Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Your Neighborhood Librarian Is Giving you a Long Look

So I'm driving to work, and I go east to go to work, here in Baltimore, and it's kind of different over there. So I'm driving to work, and there's this guy in a van, in a white panel van. Econoline. Driving alongside of me, and he gestures to me to roll down my window. So I roll down my window, and he calls out to me. I'm driving my blue minivan, my Honda Odyssey, total soccer mom minivan.

And he says to me, "You sell this van?" And I, of course, say, "What?" because, you know, people say "What?" when someone says something totally random to them. And he says, "You no want sell this van to me?" and I'm like, "Yeah, no. No. I'll just drive it to work instead."

And you know, he kind of shrugged and smiled at me and kept on going, and took the next right. And I'm driving along, as I was before, but completely baffled. I'm sure I had that look on my face, that baffled look.

Alexander the Great doesn't want
to sell his van either.
You know? What would that... how would that play out? You'd say, "Huh. Sure! I'll sell you my van! How much will you give me for this van? You want to give me five thousand dollars for this van? Eight?" I don't know, I would take eight grand for that van.

What's he going to do? Is he going to shell out a whole shitload of cash? Does he have that kind of roll in his pocket? And then he's going to give me a ride to work? And then take off, like, with my van?

Is it a question of... Where? Else? Could he find a van? I mean, all kinds of places, right? Has he checked the Pennysaver?

It's like you see those hand-lettered magic marker signs on the telephone posts, "WE BUY HOUSES." "WE BUY HOUSES - GOOD PRICES." Who does that work for? You have a house, you've been having trouble selling because it's a rough market, finally you're like, man, I'm under water on this house, I'm going to call the number on that sign. I bet they can help!

Who..? does that? There's got to be someone. There's got to be some percent return on that, some success rate of that kind of advertising, or people wouldn't draw up these little signs and staple them to posts. The investment in tagboard alone! And does this just happen in Baltimore? It can't just be Baltimore.

Although I am beginning to think it's just Baltimore where people beg on the street corner with a bucket and call it fundraising. Not kidding. Not even wearing like a vest, or matching t-shirts - I saw ladies wearing t-shirts that somebody had written on them with marker, the name of a daycare center, and they're walking around with spackle buckets at the intersection just asking for money for this daycare center. What? Isn't your daycare center a business? "We're raising money for the God's Little Superstars Daycare..." Really? Are ya? Cause... I'm a little short today. "I'm raising money for the... librarian lunch fund? That's right." I don't know.

Sure. I'll sell you my van.