Once again, I take us back to a time and a place that holds such endearing memories in my heart. A time when I was coming into my own as a man. A place where I was loved, adored, respected, and sometimes asked to perform miracles that even the world's foremost hide and seek champion, Jesus Christ, could never perform:
The Paint Department at Home Depot.
I worked with a man named Howie. In fact, he was also a math teacher at my high school and worked at Home Depot 35 hours a week on top of that. So, he was sometimes quite cranky and short with people without even noticing it. That made it fun to fuck with him.
One day we were both behind the paint counter mixing for customers when I asked who was next. And I saw her. One of our repeat customers. And she was a few sandwiches short of a picnic. You know the type. She had that wide eyed look that if you stared long enough, you could swear you'd see birds behind those eyes chirping in her ear. She was way too friendly and way too talkative for my taste. She just never shut up long enough to answer any of her questions before she asked another one. And she liked to talk about birds. I know, right? I still think she really did have birds in her brain and they were controlling her brain just to fuck with the rest of us.
After about 10 minutes I couldn't take it anymore. She asked me another stupid question about which type of brush she should use. I smiled wickedly and said "Oh, I'm sorry. I don't know enough about the product. But you know what? Howie does. He should be able to help you better than I can." Howie spun around and looked as if he was about to strangle me with his bare hands. I just smiled and bent down behind the counter to pull out some paint that was mixing and I was laughing my ass off. I could hear her with that shrill, Edith Bunker voice babble on and on about nothing and everything. And Howie had to take it up the ass like a skinny prison bitch.
He looks down at me and mouths "I fucking hate you." and I just giggled "Happy Birthday Howie." And no, it wasn't his birthday. I then hear "Oh, Howie!!!!! Its your birthday???? Happy Birthday!! How old are you? What are you doing for your birthday? Blah,blah, blah,blah........" This went on for over 30 minutes. She just would not stop talking to Howie and he couldn't escape her.
Howie never stood next to me behind that paint counter ever again.......