Tuesday, February 07, 2006


And so the lady who’s hooking me up for an EKG (don’t ask) answers the phone and it’s clearly a guy (you can tell because her voice softened), and she’s doing the “can I call you back later” thing, but he’s not having it; and it turns out to be some ex-boyfriend stalker who’s gone to jail because he wouldn’t stop stalking her, but continues to do so even after his release.  And he just wants to be friends and is trying to sing to her; and so what do I do?  I’m just there for a frickin’ EKG, and now I’m being treated to a damn story.  And while I’m entirely sympathetic to her problem, I am there for an EKG.  And what do I do?  I’m lying there with my shirt open as she sticks some sort of cold probie things on me and tells me about extremely personal matters that certainly won’t end up good.  I was polite, but what exactly does Miss Manners say conversation-wise to the EKG lady with the stalker?  I just don’t know.  I left with a “Good luck with all that”, which sounded just as rude as it probably was; but she thanked me, so I guess it wasn’t a bad thing to say.

And so I was walking to the hospital with my supposedly Columbian coffee and non-Danish danish and see this homeless-looking dude carrying a big trashbag in front of me.  And of course I’m in a hurry, so I’m walking fast.  And he’s in no hurry, so he’s walking slow.  And things would have timed-out well, except he had to keep adjusting that damn bag of his; so I caught up with him.  And I don’t have anything against homeless dudes, but I don’t have anything for them either.  I don’t have extra money to be giving anyone (not that he asked), and I’ve had a nice happy life and they’re fucking homeless; so I don’t have any interesting conversation for them either.  They tell me their sadsack story, and I tell them how I sleep-in each morning because I’m self-employed?  You don’t know what I look like, of course, but I don’t even look like I could possibly have a sadsack story.  And I don’t.  I look like a well-protected dude with a charmed life; and that’s largely correct.  And so I have no stories to share this morning.

But boy does he have a story (they always have stories).  He’s getting a divorce and has to carry all his blankets with him so they don’t get stolen.  And the teenagers, they keep stealing his oatmeal and pouring it out.  The oatmeal he paid for with his hard-earned money (he never said how he earned it).  And while he doesn’t want to kill them for it (he says), he certainly is planning to do something vaguely ominous.  It’s obvious that the glint in his eye is intended to convey menace; but it fails miserably.  Anyone willing to kill over oatmeal doesn’t need to worry about oatmeal.  But I have to play along; but I’ve got nothing.  All I want to do is laugh.  This guy doesn’t look like he could hurt a bug.  But that’s clearly a no-no, as I don’t want to hurt his feelings.  

And so he was heading to Luby’s to answer an ad to do work for the Livestock Show & Rodeo, but the sign said that all the positions were filled.  And I have nothing to say to any of this.  I act polite, but I honestly can’t think of anything to say.  He asks me what I do, and I had to tell him that I’m a CPA; normally something I’m proud of, but now I’m embarrassed.  He’s telling me how he once took an accounting class in high school, but couldn’t understand any of it and only cheated off of other people.  And again I’m embarrassed, as I was the one that people cheated off of in accounting; and thinking that they were going to regret their decision.  And I have nothing to say to this.  I try saying some goodwill gesture; but it’s all crap anyway, so I just continue smiling and act as if everything’s fine.

And he’s slowing me down (I was still in a hurry), but I couldn’t just leave him behind, and he had to keep adjusting that bag of his.  And all I could think about was how much I wanted to finish off my coffee and danish (I was hungry), but didn’t want to eat it in front of him.  Hell, I was pretending they didn’t exist, lest he request me to give up my only breakfast.  And so finally I had my chance and split-off and went my way.  And he wished me luck with my thing (don’t ask), and I had nothing to say.  I just kind of gave a wave and walked off.  Even now, the best I can think of is “Good luck with the oatmeal”, but somehow that seems a tad, I don’t know, wrong.

And that’s my life.  I don’t know what to say to people.  They all have problems and worries and troubles, and I don’t.  Not that I don’t have any problems, but I really don’t care about them.  My life is pretty damn good, and I don’t have any stalkers after me (that I know of) and the only people who steal my oatmeal are my kids, and they can have it, as I’m not a big oatmeal eater.  And so I don’t have anything to talk about with these people.  I only like to talk about politics and religion and that other fun stuff; but those aren’t subjects you want to bring up with strangers, especially homeless strangers.  At least not if you’d like the conversation to eventually end well.  And so I don’t know what to do.  I just smile and nod and pretend as if this is all normal; and unfortunately it is.  All too normal.  People have problems and they want you to hear about them.

Frankly, I have no idea what my point of all this is.  I normally like to tie things into a nice little message, but fuck if I know what I’m saying here.  I’m sure there’s some kind of message in all this, but I guess I’ll just leave that for you to figure out.  Maybe the message is that I’m a big dick; but I doubt that.  Because that would be the message to all my posts.  So I guess I’m just left again not knowing what to say.  I’ve got nothing.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

You should listen to the comedian Louis CK. He has multiple bits about stuff like this.