So there’s a running joke amongst my wife and friends that I attract weird people and strange situations. I can think of several that stand out. I’m sure there are those who can relate, those times when you find yourself thinking “Surely this isn’t really happening?” Apparently, it’s more common for those situations to occur to me than they are for my friends. This is one of those occurrences.
Let’s get one thing out-of-the-way. I’m the type of person who, when I go out to do something, I don’t like to be sidetracked by strangers. I try to avoid people I don’t know because, usually, things like this happen to me. Maybe the fact that I try to avoid it is what makes it more common, I don’t know why, but it’s not fair. It was just a quick trip to the grocery store. God, I don’t even remember what for, a one item kind of trip, you know? And the store was less than a mile from our apartment at the time. It was a run into the store, go through self-checkout, run home kind of trip, just how I like it.
Alas, that’s often not how things end up working out for me. On my way back to my car, I find myself being heckled by some random elderly woman in the parking lot. She’s shouting “Hey young boy, hey young boy!” repeatedly. I think to myself surly she’s not speaking to me, please don’t be speaking to me. I ignore it, as I often try to do in these situations and proceed to getting into my car and preparing to pull away. Before I get the chance to do so, the woman is at the side of my car. Peering through the glass, I turn to look at her, and she gives me a puppy dog look. I shit you not, she gives me a look like I was her best friend in the whole world, and I was about to leave her life forever. Only thing is, I didn’t know her, and God help me, I didn’t want to either, but my stupid conscious kicked in. I should have just driven off.
I roll down the window to see what urgent matter she needs assistance for. She asks me the age-old question “Do ya got any spare change?” This is a stupid question to me. I work for a living, as I like to think most of us do, to support myself and my family. I don’t really consider any money, be it dollars or cents, to necessarily be designated as ‘spare’. As in, I don’t need this and I never will, free money for whoever the fuck wants it! YAY! Don’t get me wrong, I don’t mind making donations to reputable causes sometimes, but the way the question is worded just irks me. I think instead of asking that question, one should instead ask for donations for whatever their cause or need is. “Excuse me sir, would you like to make a donation to Jim-Bob’s beer fund?” I’m still not likely to give you money, but I’ll respect you more. But I digress. I tell her that, no, I don’t have any spare change.
She then asks me another question, and it was like she pulled it out of a bag of stupid. “Would you like to buy a pregnant dog? I gots one in muh truck.” Seriously? Did she just ask me if I want to buy a pregnant dog? I mean, what kind of person goes to a supermarket parking lot, going from stranger to stranger, peddling pregnant dogs? I’ll tell you the kind, the kind that’s fucking drawn to me. As if I’m going find myself in a market for such things, Well gee, I know I said I didn’t have any spare change, but I was just looking for one of those in the store here and would you believe they’re all out? It upset me, I gave her my best WTF face and assured her that I did not, in fact, want to buy a pregnant dog, rolled up my window, and swiftly returned home.
So if you find yourself in the pregnant dog selling business, I have a couple of pointers. One, the parking lot of a grocery store is not a respectable venue for your business operations. Two, your product probably isn’t going to hold up well in your pickup truck. Three, and I can’t stress this enough, understand that you’re in a niche market. The odds of some random stranger in a parking lot having a need for a pregnant dog are probably not in your favor. But if you just need to just get it off of your hands, I hear Jim Bob needs beer, maybe the two of you can make an arrangement. At any rate, please, leave me out of your strange business affairs.