On the corner of 16th and Welton a man by the name of Claude has been operating a shoe shine business for eight years. He has a small, tattered shine box and likes to yell at passersby regarding the nature of their footwear. I have been wanting to get a pair of my shoes shined by Claude for a couple of weeks now but he is usually swamped with the Mall lunch rush. Yesterday, I was finally able to get the shine I was desiring. Upon resting my foot on his shine box he immediately went into a sales pitch about a lifetime membership (he normally charges $6 a shine). A suit was skulking behind me with a bag of shoes for Claude to shine. The suit commented that Claude had been shining his shoes for years and he was the best there is. He added that paying a $60 Lifetime fee is money well spent. Claude told me after the suit walked off, “I charge assholes like that twice as much for a ‘lifetime’. For you? I’ll knock it down to $30. But don’t tell nobody.” I haggled him down to $20. Included in my lifetime membership is free shines anytime (plus tip), shoe drop-off (he will shine up to four pairs and call you when they are ready) and free shines for any ladies I bring to the shine box. During my shine Claude dropped some gems:
To a young kid with a pair of beat up brown loafers: “Damn, man. How long you had them shoes?” “Two weeks.” “Two weeks??! Shit. I hate to see what your underwear looks like.”
To a guy walking next to an attractive woman: “Hey girl. Look how he treat his shoes. You think he gonna treat you any better?”
To a hot Asian woman in a mini-skirt: “You look like my third ex-wife. I’ve only been married twice.”
As I walked off Claude called to me, “Thanks Lifetime! See you soon.” Indeed, my good man. Indeed.
First and foremost; it’s called lotion. Look into getting yourself some. The skin on your legs looks like the leather on a catchers mitt that hasn’t been oiled in twenty years. Your knees are more dry and calloused than a constructions worker’s hands. Aren’t all women supposed to be moisturizing themselves with fervor? My wife has at least twenty five tubes of lotion spread around in strategic locations. There must be five alone in her purse. After you are done stuffing your cake chute with that sandwich, walk down to the Walgreens and pick up some Jergens. Preferably with Aloe. That leads me into my next issue; your mouth. Are you hearing the shit that is coming out of it? Seriously. You live in Wash Park. I get it. The entire lunch crowd on 16th Street gets it. You loudly proclaimed it three times in casual conversation to your coworker as if it was a badge of honor. Congratulations. You live in an awesome neighborhood in a house that is one hundred years old, has shitty square footage, no garage, rusty plumbing and bad wiring that you cannot afford to update because you spend all your income on a ridiculous mortgage. I am really proud of you. What’s that you say? You need to get out and run around the park to lose some weight so you look good in a bikini this summer? You have child bearing hips and a sperm bag, honey. Even with a stringent exercise routine and a crash diet that does not allow you to eat your coworker’s leftover Reuben, nothing short of cutting your head off and putting it atop Jessica Alba’s body would make you look good in a bikini. Even then. Your mouth would still be attached to the head. I suppose we could sew your mouth shut. That would definitely make you more attractive. Still, it is your head. Your thoughts, opinions and twisted views on reality are still in there. That settles it, then. Even with your head atop Jessica Alba’s body, you still would not look good in a bikini. Finally, I direct this parting shot to the clueless gentleman sitting across from you. Please do not encourage her anymore. Your leading questions and weak compliments are only exacerbating the situation. Do you need a slump buster this bad? Just pay for sex with a transvestite hooker and get it over with. Nobody will fault you, man. Especially a guy just trying to read the paper and enjoy his Italian sub.
Nameless Elevator Rider #1: I hate snow. We had an inch and half of it on the ground when I woke up this morning. Nameless Elevator Rider #2: We didn’t get any snow at our house. Nameless Elevator Rider #1: (angrily) Well you don’t live in Conifer. My Thought Bubble: Conifer. Eight thousand feet above sea level. In the Rocky Mountains. Where it snows at least eight months out of the year. You dumb bitch.
I am enjoying the new job and the downtown Denver scene. Within a block of the office there are five coffee shops, four sandwich joints, a Chipotle, a flower vendor, a blind bum that likes to sing Isley Brothers tunes and the always lively 16th Street Mall. The mall is usually teaming with business executives connected to their ear piece cell phones like Lobot, statuesque women in six inch heels walking with mean swaggers, homeless panhandlers and disheveled, mentally ill crazies that yell and carry signs. The latter are by far the most entertaining. Yesterday a wild-eyed maniac sporting a wig that looked like a dumpster diving reward was walking down the mall with a sign that read “GESUS LOVES U.” He nearly got ran over by a shuttle bus as he was thrusting said sign into the faces of a nice looking gentleman and his two younger daughters who were participating in Bring Your Child To Work Day. This morning as I was looping around the building to the parking garage, a filthy homeless drug addict was flashing a two-way sign on the corner which read “HILLARY IS FIDEL” on one side and “JFK SHOT MARILYN” on the other. It was comforting to learn that even homeless drug addicts hate Hillary.