I Almost Dropped the French Fries

Is it appropriate  to use this shot of Macauley Culkin for this story? No, it is not.


So reads the headline from the Daily Record, in a thriller of a story by John Fergueson about French chef Phillip Lemarque, subtitled 'Chef tells of Neverland shock'. Not to be outdone, the Mirror goes with "I SAW JACKO'S HAND IN CULKIN'S SHORTS", by Justine Smith, subtitled 'Chef tells of 3am shock'.

Whatever. This is a sad little story because, uh, because... Lemarque was a successful chef, dammit, and here he is, doing short order cooking for Michael Jackson. We looked up his resume on his web site Besteatz.com, in an outdated but still extant plug for a seminar the man was giving called 'Guerilla Warfare to open a successful restaurant'.

Phillip Lemarque has spend 28 years in the restaurant business and owned four restaurants in the Los Angeles area. Phillip's major venture: "The Bicycle Shop Cafe," was the in place for over 10 years of its twenty years in business. Phillip's life long road to a successful career as a restaurateur will be highlighted by all the pitfalls where one can easily be trapped.

Hmm, not a word about his experience at Neverland, although this probably comes up in the pratfall section of his lecture on the 11 Steps to a Successful Restaurant Venture.

Step 1 is vision, and we already know what the chef saw from the aforementioned headlines. Lemarque told the Jackson jury that he was taking a pre-dawn snack to the boys, who were in the arcade building (that's right, Neverland has an arcade building), playing a Michael Jackson video game. Gives a whole new meaning to playing with yourself. We found a review of the game 'Moonwalker' on X-Entertainment, where we learn that the main goal of the game is to rescue kids.

Based on and titled Moonwalker, this game let you do what no one in their right minds would want to do - actually be Michael Jackson...

You get special "dance" power-ups & moves, and some zany Michael Jackson music tracks that play in background, but aside from that, Moonwalker is your standard action game. Then again, the fact that you play as Michael Jackson does make it a rather unique experience...but how many gamers could honestly play this game around their friends?...

Now, I know this is going to sound lewd, and it's going to look like I'm searching for comedy, but it's there, plain as day. When you save one of the little kids, they absolutely, positively, appear to be giving Michael oral sex. I'm sorry, but there's no other way to describe it. Michael's standing next to them pelvis-first while the kid is jiggling like a Jell-O mold...

Back to Lemarque, aside from the video game, he told the jury that he saw Jackson holding the pint-sized 'Home Alone' star up with one hand so that he could reach the game controls (there are no stools in Neverland) and his other hand was in no man's land. "I can't distinguish what he was doing with his hand," he told police in 1993, "but it was clearly more than fondling." I don't know, sounds like the chef had a pretty good angle on it to me.

But what brought the chef upon this sordid scene? Let's go to the court transcript, where Lemarque is being questioned by prosecutor Gordon Auchincloss.

Lemarque: There was a code for Michael, it was Silver Fox, (Michael was the 'Silver Fox'? We thought that was Barbara Bush's nickname), and they said he wanted French fries. Michael was playing with Macaulay Culkin on one of the games ... a Thriller game ... He was holding him with two hands so the kid could reach and his left hand was inside the pants of the kid...

Auchincloss: When you saw this what did you do?

Lemarque: I was shocked. I almost dropped the fries and I backed up. I backed out of the door and went outside and closed the door behind me. But I realized that I still had to deliver the French fries, so I opened the door and made a lot of noise to make sure that Michael could hear me coming in.
(Harumph, cough, cough, bang, crash) 'I said, 'Michael, your French fries are here,' and he said for me to drop it on one of the machine tops.'

One can visualize the embarrassed chef at this point, holding his plate of French fries, thinking about the successes of his past, and coming to the realization that no amount of money was enough to work for the Silver Fox.

Even though he did admit trying to sell his story for half a million. But he decided against it, because those tabloids are so darn "sleazy". Not like Lemarque, who operated the web site Virtual Sin, which the Smoking Gun says he billed as "the most sinful site on the internet."  (SG also offers up a couple examples of Lemarque's cartooning prowess here).

You can help support Lemarque by purchasing his e-book, called 'Never Never Land'. Here's an excerpt:

“To your left, our two swans, right now they are in prison as you can see.”

A black and a white swan are looking at us from a golden cage on the side of the road.

“What do you mean in prison,” I ask?

Norma turns around to look at me.

“Well, they poopoo on the white sand of the beach–Michael doesn't like it.”

I am told that there are even more exciting revelations inside. The book is only $7.95 (instead of the $19.95 print version), and if you order now, there are added bonuses - two of Michael Jackson's favorite recipes, and the name of his favorite soda.

* Edited still from 'Party Monster', featuring Seth Green.


©2005, Mark Hoback