I just realized that I have not brushed my teeth all day today. I didn't brush them when I woke up, I didn't brush them after breakfast, nor after lunch.
I am usually an obsessive brusher. I can't go more than 30 minutes after a meal without feeling the need to clean my teeth. I don't know what has caused this sudden lapse in personal hygiene. Perhaps it is a tinge of rebellion... perhaps I feel that my breath could not possibly be bad.
I have my teeth cleaned at the dentist twice a year. That's right. I pay $100 to have a lady scrape at my teeth for fifteen minutes, rub that polish stuff all over them, make me rinse with mouth wash, and then tell me to keep up the good work. My hygienist told me I had the cleanest teeth ever.
There is really no point to this blog. I think I'll start another one.
Every year the house on the corner of the street by my workplace decorates for Halloween. They go all out. Ghosts, skeletons, demons, tombstones, cobwebs and witches. It is quite a spectacle.
Halloween has always been my favorite holiday. It is the first in a series of many, and hence, carries with it the most excitement. As a child I loved eating pie and drinking apple cider, carving pumpkins in the backyard and roasting pumpkin seeds. I loved dressing up, and most importantly...
I loved the CANDY!
What could be better than going door to door and forcing people to give you Tootsie Roll Pops and Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups?
I always dressed up as a princess on halloween. I don't quite recall if this was my choice, or if my mom simply bought a one size fits all halloween costume and stuffed me in it every year to save some money. Either way, I didn't mind. I liked being a princess. It meant I got to wear my mom’s makeup. (My mother has had the same Mary Kay make up for 23 years now.) She would always use her blush to make big pink circles on my cheeks. I felt so pretty.
Upon reaching adolescence, my friend Julie and I decided to trick or treat one last time. We were finally old enough to go alone, without the encumbrance of our crotchety old parents. You know what this means: MAXIMUM CANDY ACQUISITION.
I spent the week prior to the 31st riding my bike around the neighborhood, mapping out the homes. My goal was to create the most efficient trick or treating route: how to hit the largest number of homes in the least amount of time, with no back tracking. (I'm so not making this up.)
Bye bye princess outfit, this year I was a full fledged witch. I had the pointy hat, black cape, and my hair was already long, straight, and stringy.
Julie and I set out as early as possible, beginning our brisk walk through the neighborhood. The details of this enjoyable evening elude me now. I only recall reaching the last house, well after dark, the kind lady informing us that it was getting late and perhaps we should go home, then looking around to realize that we were the only two kids left out on the street.
Now, in today's society, this would not be a problem. We'd have simply pulled out a cell phone and called my dad to come pick us up. Not so back in 1993 (I didn't get my first cell phone until a decade later).
*switches to present tense for dramatic effect*
So we begin the one mile trek home, lugging our 20 pounds of candy with us... not a big deal on any other night of the year, but on Halloween? Who knows what creepy things lurk in these shadows? We round the first corner to see a white windowless van driving by. I’ve never felt so vulnerable. Perhaps we look too old, because, even though the driver slows down a bit, he doesn't stop. We pick up our pace a little.
Julie and I are so close to home when I suddenly hear a strange noise from behind... running water or a gust of wind, like something straight out of The Legend of Sleepy Hollow.
Keep in mind, before I continue, this story is not for the faint of heart!
We are sheltered under some large trees on the sidewalk. Instinctively, I feel the urge to leave this area. I grab Julie by the arm and we scurry out into the well lit street.
As we cross, I turn around to see a dark figure looming towards us at an unbelievable pace. It is a madman on roller blades, wearing a hockey mask. He is skating right at us. We start running.
I don't know if it is sheer luck or divine providence that he goes for Julie and not me, but, as he skates past, he grabs at her plastic bag of candy. The only problem? SHE DOESN'T LET GO!
The bag rips (I remember it as happening in slow motion). Candy flies everywhere. He falls. She falls. Julie’s candy scatters all over the street. He gets up and skates off.
I don't remember how much of her candy we bothered to salvage. I think we grabbed a handful or two and dashed home as fast as possible. I had to split mine with her.
When you frequent a place so often, after a while you start to learn more about the employees. My favorite Gelson’s deli employee is Lance. He is young, average height, blonde hair, pretty green eyes, acne, and a tad bit chubby.
Lance is always friendly, outgoing, and polite. He jokes around with his co workers... seems like a smart enough guy. One day I asked him what his goals are. Turns out he really wants to go to Le Cordon Bleu and become a pastry chef.
“What are you doing here?” I tell him. “Life goes by really fast.”
“Oh I can't afford school right now. I have to pay my bills," he says.
“Can you take out a loan?”
“No. I looked into that. It wouldn't really work.”
Now you have to understand that I CARE about Lance. I WANT him to go back to school. As great of a sandwich maker as he is, I so want him to achieve his goals. I start racking my brain. What could I do to help? Maybe I should go down to the library and look for grants. Do I have any rich relatives? Can I start shoving money into a savings account?
WHY IS THIS NICE GUY WASTING HIS LIFE AWAY AT GELSON'S!?
One day I ended up behind Lance in the check out line. He was talking to the cashier about how he had won $10,000 in Vegas. I immediately piped up “You're putting that in savings for school, right?!”
“No,” he said. “I had to buy a new car and I borrowed money from my dad, so I have to use the $10,000 to pay him back.”
My heart sunk.
I'll admit Lance intrigues me. I used to wonder if he has a girlfriend. Not because I would have ever dated him myself... (he is only 21) but simply because I feel an affinity towards the guy. He seems so great. But you know, it is way too easy to build a false impression about someone based on such shallow interactions. I mean, I've seen this guy almost every day for four years. I'd sum him up as:
A bit sheltered, insecure, inexperienced... nice, funny, quirky...
I decided to myspace stalk him:
Forget quiet little innocent Lance. We're talking Japanese loving, techno listening, gambling, smoking, race car driving, gay atheist here.