Saturday, April 19, 2008

The Story of the Signs and the Buckets

Early this afternoon, as I was driving away from the movie theater and not at all trying to forget Sarah Marshall, I was accosted by a gang of lowland Baptists in pastel T-shirts and matching shorts, some of them holding up signs and others holding up green plastic buckets. Buckets of what? I wondered. Pig entrails, maybe? Some form of protoplasmic goo? A glance at one of their signs told me they were seeking donations for some sort of "Baptist Youth" shindig, and I became frightened.

The stoplight was red, and my heart started pounding as they swarmed around my car like angry--or at least overeager--hornets. Will I ever see home again? I wondered. Will I be forced to tell them that I have no money, even though I do have money? Could I run over one of them and somehow get away with it?

Suddenly, one of their guys held a bucket up to my window as one of their girls--on the opposite side of my car--held up a sign, and they both began to speak. I couldn't really make out what they said, however, because my windows were closed and also because I was chanting loudly to myself, "Everything's gonna be fine, Jason; just don't look into their eyes."

I thought of something I might drop into the bucket, but it had nothing to do with money. I looked from the sign to the bucket and back, as if I were confused, and then, to my great relief, the stoplight turned green, and I sped off toward the roaring safety of the highway.

I glanced back and saw that the small red car behind me had been surrounded and wasn't moving anymore. I heard a few plaintive honks, and then nothing (there were signs and buckets everywhere). I knew then that whoever had been driving that red car was dead...or at least short a few bucks.

"Goodbye, poor soul," I said, and then I hurried home to finish what was left of the Panera sandwich I'd put in the fridge yesterday.

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