by Joe Buonfiglio
As I paddle along the slipstream of life, the definition of what is “good” versus what is considered “evil” is not as black and white as it all seemed in my youth. As the gray, even white hairs invade my once pitch-black signature beard, the line between the guardians of Heaven and their counterparts in Hell becomes a tightrope much harder to maneuver along than when confidently traversed by the younger version of myself. However, one thing is certain:
I am no superhero.
Talking into the anonymous speaker at the drive-through menu of my local Wendy’s fast-food eatery, my son — without any thought to immediate harm, let alone long-term health — orders the “Baconator” from this fine establishment’s long list of artery-clogging comestible fare.
As an increasingly raging river of fat-infused juices dribbles down his chin with each bite of the Devil’s own sandwich, the name “Baconator” bounces around my synaptic highway stimulating a sort of absurd reverence for this diabolical food product and its uncommon name.
It sounds as if the perfect supervillain, no?
Now, I’m NOT Batman! I would never be so delusional as to self-identify as the hero of my dark world; but “The Baconator”?
YES! That I could see.
Squirting fat behind my Pigmobile and laughing maniacally as the pursuant patrol cars slid off the road into a fiery pile somewhere along Gotham’s dismal streets. Attacking vegans as they gather to socially condescend toward their flesh-consuming brethren within the broader context of that which is Humanity.
Or, perhaps I could be “The Puddler,” a representative of the vile underbelly of society so sociopathic as to abundantly piss himself at the mere mention of anything kind or charitable.
I know. I could be “The Flu.” I’d run around town sneezing mucus and green goo upon every innocent soul I encountered; schoolyards and buffet-style cafeteria diners enjoying the early-bird special would be my targets of choice. No surface “sanitized for your protection” would be safe from “The Flu.”
How about “The Smoker”? I could run around in a Hugh Hefner-style 60’s smoking jacket puffing on a fat stogie in clearly marked “no smoking” sections in the gathering venues of the pompously healthy.
I could be “Mr. Breeze,” sneaking around at private parties leaving a trail of silent-but-deadlies near the dessert tables of celebratory events.
Maybe I could be the “Mad Fatter,” guilting people into eating my cooking until entering a metaphoric abyss where they are hopelessly beyond full and feeling really bad about themselves.
No. Sounds too much like my mother.
Perhaps I should just be… … … … me. Because when you get down to it, there’s no face-painted scoundrel out there who could top the machination of this clown prince of absurdist mayhem, is there? So throw the fool’s makeup, the hacksaw and the lye in the trunk and let’s get going; our friends at Arkham are waiting and it’s gonna be a long, dark night.
© 2017 Joseph P. Buonfiglio All Rights Reserved.
All photos are © 2017 Joseph P. Buonfiglio with All Rights Reserved.