Local Weirdough

“I’ve gone into hiding.”

“We’re in Pizza Hut.”

“That’s what you think,” Laverne lowered her voice. “Look around… what do you see?”

“Happy fat people.”

All of them?”

“All the ones eating pizza,” I was able to confirm.

“What about him on his own over at the salad bar? What’s his story?”

“That’s a woman.”

“Okay, whatever, but ask yourself this: what type of person comes to Pizza Hut to load up on celery?”

“Maybe she’s the nurse.”

“Restaurants don’t have nurses.”

“This one should.”

“John, what am I always telling you?”

“It’s only a phase?”

“That was your mother.”

“Never make eye contact while eating a banana?”

“That was your cellmate.”

“If someone’s crying don’t ask them if it’s because of their haircut?”

 “Stop. There are two types of people in this world: those who like pizza and -”

“- nurses?”

“Communists.”

“You’re why aliens don’t talk to us.”

The Macarena is why aliens don’t talk to us,” Laverne sniffed. “Anyway, I need to talk to you about something else.”

“Shoot.”

“How can I get myself into The Bible?”

“Oh my God…”

“Is that what I should do? Should I pray?”

“That wasn’t praying.”

“Then you, my friend, have just blasphemed,” Laverne waved a menacing finger in my direction.

“Since when have you been religious?”

“Pam’s published an eBook.”

“And…”

“It’s a collection of poems which are just dreadful.”

“So…”

“I think one’s about me.”

“Because…”

“It tells the story of a beautiful Mesopotamian goddess.”

“You’re from Wisconsin.”

“Maybe it wasn’t always called that.”

“So, you’re thinking that if you’re a goddess you should be in the same book as God.”

“I should at least be on the cover with Him,” Laverne reasoned.

“Right, here comes the waitress so would you please come out from under the table?”

“Are you ready to order?” the young woman asked.

“Have all these animals been freshly killed?” Laverne enquired, as she emerged to take her seat.

“Please excuse my friend, she’s Mesopotamian,” I intervened.

“Right…” the waitress needed more to go on.

“They tend to bury their leftovers.”

“Uh huh…” she was still no wiser.

“I’ll try the Buffet Special,” Laverne set down her menu.

“Anything to drink?”

“That won’t be necessary because I’ve just topped up my gourd in the Euphrates.”

“I’ll have the Buffet Special as well,” I jumped in again. “And a Coke.”

The waitress stared down at her pad, unsure of what to write.

“Two Buffets Specials and one Coke,” I clarified.

“Right,” she sighed with relief. “You confused me there for a minute.”

“I apologise,” Laverne continued, “it’s just that all of this takes me back.”

“All of what?” the waitress asked.

“These ancient murals. That one, for example, is it Babylonian?”

“That’s Cher at The Oscars.”

“So it’s not a mummy then?”

“Erm, no.”

“Interesting.”

“I’ll be right back with your drink so please help yourself to the buffet,” she managed to get out, before backing into the table behind her on her way to the kitchen.

“Mesopotamia?” Laverne laughed.

“From a mud hut to Pizza Hut within the blink of an evil eye.”

“We’ve got her on the run, poor thing.”

“Excuse me, but did you find your earring?” a second waiter approached us.

“How did you know that’s what I was looking for?” Laverne asked, surprised.

“It’s my job to notice everything,” he smiled. “I also noticed that you didn’t order a drink. May I get you one now?”

“A rum and Coke would be lovely, thank you,” she smiled back.

“When I return, I’ll help you look for your earring,” he winked, before darting off.

“Dark and swarthy with an accent,” I noted. “Good thing he wasn’t selling sand because you’d have bought that too.”

“You know us Valley Girls,” Laverne sighed, “we just can’t resist a man in cuneiform.”

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