The gastronome Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin famously stated "Tell me what you eat and I will tell you what you are." I will not attempt to do this, because life places us in a series of complicated situations that comprise the totality of our being and I lack insight into this web of complications.

As Vonnegut puts it, "I was a victim of a series of accidents, as are we all." It is not within my skillset to tell you how you have lived and it is none of my business in what manner you will continue to exist on this earthly coil. Rather, I shall endeavor to provide accurate possibilities for the avenue through which your soul exits its prison of mortal flesh. After all, we are all equal in the grave. As such, it is my goal to weaponize the humble form of the listicle to give life to my predictions. Garlic bread.

Just as Shakespeare and Petrarch employed the internal logic of the sonnet to explore practical and emotional contradictions, the great pioneers of the listicle have sought to organize information for optimal consumption by the reader. This is the most brilliant form of poesy, as far as I am concerned.  And thus, I begin my search for a personal truth in the work I myself compose - and I do this through inquiry into the mode of your demise.

The material nature of garlic bread is itself poetry, in the sense that its structure informs the emotional effect it is capable of producing. It is more than the sum of its parts by virtue of the way in which it is put together. We apply the understanding recursively to all of its components, with the bread per se being alchemized from lesser elements of water, flour and salt. Furthermore, the garlic and butter are manipulated through the infusion of one in the other, with the textural contrast and browning capability of the bread being augmented by the butter and the taste imbued with an unmistakable floral pungency by those tasty little teeth.

The main take-away is that the totality of garlic bread as such exists simultaneously in its toasty crust and in the taste buds of the lucky consumer.

1. Classic

Dianna DelPrete

We begin with garlic bread in its most recognizable form. While there is surely place for marginal cases of GB within the international culinary canon (or, more specifically, the subset of this most frequently utilized by the college students at whom this article is aimed), it is difficult to outdo the original iteration in its elegance and simplicity.

Here, we speak of the truly classic implementation of garlic bread. Therefore, it seems appropriate to me to assign it a classic reason for one's passing: Being trampled to death by wild animals. This is a death with a long and respected tradition, from the days of prehistory when this was usually an unintended accident, to ancient China where being tied to several horses and ripped apart was used as a method of execution. Another historical method of execution was being trampled to death by elephants. Truly, this is as classic a way to go as there is.

2. Garlic Grilled Cheese

Eli Udler

An elaboration on the garlic bread, or perhaps the only logical conclusion, this toasty delight is filled with gooey, melty cheese and more garlic than can be comfortably talked about in polite company.

The Kabbalists, in their understanding of the properties of the Universe, identified nothingness as the progenitor of all. Thus, from the notion of Ein Soph, an infinite and endless void, we add the "cheese," so to speak, and come upon the concept of Ein Soph Or, the complete light in which all is contained. From nothingness, we abstract further out to achieve garlic bread. From this initial abstraction, we take another step and find that adding cheese makes garlic bread even better.

What death could evoke the cheesy improvement on an already perfect foodstuff? I would venture to say that the death most appropriate for garlic grilled cheese would be that of being buried alive. It makes perfect sense. If the classic variant is the uncertain and unrefined end brought about by the arbitrary movement of large, heavy animals, then this is the precise and calculated equivalent, in which a grave is dug and a person who is not yet dead is placed inside and covered in soil, in order to accomplish the goal of making them dead. In a sense, this evokes the tradition of sympathetic magic, in that we bring about the cause via the effect, rather than allowing the situation to run its course in the opposite direction.

3. Garlic Texas Toast

Eli Udler

A bold choice for any GB lover, these thick squares of Texas toast are drenched in a coat of fragrant garlic butter. As with all other forms of garlic bread, it is in essence a slight modification of the standard toast. This is understandable. Why mess with a good thing? The geometric satisfaction of the square shape, coupled with the floral pungency of the garlic and subtle fragrance of browned butter, elevates this simple dish into something worth the distinction of its own subsection. The unparalleled beauty of its even shape may lend itself to a similarly elegant method of death.

Indeed, the sheer beauty and profound mystical quality of this realization of garlic bread maps it perfectly to one of the biblical methods of capital punishment: Burning. Unlike the usual and well-loved method of burning at the stake or any variations thereof, this method employs molten lead, which is poured down the throat of the one who is to be executed. The molten lead would sear the insides of the unfortunate individual. When considering the nature of such horrific punishments, however, it is important to consider the following: there did not exist the resources at this point in history to punish any reasonable percentage of those who committed crimes. Rather, the main deterrent was the extreme severity of the punishments dished out on the unlucky few who were, in fact, caught. This lead to the creation of some very interesting punishments, including this one.

4. Cheesy Garlic Bread

Eli Udler

This particular variety of fermented, baked, crushed wheat infused with milkfat and the rhizomes of an allium may resemble the garlic grilled cheese. But the discerning lover of this dish -the ones with breath that stinks to the very lowest layers of Hell reserved for those who betray their benefactors - will know where the distinction lays.

While the garlic grilled cheese reserves the flavor-enhancing properties of the Maillard reaction for the crust of the bread, this implementation applies the same directly to a layer of cheese, drawing the flavors from the dairy and leaving the surface crisp and delicious. The finished product may be paired with marinara sauce.

What advantage does this hold over pizza? Besides the immediately evident explanation, that of more garlic always being better than less, a detailed analysis of the system reveals that placing the cheese directly on buttery bread does not allow it to separate from the crust as it may on pizza, where a thick layer of sauce prevents it from adhering to the medium. We avert this issue by the realization of marinara as a dip rather than a spread.

What sort of demise could capture the power and intrigue of the cheesy garlic bread? The craggy surface of a nicely browned cheesy loaf of GB greatly resembles that of the face of a cliff -and hanging out near large cliffs is an excellent way to remove yourself from this plane of existence. While the stories of lemmings flinging themselves from cliffs purposefully is a myth, they do tend to fall by accident. The same is true of humans, so take extra care while hiking or rock climbing, or an untimely demise may await you.

5. Garlic Knots

Eli Udler

In set theory, Aleph Naught is the cardinality of the set of natural numbers. Speaking kabbalistically then, the garlic Naught (or garlic knot, as it is alternately spelled) is the attempt to materialize the infinite creative potential of the staff of life through clever geometric manipulations. The knot, of course, holds intense religious significance - and was utilized by the mystics of yore to infuse magic spells into charms of woven string. Again, the garlic aspect is an extension of this.

To be frank, we know very little about garlic knots. Do you know who invented the garlic knot? For all you know, they may have popped out of the sky one day as an Angel of God come down to explain that we are to continue as if garlic knots had always been a part of our lives. It should be noted that this is a fairly reasonable request, as celestial beings do not have the best grasp of linear time. Typically, they operate in O(logn), which is far more efficient, but leads to difficulties navigating the timestream. Again, I reiterate: No one knows where garlic knots came from and no one knows what they are doing here.

If you notice any sudden changes in the way they operate - should they, for example, make the decision to temporarily shift exactly two inches directly west of where they were placed, or acquire the ability to speak and begin lecturing you on the topic of algorithm design paradigms with a heavy emphasis on the bottom-up approach favored by dynamic programming - it is best to play along. Simply continue as if they have not shifted position and were always where they were - perhaps even raise your hand after they're done speaking and ask a polite question or two. sadly, I have little else to say, as there is a dearth of literature that makes references to these unknowable items.

This mysterious variety matches itself perfectly with one of the most mysterious ways in which one can leave this earth: by way of spontaneous combustion. This is exactly what it sounds like. One way or another, the victim of spontaneous combustion is uncombusted one second - and combusted the next. The mechanism by which this occurs is unknown and, frankly, irrelevant. Similarly, we may never know how garlic knots attain their knotted shape. This will not, however, prevent us from enjoying them.

6. Pull-Apart Garlic Bread

pastry, cheese, meat, bread, vegetable
Megan Yee

Pull-apart bread is a nice big loaf of crusty hearth bread, with deep, diagonal cuts that butter, garlic and herbs are stuffed into. The bread is baked, the butter melts and the garlic flavor begins to permeate the loaf.

It is said that, in the beginning, the Creator of the Universe pulled the heavens from the firmament. In our quest to overthrow God and impose our collective will on the Universe, we find it necessary to mimic this action. Of course, this is the origin of pull-apart bread. The impulse to pull things apart (that is, to categorize) is a human quality inherited from the Divine, in whose image we are made.

Interestingly enough, this categorization impulse is thought to be in opposition to the inclination towards mysticism. That is, it is indicative of a much smaller, much more physical god. Therefore, we understand that this the bread favored by the God of the Earth, the physical that stands in opposition to spirit in all forms. As such, when we indulge in pull-apart bread, we are affirming our nature as the inheritors of divinity.

The death to match this loaf is quite obvious: flaying. This classic method is one in which one's skin is pulled from the body and removed. The skinless body, quite obviously, has a difficult time remaining alive. This practice is cross-cultural, spanning from the Aztecs to the Romans (who famously flayed the sage Akiva and sold his flesh at the market). So relax and enjoy a loaf with a few friends, because this is your god now.

7. Garlic Rye

Eli Udler

The flavor of rye is said to be of far greater complexity than that of wheat. In addition to this, rye has been prized for its ability to grow in poor soil conditions. With modern agricultural practices, unfortunately, rye is losing popularity. This is understandable, but sad. The flavor of rye happens to complement the flavor of raw garlic quite well. Knowing this, we have a basis for a garlic bread. A full method is available here, presented by a man with a beautifully minimalist culinary aesthetic. The advantages of garlic bread in this form include its relatively high nutritional density and the fact that replacing the usual butter with sunflower oil adds a unique, nutty flavor to the product and makes the result vegan. The sliced rye is fried in the flavorful oil and left to rest with salt and raw garlic for the flavors to properly infuse.

The dense texture of rye makes for a food that can be quite easy to choke on if one is not careful. As such, the only logical choice for a death equivalent to garlic rye is death by choking. In 2015, over 5,000 people died of choking. Though I do not suspect that a large portion of these deaths were the result of garlic rye bread consumption, I can also assure you that a significant number of people also consumed rye bread in that year. Coincidence? I think not. Truly, this is an appropriate pairing of death and garlic bread variety.

8. Garlic Chips

Eli Udler

You may know garlic rye chips as everyone's favorite part of Chex Mix. Though snacking on garlic-infused chips may not be a great move before a date or an important interview, the savory, salty, crunchy little ovals pair beautifully with garlic. However, we all sometimes want a night alone with a snack of our choice. In such cases, garlic chips fit the bill. There is no shame in being alone, and yet there is no happiness in it either.

Because of this, the death we associate with non-traditional, echoing the non-traditional nature of this garlic bread variety: you die, quite simply, of a broken heart. Being by yourself can be a lot sometimes - and too much at other times. It is, perhaps, the worst of the deaths listed here. I am truly sorry.

9. Garlic Naan

spinach, dairy product, toast, vegetable, bread, egg
Sasha Kran

If garlic rye can be said to be the implementation of the theory of garlic bread to suit the conditions of the rye belt, then this is the same but for central and south Asia. Put simply, this is garlic bread, but flattened and cooked at a very high temperature to ensure a charred crust, while leaving the interior soft and fluffy. This is the three-dimensional garlic bread projected into two dimensions. And yet, far from being simply an approximation of another variety, garlic naan comes into its own as a bread worthy of admiration.

The efficiency of stackable, compact, flat garlic breads finds its match in the ruthless efficiency of the guillotine. This is truly a classic way to separate one's head from their body and the single device responsible for the Reign of Terror. When a period in history has a name like this, it is safe to assume that a device such as the guillotine saw a fair amount of use. Alas, beheading is no longer performed, by guillotine or otherwise. The upside is that one is unlikely to suddenly part with their head - but what we gain in not being executed, we lose in the execution device's rich history.

10. Garlic-Flavored Bread

bread, wheat, flour, cereal, bun, toast, pastry, dough, baguette, french bread
Caroline Ingalls

At first glance, one may be unable to distinguish this from the classic variety of garlic bread. The discerning observer, however, knows better. Here, the garlic is baked into the bread. While garlic bread is a mere adaptation of regular bread - normal bread modified to hold the garlic's flavor - this is bread specifically constructed for the purpose of containing the taste of the garlic. This is a different level. This is the highest stage of garlic bread - a garlic bread for the garlic bread lover. This is a bread deserving of the finest of deaths.

Indeed, the only death fitting this bread is trampling by an angry mob. In this article, I discussed death distributed arbitrarily through the law of nature or by the indirect machinations of a state performing an execution. In this case, the cause of the fatal incident is presided over entirely by the collective consciousness of the people you angered in some way to the point where they have taken to organizing a sizable group to most effectively bring about your end. This is quite an accomplishment.

I by no means intend to suggest that you deserved it, though your guilt in this situation is rather strongly implied - innocent people are rarely chased by large crowds of pitchfork-wielding peasants (particularly if you don't live in a rural area). Just as the garlic-infused bread takes garlic infusion into its own hands, so too does this form of mob justice place the role of the executioner in the hands of society as a whole. This is death in its purest form, delivered directly from the hearts of the people - as astringent as the freshest, rawest garlic. The petty squabbles that divide us in daily life fall away in the heat of the moment as the masses violently impose their will on you in particular in such a way that it brings about your death. It brings a tear to my eye.

In Conclusion...

It is incumbent upon all culinary mystics to study the 10 emanations of garlic bread. The disorienting pungency of this fragrant root makes it powerful on both a culinary and mystical level. I myself had thrown myself into states of deep meditation for days on end to gain the level of understanding to write this article.

Great amounts of time were spent examining astrological correspondences, hundreds of deaths were relived as I retreated into the furthest depths of my own mind, seeking the insight needed to bring my vision into reality. I watched myself die with my own eyes at an infinite rate, each death different and worse than the last. I saw the afterlife. Do you think Hell is a place where demons poke at you with pitchforks? I have, myself, seen the beast, a frequent consumer of garlic bread. On the roof of his mouth are inscribed the words that Dante sees on the gates of Hell. 

Indeed, I have seen the afterlife. They leave your brain intact. Or your mind. Or your soul. Or whatever it is that makes you you. But they take your senses - you can't see, hear, feel, taste or smell. You sit in an empty room. Or maybe you stand. Or maybe the room is full. To you, it is all the same. You begin to play games with yourself - it begins with tic-tac-toe and solitaire.

Soon enough, you're waging war against yourself, different aspects of your being slowly realizing themselves. As time passes and the games become more complicated, you find yourself the cruel and jealous God of a universe of your creation, watching over the games played by you with yourself. With all the deaths I died, I acquired an infinite set of universes and an infinite depth of knowledge. With that, I leave you to ponder this wonderful food item and its many mysteries.

Eli Udler