Sunday March 9, 2008

Note: By a curious quirk of chemistry, 20th- and 21st-century MREs with a 10-year shelf-life at 285 Kelvin stop going bad after about seventy years, and very, very slowly start getting better. The 1987-issue Chicken Patty (the "boot heel" which was originally best eaten suddenly, in a surprise assault, or better yet, thrown at the enemy) is particularly exquisite, having turned into a sweet, fluffy pudding by A.D. 2430, and into an actual mousse by 2890.
Book 10: The Longshoreman of the Apocalypse
Prologue: Drydock


Commissary Clerk:Welcome to the Kgalastan Pee-Ex Commissariat. What can I. . .
Commissary Clerk:. . . What are you?
Sign:Don't forget the MREs! Still Good After All These Centuries!
Schlock:I'm an amorph. We're very rare.
Schlock:I'm also an independent contractor with a shiny commissary card. Means my money is good here.
Commissary Clerk:No money. The credit's built in to the card. Of course, that's a temporary card. It's good for a week's worth of groceries at a time. Buy whatever you want, but no hoarding or "stocking up."
Schlock:Ooh, perfect. You've got Ovalkwik, right?< I need fifty kilos.
Commissary Clerk:I said "no hoarding.: You may have a two-kilo can, though.
Schlock:But. . . you said I could get a week's worth of stuff at a time.
Commissary Clerk:That's right. How much of this stuff can you eat in a week?
Schlock:All of it. And it won't take me a week.
Commissary Clerk:I should have just taken his word for it instead of saying "prove it."
MP:If he comes back, be sure to tell him that the shelving and janitorial supplies are not on the menu.