Good afternoon and Happy April Fools’ Day. Gigi the party poodle here with my third installment in my story What I Found in the Trunk. On a distressing note, it was bath week. The rotten little Maltese did not have to have a bath because he was recently groomed. I, however, was put into the tub sprayed with warm water and scrubbed with a lovely smelling soap against my very vocal protestations. I detest these horrors of hygiene. But as one should after such an ordeal I dried off and carried on. I plan on spending the weekend sitting vigilantly waiting for the Easter Bunny and focus my efforts there instead of reliving the bath experience. Without further ado, here is my story.
What I Found in the Trunk
Gigi the parti poodle
Gary didn’t like this. He didn’t like it at all. Maybe he should just leave the box on the porch and run. This punk might be wanting to rob him. Maybe even kill him. Either way he had a bad feeling about the situation.
He turned and headed back to his car. He moved around to the trunk, popped it open, picked up the toolbox, grabbed a reusable grocery bag with a bunny rabbit and the words The Hopper Shopper on it, put the metal toolbox inside, slammed down the decklid and marched back to the driver’s side door. Then he hopped in and started the engine.
Gary parked the car on the backstreet one block down, got out, popped the trunk, grabbed the Hopper Shopper bag, and headed for the house’s back door. Tied up near one of the neighbor’s was a black and tan Boxer chained to a stake. As soon as the dog saw Gary, the thing went ballistic. He lunged at the trespasser snarling and barking and ready to tear him apart.
Gary jumped back stunned. He stumbled away from the ghoulish hound’s bared teeth, tripped, and almost hit the ground. He ducked right then dove left, but the beast cornered him at every turn. “Nice doggie! Nice doggie!” he said. But the creature was anything but nice. Hungry, angry, crafty perhaps but not nice.
Gary lunged left, dodged right, then faked left again and ran right making a beeline for the house with the fanged leviathan chomping at his heels. He banged on the back door. No answer. He clutched his bunny bag to his chest and watched the snarling villain jump up and attempt to snap its chain. Gary banged the door again as the dog foamed at the mouth. Still no answer.
Finally, the door opened and a college age guy, possibly a grad student opened the door. He was wearing a gray Husky t-shirt and a pair of purple sweatpants. “Draco!” the kid yelled. “Hey, Draco! Shut up!”
“Let me in!” Gary demanded.
“Draco!” the kid yelled ignoring Gary’s request.
“Let me in!”
“Draco! Stupid dog.” The kid went back inside and shut the door leaving Gary on the porch alone with the snarling creature.
“Are you insane?!” Gary yelled at the kid inside.
Three minutes later the kid returned with a fistful of raw hamburger. He hurled it at Draco just missing Gary. Draco ceased barking and engaged in wolfing down the raw meat.
The kid turned and looked at Gary. “You got the thing?” he asked.
“Yes!” Gary yelled, his face red with rage.
“Come on in, man.”
The kid held the screen door open and Gary, still clutching the Hopper Shopper bag to his chest followed him inside.
“Is that…thing your dog?!” Gary asked.
“Oh, no man,” the kid said. “He’s the neighbors.”
“Isn’t owning something like that illegal?”
“Don’t know. You want to look it up?”
“No! I just want to drop off Rune’s things.”
“Sit down, man,” the kid said motioning to a bean bag chair. “Take a load off.”
“Look. I don’t have time I just want to drop off Rune’s…”
“You smoke, man?”
“Do you partake of marijuana?”
“No wonder you’re so uptight.”
“I’m uptight because I need to drop off this strong box for the girl who sold me her car this morning.”
“You mean Rune.”
“Yes, Rune. How well do you know her anyway? Is she your girlfriend?”
“Rune? Naw. I’m going to smoke a bowl.”
“Look, I’ll just put Rune’s things here,” he said motioning to an upside-down milk crate.
“Sit down, man.”
Gary reluctantly sat down on the beanbag chair and straightened his tie. The kid grabbed a bong from the side of his chair shaped like a gargoyle.
“Is this a drug den or something?” Gary asked.
“A drug den?!” The kid laughed. “No. Why would you think it was a drug den?”
“There’s almost nothing in here. You don’t even have posters on the walls.”
“And you think that means it’s a drug den, bro? Because we don’t have an appreciation for art?”
“No, it’s just…the place is abnormally sparse.”
“We’re minimalists, bro.”
“Yeah. You know like those people who live in tiny houses.”
“This isn’t a tiny house.”
“No. But we adhere to the same principals. We live with more because we live with less.”
“Sounds like broke to me.”
“No, man. It’s true. Like a lot of college kids like me are going to graduate from school with a mountain of debt. You know why?”
“Because college is exorbitantly expensive?”
“Because the government doesn’t properly fund higher education?”
“True. But that’s not my point.”
Gary looked at his watch. The ball game was on in a couple of hours and he didn’t want to have a pointless philosophical conversation with this guy.
“What’s your point?”
“My point is people are about appearances. Like where did you get that suit?”
“The Men’s Warehouse.”
“How many suits do you own?”
“Not that it’s any of your business but six.”
“Six?!” the kid exclaimed splashing his bong water.
“I need them for my job.”
“Yeah, man but six?”
“I hate to break it to you Einstein but there are a lot of folks who own more than six suits.”
“Wow, man. That blows my mind. Like six, huh?”
“Get to your point.”
“Okay, yeah, well…just a second.” The kid took another hit off the bong. “Okay, so like people are about appearances, right? You own six suits because you want to establish a certain status.”
“I own six suits because I sell cars.”
“Okay so you want to look successful selling cars.”
“And so, you spend money on suits and you probably drive a fancy car.”
“I get my cars at a discount because I sell cars.”
“But they’re luxury cars. Am I right?”
“And you live in a nice condo on the water.”
“I own a house.”
“Really? You look too young to own a house.”
“Is Rune coming to get her stuff or can I leave it with you or…”
“And you have nice furniture and new gadgets and stuff like that. Right?”
“Alright. Here’s Rune’s stuff,” Gary said standing up and setting the Hopper Shopper bag with the bunny on it in front of the kid. “I’m going home to catch the game.”
“Do you feel stressed, bro?”
“Yes, I feel stressed! Goodbye!”
“Hear me out man. Most people buy things because they think it will make them look a certain way on a certain sociological level. Like you. But us minimalists we live with what we need and only what we need. You on the other hand are stressed because you worry about how people perceive you. I don’t worry about how people perceive me.”
Gary started walking towards the door when three big athletic men came out of the room to the left, stood in front of the door, folded their arms, and blocked him.
“So, like I was saying, bro,” the kid said. “Here me out.”
You can check out my books Chicane and the first four installments in my Musicology book series Musicology: Volume One, Baby!, Musicology: Volume Two, Kid!, Musicology: Volume Three, Twist! and Musicology: Volume Four, Sweetie! on Amazon in Kindle and Paperback editions. You can also check out Musicology’s web site at www.musicologyrocks.com and vote for who you think will win Musicology!!!
STREAM OF THE WEEK: IF ANYTHING HAPPENS, I LOVE YOU-Netflix
This Oscar nominated short is the one you’ve probably been avoiding. But you shouldn’t. And recent events amplify its point even more. Honestly, the film shouldn’t exist. There is no reason this film should exist. But it does. The filmmakers consulted with the ones left behind to deal with the aftermath to provide a truthful story that should never have to be told. And if you are too much of a coward and think you don’t have the stomach to watch this twelve-minute film or if you are merely indifferent and would rather spend your twelve minutes watching something vacuous you are part of the problem and not the solution. I watched it twice.