Thursday, 4 June 2009

Theres a MANIAC on the loose............


Ok, sponge bob fans, pull up a chair.

Yesterday was fun. It started like this.
I got to do some of the worst, hardest, back bludgeoning work I could have, because it needed to be done, and I could do it. At the end of that day, I had to rush home, shovel in some Kraft macaroni and cheese while standing by the sink in muddy clothes, and then had to rush through a shower.
All this (oh I'm NOT whining, I'm setting a stage here) was leading up to a high school graduation ceremony for my nephew. I LOVE graduations, dont you??
Anywho, out of the shower I flew, and thought, "huh, I think I'll take my wife's vehicle to the graduation because its nicer and easier to park in the city and all.
So I did.
And left my cell phone and wallet and sanity, in my vehicle, at home.
The ceremony was a typical ceremony, and I was only slightly in danger of falling completely asleep during it.

It ended, we made our way out of the auditorium, and the families and grads had a nice congratulatory time outside for a few minutes.
We said our goodnights, and went off to our respective (wive's) vehicles. A nice night, all in all, I thought. Kraft macaroni and cheese shoveled down and boring speeches notwithstanding, Ive had worse nights.

Or so I thought.

I put the key into the ignition, it started, put it in gear, and away I went.
For about 15 feet, then, zip. Still made nice engine noises, but no MOVING noises. Transmission's kablooey, I thought.
Actually, it was more like "what the freaking frick!?!?!?"
I look in my rearview mirror, no one is there, so I can coast the car back to the curb. Maybe I missed something.
Put it in park, start engine, shift into D for Datway, and ............................nuttin.
Oh yeah, my brother said he was parked about two blocks away, I'll just call him on my cell.......................crap. Friggin frick, again.
So away I run, suit and all, across wilkes barre. Outta my way, mere mortals, its SUPER Stranded Man coming through! I get to the top of the hill where my brother was parked, and can see him pulling out of the lot about 50 yards in front of me.
Oh well. Maybe the car fixed itself like we hope they will every time they break.
And, like every other time they break, it didnt fix itself this time, either.
But I aint a-scared. I, unlike mortal husbands prepare my wives vehicle for times just like this.
I dig in the glove box and pull out the ..................................."click click".............. uncharged tazer.
Crap. Ok,. now its time to start wondering what the hell am I going to do.
"a pay phone", of course.
Right across the street, theres a deli......................thaaaaaaat just turned the lights off...................... so I knock on the window and ask if they have a phone. "No phone, Zoop".
Great. A phone Nazi.

No worry, theres a bar at the other end of the block. I saunter in (suit and all, thinking, "Yeah, I clean up and get stranded, well....."
I Ask the bargirl if theres a public phone in here, and she looks at me like I just stepped out of a time travel worm hole.
Ok, on down the street.
A dark street. A dark desolate dimly lit (ok, it was main street, but it was late, and not exactly my element).
One block, two blocks, three blocks.
Nuthin. No friggin frick of a pay phone, no friggin frick of a cell phone, no friggin frick of ...................oh crap. I dont even have my wallet.
No worry though, we have cups of change in the van, for emergencies like this.
So, back to the van I go, only to remember that I poured all the change into the nice volunteer fireman's boot, during their last beg-a-thon.
Good thing I have messy kids who leave everything (money included) scattered through the back of the van.
So I find 2 quarters, two dimes, four pennies, and enough candy to put half of hannah montanas fan base in sugar shock.
Yippee. Off to the bus station I go. Sweet tarts, gummi worms, something sticky but fuzzy (I threw that one out) and my cash. Lets see, what is my brothers phone number? Thats an easy question normally, but walking in a less than pleasant mood, at 10:30 at night, down a city street, in a suit, with no wallet, makles ones imagination go wild and memory not work too well.

Weeee-ooooh, Weeeee-OOh.

I imagine theresa big freakin frick of a bullseye on my back, is what I imagined.
"Yo Homes, gimme yo wallet..." is what I imagine wll be the next sound I hear.
Nope, theres a payphone, on the back of the closed, desolate, tumbleweed strewn bus station. (oh relax, its MY story,and I was there, not you, so if I say there were tumbleweeds....)
Whats my brothers number..................................oh yeah. Lets see......
Ah, a verizon phone, he has a verizon cell, I drop in my two quarters...........................
click click beep beep ring.
"hello, thank you for using verizon, please deposit 80 more cents for the next 2 minutes....."
What the freakin frick do you mean deposit 80 more cents?!" I yelled. (while in a suit, at a closed bus station, 10 thirty at night....)
At some point during a lull in the yelling I heard behind me "you need help?"
I turn, and a cabbie is there.
"I need a phone " I said.
"here, use mine" (huhm, whats this flatlander want from me, I wondered)
So I call my wife and tell her the good news.
The cabbie asked if I needed a ride, and I said I didnt have enough money in my bank account for him to take me home, so I thanked him for his help, and walked back down to the auditorium where the evening started so beautifully.

Weeee-ooh, WEEEEEEEE-ooooh.

There I go, and here they come.
About 6 or 7 of them..
Should I cross the street?" I thought. "If I dont, I'm liable to
kill em all, in the mood I'm in.
Haaaaaaaaaaaail no, I walk straight ahead. Plow, would be a better description.
It was like Moses parting the red sea, except, well, nevermind that.
I must've looked as crazy as I felt at that point. Not a word was said.
I made it back , and sat down for who knows how long to wait for whomever my wife would contact to hopefully come rescue me.
A little while later, my brother saved the night, and when I got in his truck, said in his oh so eloquent way, "what the frick?"
"Friggin frick" I replied".

We went home.
I uncorked a bottle of much needed wine, and noticed something in my finger.
A thorn, from my wonderful day at work, which I had long since forgotten. I tried to pick it out, daintily, but that got me nowhere.
So, in the spirit of the evening, I plunged a pair of fly tying pinchy things headlong into the hole and extracted a half inch long black thorn.

"what a night".

Which would only be outdone by a morning with no coffee in the house, and upon getting into MY van, I found out that my 5'2" wife, put my 6'2" seat, in her position, and broke it there. (she said it was an accident, but we all know how women are...)
So I drove to work with my knees in my chest, sandwiched against the dashboard.
With no coffee.
God help the laborers today............................................

"Well, at least I didnt get mistakenly arrested as the Maniac, last night.....
How bad can today be?" I thought.

Not too bad at all, as it turns out.
Penguins 4, Red wings 2.

Heres to not getting mistakenly arrested as the Maniac. And to learning how to handle crap thrown our way.

I said learning.

1 comment:

  1. Ted, you're a gifted storyteller. And believe me, it's a gift.

    I laughed out loud at this entry, not just because of the absurdity of it all, but because I could almost hear your voice and your cadence and your pauses and your inflection. What I really enjoy about your writing is that it's real. It's honest. It's who you are. You write what you know and experience (like I do with my Labs), and that makes for engaging, enjoyable reading. It's the strongest writing there is.

    Keep doing what you're doing (don't give up on it). Your life ramblings are meaningful and fun -- a great combination. And what's really fun (for me), is to see that your sense of humor is every bit as in tact as it was 30 years ago (despite what you've lived through to reach this looming half-century milestone we both face in the next year). You still see things for what they are (you always were insightful), you call them that way, and still manage to communicate depth and care and humor in the process. I still hear the heart of the Ted I once knew, and I'm delighted to find it thriving.

    Don't be intimidated. I'm really a nobody (honest.. just plain old me). I wish I had half the sense of humor you have (again, it's a gift...) and the wry manner with which you make observations. Just keep being you and keep writing as you see things. There's a readership out there that will benefit from your writing in ways you might never know.

    Keep up the good work!