The Book of Refreshments


Chapter 12 – The Letters of Tok the Rhymer

Being the writings in which Tok considers how to properly dine.

Verses 1 through 22

1. To the ambassador of people in the lands south of the river Spork, I send greetings!

2. Having been to the places where you people eat, what passes for food, and how you act around the table, I’m telling you now to listen up!

3. You don’t want to anger the Great Powers.

4. Trust me.

5. Let me speak on the choosing of restaurants.

6. Eat not in a place that calls itself “FOOD”, nor in one that has upon its sign “EAT”, for if they have to tell you what it is or what to do with it, then it is far better to not go there in the first place.

7. Do not dine in places that promise all that you can eat, for the body just isn’t built to take that kind of punishment.

8. If the sign entreats you to wiggle, jiggle, or flip your lid then it is best not to eat there.

9. Avoid all food vendors who have their menus in the form of large pictures upon the wall, for in those places is the way to gastric ruin.

10. Cloth napkins are a good sign.

11. Restaurants located in close proximity to an animal hospital are not a good idea.

12. Watch out for places that say they are “famous”, for you ken not what they are really famous for.

13. If the main item being sold is small square burgers then do not eat there, for they are an abomination and will taint the arteries of any who partake of them.

14. Do not seek out spicy foods where the old people dine, for you will be greatly disappointed.

15. Look for the small restaurant on the back road that seems to be packed with customers every night.

16. Immediate seating on the eve of a weekend is a very bad portent.

17. If the sign says you also get gas free then it’s best to dine somewhere else.

18. There are some who believe that the best of Steakhouses are those that give a great quantity of meat for only a few ducats, and they are correct.

19. There are some who believe that the best of Steakhouses are those that serve the highest quality meats, even though the portions are small, and they also are correct.

20. There are some who believe that the best of Steakhouses are those that play trendy music at great volumes and serve over-priced beverages, and they are clearly whacked.

21. There are some who believe that the best of Steakhouses are those where the staff wear hats of great dimension.

22. I can’t even begin to tell you what’s wrong with that.

Verses 28 through 39

28. On beverages let me say these words.

29. Do not drink of the waters that come from the lakes of the north, for they are full of all sorts of weird stuff.

30. Do not drink of the bottled water that is not flavored, for that is merely water of the tap and is way overpriced.

31. Do not drink of the waters that come from the far west, for it is rumored that people have peed in it.

32. The bottled water that is sweet and flavored with berries is good to drink, both that which is fizzy, and that which is still.

33. As the waters flavored with berries, so is the waters flavored with citrus fruits.

34. However, do not drink of the waters flavored with vegetables, for they will disturb your thoughts and make you into a commie pinko liberal.

35. Water that is sweet and flavored with herbs and dried leaves is good, but if consumed in large quantities over time will make you pee small rocks.

36. Beware of the drink called “sweet tea”, for it will rot your teeth and make you talk funny.

37. Beer is good in all forms and varieties, for it contains the vital essence of the tiny creatures that have frolicked in the water and barley mash.

38. As it is for beer, so is it for ale, and for lambic, and for other such brewed beverages.

39. But beware any brewed beverage that bears the name and picture of an animal on the label, for it will taste as foul as if that animal had excreted into the bottle.