"Guess what I saw today?” I ask no one in particular, simply voice out loud to the only two other people in the room at the time, my husband and my 15-year-old daughter. She sits curled on one end of the sofa, he on the other. I am totally ready to tell them the fascinating story of how my day started. Until ...
“Wait ... wait ... don’t tell me ...” my husband says. “You saw a goat playing the piano! ... No, wait a minute ... a flying monkey ... no, no ... a talking horseshoe ... a ...”
Sometimes, I just want to slap him.
“Sometimes, I want to slap you,” I tell him, but he knows I don’t really mean it. Deep down, though, I really do want to inflict a teeny tiny inkling of bodily harm on him when he aggravates the stew out of me so badly it makes my toes curl. Just flick him on the ear ... just once. He totally ruined my fantastic story of how my day started. But I couldn’t very well not tell them. It was just too good.
“I was driving to work before 8 o’clock in the morning,” I start, building up as best I can to the climactic, exciting part, “and right there waiting at the bus stop was a man ... wearing ... (wait for it) a tuxedo.”
Wait for it ... wait for it.
Nothing. Not a peep.
Do they not think it as fascinating as I did to see a man in a tuxedo waiting for a bus at eight in the morning? We don’t live in New York City or Las Vegas, for crying out loud. Finally, my daughter offers an opinion.
“Maybe he was going to work ... at a restaurant.”
Hmmm. Maybe. I thought a moment about what restaurant in Albany, Georgia, has their wait staff wear full tuxedos to serve breakfast. Nope. Nothing. But that doesn’t mean anything, mind you. I haven’t eaten everywhere. So please, if you know of a place ... by all means, help solve the mystery.
“Maybe he was getting married,” she offers. Yes, yes. She was thinking now. And that was another good suggestion. On a Wednesday morning, perhaps he was getting married. And if that is the case, then I wish every happiness for the mystery man and his bride.
“I know,” my husband says, joining in the conversation. See, I knew it was too good to resist ... too fascinating a topic to not want to get involved. “Maybe ... this man in the tuxedo ... was ... all in your imagination.”
Is he insinuating that he doesn’t believe I actually saw a man in a tuxedo waiting for a bus? I bet he still doesn’t believe I saw a bear in the road years ago when I was driving home from Plains one night. I thought it was a grizzly bear. And when I told him about it, he told me that grizzly bears don’t live around here. Merely a formality.
It reminded me of my pet cockatiel I had once. His name was Rambo, and he could whistle the theme song to Andy Griffith. One day, Rambo was outside in his cage getting some fresh air and somehow got loose. We never saw him again. My daddy always said that there was some poor soul somewhere that probably got committed because he swore he saw a bird in a tree whistling the Andy Griffith song and nobody believed him. I know how he feels.
If only I had had a cell phone back then, I could have snapped a photo of that grizzly bear on the side of the road to prove my case. I’m just glad that grizzly bear wasn’t wearing a tuxedo.
Now that would have been a fascinating story.
Contact columnist Mandy Flynn at firstname.lastname@example.org.