Chatty Restaurateur from the Upper Paleolithic Period Welcomes Her First Modern Day Customers

Welcome to CAVE CHICK PALEO, co-owned with ANTHROPOLOGIST! So happy! Full house tonight! I hope you like my squirrel hat!

First, some sad news. OUR CHEF JUST DIED. Fortunately, the kitchen staff, under our sous chef PETAL, my fellow cave chick, is preparing a delicious menu as I speak.

Petal and I were hunter-gathers. We lived in large cave. I had husband, Vrok (brave warrior and hunter of squirrels!), three brothers, and mother-in-law, Pain-Ass. Pain-Ass was very quarrelsome. She bullied everyone. 

As-Ho was self-appointed leader and spiritual Shaman. As-Ho was very handsome! He had three wives—very pretty! The men were jealous of As-Ho.       

Life was hard. I thought about food. I also thought about sex, but not as often as the men, or my husband Vrok. The men made thrusting gestures and laughed, and tried to mate with the women. Sometimes, if a man came near, a bleeding woman would scream and shout, and punch and kick, and take a rock and smash his head. Men were afraid of a bleeding woman. But not As-Ho. An ever-so-slightly-braver warrior than Vrok—and hunter of rabbits!–he was not afraid of anything. 

We wore animal skins, like what I’m wearing tonight, along with this cross-body pouch. Isn’t it pretty? It’s groundhog. You can purchase it from my sideline website, CAVE CHICK ACCESSORIES, as well as my squirrel hat—very popular!

While women and children foraged for food, men hunted with spears, or napped—very lazy! A woolly mammoth killed my older brother, Ugh. I didn’t like Ugh very much, so that was okay. 

Petal and I sewed grapes inside squirrel skin pouches. Wild yeasts fermented this special drink for As-Ho. If As-Ho was in good mood, he shared with everyone—but not often. This drink made us happy and we would sing.

When As-Ho was licking honey from a hive, bees stung his tongue. It swelled up like a bullfrog, and he could not eat for days. We were sad for our great, handsome leader. THE MEN? Not so much!  

If too wet to make fire, we ate meat raw. Meat made us strong and we were grateful to the animals. I ate a deer’s eyeball once—very chewy! We scavenged carrion from a saber-tooth tiger’s kill–a bad-tempered animal that wanted to eat us. In fact, it ate my middle brother, Frug, while Frug was eating the other eyeball. I didn’t like Frug very much, so that was okay.

Chewing bark removed food lodged between my teeth. I prefer your toothbrushes, toothpaste, and dental floss. My mouth smells nice now.

One time, we ate wild mustard and “magic” mushrooms for dinner—and started laughing. As-Ho began chanting, hopping back-and-forth. Faster and faster. My mother-in-law, Pain-Ass, died that night. Petal whacked her over the head with wooden club. Nobody liked Pain-Ass very much, so that was okay. We cooked her over a fire the next day. She kept us full for a long time!

It was getting colder; meat was scarce. My youngest brother, Glug, died, eating a venomous, farting caterpillar. I was sad. I liked Glug. However, we still ate him.

As artist, I painted tribe members and animals we hunted, on cave wall. However, the men (especially Vrok!) complained I’d given As-Ho (holding spear!) the largest penis. They didn’t want him as Shaman anymore, so they killed him and we ate him. We believed eating an animal’s organs increased our strength. Eating a heart, for instance, meant a stronger heart. The men fought over As-Ho’s penis, believing they would gain more length! Very childish! Smarter to eat his brain. 

As-Ho’s wives wept and wailed, gnashing their teeth while cleaning his bones. They draped his remains in animal skins, put his favorite bear hat on his head, and buried him—placing jewelry on his burial mound, and a large pinecone where his head would have been. It was quite pretty.

Soon ice formed everywhere. As I lay there freezing, wearing my squirrel hat (very popular—check my website. Rat hats too!), I wondered if this was punishment for eating As-Ho. Looking back, except for his wine hoarding, he hadn’t been that bad.

ANTHROPOLOGIST found Petal and me under ice and reanimated us, using cryonics. He named me Blondie. Blondie is good name for yellow-haired cave chick from Upper Paleolithic Period, although, I’m actually called Sprog. Apparently, I’m quite pretty…considering! He taught us English, suggested culinary career, and purchased restaurant for us–and we were grateful to anthropologist. He…very sexy! THREESOME! We not eat him.

Well, enough about me. You must be starving. It costs an arm and a leg, but our menu is to die for! For authenticity (as fire was luxury, and PETAL is a TERRIBLE cook!), everything on menu, including our dear DEAD CHEF, is served raw.     

Ronia Smits is an Anglo-American writer, artist and cat guardian who grew up in England, the Middle East and Africa. Their humor and salty satire have appeared in The Yellow Ham, Defenestration, Robot Butt, Points in Case and Little Old Lady Comedy. Ronia lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with their husband Professor Brovnik (and other wildlife!).

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