The Butter Mouse, Number Five: Toasted Cheese

Please find below a post from a Reddit feed about most disgusting food experiences. This was hard to track down. I had to read the post twice to confirm this was related to The Butter Mouse, and it is included this only for completion pieces.

The grimmest food I ever had was from a late night newsagent.

Even in a city this size, a twenty-fours hour shop is hard to track down. The only option I knew of meant a ten minute deviation from the route home after the pub. The light bulbs inside buzzed, and one of the windows was permanently cracked. Blocking half the sign was a pirate flag, hanging from the window of the flat above. The main clientele were stoners and late night drinkers, with shelves and shelve of chocolate and crisps and biscuits. Their closest nod to fresh food was a few mouldy bananas.

After seven pints and a lack of dinner I couldn’t tell you if it was a man or a woman who served me, but I remember getting stressed about their scabby hands. By the time I got back to the house I had a blue plastic bag in my hand, and more change in my wallet. My foraging consisted of a chocolate bar, a very foolish six pack of beer, and a pot of instant ramen.

The ramen wasn’t one of the major brands (if there is such a thing). The advertising on the side was very poor. On a golden brown background that bled over lid were a few images of cheddar, and a cartoon mouse fuzzy at the edges at from being expanded too big. Above that in banana goofy writing were two words.

Toasted Cheese.

What mad person decided that would be a good choice of something to mix with ramen? And why on Earth did I think on buying one? After cracking open another beer, and wolfing down the chocolate, on the kettle went, and the packet was opened.

Inside were crunchy noodles, a shaving’s worth of parmesan dust, and small chunks of something orange too hard and plastic to be cheese. Rather than boiling into a delicious stew under the hot water, they welded together into phlegmy lumps that was the bad end of old socks.

By that point I was drunk enough to try anything. After a few mouthfuls, I dropped my fork to the floor.

Something was drilling into my brain, chewing deep inside my cerebral core, munching on the cells one by one. I worried that the rumours about junk food rotting your mind were true, and occurring on my frontal lobe. 

Then I stopped worrying, and thought about the flat. The one with the pirate flag, and pale bodies in the moonlight, sitting on a golden brown carpet. A bubbling tide where the ceiling should be, washing over the crowd, and into the streets below.

The rest went in the bin. I didn’t go to the newsagents again.