Ever have a quirky old lady sidle up to you in the coffee aisle at the grocery store and jabber at you like you’re old friends as if she was picking up from where she left off ten minutes ago? And you’ve never seen this woman before in your life, let alone ten minutes ago?
Well that’s what happened to me the other day, only it wasn’t in the coffee aisle at the grocery store. It was a text message. Actually, three of them…
Oh, what a conundrum! Do I immediately let them know that they have the wrong person, thereby resulting in the least amount of stress for everyone? Or do I get sucked in by my inner smart ass and create some mischief?
I mean, this person, let’s call her LaWanda, obviously sent a potentially offensive letter to another person, let’s call her Agnus, who is apparently from Mississippi. And LaWanda thoughtlessly thought, “Oh, I’ll bet Agnus would get a kick out of this story about three busloads of Mississippi school children going missing only to be found six months later inside the the stomach fossil of a dinosaur. Haha! That Agnus, she loves a good dinosaur tale.”
But then LaWanda didn’t hear back from Agnus. And she began to wonder why Agnus didn’t at least call her to deliver a courtesy chuckle. She got nothing but crickets.
And then it dawned on her.
OMG, thought LaWanda, I plum forgot Agnus was from Mississippi. What if she knew one of those dino-abducted children? I’d better send her one of those text thingies that’s all the rage with my grandkids.
And so she did. Only she didn’t. And now poor Agnus is still mad. And LaWanda will never know that Agnus did not receive her lame attempt at an apology.
Oh, what to do, what to do.
And then it hit me.
Hey, I know! I’ll text back. Only I won’t tell her at first because my inner wise-cracker wants to play.
And so began our conversation with my response:
Oh, yes I did.
So she said:
Was that it? Was it over? It couldn’t be! The mystery remained and LaWanda still needed to settle things with Agnus, so:
I really, really hoped she had a good sense of humor because this could go anywhere and get really awkward.
Now you would think all she had to say was, “Sure thing!” or “What is it?”
Was what my question? Did she think I was wondering how she came to believe I was from Mississippi? So now I’m (I mean Agnus is) a liar?
And who says “chest-of-drawers” any more?
And I can’t call her! Is she kidding? This was supposed to be a little silly back-and-forth thing and I’d tell her it was all a mistake and we would have a good laugh and go about our lives.
But now she’s in my bedroom?
Well, I guess I should ask her a question then. It’ll get us to the end of the story faster.
Right? Because this is a slow train wreck now. And I’m the engineer. And I should be ashamed of myself, because this is going to end in tears.
Lord help me, she told me what she wanted for Christmas.
Ack!! Now I’ve gone and done it. She is praying for me, or Agnus, because of what happened in Mississippi. And she wants to hear all about the family? But she doesn’t know if Agnus likes Chinese food?
Can’t she hear by my voice that I am clearly not Agnus already?
Well, this has obviously gone far enough. The train wreck is about to commence if I don’t pull the emergency brake. Time for me to confess.
The problem is…this is a very delicate matter. I can’t just say, HAHA! — You’ve been punk’d! I was just playing a joke on you. HAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!
Because that would be mean. And I don’t want to hurt LaWanda’s feelings. It’s bad enough I’m going to Hell, but do I also have to feel bad about it and leave poor innocent LaWanda scarred in the process? I had to be careful about how I worded my next response.
There. See? It was all just a misunderstanding. Nobody gets hurt. I awaited her reply, then my phone alerted me to her answer.
I’m not sure why she felt the need to repeat herself and I had no idea what a “b & care operator” is, so I Googled it.
Google doesn’t seem to know either.
However, Agnus has not only forgotten that her actual name is Loretta, but she has also lost her damn mind because she doesn’t even know that she is Loretta. Or, I don’t know that I’m Loretta. O something.
And this is when LaWanda decides to actually call me. On the phone.
And I don’t answer it.
And now I’m going to Hell twice.
I need to straighten LaWanda out and fast before she calls the dudes in the white coats to suddenly haul Loretta off to the crazy house.
Please let it work this time, please let it work this time…
She invented the number? The phone number? My phone number? Or did she invent the “No”, in which case she’s a lot older than I thought. Hasn’t “No” been around a while?
OK, so now I’m back down to only going to Hell once, and just for good measure…
Because LaWanda at least deserves a compliment after putting up with my sorry ass. But she had to have the last word…
Yeah thanks, LaWanda, but I don’t think that’s gonna happen now.