Monday, June 13, 2016

Nurse the Hate: Hate the Pen

I bought my favorite pen last year in Bordeaux.  It was from a small shop nestled in a pack of wildly overpriced consumer goods.  It was a quintessential French transaction.  I walked in and grunted out a poorly pronounced “Bon jour” to the very enthusiastic “Bon Jour!” they greeted me with upon entry.  I looked at a series of pens that cost thousands of dollars until I found a sleek one that was small enough for my pocket that was around $200.  I bought it and they seemed pissed off I wasted their time buying the “cheap pen” and even glancing at the others.  

I walked out of the store that day with a real strut in my step.  Look out Bordeaux.  Here I come.  When I took notes and filled out tasting sheets, people would take notice.  “Francois!  Look at the American!  The pen!  Perhaps we have underestimated him!  He may know something, eh?”.  What confidence flowed through me that day.  I say “day” because by approximately 10pm that evening I had lost the pen, probably at a nearby bar where I was engaged in talking shit to the locals.  

Now $200 for a pen is absolutely stupid.  There is no logical reason to pay that much for something the hotel would have given me for free.  Would it have been that sleek bastard?  No.  But it would have worked just fine.  That wasn’t what I wanted though.  I wanted to grossly overpay, just like I do for haircuts, shoes, and hotels.  There is no amount too large.  My remaining hair takes 11 minutes to shampoo and cut into my skull hugging bowl cut.  $40?  Not enough!  Take this tip!  What?  These sunglasses are only $225?  Bring me the $300 so I can leave them on a train!  What?  I still have them?  Let me sit down on them so I may crush them!  Ahhh!  That’s it!

So now I’m out $200 and my confidence instilling pen.  This makes the white plastic hotel pen I was clutching even more rinky dink in comparison.  There was one thing to do…  Go back to the store and buy another one!  Bon Jour!  The disdain from the shopkeepers hit a point where the old man that owned the shop walked into the back room when he saw what I was up to.  He hated me for buying the “cheap” pen yesterday but now he REALLY hated me for losing the pen and having to get a replacement.  I just pretended it was a free replacement like some kind of warranty.  In the small print it said “if you are some kind of asshole and lose this immediately, go back to the shop where the French staff will look at you like you are a bug as they box up another one for free”.  I tried to pretend I wasn’t signing another charge slip, like it was warranty paperwork.  It didn't work.  I was now at $400 for a pen.  Yet, I was back!

I spent the next few days jealously guarding my pen.  When this one Chinese guy got too close to it I thought about impaling his throat with it, but wisely held steady as he walked by to the coffee stand instead.  That would have been difficult to explain to French authorities on why I had stabbed this young man in the throat for no apparent reason, though perhaps when they saw the sheer glory of that pen they might have understood the motivation of my actions.  There would have been much nodding and grunting followed by reams of paperwork, but in the end I would have gone free.  

I managed to get the pen back to Ohio where I have spent the last year losing it in my house for months long stretches.  I haven’t seen it since there was snow on the ground, so I have a nagging fear it might be gone forever.  My hopes are I will launch a successful search for it today so I may walk into my exam in San Francisco tomorrow afternoon and make a statement.  “Look!  Look at his pen!  He means business!  When he writes that bourbon is made from grain alcohol and crushed dreams, he must be right!  Pass this man!  Look at that goddamn pen…” 

Where is it?  Where is my pen?


At June 13, 2016 at 8:26:00 PM EDT , Blogger MrMFTF said...

I'd buy it its own cell phone and super glue it to it, then you can just call it when you lose it.

At June 14, 2016 at 3:33:00 AM EDT , Blogger Greg Miller said...

One of those enormous iPhones with the deluxe data plans


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