There’s been a lot of talk about Crock Pots lately. No doubt you’ve seen the reports on all the major media outlets, local news, the Internet, newspapers, around the water cooler at work. It’s all been in response to recently declassified documents, obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request by the National Society for Flavor Safety, that highlight the effects that Crock Pots have had on society, and our daily lives. The results are quite shocking.
The documents, which total over five thousand pages of in depth scientific observation by the National Society for Science and Scientific Science Discoveries of Science, which secretly cost the tax payers over fourteen billion dollars, are a detailed discourse of a savory menace lurking within our homes. To go into depth on the breadth of this study is best saved for a college lecture series or a special on the Cooking Channel. Instead this essay is meant to highlight a particular case which, for arguments sake, can be considered a common example of the danger of a Crock Pot.
Case #4453JKM454, was a one day, black box observation of a four unit apartment complex called The Whispering Trout Luxury Apartment Homes. In particular the observation focused on a man named Jeff Thistleman, a middle manager at a local consulting firm. Thistleman was singe, had a pet, liked football and beer, never broke the law, he was affable and generally considered to be a good guy.
On the night of October 15, 2013 Jeff prepared the ingredients for Easy Beef Stew. It consisted of 2 pounds of beef stew meat, 4 medium potatoes, 4 carrots, 1 medium onion and 2 cans of tomato sauce with 1 teaspoon of salt and ½ teaspoon black pepper for taste. He combined all the ingredients in his Crock Pot and left it in the fridge overnight. The next morning Jeff woke, took a shower, got ready for work, took the Crock Pot out of the fridge, plugged it in and left. The beginning of a tragedy had begun.
Walter Burns lived upstairs. Walter was seventy eight years old, bed ridden with a weak heart. When the savory smell of slow roasting stew meat infiltrated into his bedroom Walter was helpless to stop it. Memories of his own mother’s beef stew filled his mind and slowly drove him crazy. Knowing that he would never taste her cooking again (she had been gone for twenty years) and that the chances of Jeff bringing him a steaming bowl of tasty beef stew, slow cooked on Low for 8 to 10 hours was nil, Walter committed suicide.
On the first floor, Jeff’s next door neighbor, Susan Parks, a twenty something medical student studying for her finals in what would be a career make or break semester, began smelling the delightfully torturous aroma of potatoes and beef juice. After ten minutes she found it nearly impossible to study. After fifteen minutes she gave up and left her house to take her final exam. Those lost fifteen minutes proved to be pivotal as she failed her test horribly, answering 15 out of 400 questions correctly. Susan was kicked out of medical school and has since moved back in with her parents. She now works at Taco Bell.
The last apartment to experience the taste bud teasing wafting of beef that melts in your mouth like warm milk chocolate was upstairs next to Walter Burns. Jennifer and Mark Peebly lived there with their two young daughters, Samantha and Sarah. Once the smell invaded their home, and the realization that they would not be having something for dinner that came even remotely close to the quality of taste that was slow cooking downstairs a massive argument started. The kids started crying and Jennifer stormed out of the apartment with the kids screaming for a divorce. Mark went downstairs and threw a brick through the Jeff’s window screaming obscenities. Mark urinated on Jeff’s doorstep and went back upstairs.
Inside Jeff’s apartment, Jeff’s golden retriever, Sandy, was slowly being tortured by the smell of meat cooking to absolute perfection. Having a sense of smell one thousand times stronger than a human, Sandy was slowly driven crazy by the intense smell of food that she would absolutely never be allowed to have. She urinated and defecated multiple times in Jeff’s bed and when the brick came through the window Sandy jumped out and ran away.
At 5:30 Jeff returned home to his apartment to find his window broken, his doormat smelling of urine and his dog missing. He went into his apartment to eat dinner. Here is where the observation becomes very interesting. Thirty minutes after Jeff arrived home a pizza delivery man was observed to come to Jeff’s door with a large pepperoni and olive pizza. Jeff paid in cash and slammed the door behind him.
The conclusion of this particular case study determined that a Crock Pot left to cook all day can be extremely dangerous. Not only for any animals left inside but also for anyone within a one hundred foot radius of the pot.
It must be noted that there were some irregularities within the observation. The coroner’s report on Walter Burns indicated that he may have actually been dead for over a week at the time of the incident. Susan Park had been observed on several occasions partying at local fraternities on nights she should have been studying. Sandy ended up in a local shelter an hour after her escape, in which time she was believed to have somehow contracted a very serious case of worms which caused uncontrollable urination and defecation. It was also found that Jennifer had informed Mark that she was cheating on him with Jeff on the same day as the beef stew. In maybe the most interesting twist of the case, analysis of the electricity usage that day in Jeff’s apartment does support the theory that Jeff plugged the Crock Pot in but never turned it on. All of these irregularities were dismissed to simple coincidence and the conclusion that the Crock Pot was the cause of everything was upheld.