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Friday, 8 May 2009

Warm Salad

This is a daft email I sent to my future wife in the style of Alexander McCall Smith's No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency series.

This is how you cook, right?

Mr M. J. Makifali, the renowned novelist and international hamburger salesman, was a man who did not enjoy cold salad. Modern ways of eating salad immediately after it had been removed from the fridge were not his ways. Lettuces and tomatoes, he believed, should be eaten at the temperature of the room in which the eating was to be done. That was all there was to it. Many men – and even some women – said that cold salad was good salad but Mr M. J. Makifali preferred to eat warm salad. It was a very healthy way to eat salad. If the salad was cold then he would not want to eat it and then would he eat salad at all? Probably not. And, as everyone in Swindana often said, salad was a very healthy thing to eat.

Mr M. J. Makifali allowed his thoughts to wander away from salad. There were many good things in his life; for instance he was pleased that Miss N. J. Bigiwigi, the talented founder of the Notebeni Interpreting Agency, was to be his wife. It was a good thing to marry an interpreter. Mr M. J. Makifali was not a man to whom conversation came easily and so it made him happy that he was to marry a lady who was able to talk. He looked down at his shoes. They were not shiny shoes but they were good, sturdy shoes with white laces.

“Eat all the salad you want,” they seemed to say to him. “It can be warm or cold. We do not care; we are shoes, we do not eat.”

Mr M. J. Makifali ignored his shoes. Talking wives were a good thing but talking shoes were another thing altogether. “The tongues of shoes should never wag,” he said to himself. It seemed a wise thing to say when confronted with talking shoes. Besides, there were more immediate things to be worried about, like salad. Mr M. J. Makifali tapped his elbows together in the traditional Swindana fashion and settled down to eat. The shoes could take care of themselves.

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