Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Now It's Just Bathos.

There are two kinds of laughter in the world, and both are responses to honesty.

There's the joy that we feel when reality is beautiful, which is the ideal expression of laughter. Opposed is a liar's discomfort at being confronted with truth.

The story of the bike is tragic because it does not end well. It ends with me draped in saggy humility and doing that thing where I try to make the story sound as amazing and hilarious as possible so I won't feel so goddamn embarrassed at the exhaustive bathos of my daily life.

Let us begin.

Scheming with fake identities and a script, I sharpied code the length of my forearm like a Holocaust survivor cheating on a history test. We chugged a few beers and strolled lazily through the preliminary reconnaissance. We had contingency plans. We had fucking contingency plans for our contingency plans. I sweet-talked the doorwomen into letting me explore the basement and bike room of the high rise before we called the Craigslist sellers and asked to see the second bike.

Because that's the thing, you see. These "bike thieves" were selling two bikes, in case you'd forgotten considering the time chasm between posts (I got shit to do) and after I sent them an email from "Phil M. Johnson" (imminently played by Phil Not Johnson) they responded within a minute. Maybe two minutes. Fucking promptly. But that is what led me to believe the other bike was my Atticus.

I mean come on. They don't respond to my email (that I sent about an hour after they posted the advertisement), pull the women's bike Craigslist, and then speedily reply to my fake email all excited about selling.

We agreed to meet up the next day. Phil pretended he was all into that men's bike. I pretended I was all into using their bathroom (so I could get into their apartment and see if my bike was hiding there) but I was thwarted by the Chicago architects who had the fucking unmitigated temerity to design a lobby with a restroom.

Yes, we tried to pry things out of them (using statements including but not limited to musing, "so, I heard you were selling two bikes" and perky queries like, "so, did you get many offers on these?" and "so...WHERE WERE THE OTHER DRUGS GOING?" and they were all, "I don't know, I swear to god" and I was all, "SWEAR TO ME" and I dropped their asses down a zipwire in the rain and pulled them back up for more growly accusations just inches before they hit the ground because my depth perception from great heights is nonpareil, which I believe is Portuguese for "awesome.")

Whatever, it was fruitless and boring and we didn't find my bike or catch any criminals, so we went to a bar and played UNO for an hour or two, which I believe is Portuguese for "sissy poker."

Fin.

If you're confused, let's agree that the details so boring that you'll just be angry with me for setting up an anti-climax, and understand that I don't have my bike. The entire situation was so boring and unfunny that we couldn't even make fun of ourselves properly, and it was all awkward attempts at self-derision that ended in half-puffs of forced chuckles. I mean, it took me two weeks to even work my way up to the hilarious discomfort of a liar.

(Oh, and if one of you is all, "you should have done this" I will fucking scalp you, because you're not giving advice. You're saying, "I am smarter than you because my way would have worked and you'd have your bike back, idiotface" to which I say, "Hey jerkoid, it's easier brainstorming workable ideas after having eliminated one already and why don't you shut the fuck up when grown folks is talkin.")

...

Addendum: They claimed to have sold the bike and then fake smiled their way into talking about themselves. It was two preppy yuppies, early twenties, engaged right after graduating from college. They probably belong to a gym and have all matching furniture and after they buy a house in an up-and-coming suburb with a good school district, they'll have a baby and get a labrador or a shih tzu and a car with good ratings in Consumer Reports. And their conversations will always be focused on those things: going to the gym, taking care of their house, babies, and articles from Consumer Reports.

There is nothing wrong with any of that, that's just the kind of people they are. Very safe. Not reckless. I doubt they had my bike. Unless they're in it for the big con or they're like Russian spies or something, in which case - well met, thieves. I will hunt you down.

...

19 comments:

Geo said...

So did you see both bikes and find that neither, was in fact your Atticus and feeling shitty at step zero again? Or do you still think they have your bike?

Logical Libby said...

I wouldn't have had the guts to do even that.

Good on ya.

Rassles said...

Good point, Geo. I'll adjust properly.

Frank Lee MeiDere said...

Well, it was still pretty humorous from this side of the blog. Sorry about Aticus, though.

Oh, hey! What you should have done is...

la isla d'lisa said...

I have blogger envy, for a number of reasons, but mostly because that last flippin' line of 'most all your posts is freaking AWESOME and makes the entire post before it even MORE WORTHY OF READING.

So, what you should have done is ...

renalfailure said...

You all don't seem to understand... I'm not riding this bike with you. You're riding this bike WITH ME!!!

Nikki B. said...

it's just like pee wee's great adventure...

Sack Posset said...

All bike thieves should be buttered, trussed and baked in pies. I am really sorry that this has happened to you. Those pigs.

Sid said...

Dear Rassles: Those safe ppl with their mortages, kids and marriages are likely to be divorced in a couple of years time ...

daisyfae said...

you had balls for going after it. i would have just whined. sometimes shit just isn't funny...

nursemyra said...

Yeah like Sid said, you left out the part about him cheating on her with the dental hygienist and the messy divorce that sees her spiral into alcoholism and an addiction to percocet...

Mae December said...

actually they'll probably become alcoholics because of the guilt of having stolen a bike that one time. She'll become an insomniac haunted by nightmares of a lost soul called Atticus. She'll then cheat on him with her yoga instructor but he won't care because it turns out that this entire time he was gay and he didn't know and I'm sorry but I just don't love you anymore and they'll never have babies and they'll get divorced then the yoga instructor (who is bisexual) will cheat on her with her husband, there will be a divorce and no one will ever really hear from them again because their lives will be boring and sad.
Fin.

Chris said...

It sucks when it's not like the movies. Sorry about Atticus.

Geo said...

Thanks for the addendum. I am truly sorry about your bike.
Also fuckem, because as you were careful to maybe-not-quite-but-kinda-yeah point out, with or without the sentimentally prized and very cool bicycle you surely lead a more interesting life than they do.


(Also you talk about beer a lot on this blog so I thought I should mention that my word verification is "beermot," which leads me to picture an alcoholic marmot.)

Le Meems said...

So, I like how this starts out with the two kinds of laughter. BUt I think there can be inifinite type of laughter ... the belly laugh. themidnight laugh. the quiet classroom laugh. the i-farted laugh.
the i ate all your food laugh. the nothing is really funny but i'll be damned if thats gonna stop me from laughing.

...

also, my bike got stolen from my beach house last year. the day before I moved. and friends stepped in and gifted me a BMX trickster bike that I took to Burning Man. Then a friend wanted to learn how to ride a bike, so I gifted her the bmx.

WHen I turned around a few days later, my dear friend Bryan had gifted me this awesome beach cruiser.

So I believe in the power of gift culture. Create joy and it'll follow you.

It's true
<3

Mia Watts said...

Damn, I've missed you. I love your wit and your awesomeness.

Seriously, about that book you're writing... WHEN is it coming out because baby, you give good voice.

ps. my wv is fiessis... which sounds suspiciously evacuative. hm.

Kitty said...

Well I gotta tell you what not to do.

Do not go looking in the basement of the Alamo for your bike.

There are no basements in Texas. Unless it's Austin.

Blues said...

Bottom line is that it fucking sucks to get ripped off and it leaves you feeling like a shithead.

I heart you too.

Danial123 said...

I'm not riding this bike with you. You're riding this bike WITH ME!!!
beach cruiser bikes