Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Death Becomes Me

This has been something of a nasty week.

I’ve been sick since about last Wednesday, and I can’t seem to shake it, despite generous intake of germ-killing alcohol throughout that period. I’m almost starting to doubt the advice my friend the doctor gave me … it’s almost as if a Ph.D in Mathematics does not a physician make. A couple of times, I was so near death that I saw my life pass before my eyes, which just depressed me, as it was as boring as a Merchant-Ivory film, but lacking Emma Thompson.

I did have an actual brush with death on Saturday, when I decided to try to go skiing. I had stopped at the beer store pharmacy at the bottom of the hill for frosty road colas medicinal purposes, and noticed someone across the street trying to catch a lift up the hill. While this is not uncommon, for some reason or another, I had never offered anyone a ride, but Saturday, I thought “Jesus Tap-dancing Catdaddy Christ on a popsicle stick, Dead Acorn, are you really so selfish about having your little introspective ‘alone time’ on the drive up that you can’t help out someone who’s actually doing something to save the planet by not driving? Are you that much of an asshole?” While the answer to that question is quite often “yes,” I made the decision to enjoy some company on the way up.

As I pulled out of the parking lot, though, I watched with disappointment as someone else pulled over, loaded up the gear and their new passenger, and drove off. The feeling was remarkably similar to that of being rejected for volunteer work by the homeless shelter. Much to my delight, however, just over the rise was another ride-seeker! “Woo,” I thought to myself. (I was still a bit too sickly to summon up the enthusiasm for the normally accompanying “hoo.”)

Over I pulled, and almost immediately began to doubt the wisdom of my decision. The guy was dressed entirely in camouflage (I didn’t notice it prior to stopping, because, duh, it was camouflage … he actually appeared to be just a head floating at the side of the road, from a distance), and was wearing those old fashioned yellow aviator glasses. Even worse, he was a fucking snowboarder. I had obviously entered a world of pain.

Well, I knew that he had probably killed more people that morning than I’d had beers, so I tried to keep my mouth shut and wondered if I had a wide range of options as to what religion to join if god got me out of the situation alive (per the deal I had made just seconds prior). He turned out to be something of a chatty Cathy*, though, and told me he was spending the night in a tepee up on the mountain to check out the full moon.

“Sweet pickled Polly,” I thought to myself. “What next? He tells me he’s Irish?”

As you might have surmised, I made it through the day alive. I usually make a mix CD on ski days, and he seemed to like the choice of tunes. Music hath charms, to be sure. He gave me a little sideways glance during an Aimee Mann song, but then next came the Beat Farmers, and we were back to talking about snow camping and not killing strangers, and I felt just like Arlo Guthrie sitting on the Group W bench. Sure enough, he asked me to drop him off at a turnout just past the 6000 foot elevation sign, where I gave him a couple of cold ones and off he plodded up into the trees.

You know, after a week of not posting anything, I feel like I should apologize for this largely pathetic effort. Like I said, though, a brush with death or two can put you off your game. Not that I have any game, of course, but you know what I mean (ok, just stop, Dead Acorn. Seriously).

* My passenger, not god, though I'm sure god could talk your ear off, what with some of the stories s/he's got.


Domestic Oub said...

Being Irish is a good thing. Or have I missed something?

The Dead Acorn said...

Being Irish is a good thing (at least the Irish people I've met have all been very nice). The guy I gave a ride to was also very nice, and the Irish comment was just a tongue-in-cheek attempt at a little satire (maybe a little homage to Mel Brooks' "Blazing Saddles"). I don't think you've missed anything, it's just that I'm not very good at being funny most of the time.

My apologies, and Erin Go Bragh!

Domestic Oub said...

Oh don't worry Mr/Ms Acorn, I was just having some fun :)

And to answer your question - I discovered your blog after you left a comment on mine...

I thought I'd pay this mysterious blog commenter a visit, and I must say, I was most amused by what I found. I shall be back.

Domestic Oub said...

Oh, and Irish people are awful. Really, it's all an act. It's the accent that fools people, it's all soft and lilting. In reality we're bitter, parochial drunks.

Hmmm, you might have been aware of the drink thing.

Domestic Oub said...

I am certainly not drunk now. Oh no.

The Dead Acorn said...

I KNEW it! Bitter and parochial.

Well, the soft and lilting part gets me. I'm awful with accents, be it southern US, Australian, Irish ... anything will knock me to my knees.

It's nice to know you, Domestic Oub. I'll join you in a drink.

N*88 said...

You know, I'm really tired of this stereotype. That all Irish guys are a bunch of drunken brawlers, it makes me so mad I just want get drunk and punch somebody.