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Don't take a bull by the horns. Explode it.

by Al Pascarelli September 19, 2016

Don't take a bull by the horns. Explode it.

Don't take a bull by the horns. Explode it.
Madrid, Spain 1976.
 
On a blazing hot afternoon in an old bullfighting ring on the outskirts of Madrid, the gargantuan bull “El Filete IV" had just gored two of the finest matadors that had ever lived, and it was not very nice of him. The bullfighters had foolishly shaved their beards off that morning, and it proved to be their undoing. Down in the pit that day, one fallen champion lay crumpled beneath his red polyester cape. Blood weeped through the fine embroidery of his paisley bell bottoms; goldfish that had once frolicked in the waters of his glassy platform roller skates flopped helplessly in the sand (it was the 70's guys give him a break. What are you, the fish police? Jeez.) The other poor matador had been impaled on the bull’s Freudian horns, and gestured feebly with the tiny cigar in his hand. From his most uncomfortable perch on the brute’s mighty head, the matador called out to the circle of watchers, "Mi barba! (My beard!) Mi barba...Te maldigo mi peluquero! (I curse my barber!)" But no one could help the doomed toreador as the baby-faced man flopped about Filete's head like some gruesome crown. The vengeful bull paraded monstrously while the boos and shrieking of the crowd thundered in the air among the startled pigeons that fled. The crowd threw bottles of shampoo at the villain, hurled chattering maracas, pelted him with spare teeth. A cheap, inflatable novelty pumpkin sailed down and was punctured satisfyingly on, yes, the tip of El Filete's very sharp left horn. (He is left-horneded.) Once satisfied with his display of victorious mockery, the bull charged with the body towards a wooden section of wall, and slammed the matador against it. The bull’s victim slid to the ground, grasping a handful of hay to cover his humiliatingly nude chin. El Filete looked back at the crowd fiendishly, then lowered down his horns again and forked the dying man into the dirt, spinning and pounding and wrenching viciously with hate until the patch of ground turned to red mud and the man lay split in squirming halves, along, of course, with the deflated novelty pumpkin. His hay-bearded ghost played a novelty pumpkin harp as it rose into the sky.
 
While the crowd was distracted by this scene, Pepe the barber, a schlubby-looking man who had suggested the two dead Matadors should shave that morning before the fight, snuck away from his front row seat and quietly squeezed his flab through a bathroom window, escaping only to a life of shame and sleepless nights filled with hairless nightmares -- for he was cursed. One day, he bought an inferior beard care product, and his nipples grew wings and flew away. The end.
 
Anyways, Hangslow returned from the concession stand, and observed the frenzied gallery, this travesty of blood in the ring below. He stood in the archway of the loge, eating from a crinkly bag of fried spicy chips, and sipping a delicious beer intermittently between stoic bites. As the chaotic stands seethed with people scrambling around for things to hurl down at the rampaging beast, he calmly threaded each salty chip into his mouth, parting the dangling whiskers of his incredibly-well-conditioned and quite-wonderful-smelling beard without dropping nary a crumb upon his resplendent chin-mane of glory.
 
Unsatisfied with a mere two kills, the vengeful bull El Filete was still thirsty for additional vengeance, as he was understandably obsessed with revenge due to the numerous pointy things shivved into his ribs. The crowd parted in the stands each time the mad bull hurled himself up the walls of the ring to try and skewer yet more Madrileños. Meanwhile, at the center of the ring, a baby wandered about with innocent delight. Somehow, the cutest little toddler ever conceived had found his way to the center of the ring. It waddled there, with its little pudgy cheeks, giggling and pointing at an elegant rainbow-winged butterfly flapping about him which he must have chased. Still, Hangslow crunched on his fried spicy chips, and sipped his tasty Spanish beer intermittently.
 
The beast El Filete saw this and turned to look; blood dripped from his evil face, his coat of matted black fur wept crimson tears that had scrawled a pattern on the canvas of sand and earth which marked the wild path that he had tread. At this predictable development, Hangslow crunched the last of his chips and swigged the last of his beer, placing the empty packaging and the brown glass bottle in an appropriate receptacle for rubbish like a gentleman. Earl wiped his mouth, then proceeded down the cobbled steps and vaulted himself down into the ring. He raised his hands to the crowd, then twirled an end of his mustache as he walked.
 
The remaining crowd that huddled in the higher tiers of the stadium was momentarily silent, then began crying out for Hangslow to save him, “Salvarlo! Salvarlo!” The mad bull El Filete also watched, grinning an evil grin as Earl squared off between the beast and the little cute baby (who was entirely oblivious to its incredibly precarious situation, as is expected of recently birthed human of limited neurological development) as the butterfly danced about the child’s head. A great cheer erupted from the stands.
 
Earl stared at the bull. El Filete, the Vengefully Obsessed, stamped his front left hoof (he is also left-hooved, imagine that) and snorted two puffs of steam like a cartoonish cliché of a bull. Despite this obviously ham-handed display, Hangslow was unmoved; the bearded legend stared insanely at the aggressive theatrics of the bull and began shouting like a berserker of Viking lore. Louder and louder his continuous shouting became. Earl’s eyes became bloodshot, the big, thick veins in his neck and arms and face and beard (and elsewhere, generally) began throbbing and pulsing like they might separate entirely from his skin. El Filete bucked and threw his head; then he charged. Hangslow whipped out a vial of his unparalleled organic beard oil that smelled like liquid heaven, and rubbed it in his hands. As El Filete advanced, Earl then stroked his beard but once. The bull stopped, paralyzed from horn to heel, a black shadow cloaked in swirling dust. Then, Hangslow raised his other hand, the prime oil shining upon his upraised fingers and palm, and stroked his beard with that final, devastating stroke.
 
Immediately upon completing this second coat of Earl Hangslow’s life-changing beard oil, the mad bull El Filete exploded, splattering blood in a radius of really, super far (like two streets away they had to clean blood off the windows of an office building). The concussion blew a haze of grit into the air, and once it settled, it revealed the crater where the terrible animal met his end.
 
After everyone wiped the blood from their faces, they saw Earl Hangslow, standing with the cute little baby in his arms. Hangslow waved a bloody hand to the crowd that applauded him, and released the rainbow butterfly from his massive fist. Then, like a storm of righteous, beefy hail, perfectly cooked steaks rained down from the sky. New York Strips, Filet Mignons, Del Monico Cuts, Top Rounds, and double burgers with delicious beer-infused cheddar cheese tumbled into the hands of one and all. Where the cheese came from, no one knows. But the crowd cheered anyways, still covered in El Filete’s blood, while the baby was returned to its mother and had grown a little wispy beard upon its chinny-chin-chin. Hangslow produced a fine cigar, caught a massive Porterhouse out of the air for his dinner, and walked off into the sunset like the bossest dude ever to walk the Earth, you guys.



Al Pascarelli
Al Pascarelli

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