Wednesday, August 19, 2015
The Old Order
Max the blueberry farmer left Portland airport and
landed in Philadelphia. He rented a car to drive to
Phoenixville and the New Dinnerplate Pancake Factory.
But Mr Jellings wasn’t there as promised, so Max
couldn’t discuss his dismissal letter.
Rita told him “You’ll only have luck with him
by cell or email. He’s off to Scranton to
introduce the huge new blueberry pancake.
Well, it’s all over the country. They’re about the last
to get it.” Then she frowned. “Hey! That’s you!
Or used to be. I’m sorry.”
She took him out to the floor to see the rivers of
“blueberries.” Size of marbles, and millions!
“They’re hard as rocks now, but they’re furnaced
for a few seconds just before they merge with
the batter stream. Mushed up just enough."
“Well, REAL blueberries...!” he began but she cut him
off with a laugh.
When he got home to Waterville that early evening,
Millie was unloading the groceries from the Ford
Expedition. He helped her carry them in.
She flipped the kitchen switch and the florescent lights
buzzed, then caught.
They both looked ghastly green. But worse, atop the largest
MAINE MAID DINNERPLATE BLUEBERRY PANCAKES
Featuring the latest technology in artificial blueberries!
“Millie for Jesus Christ’s sake!”
“I like them. They taste the same.”
“There’s no way on God’s Green Earth...!”
“Uh huh? Well...this is as good a time as any to announce
that I’m leaving you!”
“Well, go ahead then!”
“Go ahead what?”
“Go ahead and announce.”
“I just did!”
“That’s no announcement!”
“Nobody ever pleased you! Your mother died young trying!
She went to girlfriend, Glads.
He finished putting away the groceries. Carrying out the “pancakes”
to the furthest trash can on the dank property.
Eventually sipped coffee in the dark kitchen as the twilight deepened, very nearly palpably.
“I’m a blueberry,” he sighed after blackness got there.
Perhaps evoked by its rare clanking.