Interview with a cabbage head

by Ken Carpenter

“Do you, Mr. Cabbage Head, have anything you would like to say in your defense?”, the stern voice asked haughtily. “You have been content for centuries to do nothing but create flatulence in the common man, and now all of a sudden you have the audacity to try to think like a human. Don’t you know you are nothing but a tightly wrapped ball of green vegetable leaves!”
“There’s no need to be insulting,” Mr. Cabbage Head sniffed, “I may not have a brain but I can think at least as well as 50% of the human race. Make that 60%, and don’t forget to include yourself, Mr. Beano Breath!”
At this point in the conversation my vision began to clear and I realized that the cabbage head in the mirror was none other than my own, slightly gnarled dome. A bathroom reverie had thrown me into a dither, no doubt instigated by a recent incident whereby I earned the latest in a lifetime of less than complimentary nicknames.
In this case I was dubbed Mr. Cabbage Head, and even I could not dispute it. Would that I could, but at risk of further indignities I will just take it like a, well, a cabbageheadman.
My day had started innocently enough, a typical workday, with only a few quirks thrown in. I had less than an hour to go when I got the cabbage head making phone call.
I answered the phone and a sweet and very familiar voice said, without any preamble, “Will you cook that ham, rice and cabbage dish for dinner tonight?”
“Sure,” I said, agreeable as a chowder-diving clam.
As soon as I said it I had an instantaneous attack of dementia. That voice sounded just like the complete stranger I had to help for 15 minutes on the phone earlier in the day. Was that why it was so familiar? More confusing yet, why did she want me to cook her dinner?
These thoughts took only two seconds, then I bought my ticket to Cabbageville by uttering the now infamous words, dripping with suspicion, “Who is this?”
“It’s Sarah, who did you think it was?” said my slightly befuddled stepdaughter, who was on her way home from Coeur d ‘Alene with her Mom.
I stuttered out a feeble explanation, hung up the phone, and it rang again 45 seconds later.
“How many women call you at work and ask you to make cabbage for dinner?” my wife demanded as soon as I answered. “AND, why did you say yes when you didn’t even know who it was?”
“Ummm… none and I don’t know,” I squeaked.
“Hmrph!” she replied, ending the conversation.
When I saw them a couple hours later, I was greeted as Mr. Cabbage Head, and I suppose it was fitting that the house was filled with the savory odor of fried cabbage.
I snorted and returned to my skillet, determined not to open my mouth and become the proud owner of some other, even worse, nickname.
I have since decided that being a cabbagehead isn’t really such a bad thing. Cabbages have been a food staple for 2500 years, and they have many medicinal and nutritional values to humans, including anti-aging and anti-cancer.
Men are especially fond of them, probably because we like their bombastic side effects. Women, at least the ones I have recently been exposed to, seem to think men like cabbage because our thought processes work the same way, kinda like twin brothers.
The truth is somewhere in the middle, for in all honesty my traitorous brain has been producing more and more thoughts that even a self-respecting cabbage would not claim. On the other hand, those side effects I mentioned can often distract a female from noticing some of those pesky cabbage thoughts.
Of particular interest to me is the French term of endearment “mon chou”. Literally translated it means “my cabbage”, and it is used to mean “my darling” so maybe the French discovered men’s cabbagelike tendencies before my wife did.
Funny thing is, I don’t think Mr. Cabbage Head is a term of endearment at all.

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