Tuesday, April 29, 2008


I had to stop for diesel on the way to work today. As I’m standing with my back to the pump I get the uneasy feeling that someone is behind me. Turning around I find myself about thisclose to a heap of dirty camouflage and greasy hair.

“Girl” he says, leaning in conspiratorially as I simultaneous lean back to avoid having his breath melt the skin off my face “Girl, THEY are listening”

Now, what to do? Of course there is NO ONE else around and I am alone with this hobo and his Pink Hello Kitty backpack and burlap shoes.

“MMMM” I say to convey leave me alone

“No, Girl, THEY ARE LISTENING” he is more insistent this time, desperate to be understood.

“Uh, who are THEY?” because really, it could be anybody from the government to the Travelocity Gnome that he’s referring to.

“THEY” he says pointedly as though *I* am the crazy one; “THEY”

“Oh” I say as thought it is now crystal clear “THEY. Uh, okay thanks for letting me know”

He thumps his fist twice on his chest and scurries silently away.

Standing there, I couldn’t help but laugh. If THEY are, in fact, listening, THEY are getting an earful. Last night at dinner there was a conversation about the benefits of assassination with shotguns versus handguns (less ballistics with a shot gun), figuring the aiming point of an AR15 using Kentucky windage and the relative effects of temperature on the .223 round, the potential military and economic repercussions of using 100lb bags of potatoes dropped from planes as “bombs” in countries where mud bricks are the primary construction material, my sisters fake sounding NY address being a cover for her CIA activities (I quipped her costuming degree would assist in her disguises), the weight limit involved in lowering someone from a helicopter onto the roof of the State Department building in Baghdad, whether or not the exploding dump truck was actually Jimmy’s fault (he says no, they shouldn’t have given him an Arabic only manual) and whether or not a farmer should be allowed to have sex with his sheep (only if the sheep is of consenting age was the decision).

I guess I just have to hope that THEY were busy watching porn last night, because otherwise you can guarantee somewhere there’s a list with my name on it.

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