Dorks of Suburbia

Thirteen degrees below zero didn’t stop us from joyriding through suburbia last night. We ate pie at Poppin Fresh Pies for dinner. Huddled in our booth, I bitched about the warped logic of rooting for the “home team,” given that most players rarely hail from the “home town” in which they play. Seinfeld likes to call it rooting for laundry. Those who don such laundry (in my worthless opinion), they’re basically athletic mercenaries. Did Spiffy give a shit? Nope. He’s always all about what’s all the rage, but only superficially so. He watches the Super Bowl (exempli gratia) for the commercials. And Flabjack? He won’t take sides. He keeps his beefs and passions, if he has any, to himself. I admire that. So it’s not like I’m preaching to the choir. It’s more like I’m preaching to an empty church. 

Spiffy didn’t follow my train of thought. (When he does, he usually seeks to derail it.) Instead, he expressed his desire to send flowers to his ex. Nummy dumped him after three years, exactly three weeks ago. He wants to send her flowers anyway, but he wants the card to read, “From Sic’em.” (That would be Nummy’s dead Schnauzer.) I tell Spiffy and Flabjack that if I go on any more dates (Ha!), I’m always gonna go “Dutch.” Women, I tell them, have earned the right to pay their own way. 

After Poppin Fresh Pies, we vroom on over to the nearest Borders Books & Music to haunt the stacks. (Are they only “stacks” if they’re in a library? I’d ask a librarian, but I tend to rub them the wrong way. Then again, I’ve a natural talent for rubbing everybody the wrong way. Ask Spiffy. He’ll tell you I’m better repellant than Off!

Spiffy gets bored and suggests Dixie Square Mall. It’s too cold to get mugged or shot at, which makes it a good night to pay our respects. And, who knows, maybe another vagrant will set another fire. It’d be something to watch. So we vroom off. Dixie Square is a sorry sight, inside and out. It never recovered from the famous Blues Brothers car chase. Well, really, it never recovered from the 1970s. But who has? And maybe we peeked through the Dixie Square before we wandered through Borders Books & Music. Does it matter? We survived to tell the tale. Well, I did. That’s all that really matters. 

Wherever we came from, we go to Bennigan's next. I guzzle a Guinness. Spiffy slurps a milkshake. Flabjack sips something like a milkshake. Maybe it’s a root beer float. Or a smoothie. Maybe it’s a pina colada. And maybe after that we went to Borders Books & Music. (And maybe this is all the Guinness that’s keyboarding—the whole pint of it. It’s a sorry thing to say, but my “tolerance” matches that of a toddler’s.) 

Here’s the point: I can’t read a book in a bookstore. Never, ever. I feel much too much pressure to judge whether or not to buy the book. That, and there are way too many other books I feel obliged to flip through. It’s a sort of wannabe reader’s paralysis that happens. I’m telling you, it happens. As does shit. 

4 February 2007



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