Tuesday 21 February 2023

A flash piece on the subject of Cookies



The Cookie Monster


 I consume facts.
The whiff of a new topic stimulates my salivary glands, sets me drooling over my keyboard. The first bite piques. My friend tells me her son is going to Cinque Terra. I correct her pronunciation. Chin-kwa ter-re I tell her, with a rolled r sound. She doesn’t know where that is. I do.  I am off. My hand reaches for cookies to supplement what I have already imbibed. I regurgitate what I know while my fingers lick and prod the keyboard in search of new facts. I download a map of the area, explain the coastal configuration that throws up kilometres of beach south of his destination. Give a vivid depiction of sardine packed beaches in high season. Talk of remote authenticity, timeless appeal, hilltop sanctuaries, peeling buildings, pastel glow. I warn of twisting cliff-edge roads and deep pocket parking fees. Recommend the Blue trail of low level difficulty requiring high stamina. Add a wiki-potted history of Genoa and Naples and warn against taking Italian public transport in July given the prevalence of industrial strike action at that time. Tell her about pizza Blanca, a local speciality and recommend Sciacchetr√†, the regional wine. Find and compare great deals on Trivago. Recommend walking tours with wine tasting. Do I accept cookies? Yes. Yes. Yes. She is sated with my store of information and somewhat overloaded. I do not care.
Who wants to know all that? She has work to do, emails to send, dog to walk, cake to bake and, in desperation, the loo to get to. I follow her to the bathroom door still spouting. I am regurgitating everything I know about Hugh O’Flaherty, the Scarlet Pimpernel. Who? she asks. Why him? The Italian connection? Does it matter?
All that matters is facts, facts, facts.

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