The Connection

I’ve always felt a connection to people that are witty out of desire as opposed to necessity, and I suppose that is why I thought she and I would hit it off so well.

“Are you looking for anything in particular,” asked the girl at the counter.

I looked at her for a moment, she had raven hair which looked naturally enough and shining jade colored eyes, her name tag identified her as, “Danielle,” but I thought she would be more suited to be a Priscilla or something more exotic. She oozed confidence, I don’t know why a girl working at a clothing store for minimum wage and some type of paltry commission would be so confident, but it was alluring all the same.

“No,” I replied, “I am not even sure why I stopped in here…but…if I do need anything, you’ll be the first to know.”

“No, I won’t,” she said simply.

“Are you getting done soon?”

“No,” she replied, “But, if you need anything and think to ask me where to find it, you would be the first to know, would you not?”

I smiled at her, sort of an Impish smile like when the prettiest girl in the class looks at you and you’re not really sure why the prettiest girl in the class is looking at you and the words aren’t there, but you can’t stare back like an idiot and you have to do something.

So, I just smiled and counted, “One thousand-one, One thousand-two,” in my head, long enough, I stopped smiling and started browsing the wallets.

My wallet was falling apart and I needed to buy, had needed to buy a new one for a matter of months, but I have never been a fan of clothing stores because for some reason I always feel like I am being watched. When people are watching you like that, you can’t buy a cheap wallet, but at the same time you can’t buy the most expensive wallet because they think you are buying the most expensive wallet to be buying the most expensive wallet. If I see a wallet I like I will put it down because it is the most expensive.

What are people thinking when they stare at you for buying the most expensive wallet? Are the people thinking that I came in and specifically started looking through wallets so I could go out of my way and show off by buying the most expensive one? All I want is a black leather tri-fold wallet, I don’t care what the price is.

I know that Jasmine, I mean, Danielle wouldn’t care about something stupid like that. You can tell just from looking at her that she wants you to have whichever wallet you like the best, whether it is the cheapest, most expensive or anything in-between because that is how Danielle is, just do what you want. You have to be doing what you want if you are as intelligent and witty as Danielle is and you are in your mid-20’s and working in a clothing store. She must only be here because she wants to be.

Then somebody’s wife or girlfriend, or significant other came over and started browsing the wallets and I made a hasty retreat because when you are talking about that kind of proximity then the people start judging you just based on the wallets you are looking at whether you buy them or not. I don’t think that Danielle would ever buy a wallet for someone when she knows that a man wants to pick out his own wallet, and it made me wonder what kind of a presumptuous bitch the lady that interrupted my wallet-browsing was to think she can pick out someone’s wallet.

I meandered over to the jerseys, in so doing I passed the counter and Danielle wasn’t there, which is a shame because I was trying to remember how long her hair is and I thought I would steal a glimpse. They had the jerseys for all of the, “local,” teams, even though no team plays within seventy-five miles of this town. There was the jersey for the football team that aught my attention because I thought that I would look good in the colors, even though I instinctively knew that I would not buy the jersey because why should I buy a football jersey when I am 34 and have not played football in sixteen years?

I thought for a minute about how you will sometimes be in Wal-Mart or another grocery store and you’ll see the couples doing the pre-game thing and the two of them are wearing matching jerseys and it’s kind of cute in a way. It’s even cuter when it is the jersey that is for the team that the local team is playing because it is like they are trying to overcome the odds with only each other to lean on. The local team’s colors were blue and silver and I idly wondered if people would think it would be cute for Danielle and I to go through Wal-Mart to pick up our beer and our pretzels and our Doritos together.

What is it about a flash of intelligence and wit that sticks with a man to make him go crazy fantasizing about all of this hypothetical shit. Most men fantasize about ripping the clothes off of a girl like that and nailing her in the car while parked along the side of the road, or something like that and I am thinking snack-shopping at Wal-Mart. Snack-shopping? What do I have, ten years on this girl?

I looked up when I bumped lightly into the cologne and perfume shelf, at some point prior I realized the smell of a flowery bold women’s perfume was becoming stronger and stronger but it never occurred to me that I had been moving. I didn’t even remember seeing a cologne and perfume shelf when I came into the store so I looked behind me and saw that the jersey rack was at least thirty feet behind me and to the right. In my periphery, I saw that she was looking at me, so I hastily turned around and picked up a bottle of cologne.

I sprayed the contents into my hand and rubbed my hands together and inhaled slightly, then I realized that what I had actually sprayed was some Elizabeth Taylor perfume. A gift for my Mother? Donating to a homeless shelter? How the hell was I going to explain this if She asked me?

I realized that she was no longer paying attention to me, though, the lady who thinks she knows something about buying a man’s wallet was asking her a question about the wallets, at least that’s how it seemed from the way she was pointing to the wallet rack. A question about the wallets, I wondered, how the hell can someone have a question about the wallets? They’re wallets, isn’t the purpose of a wallet obvious.

I decided to stop being mad at that lady, though, because it was her that prevented Danielle from seeing me spraying perfume all over myself. I quickly grabbed a mens musk cologne and gave my hands a few quick spritzes. It smelled good, but it was Tommy Hilfiger and I don’t think that is the type of cologne a thirty-four year old should be wearing, so I put it down.

I looked up and noticed that this clothing store also had a housewear section, and that was the first time it had ever occurred to me that I did not own a toaster. I suppose I had better buy a toaster, I thought, what would a girl like Danielle think if she went to someone’s place and there was no toaster? Would that be off-set by the fact that my place is a condo as opposed to some dumpy-ass tenement? I didn’t think that it would, I don’t know why, but I decided that for a man to be appealing to a woman he must have a toaster.

I didn’t spend much time looking at the toasters. I basically scanned a few prices and picked one that was in between the highest and the lowest prices that I saw. I took it to the counter and set it down. Danielle was over helping that one bitch with her silly little wallet shopping so I stood and focused on the toaster and thought about how much more appealing my house would be to a woman because I had a toaster.

“So when are you going to propose,” asked Danielle.

I looked at Danielle in shock as she was somehow standing on the other side of the counter when she had to walk right past me to get there. Could she read my mind? Did I fantasize about proposing? I remember about Wal-Mart and all of that, but how could she possibly begin to think that I was going to do any proposing to anyone.

“I’m sorry–,” I started.

“What do you have to apologize for,” asked Danielle, " I suppose there are less savory things than toasters to have an infatuation with."

“No, no,” I quickly tried to explain as though she really believed that I was infatuated with a toaster, “See, I had this toaster, well, not this one, but a different one and it was really really good. I mean, not like the best toaster in the universe, but you know how you have the setting and this one had the setting and I always left it there, but it started throwing, it broke, and I didn’t think there would be the same model and this is the same model, I think it is anyway.”

Danielle giggled at me, that’s what she did, she giggled. I suppose it wasn’t the first time she had ever caught a man off-guard and she was aware of it and I was aware of it, and we both knew what she had done.

“$43.78, for your one-of-a-kind, perfect setting toaster, please.”

I laughed, what the hell else was I going to do, but I laughed and handed her the cash.

“One-twenty-two is your change,” she went on, “Thank you for shopping with us.”

My move.

“Hey Danielle, you know, I was wondering, and I’m sorry for lying about the toaster, but I don’t like toast and I figured what kind of a nice woman would ever have any respect for a guy that did not have a toaster, so that’s why I bought it. I just felt bad for lying and all, so–”

Yeah, nice move.

Danielle interrupted, “I don’t know what girls you have been seeing. I don’t have a toaster either, never really needed one.”

I replied, “I feel better now. See it’s the girls I haven’t been seeing, my wife died four years ago and I have not seen anyone and we had a toaster and I don’t know where it went but I don’t have it and I moved twice…You know what, this is all beside the point, the point is that I have this weird sort of…connection…you know, I don’t know what triggered it, but would you like to come over for some toast?”

What the hell did I just ask?

Danielle smiled warmly and replied, “That is the most romantic and charming thing I have ever been asked, but I’m married.”

“You are, oh, well, then may I have a refund?”

put some jam on that one…

nice story…


Thank you very much! I wrote that last night pretty much straight up, I saw a guy that kept checking out this cashier at Macy’s and kind of wondered what his thoughts were, so I decided to take his thoughts into my own hands.

…a refund? :astonished:

That was a nice touch :laughing:

=D> =D> Very nice Pav, very empathetic… In a room full of strangers , is any one really alone?

Thanks MagsJ and Kriswest, I appreciate the compliments.

I’m actually not surprised to see this story appeals to women as I also appeal to women.

Am I right, Ladies? I’m here all week.

That was funny Pav, you had me laughing out loud a lot of the time. It had a whole Seinfeld feel to it: comedy about nothing but nevertheless existential and engaging. You have a few tiny typos scattered around, and I think you should cut the: I replied, "I feel better now. " part; (just the I replied part) it gets in the way. The reader fills in himself that you’re replying. Just a stylistic trick from Hemingway.

To be honest, I didn’t find the way you had the refund part written geniune - in terms of the way spoken language sounds - and read it more as a last attempt at a joke which turned me off and didn’t make me laugh (though i like the idea). I see other people liked it, but that’s my two cents and if you don’t like it I, too, want a refund.

Beside those trivialities, very well written.

I hope you keep me on my toes, too. I’m suprised you didn’t offer a stylistic critique of the piece I wrote.


Changed: “You are? May I have a refund then?”

What do you think?

Thank you.

I didn’t really find anything wrong with it, I’ll read it from a more critical standpoint for you, though.

ADD: Shit, I meant to edit my post, but quoted it instead and re-posted the whole story…lol

Sounds genuine. A good last punchline.


I noticed you have posted three new writings. I am slightly busy at the moment, but I will read them later on tonight.

Nice comedy. Somehow i knew it wouldn’t work out with Danielle.

I could really see your personality come through here, was inspired during a trip to wall mart perhaps?

I didn’t exactly think about ripping her clothes off, but i think i may have appraised her ability to breast feed :laughing:

I think a lot of people will relate to this story. Any middle aged crowd.

For me, a super market is not considered a viable pick up spot, let alone a place to fantasize about having matching jerseys.

Although, the grocery store has got some interesting (hot) personages.

Yeah, exactly, except it was Macy’s. I was there and saw this guy that kept checking out this younger girl (she was actually in jewelry) anyway, he had the appearance of being lost in thought. I wondered what exactly he was thinking about, but then I decided that his thoughts were probably over-sexed and boring, so I decided to do his thinking for him and make a story out of it.

LMAO The funny part about that is that I am not even close to middle-aged.

I think that in addition to being the second easiest (Bars being the first) place to pick someone up that it is also the second best. (Workplace being first)