Friday, March 21, 2008

A Seemingly Random Collection of Anecdotes

It seems the world that surrounds me is more colorful and exciting than that which others occupy. Not because I have things any better or because I'm psychotically happy all the time. (Trust me, far from it.) I say this because it seems to me that a large number of very odd situations and scenarios play out around me. Sometimes they're strange, sometimes amusing and sometimes downright hilarious. The downpoint to this is that whenever I tell stories of odd things that have happened in my life, invariably I am accused of making them up because, well, face it, I write. :P

But because I'm feeling whimsical tonight, I've decided to commit to (digital) paper a few odds and ends that have occurred to me in the last couple of years. I swear on all that is dark and unholy that these stories are true and that I have made every effort to stray from hyperbole for the sake of amusement.

This first little ditty I refer to as my "That's not fair" story, as that's exactly what I screamed towards the sky upon it happening. To set this up just a little bit, there is a character that appears on South Park from time to time named Halfy. Halfy exists only to be the punchline of a joke. For example, in the episode "Cartman's Mom is a Dirty Slut" Mr. Garrison states that he has slept with Cartman's mother, "But who the hell hasn't?". Various townspeople look nervously at one another until one man says, "I haven't". Mr. Garrison then states that, "You don't count, Halfy, you don't have any legs," upon which the camera pulls back and we see that Halfy is, in fact, a double amputee.

So one day I'm at Wal-Mart with my wife, and as we're walking to the register I am pretending in my oh so adorable way that her opinion is irrelevant and that I don't care what she has to say. As I get in line I turn and finish my little tirade with, "You don't count, Halfy, you don't have any legs." Turning back to put my items on the belt I notice, OF COURSE, that the gentleman assisting us is in a wheelchair and also OF COURSE doesn't have any legs.

Is it even worth pointing out that he was maybe the second legless person I've EVER SEEN? And that he just happens to be sitting there right as I make what could be construed as a very insulting and insensitive remark. Of course as soon as I realized that Halfy was sitting in front of me I turned beet red and just screamed "That's not fair" into the ether. I mean, come on. Really?

My next story isn't so much an astounding or ironic situation, but it helps to know that if you ever encountered me face to face I tend to be extremely shy. Get to know me and I'm horridly obnoxious and vulgar, but I clam up around those I'm unfamiliar with. Which is why my friends never believe this one...

As has been made abundantly clear through my posts, I am a massive dork. I love all sorts of geeky things and can talk your ear off about insignificant minutiae, as well as rattle off long skits, scenes and routines verbatim. So it should come as little surprise that I spent an afternoon collecting music from old Nintendo games to play in the car. Jumping into my slick hoopty after work one afternoon, I rolled down the windows and blasted the other cars with various video game soundtracks.

I had to make a quick stop by Kroger on the way home, so I rolled into the parking lot with the soundtrack to Super Mario 2 cranked all the way to 11. As I'm getting out of my car, two young black women are loading up their car in the spot next to mine. As I step out one of them approaches me and the following short conversation begins:

Her: I just gotta know, was that Mario playing in your car?
Me: You know it, gotta respect the classics.
: I told you! I told you he was playing Mario.
Me: Wanna see something really stupid?
Her: Sure.
I then roll up my right pant leg. If you've ever seen my icon in the comments, you would know that I have a tattoo on my right leg of a Pac-Man maze with Pac chasing a blue ghost while being chased by two others.
Her: Damn! That's awesome! Aw man, I'm a hater now.
Me: Hey, don't hate the player. Hate the game.

I then turned and made my way into the store. Again, this is totally out of character for me, but I'd never before been able to weave that phrase into polite conversation, so I have to admit I beamed with a bit of pride afterwards.

Story number three involves a gentleman I used to work with. Now, it's hard to tell this story without coming off as racist, but let me assure you that I most certainly am NOT a racist. I hate all people equally.

Anyways, my coworker was a young black man who we all got along with at the office. He was a Jehovah's Witness and was just so nice and friendly that you couldn't help but like him. But every single day for lunch he wanted chicken. I don't mean a couple of times a week. I mean that every single day he wanted wings or fried chicken or baked chicken. The man just liked chicken. And we teased him for this just because it amused us. We even made a sign that proclaimed his cubicle "Casa des pollo".

One day he went with me to lunch. I stopped by Subway to get a sandwich. As we're walking out of Subway he asks if we can go to the chicken wing place around the corner so he can get something to eat. Of course I said yes and we walked over there so he could get some food.

After placing his order he joins me in the dining area to wait for it. Now, this was a black establishment, owned by blacks, operated by blacks and a clientele that was exclusively black. Again, I don't care. Whatever. The man wanted some chicken, and from what he told me, they make some great wings.

But all of a sudden my friend nudges me in the ribs with his elbow rather hard and then loudly points out, "Look, E, you're right, WE DO ALL EAT CHICKEN!" All eyes suddenly turn to me, and I might as well have just shoved my fist forward and screamed "White power!". The best part was, he had no idea that what he had said just MIGHT have been inappropriate. The only response I managed was a look of sheer terror and a, "What the fuck did you just say that for?!?!". Yeah, we all still get a laugh out of that one. Bastard.

My final story was so weird when it happened that I don't think I could have made it up if I tried. When I got back to the office after this one all I could say was, "If I didn't live my life, I wouldn't believe it."

I had to run to the local Target at lunch one day for a handful of items. As I pull into my parking spot I see a young and rather short Phillipino girl walking between the cars. She makes a beeline towards mine just as I'm opening my door. She stands right in my door so that I cannot get out and asks in very broken English if I have any money I can give her, as her family is unable to pay rent and her child needs diapers.

Let me tell you, I'm a sucker for a sob story. I really am. And I'm not going to deny that I felt bad for the poor girl. Being broke and in a bad situation can feel really overwhelming, so being the sucker that I am I open my wallet to see if I have a couple bucks I can give her. All I had was four one dollar bills and a hundred, so I handed her the four ones. (I'm a sucker but I'm NOT an idiot.)

Unfortunately she noticed the hundred and her eyes lit up. She looks at me and asks if I speak French. Lucky for her I speak a little, and I told her as much, but made a real point of emphasizing the "little" bit. I managed to get by in France and Belgium, but really just enough to ask "How much is this?", "I'll have an omelette" or "I would like to eat your baby".

But she launches into a mile a minute story in French and I pretty much just stare at her and keep asking her to slow down. Slower, please. SLOWER. Apparently, as she has noticed my hundred dollar bill, she feels that she needs it more than I do. So she repeats her story over and over. They're living in a church. Her baby has no diapers. She needs formula. I repeat to her ad nauseum that she can't have my hundred. It's mine. I earned it and it's all I have. I feel for her, but SORRY.

She's not having it, though, and she REALLY wants my money. Next thing I know she's offering to have sex with me in the Target parking lot for my $100. I'm a pretty adventurous guy, but sex with a French speaking Phillipino stranger in the parking lot of a Georgia Target really isn't my bag.

But still she persists. My normally cool and easy going demeanor is rapidly falling to the wayside so I make one final offer. I tell her that she can accompany me into the store and I will buy diapers for her baby and hand them over. But that's it. No cash. No sex.

Of course her response to this was no, so I had no choice left but to rather rudely push my door open, tell her to get the fuck out of my way and storm off. Truth be told, I was a bit afraid when I came back out of the store. What if she was waiting for me? What would I do if I had to go back to work and say that I got my ass kicked by a 5'4" Phillipino girl? That would likely be the third or fourth most embarassing thing to happen to me that summer and the guys at the office would never have let it rest. Luckily, the concern was for naught, for she and her imagined five point exploding heart death touch were nowhere to be found.

So there you have it, a few tales of whimsy to pass a little of your time? Are they amazing? Not really. But I hope you found some entertainment in them. There are others, but come on, this is a blog, not a novel.


Unknown said...

All great stories E.

E said...

Thank you much. :)

Glendell-The Art Master said...

You "live" in 2008, that was a stretch, chock-full of adventure. E, that was one long, enjoyable recollection of some rather interesting events. You seem to live quite a full life and have no problem with communicating, and sharing it with other. Carry on E...carry on.

E said...

Thank you for the kind words. It does seem to be a colorful life that I lead, but if nothing else it provides fodder for topics.

Bonez said...

Blogs can turn into novels, though.

I laughed out loud at the "retelling" of some of these adventures. They are just as funny now as when they first happened. Why is it that you seem to have all the fun :)

E said...

Don't know about fun, but it's interesting. ;) I'm glad they entertained. That's all one can hope for with their work. The ultimate goal.