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demon.local meet report #4

demon.local / 13 August 1994
By Paola Kathuria

Note to vegetarians: graphic descriptions of meat-eating are contained in this document. I cannot be held responsible if you continue after this warning and are still offended.

Imagine you're sat a table. The table is covered in an olive green table cloth and you notice the subtle vine pattern woven into it when you lift the folded cone of a napkin and shake it open onto your lap. The table is nestled in the corner of a London Chinese restaurant and above it hangs a basket of fake fuchsias and an appealing picture of yellow lillies. The others at the table are talking, smiling, laughing and you can turn around to chat to people on the next table who are also part of your group. You have spent the last two hours at a nearby pub, clinking beer-filled mugs, throwing your head back to roar with laughter and slapping your thigh.

Next to you is a young man with a scarf tied around his head. His head is not bleeding. He has ordered ribs for a starter and also for a main course. The vegetarians order fried seaweed without the grated fish. The man with the scarf joins you by eating with a fork. The starters arrive. He grips a fork and spoon in each hand and gingerly picks up one of the pieces of meat. It slips from his utensils and you spy his tongue emerging from his slightly opened lips as he painstakingly picks up the piece of meat again.

This time he is successful and he lowers his bared teeth to the lightly-held flesh-covered bone and starts nibbling meat off it. His food slips to the plate again, splashing into the crimson sauce below. He sighs audibly, grasps his fork and spoon tighter in his hands and a bead of sweat drips off his nose as he lifts the bone to his straining lips again. After he has nibbled off three pieces of meat he turns his head a bit as if kissing the bone from the side and lets it slide into his mouth; the crimson sauce oozes out from the side of his mouth. His mouth seems unnaturally distorted as he flips the bone with his tongue in his mouth, showing it no mercy as he sucks meat off it.

Being the dignified person he is, he does not stoop so low as to pinch the emerging white and pink bone from his mouth with his fingers, but slowly pushes it out with his tongue so that it appears that a grisly albino worm is forcing its way out of the man's mouth (the accompanying grimaces add to this effect). The bone slides onto the waiting spoon, is held in place by the fork and the man rests the bone onto his plate, an expression of quiet satisfaction on his face.

You look at the remaining five spare ribs to be eaten on his plate in dismay. A plate of more ribs follow as the man's main course. You watch in perverse fascination. Then the orange segments arrive. You can't bear to watch but can tell by the screams and by the feel of the table, under the full force of seven people trying to escape, that it is worse than the ribs. When the plates and napkins are removed, you notice that the area where the man sat is flooded. The dish containing juice from the orange pieces had been sucked dry - you don't ask by whom, but you can guess.

Your group later falls out of the restaurant and shiver together on the pavement, recovering from the ordeal. Half can't take any more and leave; the rest, including the young man, go to the hotel for icecream.

All in all, you think, as you are lying in bed, one of the better meets.