Soon, my precious. Soon.
Archive for October, 2011
I’m grateful to be gainfully employed. I really am, but my day job is…well, it’s not exactly my life calling. But I guess there could be worse things. For the most part, I get paid to sit in front of a computer and occasionally get up and mess around with other computers and printers and things. I work in IT during the day. That’s about all you need to know. I do pride myself on a certain air of mystery, after all.
So, when one of the supervisory types came round today and wanted to recruit some people for a, get this, poster contest, guess who jumped at the chance to spend an hour or so not teaching idiots how to set up their wireless networks. They were specifically looking for people who have some sort of artistic talent or ability. Apparently every department would submit one poster and they would all be judged. I don’t even know what the winners would get. All I know is that it would mean I could get away from my desk for about an hour or so.
So the recruits were myself, some chick I don’t know who had no artistic ability at all, but was just looking for an excuse to not do any work, and the nerdy guy that sits next to me who spends most of his time reading Robert Jordan books and drawing Dragon Ball Z characters into his sketch book. At least I have someone at work who I can talk to about the twists and turns of the Wheel of Time series. It’s nice to have a fellow Jordanite on my team.
So we set about our work, and I use the term “work” lightly. Lazy Girl came up with some convoluted concept that involved putting stars all over the poster and having them all represent something, ultimately coming together into a bigger star that represented the client, or some other nonsense. I was distracted the whole time she was explaining it because she kept drawing all of the stars as The Star of David, only I don’t think she knew what a Star of David was. The plan was, she would draw the simple stuff (unintentional religious symbols and lettering), and the anime nerd and I would take care of the real work. The real work, by the way, consisted of me drawing a picture of a printer and him drawing a picture of a person sitting at a desk typing.
I guess I should mention now that the supervisory type only told us about this thing at 2:00, but said that it absolutely had to be done by 3:00, even though they’ve known about this thing all week. Well, we knew that wasn’t going to happen. Lazy Girl kept ducking out and running back and forth to her desk and pretty much disappearing for long stretches at a time. So, Anime Nerd and I just decided to take pages from his sketchbook and work on our individual parts separately, and then we’d just cut them out and tape them onto the larger poster paper later. But, our scheduled lunch breaks were coming up, so that killed about 45 minutes. Then they came to us and said it had to be done by 4:00. Some more work stuff got in the way, yadda, yadda, yadda….
Long story short, somewhere around 4:45, I found myself standing in front of a printer, frantically sketching a picture of it, while Anime Nerd was frantically drawing what can only be described as an amputee with a bionic implant growing out the side of his face. Lazy Girl was flipping right the f**k out, throwing stars everywhere. I kept poking my head around the corner, watching the judges as they actually were in the middle of judging the poster contest while we were still in the process of coloring and taping. We ran over there and submitted it just in time to see them hanging the winning ribbon on the winning poster. You know what, I don’t even care. The whole deal was such a clusterfudge from start to finish that all I cared about at that point was that I spent the better part of 2 hours away from my desk eating lunch and playing with color pencils.
The sadness you see before you is the final result. Don’t ask me to explain it. I didn’t understand the concept the first time she came up with it, and I don’t understand it now. All I know is that I was in charge of drawing a frigging printer. (Note: You might want to click on all the pics here to get bigger versions. They’re kind of light and contain a lot of fun details that you can’t see in these smaller versions.)
Here’s a better shot of my handiwork. That’s the result of about 30 minutes of sketching, a dull pencil, and using a folded up piece of paper as a ruler/straight edge. If I cared more about it, I’d be really ashamed. Believe it or not, I occasionally earn a little money on the side by drawing portraits. I wouldn’t even hang this thing on the refrigerator.
But you want to know the worst part? After all our hard work, Lazy Girl’s near aneurysm over how her stars were going to turn out, my constant drawing and redrawing of that stupid printer, not to mention Anime Nerd’s…whatever that is…THIS thing, concocted by someone over at the customer service department, was the winner of the contest.
I’ve been on a major Waffle House kick lately. I don’t know what’s gotten into me, other than I cannot resist their chicken sandwiches and hash browns. A couple of posts ago, I introduced you to Wendy. If you haven’t read that yet, do some clickin’ and some readin’ and come on back. I haven’t seen Wendy since that fateful night, although I have revisited that specific Waffle House several times. In fact, it’s kind of a regular Friday night thing for me. I find myself sometimes on Friday nights stopping by the only bar in town that I give a crap about, having a few drinks, making a tipsy dial or two, and stopping by The Awful Waffle, as we call it down here. And that’s really the only time to go to one. You’re not going to get the full experience at 3:00 in the afternoon. Now, 3:00 in the morning, after you’ve had a few, that’s the time to go.
And that’s the time when you’ll meet the subject of this post — Cadillac. No, not the car. The star. Keep reading.
First of all, I was impressed with my parking skills as I pulled in the other night. Check it out.
I walked in the other week hoping to revisit Wendy, but instead was met by a whole other brand of crazy. I sat at the counter and was greeted by a lady with a giant grin and a larger than life personality. She didn’t introduce herself, but I heard the other two people there refer to her as “Cadillac”. I’m not questioning anything. It’s Waffle House. This shit’s par for the course. I didn’t recognize her, but somehow we struck up a conversation. Or, I guess I should say she started up a conversation. Cadillac seemed like she’s never met a stranger and knew all the customers by name. I only wish I could have gotten the entire encounter on camera, but I did get some of it. We’ll get to that later.
At some point the conversation turned to her schedule. I asked her when she got off, and she said in a few hours. It was then that she realized it was Friday and that she was about to start her weekend. She celebrated by singing, “Fuuuuu-uck!” While “raising the roof”. Yes, as in lifting her hands in the air, and waving them like she just don’t care. I guess now would be a good time to mention to those of you not familiar with Waffle House, that the normal rules of decorum and language go out the window as soon as you walk in the door. This is the case for every one you go to. You’ll be greeted with the nicest, most polite, most attentive waitresses you’ve ever met in your life, but they will have the mouths of sailors on shore leave.
I figured while she was in good spirits, now would be a good time to ask her about Wendy. I’d love to get her take. I’ve only had one encounter with Wendy and I haven’t seen her in there since, so I was thinking maybe she quit. So, I asked Cadillac what she thought of her or if she ever worked with her. Her response:
“Oooooh! Oh, that bitch!? Oh, she’s a winner. She thought she was going to be the main bitch around here, but I had to set her straight. There’s only one main bitch around here, and it’s Cadillac. Let me tell you right now!” She then proceeded to go into a witch-like cackle that would chill you to the bone. I don’t know what the hell happened to Wendy, and I don’t think I want to.
Right about now, I was thinking, if I’m going to catch her on video, now’s the time. So, I convinced her to let me just turn my phone on, and talk a little bit. I was curious about the name “Cadillac”, and more specifically, what was going on with her name tag. I had noticed that it actually read, “UNKNOWN”. The result is below.
Of course, I had to get a pic of the actual name tag itself. Sorry about the flash over part of the words. As you can see, it actually does say, “UNKNOWN” and “I WEAR DEPENDS”.
Folks you can’t make this stuff up.
But, the story doesn’t end there. Let us fast forward to last night. I was driving in from Columbia after doing my radio show. The show ran about an hour long, and I was pretty worn out. About half way into my trip, I decided I wanted to stop for some hot chocolate. I saw a Waffle House sign, and figured that would be the place to go. They usually have pecan pie, and I had a craving for that too, so that clinched it. Something you need to know about the South, is that Waffle Houses are like churches and girls named “Britney”. There’s one every four feet.
So, I walked up, sat at my usual spot at the counter (all Waffle Houses are the same), and ordered a slice of pecan pie and a cup of coffee (they were out of hot chocolate — crap!). This time, I was just there for people watching. I wasn’t going to be hanging out very long because I was in the middle of a long trip, and in the car I was actually kind of wrapped up in an episode of Coast to Coast AM on AM radio. I am an enormous Coast to Coast AM fan and Michael E. Uslan was being interviewed. He is the executive producer for every single Batman related movie, not to mention the animated series. He’s also a noted comic book authority, writer, and author of The Boy Who Loved Batman. He’s pretty much responsible for every piece of Batman related media that you’ve seen in the last 20 years, and I really wanted to get back to the car so I wouldn’t miss anything. If you’re questioning why that was so important to me, you clearly don’t know me that well.
As I scarfed down my pecan pie, my waitress ran around refilling cups and things. I noticed the other waitresses referring to her as “Little Bit”. At one point, she leaned up against the counter in front of me, with her back turned to me and her ponytail in my eye line. I also noticed that she had some kind of tattoo on the back of her neck, but couldn’t make out what it was because her hoody was covering up most of it. So, I asked her. The conversation ran thusly:
“So, what’s your tattoo on your neck?”
“It’s my name. You wanna see it?” She turned back around and lowered the hoody. I noticed it was something written in Arabic. “It’s my name. It’s in Arabic.” She pronounced it “uh-RAY-bic”.
“What’s your name?”
“Is that so you won’t forget it?”
“Well, I can’t see it.”
“Oh, I guess it’s so other people will know. I mean, if they speak Arabic.” I pronounced it Arabic.
“It’s supposed to be a conversation piece.”
“Well, looks like it’s working.”
“You want some more coffee or something?”
I should have asked to see her name tag.