He was a devil in the bottle: The way he hisses as the bottle cap is twisted, giving off a whiff of sweet, acidic stench; The way he gurgles as he escapes his voluptuous confines into a clear glass, awaiting to enter the orifice of a hapless, thirsty victim.
I met him again in a family reunion, in a table laden with more evils than one could stand: Lechon, buttered chicken, steaming white rice and pasta swimming in viscous tomato sauce and choking on grated cheddar cheese and ground beef. On the other side were a hodgepodge of sinful desserts: fudge brownies, moist chocolate cake, black forest, fruit salad in thick white cream, and durian squares. There, he stands before them, commanding each morsel to attack me with provoking glances. You're on diet you say? A bite won't hurt honey. Eat. Don't believe them magazines. We know what's good for you.
Reluctantly, I grabbed a plate and succumbed to their provocations. It was scrumptious in every sinful bite. Eat child. Enjoy every bit of it. Entranced, I finished the entire plate in less than five minutes. You want more? Help yourself. Got more where they came from. Fill yourself up. You know it's good for you. Eyes widened, I made a beeline to the desserts, seduced by the rich, cold smell of chocolate and then some. A bite of this and a taste of that. How I managed to eat half of the chocolate cake, I didn't know. But I couldn't care less. It was addictive, how each bite brings forth bursts of chocolatey goodness. Last slice more before I finally parted with the plate. I grabbed a glass and headed for the water dispenser to dispel the bittersweet aftertaste of the brownies and cake. Wait, we're not done yet. Have a glassful. There he was again, holding up his unseen hands as if he was a baby waiting to be carried off in my arms. A sip won't hurt I guess. I thought as I took him up and opened the bottle cap, releasing some of his translucent brown liquid into my glass. A sip won't hurt I thought again as I tilted the glass onto my lips, feeling it's fizz throw sprays of acidic mists onto it before it welcomes the tangy, sweet-sour liquid into the recesses of my mouth. With every drop, I was entranced. Memories of a child marvelling at the dark brown liquid encased in its iconically voloptuous bottle started rushing in. A family enjoying a merienda of palabok, exchanging chitchats between sips and bites. The sip turned into gulps. The gulps turned into glass after glass. My thirst became insatiable as I cast furtive glances at the laughing bottle, enjoying every second of my surrender. Since then, I have reluctantly rekindled my ties with this evil.
Night after night, party after party. I have filled my glass with his liquid, fidgeting if the host has run out, refusing water for I wanted my Coke. Even midnight snacks wasn't complete without fizzy, acrid goodness. Days passed and I found myself farther from my goal of a 24 inch waistline. Flabs have infested my slightly flubby abdomen. The weighing scale in my bathroom never lies but I refused to believe that I have indeed gained 5 pounds in a week. Why?! WHY???! I screamed silently in my head as the digital counter hit 115.
I decided to caumoflage the unsightly flabs with a maxi dress when I was met yet again with the bottle, this time with his comrades and a battalion of 8 ounce mini me's in different colors and varieties.
"THIS IS ALL YOUR FAULT!"
"You brought this on yourself child." He said coolly, watching me mockingly in my maxi dress.
With this, I turned my back and ran away from it all. Night time came and I was triumphant to have resisted his charms. He watched me longingly as I pretended to enjoy my glass of cold, tasteless water. Not on your life pal! I thought as I glanced back mockingly at him.
That was the last night I saw him and his legions of mini mes. Relieved, as I scheduled for a visit to the gym to cure me of these flabs that has grown like giant parasites. Its weight, slowing me down. I was again nearing my goal when I visited my beau.
I sat down enjoying the chicken barbecue and soysauce, purposely avoiding the steaming white rice. I took a break from gnawing the chicken leg and made it to the fridge to grab a drink.
And there he was, hallowed by the phosphorescent light emanating from the back of the fridge. It's brown translucent liquid trapped in that same, evil bottle. Taunting.
I'm back! Missed me?