In a story out of an Italian restaurant in Queens, NY, Martha Gurerro—who has Celiac disease—is apparently willing to die not to seem like she is gluten free by choice.
Sources confirm Martha has spent her life managing Celiac disease, a chronic digestive and immune disorder that affects the lining of the small intestine such that gluten consumption causes painful damage, not to be confused with being gluten free by choice, which is honestly just dumb.
Martha came to the restaurant prepared to inform her server of this condition, but when she brought it up, he seemed confused.
“Sorry, I don’t know what that is. So you’re just saying you’re gluten free?” he asked, as if this was not a grave insult.
“Must a shark swim by choice? Nay, it swims to live,” Martha reportedly thought but did not say aloud, because that would’ve been really weird.
She found herself in an impossible position. She could give up, say she wasn’t gluten free at all, and risk ingesting an ungodly amount of gluten that could send her body into a whirlwind of pain and inflammation, or say “yes,” and seem like one of “those people.”
Martha ultimately opted to dismiss the whole thing and suffer through a bowl of penne alla vodka, a feat she would later refer to as her “personal Mount Everest.”
“We could all see she was in intense pain,” Richie, Martha’s friend and dinner guest, told reporters. “After every few bites she’d make this terrible moaning sound and throw up a little bit in her mouth. But when the waiter came by to ask how things were, she gave him a thumbs up and then heaved into the flower vase.”
Researchers at the Massachusetts Center for Celiac Disease and Treatment report that these instances are very common.
“On one hand, you’ve got an individual for whom gluten consumption can be as painful as a stab wound to the gut,” said Dr. Caroline Hynes. “But on the other hand it’s like, what is she supposed to do? Pretend to be gluten free by choice? You mean commit social suicide?”
It’s a tough one!