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Reader, take heed: Though the “if” in this piece’s name may lead you
to believe that the below account represents a blindly hypothetical
postulation of the titular event, there is nothing hypothetical about
it. A better title might have been “When Matt Finley Gave a Real Pig a
Real Pancake.” This, however, is hypothetical. There is no way to know
with any degree of certainty whether the proposed possibly better
title would have, in actuality, been any more effective. That having
been said, I still kind of feel that it would have been.

With that out of the way, I will tell you what happens if you give a
real pig a real pancake: chaos. And not the kind of hyperbolic chaos
that one might refer to in describing a two-hour mattress sale, film
opening or gas-bombed race riot. I mean actual throat-slitting,
blood-soaked chaos, with all of the ball lightening, raining viscera
and billowing diesel smoke that the word has come to denote. I hope
that by explaining this as concisely and as gruesomely as possible, I
can convince those among you who are prone to boat-rocking mischief
and/or shenanigans that there are some boats best left unrocked.

I feel that it would be beneficial, in lieu of creating the monstrous
new words necessary to describe in full the anarchy catalyzed by the
giving of said pancake to said pig, to lay out the three mistakes I
made in both my planning and methodology. This way, even the most
careless miscreants among you, who choose to turn a deaf ear to the
facts and prepare a hot, delicious pancake and present it to a pig,
will have a rudimentary understanding of the most crucial things to
avoid. Do not be fooled into believing that these were the only times
when I erred. These are just the times when I erred the hardest.

Mistake #1: The basic ideation.
Give a pancake to a pig? Yes. For I believed with all my heart that
the pig would enjoy it 100%. If only I had reminded myself that 100%
is a mere 1% shy of far, far too much. Mathematics is a fowl,
loathsome beast indeed. I underestimated by 900%.

Mistake #2: I prepared only one pancake.
 If perhaps I had made three, or maybe even just two, I would be
writing a delightful, pithy bon mot entitled “If You Give a Pig
Pancakes.” And you, dear reader, could sit back in your chair,
enjoying the tale with your spouse or a friend, warmed through by the
logs on the fire and the smoked gamey mirth in the air. Instead,
everything is awful. Ugh. I am vomiting.

Mistake #3: I gave the pancake to a pig.
This was a terrible, terrible decision. Just awful.

In the wake of the event, my reactions were rash and sloppy, drunk as
I was on the sweet nectar of my own generosity. I faced down something
nameless and primal that day, as I tried to reach out into the ether
of dreams and, with spry, eager fingers, tickle the feet of God. I
stood amidst a universal force so engorged with an ancient, malevolent
intelligence, that it seemed larger than all pigs and all pancakes.

Whoever thinks to give a pig a pancake should be careful not to, for
if you stare long enough into the abyss, the abyss stares also into
you.

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