Wise Man Once Said, A

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When it all boiled down to it, Beth was rude. She was anything but a people person. She talked down to her co-workers, was mean to her neighbors and worst of all was an absolutely awful tipper. For her entire adult life, she had been a narcissistic, shallow and petty woman. But things change in life, and not always for the better.

One night after work, Roger, Maria and Steve decided to go out to dinner. Being the butt-in that she was, Beth weaseled her way into being invited.

“Let’s go to the Golden Dragon,” suggested Steve.

“Yeah, the food there is great!” Maria chimed in.

“The food’s too cold and the wait staff are horrible,” sighed Beth, “but if you insist, I suppose I’ll tag along.”

“How wonderful,” Roger said with a hint of sarcasm.

When the quartet arrived at the Golden Dragon, the place was bustling with patrons for the evening buffet. Children ran through the tables, shouting with joy while parents tried as hard as they could to issue calm. Families crowded together chatting about the days past and days ahead. In the middle of all the commotion was one big grump; and her name was Beth.

“Oh, this place is a flophouse! It smells awful and it looks so dirty! How can I live with myself for choosing to come with you heathens? Ugh, move out of my way, Maria,” she said pushing her dining partner to one side, “I spot some peel-and-eat-shrimp!” And with that, she stalked off into the crowd.

“Are you alright, Maria?” Steve asked.

“Remind me to never let myself bring her anywhere ever again,” she huffed. “What a bitch! A raving lunatic bitch! She’s not even a regular bitch, she’s an unholy, sent-from-hell bitch-spawn of Satan! If only I had a gun, if only I had a gun I would kill that sorry excuse for a person! To think, that aloof throwback is breathing up air that we could be using! And eating food that hungry children in third world countries could be savoring! Just let her cross me again, and you all had better pray that she kills me, because if she doesn’t, her life will end!”
“Maria!” Roger gasped, “There are children present!” All Steve could do is stand there with his mouth ajar.

After a pause borderlining on awkwardness, Maria stated, “Maybe we should sit down.”

A few minutes later, the waitress came to take their drink order.

“I’ll have a Coke,” Steve said.

“I’d like a glass of Diet Coke,” said Maria.

“Make mine an iced tea,” Roger ordered. “Oh, and the fourth person will have a glass of… um…”

“Acid - Sulfuric acid,” Maria said with an evil grin on her face. The waitress jerked her head back in confusion.

“Pay her no mind,” Roger laughed. “Our fourth person will just have water for now.”

When Beth got back, her plate was overflowing with food.

“I’m so starving, I can’t believe this food is so expensive yet it doesn’t fill you up!”

“Complaining makes it better,” mumbled Roger. Steve and Maria both tried to stifle their giggles.

“What did you say?” Beth growled with a mouthful of food.

“I was complaining that the Chinese don’t use cheddar.”

“You’re an asshole, Roger. Just shut up for the rest of the meal, unless you’re going to say something nice… about me.”

“Wait just a minute, you hus-,” Maria tried to say more, but Steve clamped his hand over her mouth.

“Shhh… it was just a tease, right Beth?”

“No, Steve, it wasn’t. So quit trying to be Mr. Hotshot, and just shut the hell up.” Beth was one second from having her eyes gouged out by Maria when the waitress walked up.

“Would you like more tea or another Coke?”

“No, dumbass, can’t you see that our glasses are full? Why don’t you go mill around somewhere else, eh?”

“You are so rude!” the waitress said as she made off quickly in a huff.

“Whatever. These eggrolls are overcooked!” she shouted. The neighboring people turned their gazes towards Beth and company’s table.

“What are you all staring at? Why don’t you apes just go back to your meal and stop playing a small part in my life!”

“Beth, how can you act this way towards people?”

“Fuck off, Steve! Waitress! I want my check!” Almost instantly, the manager loomed above the table.

“Here. Now leave.”

“I don’t have to, unlike China, this is a free country! Now scram, pops!”

“Pops, I like that remark. Here, have a fortune cookie, it might give you a tip on how to be a nicer person.”

“Whatever,” she said as she cracked the cookie open. Inside was a small note that read:

A wise man once said: This may have an uplifting effect on you, but beware, it may end with a bang.

“What the apeshit does that mean? Who writes these things? Dumbasses, that’s who!” She said as she munched on the cookie. “Now let’s leave before I get hungry again. These damn scam artists!”

The four paid, left quite a nice tip for having to put up with Beth, and made a hasty exit. The whole time, Beth would not stop flapping her lip about the service and the food and the fortune cookie, until her stomach started to bother her.

“I knew it, that damn food gave me a bad bellyache! Oooh, I feel so bloated.” It seemed as if her belly was actually getting bigger in front of the group’s very eyes. It was as if with every breath she took, her stomach swelled.

“What’s happening to me?!” she screeched.

“You must’ve eaten too fast, I’ve seen it happen to my sister,” Roger began. “She ate like five hamburgers and didn’t feel the effects until an hour later. She was bloated like a blimp!”

“I don’t want to hear your asinine stories, you jerk! I thought I told you not to say anything unless it was something nice about me!” And with her remarks, her body grew a bit more. Her belly was noticeably bigger, along with her breasts. They seemed perkier. Her butt also looked plumper. She was literally inflating!

“Hey, Beth, you look better fat!” Maria laughed.

“Hey, you’re no spring chicken yourself, you disgusting sow!” And her body expanded a little bit more. It was as if every insult she spouted, her body grew.

“You’re such a goddamn bitch, Beth!” Steve shouted. “I hope whatever hoo-joo bullshit they cast on you in there makes you fuckin’ explode!” Maria and Roger both gaped in awe. Steve never said an unkind word in his life! Beth’s mouth was gaping open as well. That was the last straw. She did explode - into a fit of foul language and hand gestures. With every filthy, unkind word, she blew up like a human balloon. Her body swelled larger and larger. Beth’s big belly popped the buttons of her blue blouse. Her matching skirt ripped at the seams. Her bra snapped off and slid to the ground. She was covered in tattered blue rags, and she was lifting up into the air, as if she was filled with helium. By the time she calmed down, she was floating a good 15 feet above ground. The tirade of verbal abuse stopped, as if finally realizing her foul mouth caused her to expand.

“Wait a minute… those damn Chinamen cursed me!” And she grew a bit bigger.

“Ooh! I mean… those lovely Asian fellows placed a curse on me, ha-ha-ha!” And she shrank a bit smaller.

“Wait! That’s it!” Roger shouted up at her. “Say nice things and you’ll shrink!”

“Oh, yes! It’s working! I love you all! I love every race and creed! Every person on the planet I just adore!” With every kind word, she shrank back down. Her giant stomach began deflating. Her enormous backside no longer resembled a pair of peach balloons.

“You are so full of shit!” Maria cried out. “Take this!” The enraged woman, tired of Beth’s constant boorish behavior to such an extent, hurled a rock right at the deflating woman. When it hit Beth, it repelled her back into the air. In that moment, kind Beth transformed back into the sent-from-hell bitchspawn of Satan! She huffed, and she cursed, and she shouted, and she waved her tiny arms. All the while, her body blew up at a rate that alarmed her companions into taking cover behind a car. The beet red color in her face quickly spread down to the rest of her body. She screamed until her voice grew hoarse. Soon her body was nothing more than a tight, reddened ball with Beth’s head atop it; a constant stream of hate issuing forth from her mouth.

Her final words were “Fuck you all and I hope to see you in -” before she literally popped like an overfilled water balloon. Steve stifled the urge to vomit while Maria amusingly pointed at her remains. Roger stood in disbelief, trying to come up with ways to explain the incident at work.

The next day, the three friends donated all of Beth’s items in her cubicle to charity, and Maria was promoted to Beth’s former position. Steve and Roger received a pay raise, and no one second guessed the story they came back with from their dinner at the Golden Dragon. It was almost as if Beth had never existed at all.

Average: 3.5 (4 votes)
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