At The Cost Of Borneo

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m 1+ points - Newb
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I used to like airline meals. What changed my mind, I think, was a free upgrade to business class just when I happened to have a bad case of gut rot. I had only managed a few mouthfuls of champagne and nibbles before feeling the urge to pollute the posh passengers' porcelain with projectile poo, and then spent the rest of the flight turning various shades of green. I now heave at the sickly, oily smell of microwaved airline food. But that's another story.

Back when I still looked forward to my tray of little plastic cartons, I found myself on a Brunei Airlines flight -- about 18 hours from England to Hong Kong. It was cheap. As I boarded a small, crumbling Boeing and listened to the prayers for safety (Brunei is officially Muslim), I wondered briefly if a cheap airline was a Bad Idea. Still, several hours into the flight, nothing had fallen off or caught fire, and lunch was served. I can still remember this as being one of best airline meals I've ever had; something meaty, a couple of grain-based thingies, and a selection of vegetables, all nicely prepared with a Middle-Eastern/Asian fusion of flavours. You wouldn't have complained about it in a good restaurant. The only thing that bothered me was a generous pile of a tough, stringy vegetable that looked like Chinese broccoli, only it wasn't. It was almost impossible to chew, but I was enjoying myself, so I finished it all. Three days later - could have been less, hard to tell - we landed in Bandar Seri Begawan.

There was a four-hour wait until the onward flight. The airport is in the middle of the city, but knowing nothing about Brunei, I figured that wasn't enough time to get out, look around, deal with any hitches, and get back in again. The airport was Soviet-inspired: small, ugly, depressing, and very slightly grimy. I had a little nap. I looked around the depressing little shops. I had some snacks in the depressing little café. I had another nap. With a hour to go, I figured it was time to leave a little gift for the Sultan to express my gratitude for his hospitality.

The toilets were also depressing, but clean. Crimping off a length, however, proved difficult. A brief inspection confirmed that said length was still... attached. I wrapped my hand with toilet paper (yes, there was toilet paper), grasped firmly, and pulled. Something soft and tubular had been holding it in place. For a moment, I panicked -- WTF was this? A tapeworm? Some important internal component? Nope, it was a perfectly undigested length of broccoli-thing. I spent the next fifteen minutes pulling silage out of my ringpiece. I used a lot of toilet paper. When you're stuck in the world's most tedious airport, I found this to be a curiously relaxing way of killing time. Zen and the Art of Bunghole Maintenance. After using a lot more toilet paper to clean up, it was pretty much time to get on the plane.

I couldn't help wondering why anybody would choose to incorporate something with no obvious food value into their cuisine. It later occurred to me that much less than 24 hours had elapsed between meal and poo, and I now have no doubt that Bruneians are the most regular and prolific poopers on the planet. They probably also have a vibrant toilet paper industry, which might explain the rampant deforestation of Borneo. For the sake of the planet, somebody needs to sell them some bidets.

5 Comments on "At The Cost Of Borneo"

Thunderbox's picture
PoopReport of the Year AwardComment Quality Moderatorj 1000+ points

Great story, Otto!

Most long-haul airline food sucks and must by airline policy be laced with immodium or the bogs would be declared a disaster area after eight hours and shut down.

"Zen and the Art of Bunghole Maintenance"...I`m sure Robert Pirsig will forgive you for this.

The voice of sanity

ChiefThunderbutt's picture
PoopReport of the Year AwardComment Content ModeratorComment Quality Moderatorf 5000+ points

Otto, Your tale was great and told with a flair that is seldom seen on poop report. I am curious as to the identity of the broccoli-thing. Other countries are known to eat foods with no food value but sometimes these non-foods are good for you anyway. I have eaten lots of Japanese konyaku which, as far as I know, has no food value but lots of soluble fiber. Keeps you from taking in excess calories, which I manage to do anyway, and keeps the old colon active.

Regale us with another tale soon.


_______
How long a minute is depends on what side of the bathroom door you're on!

If I had two faces do you think I'd be wearing this one?

the thin brown line's picture
j 1000+ points


Otto Von Skidmark..hehe...wanted to type that. Nice tale _The Brunuelian Surrealists passed mushrooms just as you described..then filmed to tell about it.__


Somethin' mysterious made an exit from the gift shop.

Somethin' mysterious made an exit from the gift shop.

Otto von Skidmark's picture
m 1+ points - Newb

aw shucks, thanks Chief. I've seen a very similar vegetable in Sushi Express (I live in Taiwan) but I assume it's not the same: that occasion was the first and only time I've experienced vegetables growing out of my ass. I still have no idea what the stuff was. But yeah - an Asian diet is definitely better at keeping you regular!

ChiefThunderbutt's picture
PoopReport of the Year AwardComment Content ModeratorComment Quality Moderatorf 5000+ points

Otto, I lived in Japan for a number of years and ate a considerable amount of dried gourd strips called "kampyo" in Japanese. They are reconstituted by being boiled in sweetened soy sauce and then used for the center in a sushi type known as kampyo rolls. I can't truly judge their digestibility because I seem to have the digestive capabilities of a crocodilian and my stomach acids handily dissolve everything I swallow. Perhaps this vegetable passes through a lesser system unaltered.


_______
How long a minute is depends on what side of the bathroom door you're on!

If I had two faces do you think I'd be wearing this one?

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