Friday, January 29, 2010

Big Gears, Tiny Gears

I'm fairly positive that our conversation started before I was consciously a part of it. But sure enough, he was talking to me. "A five dollar check" he said. "Only five dollars." Wait, what are we talking about, I thought to myself. He was a middle aged black man, overweight and balding. The hair that he had left looked like it hadn't seen a shower in quite a few days. He was sitting on an exercise bike in the furniture department of St. Vincent DePauls and he was apparently talking to me. "I cashed that five dollar check and the people at the bank laughed at me. They took two dollars for cashing it so that only left me with three. I had a seven dollar, no wait, eight dollar check last week. They called me and told me that they needed me at work but they told me to go home after 30 minutes. The guy wrote me that check right then, five dollars."

Since we were apparently having a conversation I politely agreed. Five dollars is a rather small check but money is money so you have to cash it. Our conversation continued from there, like a mountain trail full of sudden twist and turns. Wait, what were we talking about again? Gears, we are talking about gears now. "I used to make gears at a factory in Chicago. They were big gears, heavy, some this tall." he motioned with his hands. "Some as big as this room. But at my new job I'm going to be making tiny gears, only this big. So small, like a quarter." he laughed, "so small, little tiny gears. It will be so easy"

"I'm getting fat but I eat healthy. Every other night I eat a can of vegetables and a baloney sandwich. Every other night I skip dinner and just drink beer." Huh, that doesn't sound too healthy I thought to myself. "A friend once told me that America makes you fat. Maybe that's your problem." I quipped.

"Someday I'm going to find that special girl to marry. The Bible says it ain't right just to be sleeping with people. That's what people do now a days you know? They go on a date and then they sleep together. That ain't right." I nodded in agreement, "Nope, that isn't right." I guess we are talking about marriage now.

And the conversation went on, never knowing what surprises lie in the next sentance. Ah ha, my chance. He had cornered another stranger and was asking their advice on the exercise bike that he had been sitting on for the last 20 minutes. He was getting fat and since his diet was healthy he figured it must be his lack of exercise."Hey, what if I don't want to use my arms on this bike can I disengage thees things..." The stranger didn't know, and I had walked away, I had shopping to do.


Not Too Old said...

Sometimes when I listen to people like that God talks to me. Sounds like maybe he did for you too.

Anonymous said...

Dan you run into the most interesting people. I guess it comes from hanging out in the most interesting places.
Roger S

proswet654 said...
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