Normally, life is rational, logical and so tastefully appointed. But even in a perfect world crap sometimes takes your breath away.
1. In the checkout lane the clerk asks cheerfully “Did you find everything you were looking for?” You say “I couldn’t find the canned corn.” The clerk blinks three times and says “So, do you think it will ever stop raining?” What is up with that?
2. At lunch, a colleague says “Lemme borrow one of your napkins.” You grant his wish. The next day you realize that the colleague never returned your napkin. You confront him and he says “Dude, I threw it away.” What the hell is up with that?
3. Someone asks you to pick a card. Any card. Oop, they say, not that one. No, not that one either. Okay, they say, look at your card. Put it back in the deck. No, not there. Right there. Under my thumb. Okay, close your eyes. Now turn around.
So you close your eyes and turn around and you start thinking about canned corn and how there’s always one little kernel left on the plate that refuses to be picked up on your fork no matter how many times you threaten it. You see yourself looking around the table and all the other members of the Clean Plate Club have their heads down like dogs, licking up every last morsel. The urge to follow the crowd is powerful but then you accidentally knock your corn kernel off your plate and onto one of theirs. A six-foot tongue slithers out of nowhere and slurps it into oblivion.
Finally you turn around and open your eyes and the guy with the cards has vanished. Because you’re still upset about the colleague who threw your napkin away, you say “Damn.” And since you already paid the guy $10 to do his card trick, you are left to ponder: what is up with that?
4. You’re at a job interview. They’ve asked about your qualifications, your work ethic, your punctuality, your zipper (which you promised to have fixed), who won the French and Indian War, your favorite Lil Wayne number, and your attitude toward mimes—which you mistakenly hear as mines and you ask like land mines or the ones you go into and come out with consumption which is what killed your grandfather who, ironically, was a mine sweeper who survived World War II but ended up croaking because, as everyone knows, things are bad in the mines—and everybody chuckles and they say let’s move on.
All of your answers seem to have gone over big, lots of laughs, especially when you explained why your clothes smelled like bear manure. Then they pull the pin and toss out that deadly grenade of a question: Why do you want this job?
What is up with that?
Hellooo. I need the money.
You’re pretty sure they want you to say you believe in the company mission, you’re sure you can make a difference, you’ll work like a dog and never fall asleep in the men’s room.
But you couldn’t care less about the company or its stupid mission and you’re not going to work like a dog or a cat or a gerbil and you’ll be dozing in the men’s room maybe eight times a day. Also, the people interviewing you are fat heads because why else would somebody want a job?
They stop chuckling and start frowning. You say “Uh oh, was I using my inside voice or my outside voice?”
The head fathead says “Outside.”
You start to say something but the head fathead barks “Now!”
So, what is up with that?
©Patrick A. McGuire and A Hint of Light 2013-2014, all rights reserved.