Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Overheard

"You're a extra, extra, extra, extra poop head!"

"If we send it to Yi-yi (through email) will we still have it?"

"Please take your nest out of my room."

"I have a mining level of 32."

and

"He looks like someone from Pride and Prejudice."

"Like Mr. Darcy?"

"Only without the claws."

(that one was Prawn, re Hugh Jackman on the cover of XMen 2)

And just now, a conversation between Grumpy Newspaper Man and a mom and her kids. Grumpy Newspaper Man is an enigma. He's always at the library, always sitting in the wing chairs by the fireplace, always reading the newspaper. Apart from this, his only other known activity is giving candy to young children.

Grumpy Newspaper Man kind of freaks me out a little. The first brush I had with him, he had given candy to Sluggie without my knowledge or consent when she was about 7 or 8. Loathe to be rude to an older person (TKD tenet #6 "respect your elders"), she had taken it (ironically thus breaking another TKD instruction) and come promptly to me whereupon we discreetly disposed of it.

Since then, our interactions with Grumpy Newspaper Man have consisted of him giving us dagger eyes when we are talking near him, him making disgusted noises and pointedly flapping his newspaper when we are talking near him, and him "yelling at" my 2 older girls and one of the librarians when they were talking near him. Oh, yes, and being subjected to him talking loudly (way louder than we ever do) to his cohort, "Grumpy Newspaper Man's Cohort." They are apparently both retired teachers (you can't help but learn a lot about them when they are yelling to each other across the wing chair section), so maybe after all those years of struggling to be heard, they just hate the sound of anyone's voices but their own.

Just now, Grumpy Newspaper Man approached a child and gave him candy. I think he asked the mother first, because I heard her say "thank you for asking." But it was purely extortion, because then he made the child smile at him. No, really. And then he gave a sucker to the kid's sister and made her smile, too.

It kind of makes me flash back to when I was 5-ish in Hong Kong and some fat white dude came to the top steps of our yard as I was going out to play. He made me tell him my name and give him a hug, even though my little 5 year old arms didn't come near to reaching around his ample gut. Even though I didn't know him from Adam. I was too afraid of being rude to him to decline.

Something about Grumpy Newspaper Man just doesn't sit right with me.

9 comments:

egan said...

Your darling children are all sorts of smart and clever. I'd like to thank their teachers for who those kids are today. The best part is they have a refined sense of humour too.

Feel free to ship one out west if desired.

Candace said...

And they're so good at creative insults! ;-) Though I guess she had good reason. They were playing "Hide the Medallion" (I later learned.) Apparently this entails hiding a cardstock medallion somewhere within the pages (and flaps and pockets) of their new Pirate Book. Yet young Fishy had hidden the medallion well outside of the realm of what could be considered fair game (and by this I mean "in a different room") thus prompting Prawnie's ire.

I'm afraid I haven't got a spare to ship out. You're going to have to come visit.

egan said...

Come on, you have four of them. Let's strike a deal of some sort. Prawnie for three days?

Candace said...

How about a marshmallow peep?

Michael C said...

Wait, wait, I thought all old men were grumpy? Maybe it's because he keeps reading the same newspaper day after day...

Wait, I love Peeps. If Egan passes, can I have them??

Simon Sterwin said...

Grumpy people make me grumpy.

This post made me realise that grumpy is one of those words which rapidly loses its meaning and becomes funny if repeated.

Candace said...

Michael - Hmmm. Maybe they are. I think you raise a good point.

Can you imagine how old the Peeps would be by the time I mailed them out? Well, some people do prefer stale ones.^_^

Simon - Grumpy is definitely one of those words. Funny you should say that, though, because in a story I'm listening to, a group of characters is forced to repeat their names over and over again for exactly that reason. (they all have numbers now)

Gawpo said...

Give me G.N.M.'s license plate number.

Candace said...

Muahahaha!!! ^_^