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Neutron dance - Sing With Me If It's Just For Today...
If I should fall behind, Guyster, wait for me.
guysterrules
guysterrules
Neutron dance
There’s a black Miata parked right in front of my house taking up prime parking real estate underneath the bird-shit factory, an enormous fichus tree that must’ve escaped someone’s living room in the Twenties and laid its roots by the curb. The little car has a broken convertible top so its owner secures Saran Wrap over it with two-liter soda pop bottles filled with water.

When I pulled into my driveway on Thursday evening, it was dusk, and I saw an older black man in a chocolate velveteen jacket with a bucket of soapy water and a sponge. He was scraping white dollops of poo from the black paint. Steve was pulling on his leash in a desperate need to be near some random vine on the fence, but then Steve’s always desperate to be somewhere where he’s not already, and I was trying to balance his water dish, my few books from work, and a sack of groceries that held nothing more than cookies and a twelve-pack of caffeine-free Diet Coke.

As I undid the front gate of my yard, I turned to the man, awkwardly because I still was navigating the desperate Steve, and I said, “Those birds sure do a number on your car, huh?” I knew this from experience. My black car had been violently speckled more than once in the past few months.

He looked up from his soapiness. “I lost my neutron detector.” I thought I heard him right and I thought he was making an odd and possibly funny joke about birds and their defecating habits, so I laughed because that’s what I do when I don’t understand something. I’m a friendly guy, though, so I thought it might be good to ask for clarification.

“What?” I was still smiling.

“I’m a physicist.”

I laughed again, still not in on the joke, but maybe it was going somewhere familiar, a place where the two dots could connect and my laugh might turn into something genuine.

“And you’re a carp.” He said this with such authority that at that moment, I didn’t have any doubt that I was a goldfish looking for my plastic castle. “I work in physics and I lost my neutron detector,” he stated for the record, again.

Slowly closing my gate, making sure its clasp was firmly in place, I fished around my mailbox and walked up to the porch.

Not wanting to be rude, I waved after I opened the front door and wished him well on washing his car. “And I hope you find your detector,” I added. I didn’t want him to think me insensitive.

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Comments
poodler From: poodler Date: May 5th, 2006 04:39 pm (UTC) (Link)

Now

Now that's downright weird.
guysterrules From: guysterrules Date: May 6th, 2006 12:17 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Now

And presumably off his meds.
backawayslowly From: backawayslowly Date: May 5th, 2006 04:55 pm (UTC) (Link)
you obviously missed the point, you stupid fucking carp.

*looks for neutrons*
From: pagerbear Date: May 5th, 2006 04:59 pm (UTC) (Link)
I hadn't considered you as a carp before, but now that I think about it....
quuf From: quuf Date: May 5th, 2006 05:01 pm (UTC) (Link)
Karpos (καρπός) is Greek for 'fruit'. Could it be . . . ?

Nah. He's just whacked. ;-)
yieldsigns From: yieldsigns Date: May 5th, 2006 08:57 pm (UTC) (Link)
You're a comic genius.
zodmicrobe From: zodmicrobe Date: May 5th, 2006 05:14 pm (UTC) (Link)
I lost mine the other day too. Those damn things can't be left around, I'm telling you.

And it's hard to say just how some things never change
And it's hard to find any freak to draw the line

I'm just burnin'.
discreet_chaos From: discreet_chaos Date: May 5th, 2006 05:20 pm (UTC) (Link)
You should've broke into a round of the "Neutron Dance" in honor of his calculator and the recently passed Pointer Sister. That'd sure show him, who was a carp.
shawnsyms From: shawnsyms Date: May 5th, 2006 05:29 pm (UTC) (Link)
I hope that guy's all right.
gotu From: gotu Date: May 5th, 2006 06:36 pm (UTC) (Link)
Then, of course, there was the kookie student in speaking with my officemate, who called Mike an "abutment." After kookie student left, we scratched our heads for quite some time trying to figure out what this student meant.

We never did come to any conclusion.
From: bobaloo Date: May 5th, 2006 08:04 pm (UTC) (Link)
I'll have what he's having.
uberdionysus From: uberdionysus Date: May 5th, 2006 08:34 pm (UTC) (Link)
Aren't those things the size of a man? And worth tens or hundreds of thousands?

It's like losing a car.

Or a boat.

Maybe that's why he called you a carp.
edenic From: edenic Date: May 5th, 2006 10:47 pm (UTC) (Link)
Proof for the toxicity of bird shit. My grandpa almost died from it.
Or was that mouse droppings...
Either way, this guy sounds birdshirt crazy, a real loon, in fact.
From: garycotti Date: May 6th, 2006 01:21 am (UTC) (Link)
...thats why you're laughing when I talk to you...huh, I thought I was just hilarious.
clintswan From: clintswan Date: May 6th, 2006 01:33 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yes Virginia, these people exist.

*shudder*
littlezen From: littlezen Date: May 6th, 2006 11:56 pm (UTC) (Link)
I used to work in a group home for the mentally ill. I loved having conversations like that. I am not sure they thought much of my conversational skills though. The only time I seemed to make any sense to this one particular girl, is when I accidentally meowed at her. She seemed quite satisfied with that answer.
notoriousbrb From: notoriousbrb Date: May 7th, 2006 01:53 pm (UTC) (Link)
I wish to hell I could give that kind of answer sometimes. Maybe I will. Next time some person comments on the weather or gas prices, I'll smile politely. Rather than say, "Hope it warms up soon." or "Wonder how bad it can get?", I'll say, "My ionic force feild was erected on this very spot."
ridiculicious From: ridiculicious Date: May 8th, 2006 04:50 pm (UTC) (Link)
Good thing he is driving. And good thing he is your neighbor. Although he sounds like mine.
guysterrules From: guysterrules Date: May 10th, 2006 06:55 pm (UTC) (Link)
Hey! Where've you been? Or have I just missed you a lot?
From: hulagalinthesky Date: May 10th, 2006 06:22 pm (UTC) (Link)
This is excellent stuff. I'm adding you.
guysterrules From: guysterrules Date: May 10th, 2006 06:54 pm (UTC) (Link)
You don't work for Discovery, do you? Whereabouts in MD? I just moved from Silver Spring last year. I was there for two years.

I've watched and apprectiated your reviews from afar. Glad you hopped on board and I look forward to getting to know you a little better.
From: hulagalinthesky Date: May 10th, 2006 07:15 pm (UTC) (Link)
Thank you! I look forward to getting to know you a bit better, as well. I've been enjoying reading your journal this afternoon. I don't know why I didn't come around here sooner.

I actually live very near to Silver Springs, in College Park. I work for an organization that is part of the University of Maryland on an e-learning project that helps adult learners to brush up on their obscure second language skills in languages like Arabic, Chinese, Punjabi, etc. We have worked with around 33 different languages or so. I'm hoping to move to San Francisco at some point in the next year or so, depending on how much $$$ I can save, finding work, etc. California is the best place on earth.

How old is your house? It sounds like you are in a great neighborhood out there with some fantastic early American architecture. I LOVE architecture, particularly the styles of building that took place from the 1920s-50s.
guysterrules From: guysterrules Date: May 10th, 2006 08:35 pm (UTC) (Link)
Oh, good. I'll open up my work filter for you, then. fabulist is a UofM alumni and a great writer who lives in Laurel. You may want to check him out, too.

The main part of my house was built in 1903, just on the cusp of the Arts and Crafts movement and Victorian. It has elements of both. A maid's quarters was built in '05, then the porch was enclosed in '22. It has major Craftsman details. I should really post some pictures.

Yeah for California! Come on out. We need cool people here. Even San Francisco does.

And thank you so much for reading my journal. I've got to make more time to find out more about you.
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