I was just preparing to leave work for the day when FooDaddy came in to begin his shift. Upon spotting me, he lurched backward and even paled a bit. His reaction startled me and I glanced over my shoulder to see what monster was closing from behind. There was nothing in sight, however, and it was obvious that FooDaddy's reaction had scared the creature away.
"Boy, that there was a close 'un," I said. "Almost had us a calamity."
"Almost?" FooDaddy regarded me with a gimlet eye, probably purchased at a flea market, and sighed a little. "I thought you would have gone home by now."
"Well, I would have," I said. "But I was waiting around for you to arrive. I was just about to give up and leave anyway."
FooDaddy muttered something that sounded like, "So close, dang it." Aloud, he said, "Well, it appears you've caught me. What's up? Surely not more bowling." He shuddered, probably from the cold.
I was touched by FooDaddy's eagerness to revisit our bowling adventure. I knew he had thoroughly enjoyed the experience, but wished he wouldn't bring it up with such regularity. It was obvious that he wished to again go bowling, but these hints of his were beginning to wear thin.
The other day, he placed a bowling pin on a partially closed door, so it would fall off when opened. I knew he had taken care to position it so it would descend harmlessly, but even so it almost hit me on the clavicle. Later, he inadvertently dropped a bowling ball from a high shelf and nearly cracked my skull.
As subtle and touching as these little hints were, however, I was in no mood for bowling and wished he would just get a clue. If there's one thing I can't stand, it's someone who can't see and properly interpret the obvious. I, myself, am an expert at this and it is how I know that FooDaddy's little games are not, as some might think, callous attempts to cause me harm, but rather his clumsy way of showing friendship.
"Nope!" I repeated. "I've already conquered bowling, so there's no reason to ever try it again."
"So, what, then? What do you have in mind this time? Beating up old ladies?"
"No, but that's a thought. I was actually thinking that you could come on over to my place and we could watch action movies."
"Action movies?" FooDaddy tried to conceal his excitement over this prospect by yawning widely. I wasn't fooled. "You mean those movies where large, muscley men charge about with huge automatic weapons and kill countless enemies, all the while saving beautiful and inexplicably naked women from the clutches of unrealistically evil men who always have eye patches and greasy hair? Those movies?"
"Yeah! It'll be great! You can bring a couple friends along and I'll supply the swine rinds and sody water."
FooDaddy shuddered again. They really needed to turn the heat up in this place. "I'll eat before I come," he said. "I'm not a big fan of swine rinds."
"Okay, how 'bout I provide sody rinds and swine water?" I looked around quizzically. Somehow, FooDaddy had managed to disappear before my eyes. I ran outside, where I found him frantically trying to unlock his car door. Apparently, he didn't see me running toward him, waving my hands in the air and shouting, because he finally gave up on the stubborn lock and leaped headfirst through the closed car window.
As he drove away, I shouted after him. "Tomorrow night at six!" I know he heard me, because he swerved a couple times.
* * *
The night of the event, I sat at home, watching the clock and occasionally snacking on swine rinds. They're really not that bad, especially when dipped in sody water. My company was a little late, but I wasn't concerned. I had plenty of time. I ate another swine rind and popped in a movie to watch while I waited.
Finally, I checked my wristwatch. It was only eleven. No doubt they had gotten stuck in traffic or left home a few minutes late. At last, I heard a knock on the door and, upon opening it, found FooDaddy and several of his cohorts standing there.
"Sorry we're late," they chanted. "We were attacked by an army of mentally disturbed badgers."
"What a coincidence!" I said. "That's the first movie I planned on watching! It's called 'Badger Hell' and in it, the hero, Barf Rasmussen, has to defend New York City from an army of mentally disturbed badgers, led by his arch-enemy, Arch Enemee. I've already seen in twice tonight."
"Oh, well, then you don't really need to see it again," FooDaddy said.
Although I knew he was just trying to make sure I had as much fun as everyone else, I waved aside his protests. "No, no. I know you all will enjoy this, so have a seat, eat some swine, and I'll start the movie."
I backed the movie to the beginning and settled into my chair as the opening credits rolled across the screen. Suddenly, a huge, drooling badger appeared on the screen and I'm ashamed to say that I yelped and started in my chair. Ha, ha. No matter how many times I see that, it always gets me. Gosh, it's scary!
"Well, that was pretty great," FooDaddy said, rising from the couch and zipping up his coat, which he had never removed in the first place. "But it's late and we need to get going."
The other guests agreed and stumbled over each other as they tried to exit.
"Well, thanks fer comin'," I said, elated at the success of the evening. "Maybe next week we can meet up again and see the next thirty seconds of the movie!"
That time, I'm not sure if they heard me, because they were already driving out of the parking lot. FooDaddy hangs around a speedy group, that's for sure.
I was so jazzed that I was unable to sleep, so I finished the swine rinds and movie by myself. I thought about the evening and became choked up as I realized what great friends I had. After all, not everyone would come over to my apartment and watch thirty seconds of a badger action movie. And enjoy it!
I was certainly a lucky fellow and decided to repay this friendship by making sure they all had the opportunity to see the badgers just as much I did. It would be selfish of me to keep this all to myself. Since Christmas was approaching, I went to Amazon.com and ordered a copy of "Badger Hell" for each of my friends. Now they could scream their way through the holidays and enjoy the thrills and chills many, many times. But there's no need to thank me, guys. I'm just bein' a friend.