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Tuesday, 23 June
The 40-Year-Old Carniwhore

Thursday afternoon, I was standing with my friend Will in front of a cooler the size of a footlocker. Larger than a footlocker. A leglocker? Whatever. Will opened the casket-sized thing, and I beheld a pig.

A dead pig. Gutted from stem to stern, its legs splayed and pointing upward as if in some sort of porcine supplication. It grimaced hopelessly at the ceiling like a distressed, eviscerated prostitute. It was like a scene out of Se7en, except I wasn't repulsed. I was suddenly hungry.

Will and Eric had earlier that day picked up the freshly dressed pig and painstakingly rubbed it down with a mixture of cumin, brown sugar, cider vinegar, garlic and cinnamon, all of which were crawling eagerly into my nostrils. Despite its ghoulish appearance, it smelled divine.

"Eric tried to hold it up while we rinsed it off before rubbing it," Will explained. "But it weighs over 70 pounds. He couldn't hold it. You should have seen us trying to jam the garden hose into its asshole." I was suddenly less whetted.

"It's disturbingly like human flesh to the touch," Will continued. "It was really weird putting the rub on its tongue." Okay, not hungry!

But it wouldn't last. I would succumb. You see, this Sunday I celebrated my 40th birthday. (My actual birthday isn't until, well, right now, but I wanted people to actually attend the party.) And now that we've cleared out the vegetarians--I'm sorry, you guys--I think it's clear that in said celebration, we roasted an entire fucking pig.

It was Eric's idea. He started with the idea of a barbecue--"Maybe some ribs"--and soon escalated the idea into SPD (Singular Pig Destruction), which is a well-known variant on Mutual Assured Destruction. Will signed on shortly afterward, as Will is also a tremendous fan of putting various animals to the sword and to the torch. An unholy alliance was formed, and in the weeks of planning that intervened between the germ of the idea and its (literal) execution, I was to be treated with the sight of Will and Eric absently, evilly stroking their beards and talking about various rendition techniques with a certain unnerving gleam in their eyes.

A roasting box was procured for the big day, and invariably, as my friends arrived, their pupils would dilate as they beheld the giant box. "There's a pig in there?" they'd ask with wonder. If I were wearing suspenders, I would have snapped them insolently against my chest and rocked back on my heels and said "A-yup." Will and Eric, in the meantime, fussed endlessly over the entire operation, nattering to each other like barbarians discussing the finer points of skull-crushing implements. Inside the roasting box, the pig abided in peace, rendered fat pooling placidly inside its chest cavity.

The guests continued to arrive, most of them pretending to genuinely like me so they could sample their taste of giant pig. Some even brought gifts, despite my invitational directive that gifts were wholly unnecessary. "Unnecessary for you," some of them seemed to say, as the many bottles of whiskey I received were quickly dispatched, some of them by me. Dusty and Kirk, responding to an old, stupid running joke of mine, brought me an alarmingly enormous, veiny dildo and an autographed photo of Stockard Channing. It's best not to ask.

Towards the end of the cooking process, it came time to flip the pig over to crackle up the skin. As Eric and Will attempted this procedure, the pig's feet came off, and the nicely caramelizing carcass thunked back into the box. Eric and Will stared at the feet (in their hands--this was rapidly becoming an Abbott and Costello routine as imagined by Artaud) for a moment before declaring, "Well, nobody was gonna eat any fucking hooves anyway." The unfooted hog continued to stare without comment into the slate-gray skies, figuring, probably, Well, it's not the worst thing that's happened to me today. As if sensing emotional collapse on the part of the dead pig, Will took this opportunity to jam an apple into its mouth.

And after a while, Will and Eric declared the beast to be well and fully cooked; they pulled it from the box and took it into the kitchen to rest for a while. It looked like a giant, pig-shaped Rollo candy; the onlookers--everybody--gasped and oohed and ahhed. Upon setting it on the counter, Eric promptly tore off an ear and gave it to me; his first offering to the (near-) birthday boy; I wondered idly if they had irrigated the ear with the same assiduousness that they had spent on the thing's asshole. I wandered outside into the throng and held it up triumphantly.

"I got an ear!" I yelled witlessly. People cheered, because I know only slavering, brutal maniacs. My social life is like a Rob Zombie movie. I bit into the ear.

It was delicious. The skin had formed a lacquerlike finish, concealing inside a ridiculously luscious admixture of cartilage and fat. Never had hitting bottom felt so much like rocketing to the top. I passed the ear around to the assembled heathens, and they fell on it like starving hyenas. Orgasmic moans began to fill the air, and I briefly thought about Stockard Channing before returning to my senses.

Thanks to Will and Eric, of course. Thanks to my wife. Thanks to all my friends. Thanks to the luckless hog. Thanks, I guess, to time itself, that merciless fucking shit. Thanks for reading for all this time.

Thanks, Stockard Channing.


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Comments

OK - College days trivia pop quiz. If this party had been thrown for NZ - the retro hottie actress photo would have been of ____ instead of Stockard Channing?

Comment number: 019593   Posted by: Nico on June 24, 2009 04:32 AM from IP: 206.212.236.2

Heh. I thought I was the only person who cooked a whole pig on her 40th birthday. No, wait, we did a goat - it's been a couple years; the memory begins to go. Goat is not as tasty. Should have done a pig. Happy Birthday anyway!

Comment number: 019595   Posted by: fliss on June 24, 2009 08:54 AM from IP: 68.213.40.242

Happy birthday, Skot. Don't know ya, but I've lurkingly enjoyed your blog for awhile. Hilarious shit, my man.

FYI - I am a veteran of many such pig roasts. Valuable lesson learned: the trick to turning the so-tender-meat-is-just-falling-off-the-bone pig without any parts ripping off is to wrap it in chicken wire first. Before placing the pig on the fire. Lay out a four foot width of chicken wire that's about 3 feet longer than the pig. Lay the piggie along it with the same amount of extra chicken wire on each end. Wrap the wire tightly around him and wad the ends into little handles at the front and back of the pig, and where the two edges of the wire meet when drawn around the pig - crush them together as well. The little scrunched up handfulls of chicken wire hold it all together and make the pig easy to pick up and turn besides. Later when he's fully done you can often just pick him up by these "handles" and bang him down on the table a few times and the meat will just fall right off.

Again, happy birthday and thanks for writing. It always gives me a laugh.

BTW, where's the bar that shall not be named?? Which one is it? I live in Kitsap and have wondered if I'm walking right by it when in the city.

Keep writing!

Comment number: 019596   Posted by: Brad on June 25, 2009 11:16 AM from IP: 138.163.0.44

Happy birthday, Skot! I'm a longtime birthday-post reader -- first-time happy-birthday wisher here. Thanks for continuing to write for the tens of us who love your life (or at least your descriptions of the lack thereof). Skol!

Comment number: 019597   Posted by: Angie on June 25, 2009 12:15 PM from IP: 97.92.35.128

Happy birthday, asshole; fuck you for not inviting me! ;)

Comment number: 019598   Posted by: Rocco Lieuallen on June 26, 2009 09:32 AM from IP: 159.121.96.200

Nothing says happy birthday like pig'n'whiskey. Hooray for you!

Comment number: 019599   Posted by: SaltyMissJill on June 28, 2009 10:20 AM from IP: 65.242.241.130

Happy belated birthday, Skot. I can only hope that my friends will so thoughtfully gift me dildos and Channing on my 40th birthday. It's doubtful, though. Fuckers.

Comment number: 019602   Posted by: You can call me, 'Sir' on June 30, 2009 07:42 AM from IP: 152.11.89.130

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