Gather round you all and hear the tale
The Tale of a Man who made the world better
The Tale of a Man who righted wrongs and healed nations
The Tale of Jeff
The Man Who Named Salads.
It may seem hard to believe, my children, but once - many years ago, all salads were just called 'salad'
In these confusing times, even the simplest of lunches was naught but a festival of confusion an dark surprises, for upon ordering 'salad' all excepted with sad certainty that you could be served any number of different options
-It might have lettuce, tomato and cheese
-It might have corn ships and tomato
-It might be a jiggling egg based affair
-Or some chicken, mayo, and potato
'WOE!' cried the people, for their suffering was great. 'How shall we live with this uncertainty? How can one small word encompass such diversity?? And in what universe is Jello with pineapple chunks suspended on it a 'salad'? I'm sorry, simply putting it on top of a lettuce leaf in no way makes that a salad, I don't care how much whipped cream you dollop upon it!'
And then the people fell silent into despair, for there was no salvation apparent to them, and they resigned themselves to an eternity of ill-defined diet food.
And it was thus, as the people's despair lay thick like an itchy blanket upon the land, that a child was born.
And his mother did name him 'Jeff'. For she knew that one day he would be the one foretold who would sort this whole 'salad thing' out.
And as Jeff grew unto a man he did find himself in his local cafeteria, and on seeing a simple concoction of lettuce, tomato, onion and crouton he did say, 'Gosh - That looks like a salad that belongs in this house. And so I shall name it 'House Salad. And it shall come with a balsamic vinaigrette. And all Men Shall know it thus.'
And there was great rejoicing, for the people now knew that he was truly the savior come, and that all light pre-meal preparations were well and truly on the road to clarity.
'But how,' said one poor and suffering chef, 'How shall we know this salad?' and in bitter tears he laid upon the feet of Jeff a true mastery of lettuce, boiled egg, leftover kitchen meats, and optional blue cheese or ranch dressing. And Jeff spoke to the Chef, and said to him, 'This salad stands, chef, as a testament to your ability to find a way to dispose of leftover scrap meat. And so shall it be always know for you - the Chef Salad'
And the chef cried tears of great joy as the people rejoiced.
And further salads were brought to Jeff. 'Chicken' and 'Egg' were dismissed from his sight, as they aren't actually salads, really more of sandwich spreads, and Jeff had no time for them other than to observe that it's always a mistake to put celery in them, I don't care what anybody says. It's just wrong. In exactly the same way that it's just wrong to put peppers in cornbread.
And thus was 'Waldorf', 'Cobb', and 'Taco' established. 'Ceaser' being thrown out by Jeff who was in a puckish mood that day, having just caught 'I, Claudius' on Masterpiece Theater. 'Pasta', and 'Ambrosia' then followed. 'Fruit' was brought before Jeff and was greeted with nothing but a long, withering gaze until it finally felt awkward and backed slowly out of the room.
But then, like all beacons of Hope, Jeff finally met his downfall. At the hands of 'Three Bean' did Jeff fall.
But some say - and I believe them - that if you listen and believe, on a dark and silent night you can still hear Jeff crying to the emptiness of the void, safe in the knowledge that his task was complete, knowing that he had well and truly cleared up the worlds salad confusion. And on those night, if you listen and believe, you can hear his voice on the wind, shouting-
'Why the Hell would anyone put Jell-O on a lettuce leaf???? WHY??????'