Wednesday, March 19, 2014

I once heard agoraphobia called "Al Gore phobia"

We had a few errands to run on Saturday and I had no idea what sort of fun we would run into when we left the house.
First stop was at Dick's Sporting Goods, and just to set the bar high for the day, nothing went wrong there at all.  Peggy had something to buy, she ran in and bought it, and off we went to

Barnes and Noble, the bookstore.  Nothing wrong with them and Peggy was kind enough to let me use one of her seemingly innumerable gift cards to purchase the Treasures of AC/DC souvenir compilation because all men my age like to duckwalk out to the mailbox every afternoon singing "Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap."  And then do "For Those About to Rock" on the way back in.

But while we waited in line to buy that priceless heirloom which I hereby bequeath to (name withheld), some guy was giving the old rigamarole to a cashier at the bookstore.  He had ordered some expensive books about architecture, gone to the store, and slunk behind the cashwrap area to get the special orders off the shelf.  He had removed the plastic wrap from one of them and was about to open the other when the lady approached him, told him (gently) that he was not supposed to go behind the registers and take merchandise off the shelves, and then when she asked if he intended to buy the books he had ordered and presumably come to retrieve, he said he didn't have enough money.  So why would he order books and then come to the store to get them, without enough money?  Who here thinks he was fixin' to rip them off?  

So we leave there and are headed to pick up dinner to go at Carrabba's. First, I call Carrabba's to order the pick-up dinner.  The phone rings 147 times before someone answers with: "ThankyouforcallingCarrabba'sinFullertonMarylandwhereyourdinnerisAlways HandPreparedandAlwaysMadeFromScratchpleaseholdon."

I told him I wanted to put in an order for pickup but I was talking to muzak because he had put me on hold without even telling me.  After a very brief five minute wait, a female picked up the phone and began a series of questions, each of which made me ask her to slow down and repeat what she said (what make and model and color of car are you driving, what is your phone number, what is your name) to the point where I had to ask her to let me talk to someone else because I could not understand one word she was saying.  And this is nothing to do with ethnicity or accent or poor diction or anything other than that adolescent habit of combining insanely rushed speech cadence with UPTALK at the end of a sentence and the vocal sizzle that drags out the end of a wordddddddddd.  Another young lady got on the phone and took the order with alacrity.  We left the shopping district to pick up dinner.

 I get behind a car down by the police station,  a car festooned with bumper stickers like buttons on a TGIF server.  The buttons have the following theme:  protect my "traditional" marriage by not letting people of the same gender have a marriage, I love America and all it stands for (and I will be the one to decide what it stands for) and don't listen to the liberal media.  The guy is in such a hurry to get to his destination and be a good American that he runs a light that turned red as  he reached it.  I thought he would have been happy to sit and bathe in that red glow, but no.

We got to Carrabba's and of course the order was screwed up. The chicken parm is supposed to come with a side of pasta, as chicken parm traditionally does.  The girl who brought the bag out to the car said, when I asked about the noodles, said, "Someone else was asking about that."  She said she would be back with the answer.  Instead, a male came out and said we should have had pasta and he would be right back with it.  Apparently, they had to send someone over to the Buy'N'Save for pasta, because as darkness fell over Baltimore and the rest of our dinner cooled, we waited for a bowl of noodles that took nine minutes to be brought out of the kitchen and into my waiting hands and I realized that some days, it's better just to stay home.

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