Horror is rarely the descriptor I use to describe my first emotion when I wake and horror, in this case came from the simple and normally uncontroversial act of looking down. I had spent the night on some sort of Scandinavian folding bed/chair that probably went under the trade name of Vuddekista which probably came flat-packed in a shrink wrapped box the size of a toaster oven. Upon this lumber-gami contraption there was a… mattress-esque padding wad that possessed absorptive powers well beyond conventional science (we’ll come back to that) topped with a fleece blanket-let. During the night I had tossed and turned such that the fleece was now on top of me and my comparatively virgin skin came in contact with the seat pad. The seat pad had the normal stains of a household trapping such as coffee, a bit of mud, as well as the expanded canonical college stains of vomit and Keystone Light along with what appeared to be a rogue’s gallery of bodily fluids whose investigation may net both a Nobel prize in medicine and literature. As when one is so angry as to emit silence, I was sufficiently repulsed that the only response I could muster was a very long blink followed by looking at my host and saying “Dylan, I think I have hepatitis”. He sipped his coffee and shrugged.
I showered aggressively, ate some seasoned pecans, refolded my bed Frankenbed, ate some seasoned pecans and we departed the company of our host who was now down a goodly quantity of seasoned pecans.
[Editor’s Note: I really wanted to include a joke about Hep Chair as a play on Death Bed the Bed that Eats People but couldn’t get it to come together.]
To Oklahoma City. Slowly. The I-35 corridor between Austin and Dallas is a 200 mile stretch with a Frontage Rd. that never quite becomes busy but never quite peters out. There is a pottery stand the size of a used car lot, billboards that haven’t been taken down for developments that never opened, and historical markers of dubious historical value. Moreso, as a straight, high speed, well-maintained road it is subject to a ridiculous number of accidents per mile. This time, we lost an hour seemingly because a parade of police cars wished to line the median and introduce two lanes of traffic to the wonder of the shoulder. This compares to an accident we passed through near Memphis were a lane of traffic was opened and guided literally between two smashed vehicles. The drive was hot and what I thought was Suzie stretching was really her tiny fingers clawing for cooler air. As a person, I possess sub-par aerodynamics for such things, but I am working on this.
Once in Choctaw, we met our host Justin and his perpetual copilot Kevin and shortly thereafter two very large, very hair dogs.
Rocky is a St. Bernard that clocks in at about 190 lbs and was how I thought Justin got to school prior to learning that his family had only had him for two years. Rocky is also notable for being the first St. Bernard I’d met that wasn’t named “Beethoven” nor did he appear to have a fondness for brandy. The other dog appeared to be some sort of genetic hybrid designed to simply produce hair.
I have a reasonably hairy dog. One can use a horse brush on Max and pull off enough hair to fill a plastic shopping bag in about 30 minutes of brushing. This dog was capable of producing a solid cat’s worth of hair simply by rubbing against your extended finger as evidenced by Justin having a dog hair scarf.
The final pet was Princess the cat who possessed the paramount attributes of the adorable ur-cat: being curious, and being people-friendly.
Justin works at a science museum and nibbles away at school. We also met up with Cody, a graphics semi-artsy person who is…. tall and who I picture comes home every day yelling for his dinner while slamming down his briefcase. I’ve been assured he does no such thing.
Kevin is a guy with attributes who I believe does things. I know him mostly as a sniper in TF2 as well as the first person to respond when I posted that I had a milligram accurate scale that I was giving away. He probably needed it to mete out tiny amounts of glue to mount decorative tea cozies.
We didn’t come to “do” anything and not doing anything proved very entertaining. We learned that Justin’s wifi password is an MD5 hash of the name of his cat. We also learned that cat paddling is indeed a real phenomenon. Finally, I learned that the enjoyment in Cards Against Humanity is very dependent on the group and that Mike Noble knows that “Bees” will always win the trick if I’m the judge. As the evening wound down, John got hit by a shower head and I passed up on a game of “Toss the Expensive Thing”.