Today I go into work and get asked to impersonate somebody. Always finding other people more interesting than anyone else I take the dart they’re pitching, then swing out wide of center. Bullseye! So right off the bat I know that yesterday has already passed tomorrow, as they say in the biz. Well, I psyche myself up because Russians sound funny when they talk. Now don’t get me wrong, I’ve got quite a few friends south of Kamchatka, but I’ve never liked Eskimo pies. They make me gassy.
So, I get all painted up, dressed down, and put into costume, then go for a little stroll downtown into the local Red Square, when who should I run into but an old buddy of mine, also in the get up.
“Whatcha doing here man?”
“Oh, you know, the old shake, rattle and roll.”
“You get pop corn and fries with that?” Well, we both laugh at that one. It was pretty good for being on the spot, I gotta admit.
“Did you get rolled last week?”
“Nah,” he says. “That’s next week.”
“How can you predict that?”
“Because the old man is a galactophagist.” Now it’s my time to guffaw.
“Who they painted you for this time?” Not sure I’m clear to talk I tell him Barney. He catches my drift and scratches his arse with his index finger. Which is better than the other way round.
“On the step now?” he asks.
“Yeah, my sweet is set and so I’m on spot.” So with that he gives me one on the down low and then he makes like a bunny. Two times in a row.
Next thing I go for a walk. On the way I audition a couple on the fritz and it looks like the mouthy mouse is gonna slug the dame. That’s a nuisance, what with me outta uniform, and instead made up like a Dimitri Colonel. It’s always like that, you’re not ready for the one thing and then the other happens. Still, no good deed goes unpunished so I amble over and take a poke at public relations. Well in the middle of a shout, with the gal all sobby, he suddenly sees me in the make and can’t decide where I should be. Then after a few words he decides he can’t make out where he should be either, and skeedaddles. I tell the donna it will be okay and to scoot home and set a grease fire before the firecracker returns. She thanks me and I’m off again to sightsee. Soak up the town.
About ten of the clock I’ve had enough of that and since my daughter has her final acting class about 11:45 I call in and tell em to skip the intros, I’ll go straight for the throat. Well, I drop two dimes on the patio and stroll on into the joint. Three of the big ones meet me, but being far more experienced than them I let my guard down anyway so as not to catch anybody off the floor. After one of em decides to wipe the walls to make a show, the other two skip me in to see the man.
Now there he is fatter than life and ugly squared. Still, the smell is tolerable so I sit down with a flourish and make the secret handsign. To which he stands up and salutes like his mother is there. Okay, so formalities aside I ask him if he’s prepared. It’s a simple enough question but where he thinks it’s going I have no idea because he’s flumstrusstered by the whole talking in words bit.
I repeat my lines in dog barks and that does no good either because suddenly his mutt runs in and her legs are freshly shaved. What the hell? Yeah, that’s what I thought too. So now that we’re all on the same page again you can see why I’m gettin annoyed. Not in the playbook, one ball, two strikes, and somebody is gonna hav’ta call for sunshine before a washout. And me without my secretary.
Since this ain’t going nowhere I decide to have a seat and let my previous sit down stand awhile. Now I’m impersonating both of em, which sounds a lot harder than it looks, especially with this crowd. Well he gets confused which is where I like to play when I’m the talker. But I ain’t saying nothing and so that’s the part that’s hard to figure, for both of us. As things stand and sit I decide to go poco a poco.
“Who you gonna call?” I pass the call sign. It’s a play on words but since he still can’t make out the game I let him catch a fly instead. Then he opens his mouth and it flies back out again. Getting tired of all this back and forth I settle on the sideways, which is always a good diagonal move. Well, a bit more of that and I tap my watch to show him that time flies when you’re having fun but all bad things must end by hook or by crook. Being crooked he gets my jive and smuggles something out of his number two monkey. I say, “How bout that,” and tip him the high hat, but with just enough parfume that he thinks I mean it to smell that way.
So Ooday and Coosay hold my hands as we walk out, just in case I trip and something drops out that can embarrassed us all. But that ain’t really what aggravates me about the whole thing. What really bothers me is that as I’m dedressing it suddenly strikes me that one of my socks is black and one deep, navy blue. What if I had been accidentally disemboweled and then cut up for square? The boys in the morgue would have spotted the foot hose thing right away and then where would I have been? It’s hard to explain that kinda thing and make it seem believable.
Which is exactly why I always come unprepared.
It’s better of course when you can see all the colors right, but we do what we can…
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