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In the season of love and presents for your boo, the only time you’re not thinking about eating chocolate, is when you are currently eating chocolate. Well, contrary to what Smash Mouth says, all that glitters is not gold. And all that sounds sweet is not safe.

Here is a warning, because unlike your Valentine, I actually care about you. Beware of these 3 things that appear sweet but will most definitely kill your soul.

1. A box of chocolates.

Let’s start with the obvious. A box of chocolates sounds sweet, right? What a punny double-entendre: sweet in the thoughtful and romantic way and in the sugary way. Classic Valentine’s.

Now, picture that seemingly sweet box of chocolate you see standing in line at the drugstore. It’s probably red and heart-shaped. Probably has a big bow or ribbon on top. The promise of a dozen or more chocolatey morsels. Looks something like this perhaps?

box of chocolates

This is what disappointment looks like.


Do yourself a favor. Throw that box out the window and never look back. Don’t check if it hit anyone; don’t look for where it eventually landed; just walk away. Because you cannot trust a box of chocolates.

We get it.

We’ve all seen Forrest Gump. “You never know what you’re gonna get.”

Y tho. Wouldn’t you rather know exactly what chocolatey flavors you are about to devour? This is exactly why a box of chocolates, no matter how sweet-sounding, is the ultimate betrayal.

You expect to bite into a delicious little chocolate, maybe with some nuts or caramel inside. And instead you might get a disgusting, maggot-filled chocolate. Or worse, cherry cordial. You really don’t know what’s inside that chocolatey exterior. Your expectations are so great that there’s a 95 percent chance of disappointment.

Seriously, on average, how many good options are in a box of chocolates? I can say with 100 percent confidence: not enough. Make a box of all good chocolates. No betrayals, no misleading designs, just good chocolate. I don’t know why this has to be said.

I’m not saying the box of chocolates sitting on your counter right now is poisoned, but I’m also not saying it isn’t poisoned. Meaning: it is definitely poisoned.

2. Sea lions.

Alright, who doesn’t love sea animals? No land animal really understands them. I mean how could we? How they breathe, how they sleep, how they don’t get soggy and pruny—it’s some kind of dark magic. I can see the appeal of something so cunning and mysterious. But when you consider about the amazing creatures, please stop considering sea lions.

You might not be familiar with what sea lions look like exactly. But if you’ve ever seen a cartoon or a circus (#tbt) you’re probably thinking a brown blob with whiskers, flappy hands, and maybe a ball balancing on its nose. Well, think again. You are thinking of cool, amazing seals and not untrustworthy, satanic sea lions. If there is an evil force of the ocean (aside from Ursula), it is most definitely sea lions. This one is personal and universal at the same time.

Sea lions are liars and here’s why:

First of all, they’re not lions. Nor are they the lions of the sea. We’re already off to a rocky start. And what are they trying to prove, calling themselves sea lions? Why all the trickery? What are they hiding? These unanswered questions should make you very, very nervous. And get this! Sea lion babies are called pups. So even in their infancy, they’re trying to be a land animal that they are not.

Second of all, they get away with crime. Land animal crime. Breaking and entering! Why do we overlook this menace just because he looks cute? Anything that moves like this is not your friend.


And is this guy seriously trying to hop a ride with a turtle?


One of the world’s slowest animals. And this “sea lion” cannot walk/waddle/move on his own. Selfish and unforgivable. Take my word for it. As sweet as those faces look, sea lions are not your friends. Don’t mess.

3. In-N-Out Burger.

This may be my most controversial statement yet. I’m here to tell you the cold, hard facts that reject what you have been conditioned to think. What “society” wants you to believe.

If you’ve never had it, the breezy, Pacific allure of In-N-Out Burger is probably one of the main plans for your next West Coast vacation. And even if you have eaten it before or live in its proximity, In-N-Out is probably one of your favorite places to eat.


Sorry not sorry to burst your bubble: In-N-Out sucks.

OK, it doesn’t suck. But it’s not that great. The crazy amount of time you will most definitely spend waiting for your burger and fries is not worth the hunger. The burger is unsatisfying and the fries are meh. To the people who swear by In-N-Out—I say get new tastebuds.

Here is a definitive list of all of the burger places that are objectively better than In-N-Out (in no particular order):

  • Shake Shack
  • Wendy’s
  • Wahlburgers
  • Five Guys
  • Cheesecake Factory
  • McDonald’s
  • Elevation Burger
  • Burger King
  • Literally any American diner
  • Carl’s Jr.
  • Hardee’s
  • Olive Garden
  • Johnny Rockets
  • Good Burger
  • Friendly’s
  • Sonic
  • White Castle
  • White Castle from the frozen section of the grocery store

Yes. All of these places are better than In-N-Out. To be honest, it’s probably missing a few, so feel free to add your own fav burger spot.

My point is, don’t buy into the hype. It sounds like an LA staple, but it’s more like a LAme excuse for burgers and fries. You can do better. You deserve better.

Follow me if you want to live.

It is true that in this life you pick your poison. But I hope that my warnings about these sneaky poisons find you well the next time you encounter the sweet-sounding but death-causing. Avoid these three things, and you should make it out of this Valentine season alive.

Shannon Vail

The number one authority on giant squids and can eat 6-14 boxes of pasta a day according to a recent Twitter poll.

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