How to Commit the Perfect Murder by Feeding Your Victim to Death

by Anne Bennett on January 9, 2010

Believe it or not, this was the title of a paper I wrote in college in 1974. I was enrolled in a writing seminar with a disparate group of students, one of whom was an ex-convict named Mike. Mike seemed highly intelligent and sophisticated, thus I imagined his crime to have been a nonviolent act such as theft or fraud rather than, well, murder.

He also had a surly countenance which served as a warning that he didn’t suffer fools well. I was 23-years-old and had dieted myself down to fashionable thinness (I had recently broken up with a boyfriend and was so depressed I didn’t eat for months. It was great for my figure!). I could tell right off that Mike the ex-con hated me. He probably assumed from my college-girl attire that I was a vain, vapid airhead, and he didn’t give me the time of day.

That is, until I submitted this paper. The procedure went like this: we wrote papers pertaining to our specific interests, made copies for the group and then, after everyone had read it, we engaged in a critical discussion led by the professor.

I remember the look on Mike’s face when I gave him his copy. He didn’t even glance up as he took the paper from me and then…and then…he read the title.  For the first time Mike the ex-con looked me right in the eye, and did I detect a certain degree of, shall we say, admiration?

Maybe Mike did do time for murder, I thought. He seems to really like the subject. A faint smile crept onto his face as he read through to the end. When he had finished reading, he looked up and we exchanged one mutual nod. We never talked after that day, but I could tell that he had changed his opinion of me. I had become worthy of his respect. I was A-OK with Mike the ex-con/potential murderer.

hamburger

Delayed-Action Murder Weapon

I actually did have a victim in mind when I wrote the paper. (I’m going to hell when I die.) The method didn’t involve anything as oafish as clubbing someone to death with a frozen leg of lamb and then defrosting, roasting and eating it, thus destroying the evidence.

No, my method was much more subtle. I prescribed how a person could, with a rudimentary knowledge of nutrition, murder someone by feeding them food that would cause devastating disease, and ultimately, death. This method required patience, I wrote, and was not for the would-be murderer-in-a-rush. I even gave recipes that were sure-fire artery-cloggers just to bolster my thesis.

It has just occurred to me that if I were to write this same paper today I’d have to change the title to, “How To Eat Like the Average American.”

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Donna January 10, 2010 at 11:02 am

Wonder if Mike used your paper on his next victim, if in fact he was a murder?

Linda January 11, 2010 at 6:08 am

Heh, heh, heh…. Anne, I think somebody is making their first million off your idea:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O9N4Y1DpTxs

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