C.H.A.R.T.W.E.L.L.S. Part II

The following is the continuation of the film treatment printed in last month’s issue. Our story so far: While on assignment for W (Dr. Wildenthal), Temoc (Agent 007) uncovered inexcusable negligence at the IHOP Express. After pursuing the manager in a fight to the death, all Temoc has to go on is a bizarre logo found on the nametag of the manager…

Deep in the bowels of NSERL, in a deserted lab haunted by the ghosts of researchers who had moved next door to BSB, Temoc was surfing AOL. After multiple unsuccessful attempts to log into his Zmail, Q (Dr. Bruce Novak, Dean of Natural Science and Mathematics) reminded him that UTD switched to Outlook a year ago. Finally accessing his student email account for the first time in months, Temoc held his breath as his inbox blew up, inundated by 10 emails.

“How did you only receive 10 emails since January?” Q inquired, astounded. “I get like three eLearning notifications a day, and I’m not even a student.”

“You forget Q; I’m on His Interim Presidency’s Secret Service. I have to work deeply incognito. Nobody knows I exist.” With this, UTD’s mascot returned to clearing his inbox.

Suddenly Temoc froze. At the top of his inbox sat a message from a person he hadn’t seen in a very long time, Dr. David Daniel. Images of Temoc’s glory days flashed before his eyes. Dr. Daniel’s tenure as D had been long and storied, but had come to a tragic end only recently when, before 007’s very eyes, Dr. Daniel was stolen from UTD by the steely claws of the UT System, ensnared by upper-echelon bureaucracy, a fate worse than death. Temoc recalled the last time he had seen D. Dr. Daniel had been crouched in the bathroom of Classroom Building 3, sobbing as he clutched a Dining Hall take-out container in his hand. As he had gazed up at 007 he whispered, “It’s too much. I have to leave.” With that, D rose and walked passed a stunned Temoc, who would never see the new Deputy Chancellor of the UT System again. Yet here was an email from beyond UTD. The subject line simply read “Redacted” and the only content of the message was a link to a YouTube video. Following the hyper-link, Temoc found himself staring at a clip of Dr. Daniel’s face speaking to the camera. The late D spoke.

“Temoc, if anything happens to me, I want you look inside the Dining Hall West kitchens. There you will find answers.”

Temoc turned to face Q, the flames on the back of his head knocking binders and molecular models off the shelf next to him.

“Q, book me a Zipcar. I’m heading to the dining hall.”

“Are you sure about that 007? Eating cell cultures out of a bio lab seems safer than eating at the Dining Hall.”

“I didn’t take this job because I thought it would be easy…”

“…you took it for the chance to serve UTD. I applaud your courage.”

“No, no, UTD wasn’t even my first choice, I wanted to be the mascot at UT Austin. No, I took this job for the suits and the women. And since this suit was purchased by D, I think the least I can do is honor his YouTube videos while I’m wearing it.”

Q proceeded to lead Temoc through the abandoned labs of NSERL, outfitting him with gadgets he might find useful in his quest for dining justice. First, Temoc downloaded UTD Eats to his iPhone partly to track the activity of Dining Services, but mostly for its detailed campus map. Second, he was given a Nerf Gun that only he could fire. Unlocking the gun required Temoc to state his NetID and password aloud no sooner than five seconds before pulling the trigger. Finally, he was equipped with a modified GoPro that could be remote operated by Q. With the camera subtly concealed (strapped onto Temoc’s forehead), Q would be able to provide 007 with real-time night-vision, thermal-vision, and slow-motion replay information all while documenting both Temoc’s discoveries and sexual exploits for posterity.

Outfitted like the qualified intelligence operative he wasn’t, Temoc found two random women in evening dresses outside of NSERL and led them to his Zipcar after giving them a blank-faced look that could only be interpreted as “Netflix and chill?” Upon arriving at the dining hall, 007’s new lady friends engaged the staff in a debate over the differences in taste between normal and Texas-shaped waffles while Temoc slipped into the kitchens unnoticed. Before he vanished from sight, he had time to notice the dismayed and bitter expressions of students throughout the dining hall. They were the kind of looks usually reserved for surprise quizzes and that moment when a room becomes so cluttered that it’s unlivable.

Temoc had only walked about 20 feet before he saw something brutally incriminating, the same logo from the IHOP manager’s nametag plastered on the kitchen wall. Suddenly, Q informed him that two employees were about to round the corner. Quickly, 007 peeled a banana and chucked the peel in the path of the kitchen staff. One slipped and fell, knocking himself out, while the other knelt to help her coworker. That’s when Temoc turned on his charm. As he helped the woman check on her companion, he wooed her with his dreamy, unblinking eyes and blue-hued physique. An hour later, after a detour to the Wellness Center to pick up a condom, Temoc had been informed that a secretive meeting was soon to take place in the SU.

Arriving at the Galaxy rooms, Temoc managed to sneak into the back by blending in with the crowd, his tuxedo and beach ball sized head indistinguishable from all of the food service employees in the room. With awe he realized that every dining outlet on campus was represented in the room, all seated under a banner with the logo from the nametag and the acronym C.H.A.R.T.W.E.L.L.S. (Corporate Hegemony for Apathy, Racketeering, and Theft of Wealth at the Expense of Learners, Laborers, and Stomachs). Temoc watched with horror as they gleefully discussed ways to disappoint students at their respective food service establishments. 007 was so stunned to learn of this shadowy organization behind all campus dining that he failed to notice when everyone except the man seated at the head of the table left the room.

“Mr. Moc, I see you have finally found me” the man said as he stepped into the light, stroking an albino rabbit in his arm.

“May I know who I have the pleasure of meeting?”

“My name is Ernst Stavro Waffled. What do you think of my little project?”

“Seems excessively grandiose to me, but I’ll humor you. What is this?”

“Don’t you see?” Waffled chuckled, “No frozen yogurt machine in the dining hall, no grilled chicken at Chick-fil-a, no meal exchange over Spring Break, reduced hours on weekends, every disappointing and overpriced meal consumed on campus; it was all me, Temoc. It’s always been me. The author of all your pain. UTD dining is my monopoly. I pull strings and dreams of pleasant meals are shattered.”

“Well that’s rather rude of you. Don’t you think?”

“Your posturing won’t save you this time. Diced Comet will make a fine garnish on the Panda Express tomorrow.” As Waffled began to laugh hysterically, two henchmen entered the room and approached Temoc.

“Wait,” cried Temoc, “before you kill me, please let me check eLearning. I really need to know what I got on that Calc test.”

While Waffled and his goons hesitated, 007 pulled out his phone, and said aloud “tmc000007, pa55w0rd.” Before his opponents could react, Temoc used his knowledge of projectile motion from physics to nail both henchmen in their eyes with the Nerf gun. Slowly, Temoc approached Waffled…

AMP’s investigators were unable to decipher any of the transcript beyond this point. Although to be honest, they also stopped because they lost the will to continue. Apparently, some people find “We’re watching” written in mayo on their Subway sandwich to be intimidating. Personally, I pledge to continue the quest for culinary justice in the grand tradition of Gordon Ramsey, the FDA, and Remy from Ratatouille. I will not rest until all students know of the existence of Cha–