her cancerous exhale, I feel woozy.
I secretly hope her dry hair erupts into flames like a scare crow at a cross burning in the deep south.
I wonder if I can wipe the corner of my vomit stained mouth with her pony tail?
Just then, some idiot dressed as Beetle Juice sprints through the crowd. Damn this 80’s flash back is turning into an LSD trip I think to myself.
I feel the sub sonic bass drum of bad pork poking me inside like a barbaric crawdad of evil. I imagine the creature’s protruding eyes and exoskeleton scurrying around inside my digestive track, pricking me with tiny toxins that cause the lining of my stomach to throw up a white flag filled with puss and discomfort.
I put my Shiner Bock down. It’s 3/4 full. I am full to the point of purging. Another swig might push me over the edge, like shoving a 13th egg into the carton.
The band launches into a Motely Crue song.
I watch as young people born in the late 80’s quiz each other who sings this song?
There’s another potential target to the right of me. 3 young men, dressed with hats on backward, black socks and droopy pants. What the hell kind of image are you guys trying to project, I think to myself. This is the future of America? I want to throw up on the back of their necks and let my purge run down their shirts.
“Can I get you anything else?” the waitress says zipping by not noticing that I have a full beer and a green face.
I manage a slightly smile.
Suddenly the band breaks into a sorry ass rendition of “our house in the middle of the street.”
My brain wants to dance, but my stomach wants to find an ambulance and ask it for a lift to the local Pepto Bismol factory.
I get my bill. I’m annoyed that I have to pay to feel this bad. I want to go into the kitchen and call the cook’s parole officer.
Pull that Pork, Bitch!
Better yet, I’d like to grab a handful of rancid pork and shove it into the back of his throat and tell him to have a pleasant rest of his life.
I negotiate my way out of this 80’s funkadellic revival show. People are gyrating like a rave that is 30 years out of its collective mind.
I drive home with the windows open allowing the cool night air to embrace me. I feel like a Labrador Retriever sticking my head out the window.
I am hoping the breeze, mixed with moonlight and the slight hint of wild flowers will have some sort of aromatic healing properties.
I breathe deeply. I am not sure how I can ingest any more molecules into my swollen form, but somehow the air enters me and calms my stomach.
Air truly is nature’s medicine.
I get home and stand in front of the TV for a few minutes. I am hoping to stretch myself out, make myself longer, somehow create space in my body. I am thinking that gravity will aid in digestion.
I am wrong. It just allows my stomach more space to yell at me, to call me an idiot for ordering pork at 10pm at night.
“What kind of ass eats this late?” my stomach belches.
I try and say I’m sorry, but my stomach puts up its hand and turns away with a look of disgust.
I’m going to bed, the stomach says.
I feel terrible and figure I better go to bed too.
I wouldn’t describe the night as restful. I enter into a dream state, somewhere between purgatory and a coma. It’s the twilight place between your ears where dreams fill your anguished brain with imagery better left to a M. Night Shyamalan film.
I see a kaleidoscope of colors filled with devil faces and spiders. There are prickly faced hamburgers that are jabbing my tonsils with barbed wire. I see those crawdads with bad attitudes again. They are carrying tiny crustacean signs that say “salmonella or bust”
I toss and turn. Can’t lay on my stomach. That’s like putting your private parts in a vice and letting your EX wife turn the handle.
I can’t lay on my back, might vomit in my sleep and die the romantic death of Jimi Hendrix in my sleep.
After a roller coaster or gas and burps and close brushes with digestive demons, I awake. My stomach feels like it’s been burning rubber in the parking lot of my old high school. The room stinks of tar and gasoline fumes.
I look in the mirror and wonder who the pasty faced ghoul staring back at me is.
I brush my teeth trying to pry off a layer of detritus so solidified, I wonder if the crawdad put it on with super glue while I slept.
My stomach is approximately half the size of the night before. I am feeling better.
I look out the bathroom window. The sun is shining in a blue sky.
I am not hungry. I wonder if I ever will be again?
I rub my stomach and laugh.
I drink some water and splash my face.
I secretly wish I could dry my face with that stupid blond girl’s hair.
Maybe tonight I muse to myself. Maybe tonight.
And that is crazy.™