Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Sick versus Healthy Children: The Flavors of Life

Laogzed here. There's been a lot of talk lately in the subterranean world about children, specifically, human children. Now, I am a god, but I'm god of the troglodytes. And I have the interest of the trogs first and first-most. So, although, many in the community think that expansion of the healthcare program won't make a difference--and we should just keep our heads down while the humans fight it out--I think that we should encourage our human friends to expand their social "safety net"--if just a little bit. So that's why I'm posting. I want the internet to hear a voice of concern from the leader of a subterranean minority.

Sick children do not a complete meal make. Troglodytes need protein, lots of it, in fact. So, please, American Humans, if not for your own children, think of the poor (and, like me, rich) troglos that live in your sewer and drainage systems--most we get are the refuse of your refuse. We meticulously suck out the remnants from your plastic microwave dinner trays. We eagerly squeeze the blood out of emptied styrofoam meat packaging onto our tongues. We lustily lick out the husks of insects killed in your vermin wars. We ravenously battle over weakened old women left on gurneys of the abandoned hallways in your public hospitals. It is social Darwinism at its grimiest and grimmest. You can't imagine how tough it is out there for the troglos. I'm desperately urging the humans to expand coverage to include not just those humans wallowing in abject poverty. But I must be straight with you humans.

It's a simple fact: Sick children are not as tasty as healthy children. I'm not being flippant. Troglodytes studies have indicated that overall quality of life is directly proportional to the quality of food consumed. Healthy children have a robust, hearty flavor that even the greatest of the Troglodyte chefs can't make up for in a sick child. It is true that the best flavored children can be found in the country-side. (The so-called free range children.) But only the richest of the troglodytes (like myself) can afford to go on field-trips to trap, hunt, dress, and consume these children. (And it is a half-myth, anywise. The country children are exposed to acrid pesticides and animal waste that taint their "freshness.")

I must impress upon you: for a troglodyte, Flavor equals Life. Consider the tongue of the troglodyte. It is, on average, 10 to 30 times as large as a human's. We don't smell, we don't taste, we LIVE through our tongues. It is the most important sensory organ for the troglodyte by far. We live in the dark like bats, but we don't have radar. We live in the dark like rats, but we are solitary creatures--we are unable to rely on a buzzing community for constant communication. We must survive through our tongues. If danger is near, our tongue tells us so. If food is near, our tongue tells us so. We have no sinus system. Our nasal passage leads straight into the cavity of our mouth. Just take a moment to imagine that! So, imagine you're eating a nice piece of mango. Okay, now take three mangos. Cut them up in big chunks. Take one handful, stuff it in your mouth, and have your friends stuff a handful each up your nostrils. That's what it's like being a troglodyte encountering a mango. The experience overwhelms all the other senses. You can only taste it. And it is directly connected to the nervous system. That is, our survival system. Thusly, if we encounter good flavors, we are happy. If we get bad flavors, we get sad and grumpy. And the grumpier we get, the more vicious and desperate we get.

And you don't want us getting too grumpy.

This is where you come in. Once in a while a troglodyte needs some happiness. In this respect, troglodytes and humans are very similar, because that happiness comes in the embodiment of a vivacious, springy, bright and bubbly little boy or girl. The joy of a child can easily become the joy of a troglodyte. We feel a child's joy through the rich flavors of its happy blood, taut but gentle fibres of its sinew, sweet and chewy bones, pulsing organs like ripe, vibrant passion fruits--the happiness of children is cracked, smashed and absorbed against the majestic tongue of a troglodyte, and gives us a reason for living anew. It is not a drug. It is life. We can live for years--even decades--on the memories of a good meal. In those desperate days in cold alleyways, licking the smudge off of pennies, gnawing on the meagre bones of discarded carcasses, gnashing away uselessly, endlessly on the refuse of your refuse, we remember a meal from the past, and the flavors return to us. Sometimes in a surging, orgiastic flashback of synesthesia. Like humans, we live life--but we live life for flavor!

And it is a sad fact of life that a sick child does not have good flavor. And if we go to the excruciating trouble of going into the human community and procuring a child and we bring it back to our troglodyte hovel only to find our treat spiritless and sad-flavored--well, suffice it to say that it is a supreme let-down. This has tragic consequences for the troglo-human ecosystem. A depressed troglodyte is an unpredictable troglodyte. Maybe you don't like us, you are saying to yourself. Maybe you want the troglodytes to be unhappy. Good, you are saying to yourself, let the disgusting troglodytes be dispirited. I hope they all kill themselves. Well, let me tell you, one who would think such a thing: A depressed troglodyte will usually transmute his depression into malice for humans. This dispirited troggie may go once again into the human community, but not be so careful in these subsequent trips, and he may go again and again until he finds a human child that has flavor. And the adult humans may start noticing. These disgruntled troggs are just as cunning as the happy ones, but are more malicious, and may cause unnecessary complications. For example, they may spread diseases, break things, defecate, scare or eat pets, scratch you or do other things to you while you sleep--these sorts of things I generally frown upon as god of the Troglodytes. We are monsters, but we are not animals.

Anyhow, I have gone on enough about this thing. There are worse things in life. The troglodytes will manage somehow even if the human children aren't prime. This used to be a great place to live. But we can always move--we've moved before. Maybe Canada. (If only it wasn't so cold and had more vermiform larvae.)

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