I'm running late so I'm walking fast. Actually, I'm not "running late" - I am late. Is there a difference? And why is the phrase "running late?" Because we all know that when we're late, we're tempted to run in order to get there as soon as possible, but we never do. We know that kid who does. That kid who is running. And checking his watch. And his feet are hitting the pavement so hard with each thump of his gallop that his backpack is bouncing up and down. Man, we think, if I ran like that kid, I'd probably make it there on time. But you know what we do instead of running along with him?
We point. And we laugh. Because he's running. And that's retarded.
My pace is almost a jog, though. My speed is jog-like, but my knees remain parallel with my legs. We'll call this a pog. I'm pogging to class.
Suddenly this kid leaps out in front of me, halting my pog and blocking my path.
Wait, do I know this person?
"You smell like apples!"
He has taken the liberty to lean into the air between my neck and my shoulder. And he is sniffing me. The guy. Is SNIFFING me.
Alright, so I knew I didn't smell like apples. But since he seemed to think so, I wasn't going to convince him otherwise. Look, I'm not above a good lie here and there, especially when it comes to aroma. If you were known to smell like dirty socks and cigarette smoke, and someone told you that you smelled like fruit, would you correct them?
"Wow, you smell good!"
"Actually, I don't."
"No, no, I'm sure it's you. I can smell it."
"Nope, not me."
"Is that Kinky-Kiwi you're wearing?"
"I don't wear perfume."
"Then it must be your shampoo."
"I didn't wash my hair this morning."
"Then what is that great smell? Is that your lotion?"
"No, it's that girl over there. She just sprayed some."
"My cat pissed my bed last night and I slept in my bed, anyway."
"Yeah and then I picked up its shit and didn't wash my hands afterwards."
"Yep, so it can't be me!"
No, you wouldn't fucking say that, would you?
The boy continues to sniff me.
"Yeah, that's definitely you. Is it?"
I think the question usually comes BEFORE the answer.
"Well...I do have apple-scented trash bags..."
"Heh. Why would you smell like your trash bags."
He says this in a condescending tone, like I'M the idiot in this conversation. YOU JUST SNIFFED ME, MAN. What are you, a dog? What's next, the hole in my ass? STAY AWAY FROM THE HOLE IN MY ASS. IT ONLY TAKES VISA.
"Why...wouldn't I smell like my trash bags...?"
Yeah okay so this was a weird thing to say. But the whole conversation was weird.
And besides, what's more normal? To smell like apples or to smell like trash bags? I touch trash bags more than I touch apples. I am surrounded by trash bags but I am not surrounded by apples. How you like dem apples? I like em in my trash bags, that's where I fucking like them.
"Hey, can I bum a cigarette?"
Was this the intended outcome for this entire conversation? Why did we just waste all this time talking about imaginary apple aroma when all he wanted was a smoke?
I'm still not sure if I know this person or not...or if he even knows me...
"Thanks, NATASHA FERRIER."
Alright, so there's a chance he might know me...
Hey, Natasha! Let's be really fucking obvious!
"You're still always logged on to the computer I use in class. I guess we both sit at the same desk everyday."
Shit, I DO know this person! See. This is what happens when night-people sign up for 9 a.m. classes. We wander around getting sniffed by people who we actually know but think we don't know. We become Human Scratch and Sniffs. It's very unsettling - and it tickles.
"Next time you forget to sign out, I'm gonna fuck up your shit!"
He's joking. Shit. I should joke back. That's the rule, right? Pressure, pressure, pressure...
"Well, I love a good fucking up!"
WHAT DOES THAT EVEN MEAN, NATASHA. "I love a good fucking up?" WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH YOU.
I don't know what to call this, but I can describe it. You know how people shit out their asses? Sometimes, I shit out my mouth. And I can't control it. It's like diarrhea. But of dialogue. "BUTT" of dialogue. Wow. Butt jokes haven't gotten old since Kindergarten. Should I CRACK another? HAHAHAHA---
Okay I'll stop.
I returned to my pogging. (For those of you with horrible short-term memory: "pogging" is a word I invented that is now in Webster's dictionary. Five-hundred dollars will be sent to me anytime it is used, so you better begin using it.) (For those of you with excellent short-term memory: yes, I did just make that up.) Pogging along, I checked my watch, forgetting how much time that smelling-session had lasted.
And then I began to run.