Extra Crispy

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$_32First sentence submitted by Madeline Walker of Victoria, British Columbia, Canada.

I’ve wasted my life. I’m fifty-years-old and cooking french fries for people who are too lazy to do it themselves. Droplets of grease weigh down my arm hair, and my skin shines with sweat. It’s a hundred degrees back here, and all day I’ve been lugging twenty-pound boxes from the freezer across the slick floor so these slobs can have their chicken strips, onion rings, and breaded fish fillets.

I yank a large bag from the mini-freezer beside the fryer, rip off a corner, and tilt it over an empty basket. Frozen fries tumble out in chunks of stuck together sticks. Crumbs escape through the mesh and crackle in the three hundred and fifty degree oil. I lift the basket from the holster and set it into the amber pool. The frost coating the fries explodes to steam with a symphony of sizzles and snaps. The surging bubbles form…

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