A man walks into a restaurant... A short story.

A man walks into a restaurant... A short story.
This post was published on the now-closed HuffPost Contributor platform. Contributors control their own work and posted freely to our site. If you need to flag this entry as abusive, send us an email.

This is a test.

A man walks into a restaurant.

Well, actually a man and his dog, a cute-as-hell black Labrador pup... one of those dogs you can't help but stop to pet on the street or in a park. A young hostess approaches and tells the man that dogs are not allowed in the restaurant, not even on the patio. Then the dog licks her hand. "He's soooo adorable," she quickly melts, and tells the man that just this once he can keep the dog with him, as long as the puppy stays in his lap. The man smiles and she shows him to his table.

After a minute, a waiter approaches. He also notices the puppy, but tells the man the owner won't mind; the restaurant is brand new and different. "We're a cutting-edge eco-friendly establishment," the waiter says proudly, explaining that the only food they serve is sustainable and humanely raised. The man says that's why he's dining there; as an environmentalist, he loves the concept.

The waiter gives his customer a few minutes and then returns: "Have you decided?" The man, who has never even looked at the menu, smiles, "Yes, I'd like you to cook him," he says, indicating his little dog.

The waiter laughs nervously: "We don't serve dog in this restaurant. In fact, I'm pretty sure that's illegal." No, the customer happily corrects him, it's quite legal here, as it is in several other states. Besides, dog, particularly black dog, is considered especially delicious in some cultures. "And," the man adds, "it's the most eco-friendly meat around."

The waiter winces, confused, as the customer continues: "You're all about sustainable food, right?" The waiter nods. The man explains that five million dogs and cats are euthanized in shelters every year, their meat just tossed away. A shelter is where he got this dog. "If you're gonna go local and sustainable, eating shelter animals beats the hell out of raising animals on farms, killing them, and trucking their meat around. Just kill the dog humanely -- you know, like how you say the other animals served here are killed."

"It's a dog," the waiter stares at the man, "eating them is totally different and disgusting. Dogs are like family members, they're smart, they're affectionate, they're like us." The man quickly counters, "But pigs are smarter than dogs. In fact, they're as aware and intelligent as a four-year-old child. Chickens display striking personality traits from being curious to shy to proud, and they form extremely complicated social structures. Cows also have individual personalities. They actually lick you, just like dogs do, to show affection. And I'm sure we can agree that with regards to things like fear and suffering, that dogs, pigs, chickens, and cows are certainly equals."

"So considering all that," the man asks, "what's really the difference if I want to eat this dog?"

Your assignment: Answer the man's question.

Popular in the Community