I was rambling through the shopping centre, feeling bored. From the corner of my eye, I noticed an advertisement – ‘Yummy Burgers 1st Anniversary. Eat-As-Many-Cheeseburgers-As-You-Can-Competition’. Upon seeing the advertisement, my eyes shone with ecstasy and my tummy rumbled. I scooted to the register counter and penned down my registration.
Soon, I found myself seated on the stage, waiting patiently for the competition to start. Cups of water stood in attention for anyone to grasp to flush the burgers down their throats. My eyes gleamed as wide as saucers, drooling at the sight of copious pile of the ambrosial-looking cheeseburgers. I could not wait to sink my razor-blade teeth into the scrumptious cheeseburgers.
“Ready, start!” the host blustered into his microphone.
Sounds of ravenous animals wolfing down their food reverberated in the air. I stuffed burgers after burgers into my weeny mouth, irresistible to the pile of cheeseburgers right in front of me. The other contestants were quite beefy and hulking, like Incredible Hulk, and they stuffed five burgers into their ‘dinosauric’ mouths all at once! It seemed pretty gruesome where the tomato sauce and the fillings smeared all around their mouths. Ignoring them, I just savored the juicy beef patty and felt the cheese melt in my mouth. It was heavenly!
I held up another burger, ready to pop it into my mouth when I noticed something bizarre. Something in the burger seemed to be wriggling. Curiosity killed the cat. I scrutinized the moving object. My mouth instantaneously went agape with my eyes gleaming wide open. Before I could react, a tiny brown cockroach scampered out of the burger! I tossed the burger on the plate, dumbfounded. I almost nauseated.
The cockroach scampered all the way up to my upper arm. It then came to a halt and wriggled its feelers at me. I blinked my eyes and recovered from my state of hysteria.
“Ahh…!” I shrilled in horror
I flinched the pest away and stumbled out of my seat faltering to the side of the stage. From the bottom of the stage, a startled-looking host pelted up on stage.
“What happened, Miss Tan?” the alarmed host inquired.
“T…there is…a… c..cockroach!” I faltered in fear.
“My gosh!” and he gaped, almost to the point of collapse, at those repugnant cockroaches.
Recovering from his stupefaction, he ushered me to a seat and ordered someone to clear my plate. He disrupted the contest and it came to an abrupt end. All the other contestants were apoplectic with the decision and stomped down the stage. The host then announced that the contestants would each receive a fifty-dollar voucher from McDonald’s as consolation prizes but I was compensated one thousand dollar in cash.
The crowd jeered at the organizers and gradually melted away. I marched to the manager, incandescent with rage.
“Didn’t you guys inspect the cheeseburgers before starting the competition? That cockroach almost scared me to death, you know!” I howled at him.
The manager hung his head low in abashment and apologized candidly to me about what had happened. He promised to be meticulous in their preparations in the future. I shot an annoying frown at him and flounced off.
Ever since, I never lay my hands on a single cheeseburger and whenever I spotted one, the episode of the cockroach wriggling at me would flood into my mind, sending a cold shiver down my spine.
scooted – walked quickly
rambling – aimlessly wandering
copious – large quantities
ambrosial-looking – taste good / delicious
razor-blade teeth – sharp teeth
scrumptious – tastes very good
blustered – shouted
ravenous – starving
wolfing down – eat something very quickly, swallowing it in big pieces
reverberated – a sound that is heard many times as it is sent back from different surfaces
weeny – small
beefy – big, strong, and often quite fat
hulking – big-sized
dinosauric – extremely huge
bizarre – very unusual or strange
scrutinized – examined something closely
instantaneously – immediately
flinched – to move something or someone from you because you are shocked or frightened nauseated – vomitted
state of hysteria. – state of fear and shock
faltering – nervous and uncertain or unsteady
pelted up – ran or got to somewhere very quickly
faltered in fear – spoke in a voice that sounds weak and uncertain, and keeps stopping because
of shock or fear
gaped – stared with mouth open of a surprise or shock
repugnant – very unpleasant, causing a feeling of disgust
stupefaction – so surprised or shock that one cannot think clearly
apoplectic – feeling of anger
stomped – walked angrily
marched – walked angrily
incandescent with rage – angry
howled – shouted in anger
abashment – embarrassment
apologized candidly – say sorry to someone sincerely
meticulous – very careful about small details, and making sure that things are done correctly
shot an annoying frown – glared at someone annoyingly
flounced off – walked away angrily