Turkey SPAM in the Pandemic
Like others who follow him, I was going to send my favorite YouTube personality, Featureman, a pandemic care package. In addition to root beer, peanut butter, marshmallows and pudding, another of Featureman’s fancied foods is processed meats. He seems to be an admirer and aficionado of boloney, hot dogs and SPAM, and occasionally canned corned beef hash and canned salmon.
Sometimes Featureman goes for healthier options, like turkey bacon or non-meat bacon instead of regular bacon, though I suspect he buys them when they’re on clearance, making the choice as much about economy as health. But sometimes he goes healthy, so I thought I’d send him a can of Turkey SPAM along with a jar of peanut butter and a bottle of maple flavored root beer. Well, I searched all over town and the regular SPAM was in short enough supply, not to mention the more “connoisseur” varieties (e.g. Turkey, Black Pepper, Smoked or Bacon SPAM) that were completely absent from the shelves of every store I went to.
That’s when I decided to go to The Mecca for processed meats, WalMart, figuring if they didn’t have any Turkey SPAM, then it wasn’t to be had.
When I stepped in WalMart, the first thing I saw the security guy. From his build, he seemed young and fit. He was dressed in black from head to toe. Black SECURITY cap, black gator (or as I like to pronounce it: GAY-tor, with 2 syllables instead of 1 since it sounds more European), black shirt and black pants with a bunch of pockets and a bunch of shit hanging from a thick, black belt. He looked very SWAT. His garb looked very menacing and tactical.
I entered, giving the guard a nod, then went hunting for the Turkey SPAM. I found the canned meat section. I was excited, a bit like a child on an Easter egg hunt. But, alas, nothing but regular SPAM and it’s sorry, downscale cousin TREET and even worse, the street trash of processed meats: generic Luncheon Loaf. I decided I shouldn’t go cheap. Featureman seems like a sweetheart of a guy deserving better than the poor-poor-poor man’s Luncheon Loaf or TREET. I’d settled on sending the package that week. I was tired of fucking around so I grabbed the regular SPAM and a jar of Peter Pan peanut butter for my long distance pal, Featureman.
I hate WalMart. So, before I left, I considered what else I ought to look for so I never had to come back, at least for months. I’ve put on some COVID weight. My large shirts are feeling a little tight so I went over to the menswear department. I picked up a KISS Love Gun t-shirt and a John Carpenter’s Halloween shirt in XL for $7.88 each. Good finds, I thought. Suits my blue collar, every-man gimmick swell. Plus, each is a hell of an album and movie, respectively.
I checked out. On leaving, I had to pass in front of the guard, so I gave him a harder, closer once-over. He stood stoic, in all black. Looking menacing. Looking all tactical. Looking all tough and SWAT. That’s when I noticed them. The big giveaway. His shoes. Sketchers. Matching black like everything else, but Sketchers nonetheless. I gave him another nod on the way out. And I didn’t let on at all how those fucking shoes completely ruined his gimmick.
I got in my car. On the drive home I thought how somebody at his security company ought to make a No Sketchers policy. And I was a little bummed that I wasn’t gonna be sending Featureman any Turkey SPAM.