Bewildering Stories

Fried Rice

Lane Trefoil

Me, I like fried rice. Perhaps a bit too much, you know?

So there I was at the restaurant, talking to the fried rice. No, seriously. Talking to the fried rice. And it's talking back.

I asks it: "Hey, why you talk to me, fried rice?"

It says: "I talk to you because I want to, stupid."

"How can you talk? You're fried rice."

"I want to, that's why."

"But it's impossible."


Obviously I should have known this earlier. But perhaps it was just too much to take in at one time. I mean, how often have you had conversations with your food?

Well, I says: "I can see that. But how?"

"How can YOU talk, stupid?"

I says: "How can I talk? I'm a human. You're fried rice."

"Yeah so?"

"Well, how can you talk when you're fried rice?"

"Beats me. You figure it out."

So I starts scratching my head and I says: "I dunno."

"Well, good. I don't know either."

So there was me and the fried rice talking to each other. I looked over at the next table and the two people there just looks at me kinda funny and look away. Okay, so they didn't see what was so weird.

But me, I go back to the fried rice and I says: "Is this a fantasy story or a science fiction story? 'Cause fried rice ain't supposed to talk in no sci-fi story. And I don't like fantasy stories, you know what I mean? I saw Lord of the Rings and it sucked."

"Why don't you read the original, stupid?"

"I don't got the time, you know what I mean?"

"Good for you. Now leave me alone."

"But how am I supposed to do that? I ordered fried rice, and now I'm gonna eat it."

"Not while my bodyguards are here, you don't."

So I looks around and I see two dark cloaked people standing at the door. They looks at me and their eyes glows green, bright like.

I says: "No way!"

The fried rice says: "Yes way. And this ain't no fantasy story. It's science fiction."

I says: "How?"

It says: "I'm genetically engineered."

Me, I dunno too much about genetics and all that scientific stuff, so I says: "Really? You sure? Genetically engineering fried rice sounds a bit impossible."

"All right. So I'm not here, is that what you're saying?"

I says: "Look, man. How am I supposed to eat you if you keep talking back?"

"Don't. Leave me alone and I'll leave you alone."

That was the strangest thing that happened in my life. No really. You think I'm making this up, don't you? Don't you? Oh, you're no better than the rest. Hey, where are you taking me? Let go of me! Help! Somebody help me!

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Copyright 2002 by Lane Trefoil and Bewildering Stories.