Once again I’ve slept in and missed breakfast. I drag my late, but slightly smaller, ass into work and realize that I’ve forgotten to bring a lunch. As I am neither a planner, nor a cook, my food regimen usually consists of anywhere from zero to seven square (possibly isosceles, often tater-tot* shaped) meals, couched between various snacks, many Diet Cokes, and whatever scraps I manage to snarfle off your plate before it gets to you. If one had the learning of a fancy psychology degree (which may also be useful in bartending) she might diagnose me with two or even three eating disorders. But Anorexia would totally not be one of them, and I am NOT about to go until after 6:00 without eating.
Upon request, my lovely husband is kind enough to pop in and bring me some black beans & rice, two cabbage leaves, & two blackberries.
Until now, I’ve pretty much kept my diet on the down-low around the Nail’s customers (Hereinafter referred to as “Clients,” so as not to waste my education.) I’m not ashamed, I just suspect they won’t understand. These suspicions are soon confirmed when, after explaining the basic premise of the 30/30 experiment, I am met with a universal “Why the hell would you want to do that?” A fair question, but I realize the answer is more easily articulated to, and understood by, a different crowd. (i.e. hippies) To the urban (semi) haute bourgeois that frequent my place of employment, the concept of voluntary self-denial is categorized not only as foreign, but as Anti-American heresy. †
I’ll take this opportunity to illustrate a very important fact, since I’m unsure of the extent to which I’ve described the Rusty Nail to the reader. With the exception of my own political leanings, the only thing at the Nail that could be accurately described as “liberal,” would be Big Daddy’s‡ enthusiastic use of salt and lard in the giant vats of collard greens, black eyed peas, and mac-n-cheese. Despite the Nail’s dive bar status, most of the clientele (I mean Clients) is made up of the fairly affluent uber-Right (good for tips, bad for open political discourse.) Whereas I am usually quick to voice my opinion, I keep a close check on my tongue when it comes to the Politiks.
Today, I forgo a defense of 30/30, opting instead to pour stronger drinks, in hopes that my Clients will either feel sorry for me and tip more, or accidentally leave a $100.
Adam, who still has the car, is late picking me up this evening. I wait. He gets later. I wait. He’s stuck in traffic, so I wander on over to CVS to take in today's array of pharmaceutical wares. After observing the patience with which I have endured my husband's tardiness, The Man Upstairs reveals his blessing to me. In the form of a silver shopping cart emblazoned with a hand-written "90% off" sign, He rewards me yet again with the bounty of clearance X-mas candy. Thirty cents later, and I'm the proud owner of a Russell Stover 4-pack of assorted truffles, and a marshmallow Santa. The chocolates go for $0.21, and the Santa $0.09. I’ve got $0.05 left.
I’ve wolfed down the Russell Stover chocolates before Adam finally arrives. Apparently, he “didn’t know what time [he] was supposed to be there.” Super lame excuse, but Lady Luck shines on both of us tonight. I've got a belly full of choco-goodness, and I’m in high spirits. Adam gets off scott free, blissfully aware that what, on another day, might have earned him a sarcasm laden lecture about how “6:30 is rather ambiguous," has been averted. There will be no mocking and faux-understanding. He doesn't even get an "I guess 6:30 is pretty vague, what with all the nuances and interpretations from person to person. I mean, which time zone are we talking about? Before or after Day Light Savings? You know Arizona doesn’t even participate in day light savings, right? The Native Americans didn’t even have watches.”
He seems genuinely sorry, and has a friend in town, so I decide to keep my high horse locked away in the stables tonight. Plus, I got chocolate out of it.
I don’t eat dinner. I’m full of chocolate. And even as the cocoa starts to wear off, I don’t let it get me down. Why? Because I’ve got a Marshmallow Santa in my purse. Like most every member of the marshmallow family, Marshmallow Santas have always owned a place in my heart and back fat. Just as the proverbial tiny tot with his eyes all aglow eagerly awaits the arrival of St. Nick and his bag of toys, I impatiently anticipate the early-November appearance of his confectionery likeness on gas station and drug store shelves.
I had scored the last Marshmallow Santa of the season!
It is with heavy heart that I tell the reader what next conspires. In what can only be perceived as a cosmic bitch-slap, and appropriately proportional discipline, karma gives me the sugary back hand for even thinking about bitching at Adam earlier. It appears that my judgement, clouded by haste and delusions of Marshmallow-Santa-finding-grandeur, has erred. For my Marshmallow Santa is not a Marshmallow Santa at all. My Marshmallow Santa is a Caramel Santa.
I one-up karma by I eating it anyways.
* “Hey Napoleon, gimme some of your tots!”
† Was that a totally annoying sentence?
‡ I am continually delighted by the fact that the cook, who has run the kitchen for the past thirty years and absolutely hates me, goes by the title of “Big Daddy."