Thanks for bearing with me as I continue to drag out this story, that is if anyone still cares. Part 4 is posted here on the World of Progress online magazine where my saga has been renamed Coaster Punchman and the College Boys. Please leave comments there if you don't mind, although I don't mind if you leave them here too. I'm such a whore for affection, it's pathetic.
Since even Albert Einstein wouldn't remember what this story is all about, I'll provide links to the first three installments:
I can barely even begin to explain this. You'll just have to read below.
Our pastry-chef friend Jin recently posted a contest on her blog. She wants her readers to leave a comment stating the most embarrassing story about themselves they can think of. Whichever story makes her laugh the longest and loudest will entitle the reader to one of her special Sweet Boxes.
Now I’m not all that competitional or anything, but seeing as how embarrassing stories (about myself and others) are one of my specialities, I could not resist the urge to throw my name in the hat.
I started to type my comment to Jin (wherein, as you will note below, I state for the record that I could in no way compete with her reader Jay Ferris who boasts a horrifying story of jock itch and professional nudity) but alas, the “comment” was too long for Blogger to publish – leaving me with no choice but to post my entry on my own blog.
So, without any further ado, I respectfully submit the following entry in Jin’s Sweet Box Contest: I would really like to play this game, but I simply don't believe I could beat Jay. That story is just so nasty.
But actually, I have thought of a story from my childhood that is just so stupid, it's more embarrassing just to think about what was going in my 12 year old pea-brain rather than the embarrassment of being discovered. (I actually never was officially discovered.)
Here's the set up: You may or may not recall a post I did some time ago about my childhood ex-neighbor Jenny. She and I had been best buddies earlier in life but had started to grow apart as we hit the tween years. One time when I was 11 or 12 I decided to mess with her and send her a "secret admirer" letter, not because I secretly admired her, but just because I was a mischievous imp and wanted to screw with her head.
But this was to be no ordinary secret-admirer letter, mind you - that would have been too normal for my pea-brain. Instead I decided she needed something homemade, something artsy and craftsy to show my fake-love for her. So I decided to make her a pillow.
Yes, that would be a pillow, the kind of thing on which you lay your head down at night to help you go to sleep. I have no idea where this random thought came from, but I took to the project with much aplomb.
I dug through some drawers and found some old pieces of upholstery that my mom had used to recover the seats of our dining room chairs a number of years before. I chose for one side of the secret-love-pillow a patterned fabric with a kind of plaid-paisley thing happening. For the other side of the pillow I chose plain green.
Why just plain green for the other side, you may ask? Because I needed a plain side so that I could do some special embroidery work on it. Just to make it extra special.
I took a needle and a spool of ordinary white thread from Kmart and carefully stitched in a large letter "J" on Jenny's pillow. (You know, so it would be an initial of her first name and all to make it really nice.)
I sewed up the sides of the fabric pieces and stuffed it with some old rags or something. The finished product was the saddest little thing I'd ever seen - like a school art project for which even a special-ed kindergartner would have received a D-minus. It was pathetic, but I was still really proud of it.
Then I proceeded to write her a letter (not even disguising my own handwriting) which read something to the effect of "I like you very much and so I made you this pillow. Signed, your secret admirer." And then I mailed it.
A few weeks later my cat had kittens, and when I saw Jenny across the yard one day I asked her if she (and her new best friend Joanne) wanted to come see them. Sure, they said, and they came in to see the new kitties.
As Jenny held one of the sleeping kittens in her hand she said, sotto voce to Joanne, "this kitten is so cute sleeping like this - I should go get her a small pillow." Joanne started snickering, and I asked what was so funny.
Jenny looked at me and rather flatly stated "a secret admirer sent me a pillow."
"A pillow?" I asked, in the sort of "what the fuck" tone that would properly befit that kind of statement.
"Yes, he made me a pillow. You should see it - it has got to be the ugliest thing ever." I couldn't tell if she suspected me, but I played along. She went and got me the pillow and the letter and we all had a good laugh. I could tell she was genuinely confused, as was I, frankly. To this day I still have no idea what possessed me to do such a strange thing.
But as an adult I have come to appreciate it as a kind of private performance art. I would consider doing the same to other people I know today except that technology is so much more sophisticated now - it would be much easier to sniff me out. And as an adult I could probably get arrested - or at least slapped with a restraining order - for doing something so awkward and creepy.
I've never told anyone this story, not even Poor George. Consider this my humble submission to the Sweet Box context.
I am Coaster Punchman and you have just entered my world. I rule it with an iron fist, so if you're looking for First Amendment protection, you will not find it here. I have a now deceased crazy Chinese mother-in-law, and sometimes I wear Crocs around the house. I don't like flip-flops or Mormons. I'm also a cyberstalker by trade -- so I could look up all sorts of random shit about you if I wanted, but I probably won't because I'm pretty lazy.