From their perch in Sharkatraz atop the tallest apartment building in Astoria, Max Robinson and Mike Pfeiffer are The Trash Boys. In The Trashford Files, they investigate and review foods that are normally best eaten alone drunk in the dark after a breakup.
Max: Wow, what a crazy year this has been, eh Mike?
Mike: 2013 was certainly one for the books. The eBooks. The eBooks I would love to read on a new Kindle Fire. Which are cheaper than ever, Max.
Max: *Looks down at printed script* Wow, what a crazy year this has been, eh Mike? 2013 saw some real highs and lows for the Trash Boys. We ate a donut sandwich in our inaugural column, nearly died at the hands of McDonald’s fries and mourned as beloved TV fixture Bryant The Dog died on TV’s Family Guys.
Mike: After a crazy year like this (2013) maybe we should just have a nice intimate holiday feast with all the trimmings. At McDonald’s.
Max: That’s right, Mike and I decided to go back to our roots and try McDonald’s yuletide standby, the *sigh* “Holiday Pie”.
Mike: And tonight, thank God it’s us instead of you.
The Gastronomic Artifact
What are we putting in our talk holes?
Max: The McDonald’s Holiday Pie is a seasonal variant on the standard McDonald’s pie-cylinder but with a strange egg cream custard filling and multicolored sprinkles baked into the dough-product.
Mike: It recalls the festive feel of multicolored lights and it’s… Fine. It’s fine. Max, I gotta come clean. I just don’t feel the Christmas spirit. I think this will be the Year Without the Trash Boys.
Max: I hate to say it but…I think you’re right. I mean, what is all this fast food doing to our health? When’s this going to catch up with us? High Cholesterol? Diabetes? Maybe… Maybe it’s best if we end the column.
[Many hours pass as The Boys sit in their rooms in quiet reflection before tucking in for bed. A heavy snow falls upon the roof of stately Sharkatraz on the chilly December evening. At the stroke of midnight, they are roused from their bunk beds by a blinding, ethereal light in the center of the room. It is an angel, Gene Simmons, clad in a Hello Kitty KISS robe and signature LA KISS ARENA FOOTBALL jersey]
Gene: YOU WANTED THE BEST… YOU GOT THE BEST
Mike & Max: Say WHAAAAAAT?
Gene: HELLO BOYS. AND… GIRLS *Aggressively fondles Max’s Julie Newmar action figures*
Mike: Golly! Gene Simmons! Sexually harassing OUR collectibles!
Max: I didn’t even know Gene Simmons was dead!
Gene: LIFE AND DEATH ARE BUT MERE PLAYTHINGS TO THIS KNIGHT IN SANTA’S SERVICE. THE GREAT MYSTERIES WERE REVEALED TO ME AFTER I NEARLY CHOKED ON A SINGLE SIP OF ALCOHOL ONCE IN THE SUMMER OF 1974. THE IMPORTANT THING FOR YOU TO KNOW IS THAT KISS IS REAL AND KISS IS NOW.
Mike: But the people are clamoring for both KISS and HELLO KITTY like never before! The same way they’re calling for new Kindle Fires! Max. But there’s no need for trash like us anymore. We don’t even have a podcast or a tumblr or a scathing thinkpiece about us on a Gawker site.
Max: I think what Mike is trying to say, Mr. Simmons, is that we’re just….plain ol’ trash.
Gene: NONSENSE MY BOYS. YOU TWO SERVE A PURPOSE AND I’VE BEEN SENT HERE BY THE MAN UPSTAIRS *points hideous tongue toward heaven* TO SHOW YOU A WORLD WHERE YOU DON’T EXIST. A WORLD….WITHOUT TRASHBOYS.
[Max and Mike are scared and hold hands as their posh apartment gives way to the sights, sounds and smells of an Astoria street corner. This is the neighborhood occupied by Mike and Max….or so it would seem.]
Mike: Hey, that’s the spot our halal cart is usually in! But that’s not our halal cart. Max, what’s… *squints at sign* FroYo?
Max: You mean they sell FROZEN YOGURT now? WHY DON’T I JUST EAT HOMEWORK? *punches a nearby telephone pole, shattering every bone in his hand in a fit of righteous protest*
Gene: YOU BOYS PUT SOME KIDS THROUGH COLLEGE WHEN YOU’D STUMBLE HOME FULL OF COLD GIN AND BUY A TRASH BAG FULL OF GYRO MEAT, BUT WITHOUT YOU QUEENS HAS JUST BECOME UPSTAIRS BROOKLYN.
Max: NO! NO! I WON’T BELIEVE IT! *runs crazy leg style to the nearby McDonald’s where he collapses in a heap upon reaching the door*
Mike: C’mon, bud. It’ll be okay. We’re at the McDonald’s with the cute burger clerk who gives us free nuggets when I leave my fly unzipped- NO!
Gene: THAT’S RIGHT BOYS. WITHOUT YOUR ENDLESS APPETITE FOR ARTIFICIAL GARBAGE, MCDONALD’S IN ALL FIVE BOROUGHS STOPPED SERVING FAST FOOD ALL TOGETHER. NOW THEY JUST SERVE TERRIBLE, TERRIBLE SALADS. YOU CAN STILL ENJOY A DELICIOUS AND REFRESHING CHERRY DR. PEPPER, HOWEVER. IT’S THE SODA…YOU CAN FUCK.
Mike: Wait this is fucked up as hell- I still exist! There are two of me and we’re dating Hoda!
[A classy, bespectacled lady walks down the street. It’s television’s Rachel Maddow, holding hands with her husband journeyman troubadour Elvis Costello, and their third romantic partner Hoda Kotb.]
GENE: MIKE YOU IGNORANT SLUT. THAT’S TELEVISION’S RACHEL MADDOW. WITHOUT THE TOXIC MASCULINITY OF THE TRASH BOYS, GENDER AND SEXUAL PREFERENCE ARE RESPECTED AS A SPECTRUM AND NOT A BINARY.
Mike: That sounds progressive.
GENE: IT’S A SLIPPERY SLOPE. WHAT IF SOMEONE MARRIES A DOG?
Max: *grabs Elvis Costello by his foppish lapels* Sir! And ma’ams! Tell me, please….where is the nearest Taco Bell?!
Elvis Costello: Taco Bell….You mean Old Man Taco Bell? Went to prison after the rat poison they used to flavor the ground beef killed all those kids! GET OFF ME, STREET RAT!
[Mike can only watch in horror as his best friend is viciously beaten by the Power Pop New Wave super-star’s eagle-headed cane.]
Mike: No! Gene, you’ve got to take us back! You’ve made us see the light! You’ve Kindled the Fires of our creativity again! Max.
Max: *spits out blood and teeth* Gene, you’ve shown us the error of our ways. We really are big deals and the best in the field.
Gene: OH BETHS I HEAR YOU CALLIN BUT YOU CAN’T GO HOME RIGHT NOW. YOU AND THE BOYS ARE EATIN… TRASH IN A BIG OLD MOUND.
[A smiling Gene waves his KISS ring-covered hand and all are enveloped in a blinding light as the sound of a heavenly choir singing “Detroit Rock City” fills the air. The boys awaken, frostbitten and covered in their own frozen urine in front of the very same McDonald’s. The smell of fries wafts from the entranceway.]
Mike: Oh god, it’s over. But was it just a dream?
[Mike wrestles a Happy Meal out of a child’s hands and dumps it on the ground. It’s nugs and fries as god intended.]
Max: Oh, I don’t think it was a dream, pal o’ mine! *Shoves hand into garbage, pulls out perfectly edible half-eaten gordita, eats it all in one big gulp*
Mike: Max! Our halal cart is back! Kind of. It’s… an Elvis Costello’s Fish ‘n Chip Lorry?
Max: KIND OF A LATERAL MOVE BUT I’LL TAKE IT.
Max and Mike: LOOK! ON THE GROUND!
[The boys are awestruck by a glossy 8″x10″ photo of a pair of women’s breasts. Inscribed in permanent marker on the corner is “NO MAN IS A FAILURE WHO HAS TRASH. ENJOY THIS PHOTO OF BREASTS. DO NOT CALL ME. STAY FROSTY. – LEGENDARY KISS FRONTMAN GENE SIMMONS”]
Mike: Well. I believe we’ve got some pies that need our attention, brother.
Max: You said a “mouthful”, brother!
[Both laugh hysterically, much to the discomfort of passersby]
Does it satisfy?
Mike: This is like food from the Matrix. I mean the food that you eat when you’re in the freegan caves of Real Life, not the delicious steaks that traitors get to have. It’s hot crust slashed with ventilation crevices to prevent the neutral custard inside from injuring you like its vindictive sibling the Hot Pocket. Eating it is as inoffensive as breathing, just thicker.
Max: The Holiday Pie is like something the food replicator on Star Trek would make if you poured battery acid on the control panel. “ERROR INITIATE SPRINKLE + DOUGH 10101 CO-SIGN CUSTARD CREAM WILL YOU PROCEED?”
How easy is it to put in your talk hole?
Max: It’s a flat tube of pie in a kicky cardboard sleeve, you could eat this mid-jog or even during a important business meeting to command respect.
Mike: In a hand-to-mouth sense it’s a slam dunk. But in a purchase-practicality sense you have to consider that you can get two apple pies for a dollar. This fucked up crusted hot Gogurt debacle costs you one dollar a piece no matter what, and am I made of money? No. I’m made of hot air, wrapped in a thin skin of rude thoughts about Sherilynn Fenn. Not as practical as a Standard Pie.
Would I eat this in front of a date or in a job interview?
Mike: what’s a job
Max: The entire time it took me to eat this I stared Mike cold in the eye. So yeah sure whatever.
Is it worth feeding your self loathing to purchase?
Max: This pie is worth a dollar just to share a moment with my best friend, the Bert to my Ernie, the sweet to my sour….Mike Pfeiffer. I love you, Trash Brother. I give this all possible rats out of a theoretical infinite number of rats.
Mike: Having this with Max (My Kin from another garbage Bin) did feel like a cut storyline from Love Actually where Michael Sheen and Simon Pegg try to be roommates in a dumpster, so I guess it’s a choir of four rats out of a possible five mewling angelic rats from me.