Taco Burrito Theory Episode 4: Takosuburitō

Taco Burrito Theory Episode 4: Takosuburitō

Takosuburito (TBT Episode 4)

Taco Burrito Theory Episode 4: Takosuburitō

This story is part of a series:

Taco Burrito Theory Episode 1: Taco Burrito Theorem 101

Taco Burrito Theory Episode 2: Burrito Tuesday

Taco Burrito Theory Episode 3: Burrito Expansionism 404

Taco Burrito Theory Episode 4: Takosuburito

Taco Burrito Theory Episode 5: Global Crisis Imminent!


 

Arturo Hidalgo-Juan Carlos had already been in London for a week, but he felt no closer to uncovering his long lost family history.

He got a whiff of Mongolian beef cooking on a food cart further down the street. He’d been eating tacos since this whole thing started in hopes they’d help jog his memory. Arturo figured maybe a change of dinner was what he needed.

The smell grew closer as he waded through the crowded street. Finally he spotted the cart and the line of people that had formed in front of it.

When he got to the front of the line the first thing he noticed was the cart’s name in big bold letter above the menu: MONGOWIAN BEEF TACOS! YUMMY!

“Really?” Arturo sighed to himself.

He ordered two tacos.

“Taco Burrito Theory,” he repeated to himself as he ate his dinner on the sidewalk against a building near the cart. “Why does that mean something to me? Taco Burrito Theory, Taco Burrito Theory…”

He slowly raised his cup of water to take a sip. A woman walking by and mistook him for a homeless man and dropped a handful of change in his cup. The water splashed onto Arturo’s pants. He took the last bite of his tacos and wiped his hands off on a discarded copy of a Zitz & Chips magazine on the ground beside him.

A black SUV with dark tinted windows pulled up in front of him and he caught his own reflection. He couldn’t blame the woman – he did look kind of homeless.

Two large men in black suits got out of the car and stood in front of Arturo on the sidewalk – arms crossed, eyes forward, showing no emotion.

“Um, excuse me guys,” Arturo said. “I’m sort of sitting here.”

The men didn’t move.

“Okay then, guess I’ll be on my way,” Arturo said.

He stood up and began walking away. He took a quick look behind him and saw that the two men were following him. The black SUV was slowly creeping along as well.

As he turned the next corner he took off into a full sprint. Checking behind him a few times to see if he’d lost his pursuers. No luck, but he was able to create some distance between them.

He picked up his pace down a dark alley.

“Could have gone without those Mongolian beef tacos right now, Jesus.” Arturo said to himself – his stomach was cramping up. “No more fusion food carts, this time I’m serious.”

He turned another corner in the dark alley, hoping to finally ditch whoever was following him. As he turned his head to check, something grabbed him. Something wooden came down with a hard thud on his head. Arturo passed out.

>>>LATER ON…<<<

Arturo awoke on a small boat. A short Japanese man with a long white beard sat at the back of the boat rowing. They were on a calm murky waterway engulfed in a thick fog.

“Where am… What is… Who are you?” Arturo said.

“You are on my boat. I helped you to escape a most unfortunate situation. I am Master Kito,” Kito said.

“Where are you taking me?”

“I’m taking you to Japan. There you will be safe. I will tell you everything you need to know when we arrive.”

“You’re going to row us to Japan in this thing!?”

Master Kito laughed and continued rowing.

“Well?” Arturo said.

“I will tell you everything you need to know when we arrive,” Kito said.

>>>WAY LATER…<<<

“Welcome to Japan, Mr. Hidalgo-Juan Carlos,” Kito said as the two men climbed down the stairs of the small plane.

They landed on a small airstrip on a family farm at the bottom of a massive mountain. The mountain was made up of jagged cliff faces that were dotted in spots by vivid green trees, tall grass, and bamboo. The summit was covered in clouds. A heavy mist surrounded the two men and the mountain.

“How do you know who I am?” Arturo said.

Master Kito motioned his head and eyes towards the University access card still attached to Arturo’s belt loop.

“Oh,” Arturo said, examining the card. “But why’d you grab me?”

“You’re eager to find answers. I assure you, they will reveal themselves when you are ready to face your true destiny,” Kito said.

“My destiny? What is this all about?”

“Don’t act so surprised. You are the one who started this journey after all,” Master Kito said. “But for now, we climb.”

Master Kito led Arturo across the green farm fields and towards the base of the mountain. The mist grew heavier. By the time they reached the base, Arturo’s clothes were soaked.

Master Kito stopped walking and removed his canvas shoes from his feet and placed them in a small hole in a boulder. He looked at Arturo to do the same.

Soaked and now barefoot, Arturo followed Master Kito around the boulder where they placed their shoes.

“What are we…?” Arturo couldn’t finish the question before Master Kito pushed aside some tall grass to reveal a steep, narrow staircase that looked like it had been carved into the mountainside over a thousand years ago.

“Up,” Master Kito said and began to climb the stairs.

The men began to climb.

“Jesus, Master Kito,” Arturo stopped to catch his breath. “Where are you taking me?”

“Everything in its own time. For now, we climb,” Master Kito said.

>>>5 HOURS LATER…<<<

Arturo collapsed at the top of the stairs. Master Kito had led him to his secret dojo on the summit of the giant mountain. The dojo looked as ancient as the stairs.

Large mountain gorillas shared the dojo grounds. A group of young gorillas inched towards Arturo to inspect the newcomer.

“They won’t hurt you. As long as they decide you’re not a threat,” Kito said.

“How do they do that?” Arturo said.

“They’re very particular,” Kito said.

Master Kito led Arturo inside the dojo and poured him some hot tea.

“How is your journey going so far?” Master Kito asked.

“How’d do you even know about it?” Arturo said.

Master Kito laughed and ignored the question.

“I guess you probably already know how it’s going then. I really don’t even know what I’m looking for. All I’m going off of is this stupid phrase, ‘taco burrito theory.’”

“And you set out to England to uncover the origins of the phrase?”

“Actually I set out to Spain first, but I remembered my family’s from England. That’s why I’m searching I guess, there was something about the phrase I remember from my childhood. I must have been too young for any real memories, but something about it struck me. I know it has to do with my family. Maybe a distant relative? I’m not sure,” Arturo said.

“And why, after so much struggle and failure, do you wish to continue your journey?” Kito said.

“That’s a good question. And trust me when I say, I’m tired of this. But, there’s something that won’t let me quit,” Arturo said.

“Good, Mr. Hidalgo-Juan Carlos,” Kito said. “That’s what I was hoping you’d say. I think that you are ready to begin. But first, you must rest.”

>>>3 DAYS LATER…<<<

Master Kito was outside near the gorillas. He was balancing on one foot atop a tall, wavering bamboo shoot. His eyes were closed and in his hands was what looked like a mop.

Kito went through a series of deliberate movements with the mop-thing, switching feet, jumping, and flipping throughout the practice. All the while keeping his eyes closed and balancing on the tall bamboo shoot.

Arturo watched in disbelief. He couldn’t wrap his head around how this little old man was moving like that.

“Master Kito! What was that?”

“Good morning Mr. Hidalgo-Juan Carlos. That was the ancient practice of janitorial arts. The specific practice you saw me doing is a product of what you search for – the Taco Burrito Theory,” Kito said.

“Wait, wait, wait. Sorry, a few things are coming up for me,” Arturo said. “So janitorial arts – in that sense – is actually a thing?”

“Before the samurai even, janitorial arts have been practiced here in Japan, yes.”

“And, that, in your hand, is?”

“This is a mop.”

“Okay, that’s what it looks like. And so, what does Taco Burrito Theory have to do with janitorial arts and my family?”

“Come with me.”

Master Kito led Arturo inside the dojo once again and poured some tea. He pulled an old, handwritten book from off the shelf and blew the dust on the cover. It was written in Japanese. The front cover read: Takosu No Buritō No Riron To Sore Nashi De, Sono Jugyō De Seisō Geijutsu No Genkai, which roughly translated to Taco Burrito Theory and The Limits Of Janitorial Arts In Its Lessons Without It.

“This book is the official documentation on the Taco Burrito Theory of which you seek. It was authored here, in this very dojo, by your great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great grandfather, Master Juan-Pedro Hidalgo-Juan Carlos. He was the only student that I’ve taught the ways of janitorial arts that was able to teach me something in return.”

“Student you’ve taught?” Arturo said. “Master Kito, that had to be over 300 years ago.”

Master Kito laughed and carefully placed the book back on the shelf.

“Master Juan-Pedro was inquisitive like you.”

“So you’re saying you’re over 300 years old? Come on.”

“After a while, I stopped keeping track. There is still much you have to learn about this world Mr. Hidalgo-Juan Carlos.”

“None of this makes any sense,” Arturo said. “My great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great grandfather – your student – came up with this theory that apparently makes you some sort of super janitor? It doesn’t make sense. Why on Earth would I be so compelled to search for that answer?”

“It is that, but it is more than that too. Master Juan-Pedro discovered the Taco Burrito Theory’s true power not long after he discovered its application in janitorial arts.”

“You really don’t have to pause anymore, I’m just going to try to hold my questions until the end. Please, just continue.”

“In the beginning, the Taco Burrito Theory simply helped unlock new understandings of the flow of motion and mind that builds the foundation of the janitorial arts. The Taco Burrito Theory took it all to a new level – one’s senses becoming entirely in-sync with the environment, learning to sense incongruities and imbalance within it. Using the mop, the broom, the squeegee as true extensions of one’s body – being able to sense even more through the tools. In all my years of practice, I had never experienced anything like it.”

To test the “theory,” Arturo slyly slid his cup of tea towards the edge of the table. It began to fall. Master Kito was standing on the opposite side of the table.

In an instant, Kito back-kicked the handle of a broom in the corner of the room. The broom flipped above the table and across the room landing between the handle of a bucket and the floor. When the broom handle met the floor, the bucket slid across the room, stopping precisely underneath the falling teacup, catching its contents.

“Please don’t waste good tea again,” Master Kito continued. “The Taco Burrito Theory’s effect on janitorial arts was powerful. I achieved things I never came close to in over a few hundred years of practice.

Your great, great, great, great, great, great, great grandfather was young, highly intelligent, and curious. He was highly advanced at the janitorial arts, learning quicker than anyone before him. Despite his advancements though, he had not finished his training and he craved something more. He tested his theory outside the practice against my recommendations, but with great success at first.

The farm we past on our way to the dojo was infertile before Master Juan-Pedro applied the theory. He ended a 5,000-year famine that had crippled much of the region. And he moved on from there. Eventually, word spread and he was called back to England to strategize how to expand its territory in the New World.

It was there that Master Juan-Pedro witnessed the dangerous and evil capabilities of the Taco Burrito Theory if left unchecked and if applied for the wrong reasons. He returned to Japan sometime during the French and Indian War.

When he returned, he stormed into the dojo in search of Takosu No Buritō No Riron To Sore Nashi De, Sono Jugyō De Seisō Geijutsu No Genkai so he could destroy it once and for all.

I asked him why he wanted to do so, and he recounted the horrors he had witnessed at the hand of the Taco Burrito Theory. He was ashamed he had created something capable of such evil and destruction. He apologized for acting against my advice and leaving his training unfinished.

However, I would not allow him to destroy his creation. The Taco Burrito Theory was indeed a powerful tool, and the world would need it one day, but it was not yet ready. It is not yet ready today.

I swore to protect the book and its teachings until the time was right.”

“So, I forgot to mention, what sparked this whole thing is when I saw the class at the University called Taco Burrito Theory 101. How, if you say you’ve protected the theory this whole time, could it be a class at a University?” Arturo said.

“Ah yes, but I never said people didn’t try to uncover the true theory. There have been attempts to recreate and rediscover it, but all applications have fallen short. The men who were chasing you were likely sent after the true teachings of the Taco Burrito Theory themselves. One man in particular, Seymoor Fandanglesburgerstein, has become consumed with the search of the Takosu No Buritō Riron,” Kito said.

“The what?”

“The Taco Burrito Theory. He has come close, but his methods come nowhere close to the power of the original theory. Which is why he teaches the course at the university. I think he hopes to find a young prodigy disciple much like I did with your great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great grandfather. For the world’s sake, I’m glad he has not.”

>>>3 YEARS LATER…<<<

Arturo’s training in the way of the janitorial arts was coming to an end. He was by no means as gifted as his great, great, great, great, great, great grandfather, but he was talented nonetheless.

Master Kito told Arturo that he was now responsible to help protect the true Taco Burrito Theory until the world was ready for it. Arturo gladly accepted his destiny.

“There’s still one thing I’ve got to ask before I leave, Master Kito,” Arturo said.

“Yes, I think you’ve earned that,” Kito said.

“Why no shoes?”

“They anger the gorillas.”


 

Read the next story in this series: Taco Burrito Theory Episode 5: Global Crisis Imminent!