Nacirema – Rapid Sustenance Stations

I have observed many of the Nacirema making regular visits to rapid sustenance stations where they make a small gift in exchange for a meal prepared in extreme haste. This usually consists of local delicacies such as regrebmah: the meat from large black and white quadrupeds heated over a fire plate and eaten on grain cakes or teggun: meat from small fowl served after being dipped in a vat of grease. Served with these are starchy roots chopped up and also grease-dipped. None of these dishes are usable for actual nourishment but they are eaten anyway for their ceremonial value.

Individuals must make further gifts if they wish to be presented with a liquid receptacle. Once this has been given to them they must venture to the potion spring where they may fill it. Often the potions contain special powders, which make it difficult for the Nacirema to sleep but even children drink them for their saccharine taste. The potions are infused with a substance that makes them bubble and fizz and that can cause headaches and dizziness when too much is in the air.

After the Nacirema have gathered their food and potions together, they may either sit on a bench to eat and drink with haste or they may put all these things in a carrying case and return to their method of transportation. Sometimes they are in such a hurry they refuse to leave their transporters and pull them up instead to an opening in the wall. Here they make their gift before a carrying case that usually contains the things they ask for will be handed out.

The Nacirema are obsessed with the above-mentioned eating ritual to the point of which some may actually die from it. This is a common form of mortality for members of Nacireman society. Other Nacirema have managed to avoid this by only eating ceremonial food when they don’t have time for any other, but even these struggle to remain healthy.

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