When I first started this blog, I wanted to have a feature called Silly Saturdays. But, as I usually have to work the early shift on Saturdays, thus cementing myself in the brain-dead category for the rest of the day (see prior post), that quickly fell aside, as did this blog. Then, I came back to the blog, but abandoned the silly. How dare I?
So, I promise some silly.
I work in a small grocery store. It’s not the most glamorous of jobs, but it pays the bills and that is what counts. So, once upon a time, the company I work for had annual meetings. The store managers used to go to these meetings and usually attended a food show. This is sort of a convention for food retailers. You can get some free stuff, if the vendor is willing to give it. You can also try out new product about to be released to the market and decide if you want a part of the potential cash cow.
One year, my boss, an aforementioned store manager came back and eagerly shoved in my face…this:
That’s Pete. Well, actually, Pete the Poptart. Yes, Kellogg’s vendors gave out amazingly handsome frosted poptarts with pink icing and sprinkles. Complete with arms, legs, and the most appropriately, “Yeah, I’m hot,” facial expression!
Naturally I fell in love.
Pete found his way into the hearts of my coworkers. He became the mascot of our silly store. He developed a cool relationship with another friendly icon in our store, Kyle the Keystone Can. Kyle Can for short. Kyle was already a post in and of itself, but for reference, here’s Kyle:
Anyway, Kyle and Pete became the best of besties, and in turn, hatched plots. See, Pete was a sheltered Poptart. Kyle was an adventurer. I mean, look at that picture. He scaled the mountain of beer. He has a helmet. He has an awesome arctic ride:
So, Pete begged for an adventure. He needed to sow all those oats or something. So, he had his adventure. Pete went home with Lauren. Yes, me.
First thing Pete learned about was this idea of the internet. This media was foreign to the guy that was only saw technology as the way to toast him. But, Lauren (me) promised to show him the good of technology. She showed him how famous he was.
He found himself on the internet. How much more famous can you get? This wasn’t enough. He needed to be the next Indiana Jones, Poptart version. So, he went on a quick fishing trip. He caught a fish. And, it was:(this big!)
Kyle’s tales, however, teased him. He needed to experience more. No one would believe he was brave if he didn’t have the stories to prove it.
He tried to join a rodeo and compete, but his steed let him down. The dog was too fluffy, too clean, and way too prissy. So, he moved on. Maybe the ocean? Pete couldn’t get to the ocean. Not Yet. But, he managed upon a seafood market. Inside, there was a lobster.
However, that lobster had it out for Pete. He had connections and, realizing the poptart’s dream, he met with his rough buddies to plan an adventure ol’ Pete would never forget. Barely able to cool his feet from his retreat from the red shellfish terror, Pete found himself out in the dark. Literally. The knock on the head left him cold. He didn’t know how long he slept, but slept he did.
He awoke to this:
“Aw, Crap,” said Pete. “How will I ever get out? I know! My superior wit!”
It didn’t work as well as he hoped. I mean, after all, he’s a poptart with no adventure skills. He slowly climbed through the jungle of shamrocks and he encountered the native inhabitants. Throwing himself at their mercy, he struggled to learn their language. Learn it, he did. And, they made him one of their own:
Now an accepted member of the native tribe, he was able to get the information needed to get out of the jungle and in turn back to civilization, even if it meant the threat of toasterdom to him.
Back in something recognizable to him, he sought out a nice hotel. They had fine Egyptian cotton sheets, and Pete spent his nights dreaming of Egypt, its pyramids and sites. Then, he realized Egypt is in the desert, it is hot, and toasting him might result in some hungry Egyptian mistaking him for a snack. Waking up from an nightmare, Pete decided to spend a short while in the tub, cooling off.
The jets in the tub made amazing bubbles. Yes, amazing. See how amazing they are?
Tales of his adventures with the natives of the Shamrock Jungle had reached the local media. Pictures were being taken of him everywhere. Even in his bubbly bath. He struck out at the paparazzi. How dare they invade his privacy?
Upset, Pete closed his curtains, turned off his ever-ringing phone, and disconnected the router in his room. Terrified of this world that would sneak in on a poptart and snap photos of his basking in the orange-scented bubbly goodness of a bath, he sat down in the most comfortable chair in the room.
Rocking away, he let the insanity set in. He imagined himself in different places. Different things. He struggled with his newfound fame. Should he venture outside? Is the world still that scary? He turned on the tv in his room. Quickly flipping the channels, he skipped the news and settled on reality programming. Ah, yes. His favorite adventure show. Deadliest Catch. Man, that Time Bandit crew seemed like Poptart type people. Oh, if he had the guts to be frozen for many months of the year. But, that would make him a Toaster Strudel and he couldn’t ever forget his last date with one of those! She broke his heart. Aw, poor Pete.
Going to sleep with thoughts of cod guts being dropped into the ocean by guys much more daring than himself, Pete tossed and turned. He didn’t hear the latch on his door click, or the rustle of a breeze disturbing the room’s curtain as the window was opened. No, he didn’t even notice as they lifted him and set them in their next trap. Poor Pete. How would he ever survive the dreaded: Lady with a Pocketdog Purse torture?!
But, renewed with the face of his new Shamrock Jungle brothers, Pete fought and climbed the walls of the pocket dog purse. He scaled them. He slipped! Oh no! Would he fall to his death?
But no, the leg is out. An arm. Half a frosted body with sprinkles! Hurray! Pete escaped! He escaped the wrath of the Pocket Dog with its licking tongue and green bodied home!
Knowing enemies were still out there, Pete struggled with his escape. He needed a weapon. Many had fought with the Pocket Dog. Many had fallen aside. He searched through the remains of those brave souls. No armor. Crap. But, lo…a glint of an obsidian sword!
Yes, it’s the weapon he needed.
Using it, he wandered the halls of this newest challenge. Here and there, he found dead end after dead end. But, press on he must and eventually, he found his way to the exit. The gleaming light passing through the portal inspired him. Could he do it? What if there was something out there to stop him?
Then, he saw it. The reward so critical for an adventurer such as himself to collect. Who cares what lay outside the door? This..yes, this was all that matters.
The treasure. He had to have it. And, have it he did. He opened the chest. He found the cache of his dreams. And, he returned home with the privilege of being a true adventurer behind him. Kyle the Can could not scoff at him now. He was just as brave. He was just as daring.
He was the true poptart that he was meant to be.
Yeah, I’m not joking with this post. I like being random. I like my imagination and where it takes me. I like concocting stories with objects and amusing my coworkers. In seriousness, Pete is a welcome relief when the onset of numbers, and shrink, and profit/loss rule your life. When people yell at you, or hit on you, or do all sorts of things under the creepy guise that as a customer service person that service part is taken literally.
I refuse to grow up if it means that life must always be serious. I refuse to give up these few threads of youth. I want fun in my life. I want laughter. I want to feel like I did as a child, sometimes. Too much of being an adult means losing the fun of life. Why, I refuse to do so completely. I love pretending. I love letting my imagination run.
It keeps me alive.
It keeps me happy.
That’s all that matters in the end, no?