Did you ever have one of those days when you scratch your head and say: “What the F#$%?” In my part of the world, these days are, well, an everyday occasion. But sometimes I’m so amazed that I end up scratching both my head and my butt. This past Saturday was such a day, a perfect storm of silliness and awe that makes you think: wait a minute, is this really happening?
Another such day was an afternoon a little over three years ago when two elderly ladies came into our fair tavern. Along with their brooches, one was wearing a smile, the other was wearing a snarl. I was on the phone growling at a vendor and didn’t recognize the impending good granny, bad granny routine.
Little did I know they were the messengers for a sinister organization – The Senior Citizens of our Town. “We have a petition to deliver to you,” the bad granny snapped as she handed me the piece of paper.
I took it from her and read the first line: “We the Senior citizens who’ve lived in our little town for 50 (and up) years find your sign “Welcome pimps and hos” offensive. ((Actually the sign read: Pimp and Ho Party, Saturday Feb. 14) Yes, that’s right, it is our way to celebrate Valentine’s Day.)
Like some sort of sixth sense, or maybe it’s my built in bullshit detector , whatever it was, I sensed displeasure with their message. They weren’t visiting to proclaim my greatness or draft me as their candidate for mayor.
”Listen, I’m in a bad mood, I don’t have time for your nonsense,” I said.
“Read it!” The bad granny snapped.
“Stick it,” I replied. I can be such an anal aperture. “And while you’re at it, buy something or leave!” This always works on the non-paying, especially if I’ve never seen the person before. Listen, being a customer has its priveledges – mostly throwing me a line or two of grief. This was different, I had to draw a line in the sand against the Granny Gestapo.
”You really should read it, it’s kinda funny,” the good granny chirped.
“No drinky, no stayie,” I barked. (I really didn’t say that, but it sounds good.)
Their task complete, the Grannies walked out the door with their heads held high. It wasn’t till a couple hours later that I cooled my jets enough to peruse their masterpiece. And I thought we were offensive, we’re completely bush league in comparison. This is what their note read:
“We the Senior citizens who’ve lived in our little town for 50 (and up)
years find your sign “Welcome pimps and hos” offensive. I believe that
parents of young children will also find it offensive. However if you
really think that calling people denigrating names is the way to appeal
to potential customers you are neglecting whole classes of people…
You have your Spicks and Micks and Dagos and Wops,
Your Hunkies and Junkies and “pigs” (for cops)
There are Bucks and Squaws, slant-eyes and Frogs
Your Rednecks and Polacks and female Dogs
You’ve got Chinks and Finks and Pansies and Dykes
Niggers and Limeys and don’t forget the Kikes,
There are Greasers and Japs and the German Kraut,
Just so you didnt leave anyone out…
home away from home” Better yet how about a really family- friendly
sign. “Welcome friends and neighbors!”"
Oh, I almost forgot about what happened this Saturday. In addition to our Spread your Wings Party, we had another wedding at the bar. That’s strange enough, but it’s not terribly unusal, it’s the third. What makes this one odd was not that the mother of the bride was summoned from the golf course, she didn’t know her daughter was getting married. Apparently, forty-eight hours early, neither did the bride. The story goes the happy couple met a few days prior to the wedding. Move over Vegas!