Wednesday, January 07, 2009

I'm not a very good person to ask

SarahK says that Cadet Happy (photoshopper to the stars) sent her an email asking for advice. I've got nothing - except to be careful what you say if you choose to say anything.

For example, I am the sort of annoying chap who greets folks, and companions, and occasionally dogs and horses, and lots of other stuff I drive past on the road, even if it isn't technically alive. Also, I am apparently still five years old, because I can't stop mooing at cows when I see them from my car. I even do this stuff in front of my wife, poor lady.

This can get you some odd looks, and if that were all, it would be enough for some; I blunder on even when the stakes get higher. A couple of months ago I pulled into a drive-through on the way home from working late, and gave my order, and pulled around to hand in my money. Through the window, I spied a young man and his pre-toddler child at the front counter, waiting for their own order. Reflexively I chirped, "Hello baby!" though they hadn't a prayer of hearing or responding.

And that's when the comely teenaged lass working the drive-through window rose up into view, looking at me with a cool bemusement.

I cannot emphasize enough, that window was completely empty when I spoke. I figured whomever it was had stepped away for a moment, and not once did I consider that the voice I heard might have come out of someone who would overhear the stupid things that tumble out of my mouth.

Helplessly I pointed at the counter behind her. Really I thought I was doomed. Would she toss a shake at me? Would the manager get involved? Would twelve cop cars roar into the lot? I guess I look far more like a doofus who talks to random infants than a middle-aged weirdo who propositions high schoolers at the drive-through. She looked back, looked down at me, and went about filling my beverage while I burned with shame.

"Thanks," I said as she handed over my order, trying hard to look chastened.

"Have a nice night, baby," she replied.

So watch what you say to the parrot!

UPDATE - regarding Joel's comment - don't worry, bro, we know your heart's in the right place.

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