Mexican Frying an Egg

Mexican-fried eggs are eggs getting blown up.

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3. Three

“Your attention, please,” the tannoy system called. Nobody paid the slightest bit of attention. “We are recalling all loaves of Snow White bread, as the best-before date is incorrect. The best-before date has been mistakenly printed using the American dating system. It should say ‘13/07’ as opposed to ‘death to the humans’.”

                Nick, who also had not been paying attention to the frankly forgettable announcement, grabbed a loaf of bread and stuck it in his trolley. The squeaky wheel squeaked plaintively.

                “So what happened, exactly?” Natalie enquired, curiosity manifesting in her slight features.

                “What do you mean?” he asked absently.

                “This is your local supermarket, and you haven’t been here for three months. Obviously someone else was grabbing the groceries. So what happened to her?”

                Nick paused in his trolley-guiding, gripping the handles to stifle its high-pitched complaints. He considered the question. What had happened, exactly? How did you tell someone that Cheryl had been cheating on him? How does one explain that one lost it during a gig and was removed from both stage and band, his guitar broken into no less than two pieces?  It is, quite clearly, a difficult thing to express. And so he did what all people do when in doubt: summarise and simplify.

                “She was a bitch,” he announced. He resumed walking, the wheeled cage grumbling along the smooth floor.

                Natalie regarded him cautiously. “That’s a remarkably vague explanation,” she ventured.

                “Don’t venture there,” he warned. “Let sleeping dogs lie. Or, in this case, let the bitch remain not discussed.”

                 Her eyes fluttered in recognition. She knew better than most that he wouldn’t talk unless he wanted to.  As it was, she was about to become more than mildly preoccupied as, just around the corner, was aisle four. Aisle four, the poultry and dairy aisle.

                “Aisle four, where the eggs are,” remarked Nick.

                Famous last words, no less.

 

The sliding doors rolled back along well-oiled rails to admit the girth of a bulky, genderless mass clad in tightly stretched ‘baggy’ trousers. The thing’s width was indeed considerable, being wider than it was tall. It was the kind of person who should, by law, have a metal plate nailed to their back detailing them to be a ‘WIDE LOAD’. And what a load this human was! So fat was it, so morbidly obese, that it managed to hide all view of the man behind it.

                That is, until it wobbled off to find the microwaveable foods aisle.

                Face shadowed over by the brim of his hat, a man stepped through the doorway, his impressive physique drowned by the patterned fabric of his poncho. The loose triangle extended down as far as his knees, consuming him like a child in a blanket. But this was no child: towering high above everyone else; far taller than those who gawked at his wild dress. Yet still, his face remained cast in darkness. All that could be seen was a craggy chin, and above that, thin, pale lips set into skin the colour of dust and sand. And above the lips... an enormous handlebar moustache.

                The man peered out from under the sombrero atop his head and rolled his shoulders. He had shopping to do.

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