Thursday, February 25, 2010

Ancient History, Bag Boy Style

I went to the grocery store today.  This story will get better I promise.

Cate ate a banana while I shopped, and when I went to check out, the young man bagging my groceries offered to throw it away for me.  This is when he mentioned he is afraid of fruit.  Yes, afraid.  Yes, of fruit.  He is afraid to touch it.  But not vegetables.

He bagged my groceries, then offered to help me out to my car.  This is an offer I usually decline, because I am no good at small talk, especially with bag boys.  But, the back door of the station wagon is temperamental and only stays in the "up" position when I do not need it to.  And, I had filled our jugs at the water filtering machine, and they are heavy.  So, he walked me to my car, pushing my cart with my groceries and my baby in it.  Had I known then what I know now, I would have pushed that cart myself and risked the concussion.

So, we got to my car and he was telling me how he read an article in TIME magazine about a guy who was afraid of the color blue, and the author of the article admitted, for the first time, that he himself had a phobia of watching people eat.  Now, this is when I am usually putting the baby in her car seat, while the young man loads my car.  The problem was, he was not loading my car.  He was still standing at the push end of the cart, while I held the self-closing car door up with one hand and put groceries in the back of the car with the other.

Finally, the cart was empty of everything but the water jugs.  The heavy water jugs.  "This door falls down,"  I said pointedly.  "Let me hold it for you while you put the water in."  He did that, but he was still yammering about weird phobias.  Then I made my fatal error.  I should have just dropped the car door on his head, but no.  I said, "I don't have any phobias.  Well, I find clowns kind of creepy."

Do you know that clowns originate in Italy?  They are an offshoot of the court jester.  And, in a change of subject I failed to follow, he informed me that back in ancient Greece, the early satirists were named after the satyr, the mythical half-man, half-goat creature that will have sex with anything.  "Will have sex with anything" were the exact words he used as I buckled my baby into her car seat and he stood leaning on my now-empty grocery cart.

I got in my car and he was still talking.  Satirists, whether Greek or Italian was not clear, used to carry a giant phallus, so big it had to be carried by six men  (probably only took two if they were sober), down the street to the door of the mayor, and bandy it about for an hour or so, making crude (you think?) jokes and pointed comments about his prowess.  Really?  I was then in my car, it was running, my hand was on the door handle, waiting to pull it closed.

But he did not stop talking.  It is because of these town drunks satirists that the first amendment of the United States Constitution allows you fair use of any copyrighted or trademarked material if it is used for the purpose of humor.  (This is his legal analysis, not mine.)

"I'm a history major," he said by way of conclusion, or maybe it was just a pause for breath.  Either way I was not taking any chances.

"Have a nice day," I said, and closed my car door as fast as I could.

He talked about phalli and horny man-goats in front of my baby.  Is this appropriate?  Oh, and don't search Google Images for a photo of a satyr.  What you see will be burned on your eye balls forever.  I need a shower.


  1. Ah, one of those people that need to talk about something for it to install in the brain. But it does seem his kindle is on the fritz as he is mixing about twenty concepts spread over 1500 years. Anyhoooos, if your bag packer is spouting Archaic Greek history Ca' is safe for a while yet. Oh, you should see the reaction of the Irish first years in Classics 101 to Sappho or the Symposium.

  2. Vince, do you teach Classics 101 to Irish first years?

  3. ewww...major heebie jeebies here.
    Yeah, that was weird.

  4. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Maybe he felt it was his duty to educate you. Good Lord. At least you were polite. I probably would have said something that would have offended him. ;)

  5. Aww...he obviously has problems. He actually sounds mildly autistic. You were nice to be polite....oh my, and what a funny post it makes on your blog! hee!

  6. My sister says he sounds like a guy who plays too many video games. He was a bit pale. Somewhere there is a woman who is going to love him.

  7. I plead the fifth. AND leading question Missy.

  8. What an informative young man! It sounds to me like he's been studying a little too much and skipping the knowledge for the naughty bits :)

  9. That was the best story I've read this morning! Thanks. Now I have to go try not to hammer my fingers.

    Miss you!