Diary25 Ben&Jerry's Terrorism


By--Cliff McKenzie--New York City Combat Correspondent

GROUND ZERO, Manhattan, Sept. 25--Yep!  I just knew it.  A biochemical terrorist attack from the least expected of all--Ben & Jerry’s.

It was a slow attack.   Insidious in nature.  The kind of bio attack we fear the most--one that eats you gradually, like a single humongous piranha swimming in your half-filled bathtub where you have been handcuffed in it, taking a bite here, a bite there.

As I spooned another mouthful of Vanilla Heath Bar Crunch, I felt the nefarious chemicals working their way through my system.  Their mission was to create fatter fat cells--to stretch existing fat cells into flaccid balloons, which would force me to eat everything in sight--the rinds of watermelons, gnarled husks of peanuts, wrappers on candy bars, sharp-pointed pistachio shells, even, ugh...parsley and endive.  And, my worst enemy--ochre.


I have always suspected Ben & Jerry’s of being a front for some third-world religious sect.   After all, the company was founded on a pie-in-the sky foundation in total opposition to “normal” capitalism.  Their principles of capped salary ceilings, and giving back a percentage of earnings to the propagation of peace--these are things that “normal” capitalists in the ice cream business would never think of doing.  Ergo, they must be Terrorists.

But there’s more hard evidence   Their affinity for the “dead heads” was a blatant give away.  “Cherry Garcia!”  Give me a break.  Who, but a Terrorist in disguise, would name an ice cream  product for a rock guru.  Then there is  the decadent nomenclature: "Everything but the...", "Concession Obsession," "Raspberry Gone Coconuts," and the ultimate proof of a a clandestine "gotcha"  on us--"from Russia with Buzz".

More hard evidence--they targeted the kids in our society, especially those inclined to revolution.  These mush brains flocked to eat Ben & Jerry’s ice cream.  They were easily seduced.  Once they snagged the restless, liberal youths of America in their marketing web, they next attacked America’s bloated belly, going for the soft underside of America’s middle class with their insidious brand: “Chubby Hubby.” 

Ah, such a well-oiled plot.      

As I smacked another bite of my Heath Bar Crunch, masticating it slowly, I felt the nuggets and chocolate and cream mixing.  I was sure the sucking and chewing, perhaps triggered  by my saliva, set off a chain reaction, igniting to deadly life those fat cell stretchers that would turn me into a corpulent cow.

I knew that soon millions of Americans like myself would be affected by the attack.  Our fat cells would balloon like a fleet of tiny blimps in our guts.  Our swollen, pregnant stomachs would shove against our bellies, distending them until we became fleshy, oleaginous teardrops waddling down the streets of New York City and other towns in America.

I heard our thighs squishing together...squish...squish... squish...squish. The sounds echoed off  hundred-year-old brick apartment buildings and storefronts.  As we walked, our tremendous weight thundered with each step, shaking buildings, trembling glass windows.

The sounds of our steps drowned the rattling noise of subways.  Sirens' screams were muted by the simultaneous smashing of huge, fat feet slapping groaning, cracking concrete.   Guttural, primal  belches and flatulations by the huge mass of bloated people hunting food drowned the sirens of fire trucks, ambulances, police cars. as people squished and waddled and burped their way downtown or uptown.

 Small dogs being walked  by nervous owners dodged the thick, wide stumps of mountainously fat people’s feet.  Red, hairy pancakes of man’s former best friend  littered the sidewalks where a Yorkshire Terrier perhaps zigged when he or she should have zagged to avoid the deadly stomp.

Corner delis no longer displayed food in front of their shops.  The owners hid it from the fat, thick fingers passing by that constantly snagged handfuls of apples, oranges, artichokes, cantaloupes--even flowers--and stuffed them into their owners’ prodigious mouths without paying a penny.

The police would be helpless in such a scenario. It would be virtually impossible to push, shove or shovel these obese bodies into the back of squad cars.  Of course, the Mayor would not want ravenously hungry shoplifters in jail.  A one-night’s stay could mean the consumption of enough food for ten, maybe twenty prisoners. Plus, there was the ever-present threat of cannibalism as the fat cells expanded larger and the hunger to consume food of any kind blinded any ethical sense.

I dug deep into the Heath Bar Crunch, using the tip of my spoon to capture the bits and pieces at the bottom of the container.  I went on with my thoughts.

I saw riots breaking out at Ben & Jerry’s warehouses all over the country.  Masses of human flesh fought to break open freezers that guarded what they thought would sate them--but little did they know each flavor only accelerated their own implosion.

The scene was ugly.  The biggest snarled and growled at anyone who tried to lick a drop oozing off the side of their container.  The grizzly’s of Ben & Jerry’s ripped open pint after pint, jamming their sausage fingers into them and slathering their tongues over their hands to enjoy every drop.

Children were shoved back, offered only empty containers from the adults to lick and hope they might find some remnants.

My once funny image was turning  horrible.

I took another bite of the Heath Bar Crunch, compelled as the alcoholic to consume that which I knew was bent on destroying me.  It was soooo gooood!  I was well aware that swirling a heaping mouthful of the creamy contents of a pint of  'my brand' of Ben & Jerry's was not unlike chug-a-lugging a pint of Stoli.   They both provide solace and those "addicts" worldwide who are in need of such ' magic', myself included, couldn't stop the consummation. Years ago I turned in my pint of booze for a more seductive pint of ice cream.  But the effect is the same--I bury my pain these days in Ben& Jerry's rather than in Stoli.


I began to sniff out the Ben & Jerry’s “fatten-‘em-till-their-guts-explode” plot a few weeks before the Terrorist attack on September 11.  I should have connected the two events right away.  But I failed.  I was  too overcome by the taste, blinded by the hedonistic desire to sate my own sweet tooth.

 My suspicions started when someone turned me on to “Phish Food.”  It rivals my Heath Bar Crunch, but is made of yogurt rather than cream, thus has half the calories.

 I interpreted the nutritional value on the side to mean I could eat twice as much of Phish Food, not half as much.  Why have one Ben & Jerry’s when you can have two?

But isn’t that what a Terrorist wants?   Don’t they strategize their attacks after they have lulled you into complacency?  Aren’t you most ripe for them when you feel invincible, beyond attack?

Phish Food was like that.  It was too good to be true.  Too delicious.  Why, I could eat twice as much as I could Vanilla Heath Bar, and yet get only one dose of Heath Bar Fat.  I was lulled into consumption Heaven. 

But after the Terrorist attack on Tuesday, I realized that Ben & Jerry’s could have a two-pronged strategy in the works. They could have been planted here years and years ago, assimilating into our society, plotting and planning their revenge for years.

Unlike Heath Bar Crunch that expanded fat cells, Phish Food filled the air with terror toxins.   After eating two pints, I flatulated constantly.  I began to wonder if they had mixed up some bio agent that upon contact with methane, produced a terrible gas that either seriously sickened others, or killed them.

I wondered if I might be Ben &Jerry’s Typhoid Mary.  After eating two pints of the yogurt-based Phish Food, people ran from my presence,  handkerchiefs covering their faces, gagging, choking. 


 The Heath Bar Crunch and other ice-cream-based products were Phase One of the plot.  They expanded the fat cells and turned people into obese monoliths who couldn’t run when the crescendoing  toxins were released from people’s bowels.  Phase Two, of course, was creating a  snowballing gaseous expulsion from an expanded gluteus maximus that would attack one’s nostrils with fetid fervor.   The "gravity challenged" could not run.  They gagged and fell to their thick, padded knees, unable to scurry to safety.  

It was a horrible image.

I shook my head.  Oh, how the imagination can run to dark corners in troubled times, I thought.

The recent events of horror and terrorism made it easy for me to believe something as mundane as ice cream could be the source of some ugly biochemical attack.

I was becoming paranoid along with countless Americans in the aftermath of September 11.  All around me people were looking for terrorist in sheep’s clothing.  Why not Ben & Jerry’s?

It bothered me that people were turning on one another.   The paranoia of Terrorism was taking root.  A woman I know told me how she was going to call the FBI and report a former roommate who had talked about “getting even” with his boss who fired him.   Of course, his skin was slightly darker, his eyes a deep brown.

It was just starting to grow.  Suspicion.  Doubt.  Fear of the unknown.  I remembered that feeling well.

In Vietnam I quickly learned to be suspicious of anything that moved.  If I didn’t, I could die.  I became “trigger happy.”   We all did.  Why take a chance?   The rule was, “if it moves, kill it.”  And we did. 

Today, in America, the rule is:  “If it looks middle eastern, suspect it.”   Shoot it with your eyes.   Call the FBI.  Hunt down anyone who talks in a tone suggesting support of terrorism, or, who seems “violent,” or whose “eyes are filled with hate.”

And why not?  Everyone is waiting for the other shoe to drop.  We all wonder what will come next?  Where will it come?  How many will die this next time?

No one is sure of anything except Terrorism is not going to go away.   America’s innocence has been savagely raped.  As a rape victim never forgets, America won’t either.

We are starting to turn on each other.  In a way we’re still dazed, kind of punch drunk, swinging at the shadows that flicker in the night, jumping at the sounds of planes flying overhead, running for cover when a car backfires.

Terrorism likes to confuse its victims. 

It likes guys like me to think Ben & Jerry’s might be culprits in a terrorist conspiracy.  If we’re all busy looking around for the enemy “without” we won’t look “within.”  We won’t look for the problem; we’ll only see the symptoms.  We won’t bother finding and  cutting out the core, we’ll just keep squeezing the pus out of the boil and hope the core will follow eventually.   Of course, we forget another boil is growing in another place, seeding, sprouting.


As Americans become reactive rather than proactive, the Terrorists move another player to another spot on their chess board.  They want us to walk around looking for someone or something to hate, someone or something to blame.  They know when we find that “someone” or “something” we can eliminate or punish, that we can  go back to a state of “normal, peaceful life” so viciously ripped from us on September 11.

That’s not possible.  The Terrorists burnt the bridge to Xanadu.  Camelot’s moat isn’t filled with lilies or roses, but angry, hungry alligators.

The hard-to-swallow truth is no matter what we do today, terrorism will strike again and again and again.  Fifty years ago we screamed the words: “Remember Pearl!” as a warning to our children and grandchildren and great grandchildren to stand alert, vigil of another attack.

Over time the memory of “Remember Pearl” died.  Fewer and fewer papers carried it’s anniversary in big, bold headlines.   The memory of what it was and what it meant shrank down to small columns appearing on December 7--sometimes not even on the front page.

We apologized.  We became politically correct, bowing, kowtowing to the “nice-guy-we-don’t-lock-our-doors-at-night” image created by a sense of complacency, and a national ignorance of troubles around the world.`

We swept the words “Remember Pearl” under the rug.   We let the Voice of our grandparents die.  Terrorism then and now is not different.   The numbers are larger today, but the terror is the same.

 Terrorism is here to stay.  It cannot be eliminated from without--only from within.

If we destroy Ben & Jerry’s, another ice cream will appear to take its place.   Then another.  And another.

What we must destroy is not terrorism, but the reasons for it.   We can’t keep the weeds out by pulling them.  They come back.  

We must rip out the soil and replant.

But what?


First, we must rip out our ignorance of Islam and throw it as far away as possible.  No fighter climbs into a ring without first studying his or her opponent’s every move.  If he doesn’t study the opponent, he’s sure to get knocked out over and over until he has a brain concussion.

Americans need to understand the enemy.  Need to know why the radical factions of the Middle East hate us enough to want to kill our innocent without blinking an eye.  It would be easy to give that responsibility up to the government and go about our daily chores confident the terrorists were taken care of by our new Home Security Militia that will be formed.

Or, each American can realize the more we turn over the policing of the terrorists to government, the more our rights will diminish.   And since terrorism is a local event, conducted in people’s neighborhoods, we owe it to ourselves to take responsibility for rooting it out.   If its roots are ignorance, then the more we know about it, the more prepared we will be to deal with it.

Next, we need to think like the enemy.  We need to see through their eyes.  Feel their hearts beat in our chest.

Now, they laugh at us.   We are ignorant of their way of life, their culture, their beliefs.   But if we begin to learn about them--their good and bad, their right and wrong, their successes their failures--then we can climb in their skin, walk in their moccasins, and realize how to defeat them where they fight the hardest--next door to you, at your work, at your social club, at your children’s school.   When we know them, we can enter the ring and have a fair fight on our hands.

Until each American assumes the understanding of terrorism, we will continue to turn against ourselves.  We will blame Ben & Jerry’s,  verbally abuse the deli when it runs out of Vanilla Heath Bar Crunch or Phish Food, or take our wrath out on the local tailor, or cab driver, or the swarthy looking guy on the corner.  Or, we’ll abdicate our responsibility to learn from “Remember Pearl” and give the job of protecting ourselves and our children and our futures over to those whose primary purpose in life is to get elected for another term.

My suggested solution?

Relax.  Get a book on Islam.   Kick back with a pint of Ben &Jerry’s.   Turn complacency into knowledge, and knowledge into power.

But stay away from Phish Food.   It belongs to me.

Semper Vigilantes!  Unified, In Death And Life


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