Sunday, May 10, 2009

Saturday: A One-Act Play

I talked to all of three people yesterday, not including a one-sided conversation with my building's New Vagrant in which I told him that I understood that he had to battle the demons coming out of his face but would appreciate if he could do it more quietly.

Last weekend, I noted a reasonably attractive guy moving into one of the ground floor apartments, and although he was neither a British musician nor middle-aged, the fact that he was wearing a Red Sox hat and carrying a giant set of speakers made my heart briefly rattle around my ribcage. He was back on the premises yesterday, making labored trips across the rickety metal ramp extending from the back of his Ryder rental, and as I rounded the corner with the Boxerbeast I decided it was an excellent time to say hello.

I casually adjusted my sweatpants, glad I was wearing my dress pair with the orange piping down the side and walked closer to the cab of the truck. I'd just rearranged the excess ass fabric when I heard the first verse of "Watching the Detectives" pouring out of the truck's open window. Since he wasn't carrying anything unwieldy at the time, I made my move.

"Hey", I said giving him what I hoped was my least creepy-looking smile, "Glad another Elvis Costello fan is moving into the building."

He tugged at the brim of his hat, which was ringed with a white corona of dried sweat. "Oh, hey. I don't really follow sports. I just bought this at the airport."

"I meant the musician," I said, undaunted. "On the radio."

He pulled the bottom of his shirt up to wipe his face. "I don't listen to the radio," he said through a mouthful of cotton.

"Yeah...um...it was just on in the truck. Nevermind then, welcome to the neighborhood." I tugged the Boxerbeast's leash and hoped to get back to the parking garage before I started sobbing.

"Oh that. It's not the radio, it's a CD. My girlfriend likes stuff from, like, the 60s."

Things couldn't have gone more smoothly if I'd just emptied my colon into the cardboard box marked 'Kitchen'.

"Elvis Costello is an excellent choice, but that song actually came out in 1977."

He said nothing. So of course I kept going.

"It's from the My Aim is True album. Well, that's not entirely accurate, because it wasn't on the original release, but it was on the version that came out in America."

A pause, as I felt a trickle of sweat slide down the back of my thigh.

"I have the t-shirt," I beamed.

He stared at me in shocked silence, like I'd just torn a squirrel apart with my teeth.

"OK, well I'm just going to go throw this bag of dog poop away. Nice talking to you."

Aaaaand scene.

This, ladies and gentlemen, is why I rarely leave the house.

44 comments:

K.H. said...

I think you got off easy. Can you imagine the way that the conversation would flow on the always awkward first date?

You (in an Italian restaurant): "So, you like Italian?"

Him: [Stares.] "No."

You: "So, you like restaurants?"

Him: "No."

You: "Food?"

Him: {Blank stare.]

It'd be marvelous.

inflammatory writ said...

If he doesn't know who Elvis Costello is, well, she can keep him!

A Lover and a Fighter said...

I agree. This was an excellent screening tool. Now you know not to waste any energy on his kind.

He wouldn't be a decent candidate for your first marriage.

MonsteRawr said...

Sounds like we not only have a profound genius, but an inspired conversationalist on our hands. If he couldn't handle some small talk without going all Rain Man on you, then there's no way he could have handled your unique brand of awesome. Just be glad he didn't cry.

Jersey said...

This was great! It would totally be a scene that would play out in my life, too!

So maybe it's not me that says random stuff, maybe its the GUYS that are just dumbos.

Intelligent, worldy, and muscially knowledgable women of the world, UNITE!

Bootchez said...

Lesson learned: always carry a bag of poop with you to provide the perfect conversational exit strategy. Masterful.

Philly said...

What are you worried about? I think you said what needed saying. No regrets.

Bridget said...

K.H. is right. He sounds like he has the personality of a rock. I feel sorry for his girlfriend.

Word Perv said...

OMFG!!!

Hilarious!!

I mean, sad for you, but fucking funny.

On the bad dates I've been on -- and there have been a lot -- I often think, "Well at least this will make a funny/entertainig/awesome post."

See, there's a silver lining there...

Deidre said...

Seriously, you dodged a bullet - Wearing a red sox hat and thinking its from Team Costello is just redonkulous.

emily said...

See, I suspect that the point of your post is that you don't mix well with people. This dude, however, does not count as 'people'. Did you happen to notice tentacles or additional appendages on his person while you were chatting?

Because that wasn't chatting, for him. That was 'assimilating'.

golublog said...

Those interactions are always kind of awkward.

*Akilah Sakai* said...

Dear Lord, what the hell was that?! Was he really breathing or a Stepford Husband?

The Merlin Menu said...

LOL!

NY Wolve said...

Now that is funny. Could have been worse -- he could have been a Yankees fan!

Iain said...

Can't you somehow Tumblrise this? I always forget to check here.
Which is clearly my problem, not yours. But still.

Also, my wife would like you to create some more LOLHouse joy for her.

cardiogirl said...

Oww. Ch.

hagen said...

It's moments like this that divine the good from the unimaginably horrible. It's a victory for you and a loss for him and The Boxer Beast (who could've torn out the speaker cones for nesting material). Progress marches on!

The Imaginary Reviewer said...

I would say you should wear the t-shirt as often as possible, and if you bump into him point to shirt with a wide-eyed smile and shout "THIS IS WHAT YOU WERE LISTENING TO WHEN WE FIRST MET!"

Then he'll never leave the apartment and you can be safe in the knowledge that no further embarrassing conversations will be had.

Craig said...

I can get and accept people not liking sports. I can get and accept people not being totally in to music. But, come on, some passing knowledge, if even just to function in society! (Pop) Cultural literacy, use it!

(When the day comes J-Money, I am using you as my exhibit A for "Communication as art and science.")

JackeeG4glamorous said...

I.cracked.up over your comment "like a just tore a squirrel apart with my teeth." Mind if I steal that when I say something to my adult children and they look at me with that oh...look. Like I've just torn a squirrel apart with my teeth. PERFECT.
You are a genius, if not a great fashion icon.

starpower said...

YOU feel awkward?! He's the boring and douchey one. You were being nice.

David Brenner with a sex change said...

Yet another example of why we shouldn't go on looks alone. Give me a chubby dork who lip syncs and dances to Watchin the Detectives over a Chris Isaac look alike who confuses EC with a sports team anyday!

Ananda girl said...

I came here from Michael's blog... he's right, you are funny! Hope you don't mind if I drop back in again.

Danielle said...

Hilarious!!!!
http://midlifemommy07.blogspot.com/

amindinmotown said...

I see a future with three children for the two of you.

Or you know, a casual "hey" every other week or so as you walk the Boxerbeast. Whichever.

Mike said...

"reasonably attractive guy"

The longer the dry spell, the lower the cull factor.

los_tartist said...

Oh man. That's got to be like, the best Saturday evar.

. . . well for us anyway. Sry. But you do make it hilarious.

JM said...

Suddenly I don't feel as bad about the time I met a girl at a bowling alley in the middle of the DJ spinning "On A Bus" by INXS and being told by said girl "You like this stuff? You're old!"

repliderium.com said...

On the upside, at least the girlfriend likes Elvis Costello.

highlysatisfactional said...

You know, I once was totally enamored with a kid who looked exactly like Prince Eric, from The Little Mermaid. I once got lucky enough to sit next to him on a bus to a frat party. This was his ice breaker.
Him: So - do you do drugs?
Me: No
Him: Pot?
Me: Nope.
Him: Coke?
Me: Unh unh.
Him: LSD?
Me: No.
Him: Well then I guess we don't have anything in common.
Me:....

Granted, at the time I WAS a college freshman and not quite wise to the ways of the world, but he was FOINE.

You should be relieved that he wasn't such a scintillating conversationalist! I mean, WHO doesn't know who Elvis Costello is?!

Wonderful said...

I'm making a mental note now that good looks does not always equal intelligence. Thank you for the life lesson!

Abecedarius Rex said...

Okay, not a pickup story but a story of absolute dorkish eclecticism:
So I'm on the way north to Thunder Lake with some school colleagues and we stop at a local sebenleben for some chow and potty breaks; rural Minnesota area populated by vacationers, farmers, and people who find sport in driving your snowmobile as far onto open water as you can before it sinks.
As I belly up to the counter to pay for my drink and inedible prepackaged gastrointestinal delight I notice the nametag of the girl behind the counter = "Roxanne".
"Oh," I said, "Roxanne. That's a nice name."
"Yeah," she says, as her creep factor begins undoubtedly to rise at having her name commented on by some foreign guy.
"That's Alexander's woman," I said. Then thought "WTF? DID I JUST SAY THAT? SHE HAS NO CLUE WHAT I JUST SAID!"
- a pause as she obviously didn't know what to say.
So I try to make everything right, "Alexander the Great that is."
Smoothe, exlax. Like she has any freakin' clue who on earth Alexander the Great was. I might have been naming great Jewish Hockey players or something.
I took my change and my beef jerky and left.

Reluctant Runner said...

Ground floor apartment? Loser.

Danielle-lee said...

Aw shit. That is definitely a bad start to being neighbors. At least he wasn't a Mormon that tried to convert you, and then your boyfriend tells him that you are actually a stripper, so you are already going to hell, so please stop bugging about converting her.
Welcome to my world.

Danielle-lee said...

Now I think I will have to post about that lovely time in my life. :) Thanks for the reminder! LOL

punchanella said...

yea, that wasn't you... that dude has social issues.

how hard is it to LISTEN to the words that are coming out of your mouth and respond appropriately?

loser, i say.

KT said...

That is a great story.

Natasha said...

Music from the 60s. *snortlaugh*

Mary@Holy Mackerel said...

It could have been much worse...

His girlfriend could have been right there, heard you hitting on her boyfriend, come out and pummelled you to smithereens. Then, not only would you have been humiliated, but swollen as well.

That is what would have happened to me...

Mary@Holy Mackerel said...

And you don't want someone who doesn't know Elvis C.

birdykins said...

Hilarious. I love carrying awkward conversations way past their end date.

Jessica said...

Maybe he'll bring his gf around- it sounds like she's the one worth getting to know. : )

Your Ill-fitting Overcoat said...

Wow. Even this one has a girlfriend. THEY ARE ALL TAKEN. EVEN THE D-BAGS.