duck-shaped pain


1 August 2001
On Time For Once

Today, I got paid. Payday is officially the first, but today marks the first time in the two years I've been working for The Employer that I've actually been paid on the first day of the month.

Welcome to August. About the only thing of note about August is that the French word for it is Août, [1] which is pronounced something like "oooot", which makes it amusing to say.

Doesn't take much to get me excited.

Because I was suddenly flush with money, I decided to take myself out for dinner. I headed over to the Thai restaurant to see if it was crowded. There were a lot of cars outside, but I knew from experience that this didn't necessarily correlate into it being crowded. All the cars could belong to one family, sitting at the big table, for instance.

But when I went in, it was very crowded. An entire group of kayakers [2] had landed ashore and had a collective urge for pad Thai. Their dustiness, dreadlocks (on white guys) and outdoor smell filled the foyer.

I stood there for a second, and J, the restaurant owner, came over to me. She apologized for the wait, and said it would probably be about 45 minutes before a table opened up.

I was really, really hungry, so I wasn't sure I wanted to wait. There wasn't anywhere to sit, and the only neighbors the restaurant has are a motorcycle store, a Laundromat and a corn field, so it's not like I could do any window shopping while I waited.

"Um, I don't think I'll stay," I told J. "I think I'll come in tomorrow for lunch or something."

"Okay. Hold on though, I get you something," she said, and ran towards the back of the restaurant.

I waited, getting glares from smelly boaters..

J. came out with a big container of something. It was a large foam container, probably used to hold soup or some other liquid. It was enormous - just past Big Gulp size, but not quite to bucket status.

She handed it to me. "Here you go, Thai coffee."

"Oh, wow, thanks," I said. "How much do I owe you?"

"On the house. Come back and eat when the boat people are not here."

I had planned to go to bed early tonight. But 1,000 fluid ounces of Thai coffee (yes, I drank the whole thing. It was free -- it would go against the spirit of the gift to waste it) are working against me.

Spoils from my highly caffeinated trip to the grocery store tonight: mint shampoo, gallon o' chai, salmon fillets, two ears Olathe sweet corn, bunch o' kale, 3 heads garlic, lemongrass and hot pepper instant noodles, strawberry and yogurt bread spread, eggplant, tiny cheese wedges, and olive oil potato chips.

Scary search engine hits this week: "the bras of yesteryear," "can I prove things with statistics?" "how do I make a dog turd?" "duck itch," "Wrinkly Crinkly week."

[1] It's been about six years since I took any French, so I couldn't remember which vowel in Août got the circumflex. So I did a Google search on the word, which helped, but it was depressing that so many of the results were just people misspelling "about."

[2] Alternate words suggested by spell check: "haymakers," "Kay Akers," "kanakas."

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