Monday at the Dealer
There was nothing going on this morning, so I took the truck to the dealer for some scheduled maintenance. I got the magazine out of my bag (not my bad) first. This is essential at this dealer, where the only reading material is a freebie sports magazine.
I got there at 8:50. There was a black lady ahead of me, describing the condition of her SUV. I got the attention of the service guy, and told him whom I was with. I wanted an oil change, and whatever else was needed.
I go in the waiting room, and the first thing I notice is a TV playing ESPN. It was rather loud. I thought for a while of hanging out at an empty desk in the showroom, but there was golden oldies muzak there, and I decided to take my chances with Joe Torre, and his job hanging in the balance.
He should know better by now. Baseball managers are hired to be fired, especially those working for George Steinbrenner. Still, I like Joe Torre. To me he is still the raccoon eyed catcher who moved with the Braves from Milwaukee, and I can forgive him what happened in ’96 and ’99.
There is a copy of USA today, and I peruse the NFL scores. The Falcons are reverting back to their normal selves, and all of Rankin Blanks money won’t make any difference.
I also note that Indianapolis has gone 5-0. I am reminded of this by ESPN, which says that only three teams have gone 5-0 three years in a row. One of these teams was the 1930s Green Bay Packers, and this announcer has the same rise in his voice every time he talks about this. Something tells me this drivel was pre recorded.
Moving right along…..
I open my Atlantic Magazine fiction issue to a story. It is about a Catholic Priest who gets in financial trouble because he buys things his parishioners cannot afford. He gets out of debt by writing speeches for a right wing seminary buddy. At the end he has a conscience attack and resigns his job as a speechwriter, and drinks beer on the roof of a hospital with a terminally ill parish handyman. The final line of the story…”It’s a lucky man who can drink with his priest”.
It just might be the stupidest short story I have ever read.
Meanwhile, ESPN dude spreads the happy news that Denver suffered its worst home defeat since 1966. This is good news.
A few minutes later, the idiot box was squalling about Jeff Gordon. The black lady and I exchange a knowing look.
The service guy came in at some point, and told me of other procedures to be performed. Instead of 45 minutes, we were up to 90.
ESPN sports news apparently repeats itself. By this time, the Joe Torre saga was on its second round.
During the Braves lame duck season in Milwaukee, the team came down to Atlanta to play exhibitions at Atlanta Stadium. After one of these games, I got Dad to take me where I could get autographs. At the time, they let fans hang out outside the clubhouse and meet the players as they came out. This was changed rather quickly.
Henry Aaron stood patiently, smoking a cigarette and signing all the autographs on a cardboard box. Rico Carty came out and greeted the fans.
There was a panel truck parked beside the clubhouse. Joe Torre came out, took a look at the crowd, slipped behind the truck and ran.
By this time, a man with a laptop had joined us in the waiting room. When I finished the story about the priest, I said out loud “ this is the stu”, and saw laptop guy looking at me. I did not finish the sentence.
The Atlantic fiction issue had an article about an author whose appearance at Clemson University sparked a controversy. There was mention of a talk before a group of honors students, and I was reminded that Miss Teen Age South Carolina was an honor student.
By this time, I was looking behind me at the service area, and looking at the time line on my cell phone. Finally, at 11:02, I saw the truck . It was time to go. The lack of ESPN noise was appreciated.