|Get some, little guy! Get some!|
Every day at lunchtime, my stupid co-workers from my stupid office gather at the lunch table to talk about their stupid, lunch-filled lives. Each person sits with their phone flat down in front of them, periodically swabbing the screen and punching in their SECRET CODE to see if anyone's reached out to them. Some people bring their own salad dressing. Everyone sucks their own butt. To be honest they're all very nice and personable. I consider some to be very dear friends.
But I've never understood why someone would want to spend their only free hour of their miserable day in the same place that causes so much of that misery. The world around us -- specifically Center City Philadelphia, where my office is located -- is a RIDICULOUS place. This morning a homeless guy yelled at me to "go take a shit!" Last week the same guy told me my name was Larry. How could I not want to be a part of that? The City of Brotherly Lurve!
That's why I always go out for lunch. And this past Monday afternoon, I found the perfect spot to stuff my fat face with a turkey sandwich -- on a shady bench in Rittenhouse Park. I was amazed I found a seat. Right in the shade. All to myself. Directly across from a chick sunning herself. She had on one of those ridiculous bikini bottoms that ties on the sides, and her skin looked like it had never given birth to a baby. Unfortunately, she was flanked by two (2) dudes with their shirts off, both ripped and tattooed, but their backs were facing me and they had no way of catching me staring. So as my mouth watered and my sweat glands kicked in, I shoved clumps of dry, cold turkey into my warm, wet mouth.
It was marvelous. Absolutely marvelous. But then just as I got my mouth-breathing under control, a 4-year-old shithead came by and started throwing Chex Mix at pigeons.
I'm fine with feeding birds. I think they're hilarious. But this kid was feeding them RIGHT in front of me. Like, two feet in front, and he was throwing the Chex Mix directly where everyone was walking. And he was throwing so much Chex Mix. Not just like a sprinkling here and a dash there. Full handfuls, chucking it wherever he could. People were walking by just trampling over it. One guy smashed a pile with his wheelchair.
At first, there were only around two or three pigeons grippin' down. Then four. Then five. To the point where I fully expected to see the entire cast of Winged Migration before the hour was up. But the kid just kept feeding 'em. And feeding 'em! And feeding em!!!
Eventually, he started bending down, holding the food in the palm of his hand and trying to serve any pigeon within arm's reach. It was sort of adorable -- and I could totally see his little buttcrack peepin' out the top of his shorts -- but the pigeons weren't having it. They just kept ignoring the kid, and pecking away at the stuff on the ground, because pigeons are smarter than they appear. The kid wasn't.
Frustrated, he then started to throw the Chex Mix directly at the birds. Not around them. At them. At their measly, little heads. One bird (who was just trying to enjoy his goddamn lunch) kept getting pelted in the neck with crackers. He didn't seem to mind, but I had to step up and say something, on behalf of the entire animal kingdom.
"Dude, you're just nailing them in the head," I said to the kid, whose name wasn't Pedro, but might as well have been. He looked at me blankly. Then went back to the feeding. I laughed and threw my arms up in the air. Luckily, Pedro was running out of ammunition.
Meanwhile, the sunbathing beaut was joined by a FRIEND -- a slightly less attractive friend, but still a friend, with a body and a pulse and that's really all you need -- who then proceeded to slide her shorts down off of her butt, revealing an even SLIMMER bikini than the first chick's. Then she lifted her top over her head in that way that only women do, with both arms criss-crossing upward, until the shirt was off and her head popped out like a synchronized swimmer. I dropped a tomato on the ground. Pedro was oblivious.
He was also out of Chex Mix. But that didn't matter, because Pedro was now using an empty Zip-Loc bag to try and catch the pigeons. He was chasing them around, with the bag held above his head, lunging forward like Marion Butz in Madden '94... when you'd repeatedly press down on the speed burst to get a first down. Pedro caught nothing but air. I could essentially see one of the girl's buttholes.
After a few minutes of TRYING TO CATCH A PIGEON IN A BAG, Pedro took a rest, leaving just me and the girls. But soon he returned with a 20oz water bottle and attempted to spit on the birdies. Sip a little. Spit a little. Sip a little. Spit a little. His mother was changing his sister's diaper.
I wish I had a better ending, but unfortunately I don't. Pedro and his family soon left. The girls just laid there like logs. I made my way back to my soul-crushing cubicle. But for that one short hour -- in a place far away from my computer -- I was reminded of what it's like to be alive.