Thursday, March 28, 2013

Everyday hilarity

Alright, I know I need to update on the Darryl situation but that will be a more involved post.  For the time being, in the midst of post-vacation catching up at work I have come across two things that I have found terribly amusing.

1 - I have a student doing research for his PhD out west and have been wading through piles of receipts to reimburse him for travel costs, including fuel.  Through this wading, I have found that gas stations out west have AMAZING names.  Colorado boasts a chain called Loaf n' Jug.  But my personal favorite, Toot'n Totum, obviously hails from Texas.  It begs the question, why have we East Coasters been bothering to write out those conjunctions when you can be folksy AND save signage costs at the same time?

2 - Desperation e-mails.  Admittedly, these shouldn't be as funny to me as they are.  These students are genuinely worried about their academic futures.  Make no mistake, I'm genuinely concerned for them.  More for the fact that they will try and blame me if they don't get an offer anywhere than for the fact that they would be unjustly denied the chance to share their brilliance with the world through their undoubtedly groundbreaking research.    But please allow me to post possibly the best e-mail I have ever, and perhaps will ever, receive which falls in this category:

"    Hi,

     Now the number of Universities that I applied for them are reducing day after day and the word sorry is increasing. Please I am afraid that I will not found the acceptance from the 13 universities that I am waiting for until now...can you help me to find the acceptance from university that you have chairs on it for Kuwaiti students??? I know you told me before to wait and faith but I can't stop thinking. Please help me if you can. Also if it need from me to come to the embassy I will take an airplane and come. But please help me to get the acceptance I pig you. Thanks for your patient and your big heart, I will wait to hear from you,,,   "

Please note that I have not changed any grammar, diction, or syntax for added humor.  This is 100% original material from my dear, concerned student.  Sorry to laugh at your expense, but the world (comprised of the 3 people, maybe, who read my blog) needs to see this.  My co-worker did a dramatic reading of it yesterday and I had to step outside to regain my composure.

More on Florida soon.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Trader Joe's is for Lovers

This just happened at my neighborhood Trader Joe's.

I was waiting in line behind a couple who didn't seem to be partaking in the revelry of the day.  They had had a long conversation with an elderly triathlete in front of them because the lines were out of control today.  So the triathlete checks out, and the couple steps up to the register with just a jar of cookie butter and chocolate syrup to purchase.  The cashier looks at them and says with a smile, "I see those sweet treats coming your way." Then she adds, laughingly, "but where's the ice cream?"  The gentleman in the couple responds by putting his arm tightly around his girlfriend/wife, and says, "I'm 'bout to go home and make me a sandwich.  I got some St. Patty's plans tonight."

I stepped up to the register after this and the cashier was smiling but also a bit flustered.  We were both trying to get our heads around what had just happened.  I asked the cashier if that was the strangest thing she had ever heard at the register and she said, "Well, today anyway."

Friday, March 01, 2013

Darryl - 7th Generation Florida Gold

Hello friends.  It's rare that I am inspired to blog by a business telephone conversation, but it wouldn't be the first time.  To say that this phone call was about business is using the term loosely.  My business was planning my vacation in Florida for my dear friend Lauren's wedding.  All the big pieces are set: car rented, plane tickets bought, hotels booked, I just had a few holes to fill in.  Namely, spending Sunday exploring the Everglades and figuring out the best way of doing that.

On the Everglades NP website, they have links to a few tour companies and Captain Steve's Swamp Buggy Adventures really stuck out to me.  What is a swamp buggy anyway? I had been putting off calling until I had a few more pieces of the puzzle in place, and today it all came together.  So I rang up the outfit.  A fantastic deep southern accent greeted me on the other line:

"Captain Steve's Swamp Buggy Adventures, this is Darryl".

Instantly, I am excited by the prospect of sitting in an amphibious, adapted tractor for three hours with someone talking to me like this.  Darryl informs me of the reservation process, and manages to work in not a small amount of his life story while doing so.  I learn that Darryl is Captain Steve's son.  Darryl is a 7th generation Florida swamp native.  Darryl just came back to start helping his dad out with the business (didn't get a chance to find out from where, but this is for the best.  I have to save something for the buggy tour...).  Darryl LOVES NASCAR.  I find this out when I tell him my last name, which is synonymous with stock car royalty. He says he will never forget my name.  I am starting to have a crush on Darryl.  Darryl tells me his name, which is "7th generation Florida gold when it leaves your mouth" much like my own name is "All American 100%" in his kind estimation.

I tell Darryl a little bit about what I'm hoping to get out of the tour, expressing a desire to see a lot of the Everglades' different terrains.  Darryl is quick to assure me:

"We ARE the Everglades".

Well, technically, you're Big Cypress Nature Preserve, but I like where your heart is, Darryl.  Sheepishly, and apologetically, he explains after a long period of paper shuffling and a can of pens falling over that "I like to write things down first before I put 'em in the computer.  That way if I have to get up and do something in the middle of something else, I know I got 'em.  And you know I'm allllllways multi-tasting.  I'm like quadruple-tasking right now".  Impressive.  A picture of gentlemanly conduct, Darryl does not repeat my credit card number again when confirming my other information "out of consideration for your privacy, ma'am".  And not the kind of ma'am that makes me feel like a school marm, but rather like Scarlett O'Hara.  He does repeat my cell phone number, twice.  Asking me to confirm that I can be reached at this number anytime, especially while traveling.  Oh Darryl, I'm blushing.

Needless to say, I am beyond excited about meeting a man who probably uses crocodile teeth to floss and 90% of whose wardrobe would enable him to stalk a panther unnoticed in its natural habitat.

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