I too have been enjoying some time outside. Leah’s been spending more time at the university, so I’ve been going home at lunch to walk Duke.
Earlier in the day, when I was still outside and enjoying life, I had the sweet and naive ambition to try and save you from becoming who I am, but then I realized that there’s never hope of saving you.
I’ll just show you what I did over my lunch hour and it sickens me—but I felt like my last letter was particularly harsh and I thought the studio audience in my head might have got the wrong idea about me and thus want to show the softer side.
Mai Poo-KEY, Whew-KEY, Do-KEY
How cute am I? And, just as important, how cute is he!? And that leads you to this picture:
So here’s how my lunch hour broke down:
- 20 minutes to drive home
- 15 minutes to walk Duke (5 minutes spent taking cute pictures and making cutesy noises at Duke)
- 3 minutes to cook ichiban
- 1.25 minutes to eat
- 45 seconds to write this letter (in my head)
- 20 minutes to drive back to work
I wanted to save you from a pathetic life of loving your pets too much. But I can’t. Because I know you love Finnegan way too much. It’s creepy. The obvious thing to do here is make a peanut butter joke, but I’m not going there. Nope, nope, nope.
Pets are wonderful and the ichiban is always the same.
P.S. Is it sad that we’ve written maybe 40 letters total and this is, I’m pretty sure, my second—if not third—reference to a lunch of ichiban.
Last night was kind of depressing. I can feel it bleeding into today.
I went to go see a documentary called Junior that was playing at the Plaza as part of the Doc Soup festival. Rather than the madcap Schwarzenegger pregnancy flick that I was picturing, this Junior was a clever and thoughtful meditation on aging, told through the eyes of a 75 year-old Italian living at home with his 99-year old Mama. Needless to say, the spectre of death loomed throughout, and as I walked out of the theatre, I was lost in my own conflicted thoughts about growing old and dying.
Instead of trying to cheer myself up, I went home and grabbed The Brothers Karamazov off the bedside table and sat down to finish it once and for all. I only had 75 pages or so to go and was totally caught up in the grand finale, which takes place in a courtroom. I won’t spoil the ending for you, but I will say that Russian novelists of the 19th century were not masters of the happy ending. Truth be told, I went to bed feeling pretty down about things.
Fast forward to this morning. I’m easing into my morning with a little routine web surfing. Somehow I came across this Taco Bell webpage, featuring a rather sad packet of hotsauce.
Glen Bell, RIP
I tend to read more into these things than I should, but I felt like everything was conspiring to stress to me how brief and fragile life truly is. How did I act on this information? I went to the cafeteria and got the Creole Chicken sandwich with a side of Chicken and Rice soup. Sometimes you’ve just got to live every moment like it’s your last.
Today, unable to stomach another sandwich, I went to Coco Brooks in the southeast. There’s a lot of strange things about Coco Brooks. First, it sounds like a pornstar or a stripper runs it—when it’s actually run by Christians. Second, they give their employees Sundays off which I respect in theory, but in practice not as much—some times I just want a pizza on a Sunday. And frankly, all the uplifting slogans all over their personal-sized pizza boxes don’t actually do any uplifting. Not for me. Not when I’m about to injest a pound of meat and grease/cheese.
I know you know all that, since it was you who introduced me to Coco Brooks. I just wanted to say it because know one else listens to me. My presumption is that, as this is a letter, you will have to read—not because you want to but because I know you believe in the sanctity of letters.
I got the Mile High pizza, a name that I can’t help but associate with the sex act. Perhaps it’s this connection that made me so self-conscious about what happened next. While I waited for my pizza to arrive, I crossed my legs and I noticed that I was wearing white tube socks with my Wallabees. You can’t wear white socks with brown/black shoes. It’s a faux pas. And yet, there I was, in defiance of that true and noble fashion law. What did I care? I had no one to impress.
Just then a cute girl sat next to me and this presented a real problem. First, she was cute. Second, I knew she was judging my sock/shoe combination, but if I tried to hide the fact I was wearing brown shoes and white socks she’d know that I knew how much of a loser I am and thus lose all potential interest in me. So I played it cool, kept my legs crossed and proudly displayed my white socks and brown shoes. Maybe she’d take pity on me?
Truly, my only true hope for coming out unscathed during this was that in her judgement she’d realize the truth—I’m married. Luckily, my number was called first so I just left and ate my pizza at my desk, at work and in silence. It was pretty good.
I’m in a bad way. I don’t want to talk about lunch. It’s Friday and Fridays should be about happiness, but this whole day has been off. It started with Duke. He was mental this morning and I just knew the walk wasn’t going to go well. But I doubted myself. I thought—it will probably be fine. It wasn’t fine. I took his leash off and off he ran, towards the road (instead of into the park). Took me 10 minutes before I finally got his attention and tricked him into coming back. Then I got ready for work.
I prepared my lunch. And I don’t want to talk about my lunch because it was awful: toast, chicken, mayo, pickles. That’s not a sandwich. That’s the minimum requirements for living. But you know what I really wanted? Ice cream—at 8 AM. No day is going to go right when you want ice cream at 8 AM. I opened the freezer and there was a hole. A giant hole where the ice cream should be.
So that’s it for me. That should’ve been a wrap on the day. Then I read this XKCD comic. Sad robots. The only thing worse than sad robots is a sad puppy. Personification is the worst.
But even after all this, I had a backup plan—a kiwi. A delicious, hairy, ripe kiwi. Then, as I spooned the sweet and tangy kiwi flesh, I displaced some kiwi juice on my white shirt. This day is the pits.
We’re playing hockey today after work, so I stopped in at “No Sweat” to get my skates sharpened. I went around the corner to the Subway to get my usual sandwich—the Italian BMT. I like to get it on an Italian Herb & Cheese bun. I order this every time. I like the consistency in my life. It’s something I can easily control and it always tastes the same. Except recently I added cucumber to the roster. I don’t want to be boring.
- White cheddar (WTF is white cheddar?)
- Lettuce, tomato and pickles
- Banana peppers, cucumber
Anyway, while I was standing in line, I tweeted something about getting my skates sharpened and how you “Better watch out for Rhettski”. It got me thinking about nicknames. I never really had any nicknames. I can only imagine that, as a child, you had some unfortunate nicknames. I’m imagining pee-pants or butt-face. Definitely something hyphenated. But it was always surprising to me, that as a popular kid, I never had any nicknames.
I mean, there were some obvious ones when I was older like “Rhettoric or Rhettna” (or the above mentioned “Rhettski” (but really my dad only called me that)), but nothing like “Striker” or “Ice man”. Not even my last name was used as a nickname. For a couple days, in grade 9, this girl called me “Rat”, but that didn’t really bother me because she was a burn-out and rarely seemed to shower.
I always wanted a nickname, but never got one. Now it doesn’t seem that important or appropriate. At least I had a delicious sub.
All the best,
PS – You can get Erdinger at the Coop Liquor store (beside No Sweat) for a buck cheaper than anywhere else that I’ve seen in the city.