Authors, Writers, Publishers, and Book Readers
A short sci-fi story by Chuck Keyes
Nine wealthy angel investors, two genetic scientists, and two Dallas attorneys all met with Bucky Addams, one the largest pig farmers in Texas. Following a seven hour meeting, everyone followed Bucky into one of his enormous pig barns. They walked up a wide flight of wooden stairs to a loft overlooking countless rows of large pigpens. As they looked down upon Bucky's genetically altered hogs, greed formed wide smiles on all their faces, and everyone said this is good. Bucky's new pigs grow to adulthood at nearly double the speed and size of a normal pig. Plus, they contain sixty-two percent less fat than normal porkers.
During their secret morning meeting, Bucky explained that his genetically altered pigs are corn fed, along with a special powdered enhancement added to the corn. He praised his brilliant genetic scientists, Dr. Norris Coxstein and Dr. Natasha Bayloft for developing this unique chemical powder that makes the meat more tender, tastier, and somewhat addictive.
The objective of their meeting is to come up with a speedy moneymaking idea to distribute Bucky's genetically altered pork byway of the fast food industry. Knowing that beef and chicken rule the market as kings, they need to think out of the box to sell Bucky's enhanced, lower fat pork. Their goal is create a huge market for pork burgers.
They returned to Bucky's conference room, sat down at the long red mahogany table, and the attorneys passed out Bucky's business contracts.
On this seventh day of November, nine happy angel investors signed the contracts, thus creating McWongs, a fast food restaurant that'll eventually serve the world populace Wong burgers with a special no-fat Chinese sauce, Wong pork eggrolls, Wong pork fingers, and Wong pork fried rice.
Bottles of expensive champagne popped open, and they toasted while imagining large bamboo arches towering next to the parking lot entrances of a worldwide chain of McWongs. "Why remake the damn wheel when McDonalds has already done it for us!" shouted Bucky.
Lined on the walls of Bucky's conference room are many wild boar heads with long white tusks. Each ugly boar head is different in appearance, but what they do have in common is an expression of sadness mixed with evil.
Within five years, after a short winning name battle with McDonalds' attorneys, McWongs grew faster than any other fast food chain in history, expanding with more than twenty daily grand opening restaurants. Like Burger King, McDonalds, Jack In Box, and Taco Bell, McWongs is now known by everyone. Children of all ages love eating at McWongs, and with every Wong Kids Meal, they receive an electronic singing Mister or Misses McHog. A little man or woman plastic doll with cute pig faces. The dolls sing the Wong Kid's Meal theme song entitled: 'Only a Wong Kid's Meal is the Right Kid's Meal.'
McWongs' pork has become so popular that Bucky Addams is continuously expanding his pig farm. His expansion of newly constructed, automated pig barns is covering square miles, and his pig waste fertilizing company is escalating substantially, providing nutrients for nearly all of America's largest farm crops. Liken to Colonel Sanders' association with fried chicken, Bucky's sweet pork has raised him to fame.
During the beginning growth of McWongs fast food restaurants, Bucky Addams devised an advertising scheme to capture the gullible minds of masses. With the influence of money, he adopted a six year old Chinese orphan who he named Wong. On the same day Wong arrived at Port Houston aboard a Gypsy freighter from Hong Kong, Bucky gathered his family, along with Wong, to pose for a family portrait. For this portrait, he dressed the Chinese boy in a cowboy outfit, thus giving their new family member a home on the range appearance. He placed Wong kneeling down in the front of his chubby teenage children, Cooter, Horace, and Gretchen. Bucky and his wife, Norma-May, are standing to the right of the children, holding a big bowl of McWongs fried Chinese style pork skins. Today, this portrait of the Texas Addam's family is famous, and it hangs in every McWongs around world.
Like Ronald McDonald, the Burger King, the Jack in the Box ping ball head guy, and the Sonic Kids, little Chinese Wong has become McWongs illustrious mascot. He spends most of his time traveling to grand openings along with his highly paid guardians and tutors. The little Chinese boy wears his Texas cowboy suit and dances to the song, 'Only the Right Burger is a Wong Pork Burger'.
McWongs has become the rage and many of their fast food competitors are advertising eat more beef and chicken.
"Julie, I have reservations at Chuck's Steakhouse!" snapped Kurt Zane.
"Dear, you can cancel your damn steakhouse reservations! It's my birthday and I should be able choose where I want to eat."
"Yeah, but every day you eat your lunch at McWongs, so I figured a change would be good for you."
"I enjoy eating at McWongs!"
"Yeah, but eating pork every day may not be good for you and our baby."
"The special pork that's served at McWongs is good for everyone," voiced Julie. "Their pigs are one hundred percent corn fed, making them lean of fat and exceptionally tasty."
"You sound like a commercial for McWongs," sputtered Kurt. "That's what they say to sell their damn pork burgers. It was my grandfather on my father's side who told me that too much of a good thing can be bad for you."
"Oh, it's bad for you." She pressed her huge pregnant stomach against him while giving him a passionate lip to lip kiss. "Am I too much of a good thing?"
"That's different…you’re my wife. You're a sexy woman that lasts forever."
"I'd like to hear you say those exact words when we're in our mid seventies. That's when my face will look like alligator skin, my ass will resemble a three week old yeast roll, my breasts will be hanging down to my knees, and my beautiful butterfly tattoo will look like a screeching buzzard."
Kurt chuckled. "Hopefully, I'll still have my excellent engineering imagination to always see you as my sexy young wife…or perhaps my eyesight will be the first thing to go."
"You're funnier than a box full of dead puppies. Look, I'm ecstatically happy you took a personal day to spend time with me on my birthday, but I don't want to break my daily routine of having my lunch at McWongs."
"But, dear, it's always so damn crowded. We'll most likely have to wait for a table, or we'll have to go outside to sit in the heat."
"I don't care."
"To tell you the truth, Julie, I've been noticing something strange about the fast food at McWongs. A little over a year ago, before McWongs opened, my engineering buddies that I work with, use to eat lunch at different restaurants, but now I can't even drag them away from McWongs by offering to pay for their lunch. I mean these guys are smart enough not to screw up a free lunch. It's as if their addicted to McWongs' pork! A few months ago, when I made up my mind to stop eating at McWongs, I suffered some disturbing feelings of withdrawal. No matter where I went for lunch, I'd think about sinking my teeth into a Wong pork burger, and I had to fight off the urge by telling myself over and over again that the Wong burger is the wrong burger."
"Kurt, what the hell are you implying, that the Wong pork burgers are laced with an addictive drug?"
"Whatever they're doing to drive the masses to eat their pork, I'm sure it's nothing as obvious as a drug. Yesterday, the evening news announced that McWongs is now selling more pork burgers than McDonald hamburgers."
"The pork burgers are much more tastier. Besides, as filler, McDonalds grinds earthworms into their beef."
Kurt waved his hand. "Now you're being silly. The worms are an urban legend. Dear, never again am I going to take you out to eat McWongs."
"Then it looks like I'll be going to McWongs by myself!" sputtered Julie.
"No! you're not going to McWongs!" Kurt demanded. "I stayed home for two reasons…one is to celebrate your twenty-sixth birthday, and the other to do what it takes to break your temptation of eating lunch at McWongs."
"Everything you're saying about McWongs is an assumption. You don't have any proof that McWongs' pork is addictive or harmful!"
Kurt removed a file from his briefcase. "Over the past few months, many alarming Blogs about McWongs have popped up on the Internet. I've printed over a hundred of them for you to read. I know some of the articles seem a bit farfetched, like the ones claiming that the pigs have been genetically enhanced, but anything is possible. Many people are greedy, and they'll step on their fellow human beings to make more money than what they require in five lifetimes. As our technology advances, these greedy people are going to modify this technology to make money, and these altercations are going to harm people, but they're not going to give a s*** as long as the profits keep rolling into their bank accounts. One excellent example of greed is fossil fuel. Sixty years ago we should've begun searching for a safe alternative energy source, but doing that would've destroyed the moneymaking oil industry."
"I don't see what fossil fuel has to with McWongs," huffed Julie.
"I'm trying to explain that greedy big business doesn't care if they're hurting the human race. They'll cheat and lie to fill their bank accounts with wealth. I'm using the oil industry as an example because I'm working hard to put the oil companies out of business! You know I work for a private research company belonging to many investors who wish to help the human race by finding a cheap alternative for energy. We're working on many secret projects, and any day now we're going to change the world." He paused to catch his breath. "Honey, you need to read these Blogs. Many of them report the same addictive concerns that I have. They too claim it's not the wonderful taste of the pork that's making people addictive to eat at McWongs."
"I watch the main stream news every morning and night, and I've never heard any negativity about McWongs. The commercials between the news advertise McWongs." She paused to giggle and sing, "the right burger is the Wong burger."
"You watch the mainstream media, but you'll never see me watching it. I'm not going to lose my freedom of thought. I don't want my brain filled with foolish b*******. The mainstream media is as corrupt as the big greedy companies that pay them off to control the gullible masses, and take away their freedom of thought. I don't understand why people aren't realizing their being brainwashed. Are these people too scared to be self controlled lions instead of media following lambs. I'm certainly not going to listen to the mass media and vote for a president who doesn't have enough experience to manage a 7-Eleven Store. The mass media is all about big business, money, and power. McWongs has rapidly grown up to be another big business tyrant, paying millions of dollars to advertise on the news networks, and the mass media isn't going to set fire to the hand that's feeding them tons of money." Kurt chuckled. "I can imagine what these bigwigs at the major news networks are saying every minute of the day. 'I don't care if the story is true! Either change it or forever bury it!' They treat us like children, only telling us what they want us to hear. The mass media doesn't care if Wong burgers are slowly poisoning everyone, nor do they care if the man they chose for president is a flying imbecile, and they're not interested in a cheaper alternative for energy because it's not good for big business. The only thing the mass media cares about is controlling the minds of the weak lambs. They believe the power and wealth needs stay with the privileged ones who work with them to control as many as they can. Although this mind controlling of the lambs isn't going to work forever, because the evolution process is producing future generations of people with more intelligence, and with this higher degree of intelligence comes an elevated need for the freedom of self thought. Someday in the near future, this increased intelligence will produce a revolution for the freedom of thought, and everyone will stop listening to the mass media. Personally, I believe the Internet news Blogs hold more truth than the mass media."
"Are you done with your speech?" asked Julie.
"It's almost high noon and I'm going to McWongs to eat, so you might as well go find one of your engineering buddies to listen to your flipping lips of sad tales."
"Dear, how are you going to get there?"
"I'll use my car."
"Last night, I removed your car battery and I buried it in the woods."
"You can't do that!"
"I already did it," Kurt said along with an evil grin. "I'm protecting my wife and my unborn child."
"You do realize by holding me against my will is kidnapping!"
"I'm protecting you."
"I'm going to call a taxi!"
"I also buried your cell phone next to your battery."
"Damn you, Kurt! If I weren't nine months pregnant I'd beat you to within an inch of your life!"
"I'm doing this for your own good."
"This is a mighty fine howdy do birthday! What are you planning to do next! Tie me to a chair, gag me until the baby arrives?"
"You better not give me any good ideas."
"I'm getting mad and hungry!"
"My reservations for Chuck's Steakhouse are at one PM. We still have plenty of time to go."
"Since you're now controlling my life as if I'm a prisoner and you're the guard, I guess I have no choice but to eat steak."
Kurt offered Julie a loving smiled. "Dear, after you take a bite of a big juicy steak smothered with fried mushrooms and onions, you'll forget all about McWongs."
"I doubt it!"
"Are you ready?"
"Let's go before I Bobbitt you!"
In an awkward silence, Kurt drove Julie across town to the steakhouse. He parked his truck in the shade, under branches from a red oak tree. They walked across the parking lot and entered the barn-like restaurant.
Kurt walked up to receptionist. "Hi, I'm Kurt Zane, and I called in for a table at one PM."
"Oh yes, Mr. Zane," she said along with a silly smile. "Oh my, this must be the birthday woman, and you look like you're going to give birth at any time now."
"I feel like I'm going to give birth at any time now," voiced Julie."
"Do you know if it's going to be a boy or a girl?"
"We didn't opt for learning ahead of time what sex our child will be," said Kurt.
"It'll be a surprise," added Julie.
"Please follow me."
She sat them down at a round table in front of a window overlooking a flower garden. "Here are your menus and the waiter will be with you in a moment."
The waiter rushed over to take their drink orders. They each ordered an ice tea with slices of lemon.
"Now this is nice," announced Kurt.
"Yeah, but I miss McWongs."
"Maybe this will cheer you up." He reached in his suit coat pocket and pulled out a card along with a small wrapped gift box."
Julie opened the card first. On the face of the card is a bouquet of a dozen colorful roses, and written inside the card it simply says, 'To my loving wife on her birthday'. There's also a five hundred dollar gift card for the Lone Star Baby Boutique. "Oh dear, thank you."
The waiter returned with their drinks. "Would you like to place your order now, or do you need a few more minutes?"
"Kurt, I'll have whatever your having."
"Okay…that'll be two sixteen once prime ribs with baked potatoes filled with all the fixings, and the mixed steamed vegetables along with two orders of your famous sautéed mushrooms."
After the waiter hurried off to place their orders with the kitchen, Julie opened her gift box. "Oh my God, these pearls are absolutely gorgeous. I have a necklace, a bracelet, and earrings." She leaned over and gave Kurt a kiss. "I love them."
They enjoyed their prime rib meals, and Julie is so excited with her wonderful birthday gifts that she lost her mental urge to eat a pork burger at McWongs.
After they ate, seven waiters crowded around their table to give Julie a small ice-cream birthday cake while singing happy birthday. Near the end of the song, Julie happily blew out the one candle on the cake.
"Kurt, before I eat some cake, I'm going to the bathroom to see my pearls in the mirror."
"Okay, dear, and do some thinking about what fun things you'd like to do this afternoon." Kurt watched her do the pregnancy duck waddle across the restaurant.
Julie returned with an upset expression.
"I'm so embarrassed. My water broke along the hallway from the bathroom."
Kurt smiled from ear to ear. "This is great news. You're going to have our baby on your birthday. Are you feeling any contractions yet."
"Just a few slight tremors."
"Those slight tremors are going to turn into major earthquakes," excitedly voiced Kurt. "You'd better gather up your cake to go while I go pay the bill. Your fun birthday afternoon has already been planned out by either our son or daughter."
"But it's ice cream cake…and I don't think it's going to be a fun birthday afternoon," Julie said without being heard.
While driving, Kurt called ahead to tell the hospital to inform them that his wife is going into labor.
By the time they reached the hospital, Julie is moaning in pain every five minutes. The nurses helped her up onto a gurney and rushed her off to a delivery room.
Kurt followed, but a large nurse stopped him dead in his tracks. "Sir, you will need to wait in the expectant father's lounge."
"No!" he shook his head. "I took all those damn birthing classes so I can be with my wife during delivery. I want to see my child enter the world."
"I'm sorry, Mr. Zane, but you must wait in the lounge," she demanded while pointing her chubby finger at the doorway.
Kurt noticed two armed police officers standing guard. He passed between the officers while entering the lounge. Two unhappy men are pacing back and forth, occasionally stamping their feet like raging bulls, and muttering obscenities to themselves. Kurt walked up to the men, blocking their pacing paths. "Gentlemen, like what's happening to me, are the hospital staffers refusing to allow you guys to be in the delivery room with your wives?"
"That's right!" snapped one of the men.
"Yeah," sputtered the other man, "and they refuse to give us an explanation!"
Impatiently, Kurt sat down to wait. He jumped up like a jack in the box clown each time a nurse entered the lounge to call out an expectant father's name. Another waiting father entered the lounge wearing such a mean gorilla face that Kurt decided it would be best not to question him.
More than an hour and a half has passed by without any information about Julie. Kurt feels like exploding into the Hulk, demanding to see his wife, but he knows the two big cops standing by the doorway will probably throw his ass out into the parking lot.
Finally, a nurse entered and called out his name. "I'm right here!"
"Please, Mr. Zane, follow me."
"He followed the young nurse to a room on the fourth floor. Kurt rushed in to see Julie is lying on the bed with her head propped up. Her face looks deeply worried. "Oh, Kurt, they wouldn't let you into the delivery room, nor will they let me see our baby. I don't remember anything about having the baby. I think they put me under with drugs."
Kurt gave Julie a hug and kiss. "Honey, I don't understand what the hell is happening around here. They wouldn't allow any of the expectant fathers into the delivery rooms, and they have armed police officers guarding the waiting lounge."
"Oh, I'm so scared," moaned Julie. "I want to see my baby."
Three people entered Julie's room. A doctor, a police officer, and a nurse holding a bundled up baby.
"Oh…oh, is that my baby?" asked Julie.
"Yes, Mrs. Zane," replied the soft spoken doctor. "Your daughter is healthy, and she has a normal human brain; however, there are some unusual deformities."
"Deformities!" snapped Kurt. "What the hell do you mean by unusual deformities?"
"Over the past twenty-four hours, almost every child from around the world is being birthed with the identical deformities."
"Doctor, I don't give a s*** if you have a cop in here to protect your ass. I demand to see my daughter!"
"Alright." The doctor gestured to the nurse, and she gently placed the baby girl into Kurt's arms. He surprisingly slid aside the pink blanket to see his daughter with a face of a piglet. Her nose, ears, mouth, and jaw, resemble a baby pig. He turned away from his wife and exposed the rest of the baby girl's body for viewing, which is human, except for a little curly pig tail sticking up out the backside of her diaper. Along with a deep inhale of air, tears began flow from Kurt's blue eyes, running down his cheeks, dropping onto his baby daughter. He gently kissed his daughter's forehead, and then he passed her to Julie, who ignored her deformities, and begun her bonding of breast feeding her.
"Doctor, you said these births have been occurring around the world for over the past twenty-four hours?"
"Yes, Mr. Zane." The doctor sadly nodded.
"How come I haven't heard anything about this on the news?"
"They're trying to prevent a worldwide panic. Although the major mass media networks are not going to keep this a secret for much longer. News stories about the deformity births are starting to appear on Internet Blogs."
"Yeah, just like all the other true news blogs that the mass media ignores." Kurt spun around in anger. "My good God," he raised his hands and yelled. "Evidently, the human race has been genetically altered from eating McWongs' pork products. What the hell! Greedy…fast food…big business has altered the future of the human race into the planet of the pigs!"
© November 2011