a moving story
(first appeared at yareah.com 5/25/2013)
I think when somebody asks you to help them move the polite thing to do is say while you’ve enjoyed the friendship up to that point, you think it’s best if you never speak to each other again. Pivot sharply on your back foot and walk briskly in the opposite direction and begin changing all your contact information. It will save you both the ugly ending that your friendship will otherwise inevitably face.
Don’t believe me? Let me tell you a little story.
Recently I had a friend ask me to help him move. I had known him since college so I was put in a very awkward spot. I knew a few other of the guys were stopping by and I didn’t want to look like I’m not a true friend, but on the other hand I wasn’t sure how much help I could be because while it is true I am very tall in stature, my height is only surpassed by my lack of upper-body strength and my lack of upper-body strength is only surpassed by my lack of lower-body strength. Even surpassing those is my lack of strength in the newly-discovered region that I’ve heard called “the core,” whatever the fuck that is. Apparently the meatheads in the gym are running out of muscles to build up so they are inventing new areas to put muscle on. Or something.
So of course I’m not there two minutes before I am taking responsibility for holding up the end of a credenza that apparently was made from those fossilized trees you see out in California. I grabbed the northern-most end and immediately the trip from the truck to the front door began to take on a noticeable pull to the north. Six feet north of the door I noted from amidst the azaleas.
I should interrupt here to note that at least one reader will be sitting there trying to figure out if having a weak person holding the northern-most part of a hefty credenza would indeed leave the people carrying it six feet north of their intended destination. While I really shouldn’t have to dignify that with an answer, I should also point out that I need every reader I can get so I’ll simply state that it all depends on where the house is that you’re carrying the credenza to and it is assumed that the house in question would put the credenza right where I said it was. In the azaleas.
Obviously. Why would we carry it to another house?
Perhaps I need to be more selective about who reads these stories. I promise next time that someone tries to figure out if what I am saying is accurate I will lay into them with all gusto.
Back to the azaleas.
I was relegated to boxes after that. I wasn’t insulted; the glassware has to make it into the house somehow. There’s no shame in that.
The shame came when I picked up a box that held books. I swear I felt my spinal cord shift slightly but when I asked to borrow one of the hand carts from the men hauling in the furniture there was a decided lack of sympathy for my spine and it was even suggested that perhaps I had no spine and what I felt shifting was my mangina.
A good friendship can withstand such barbs so that wasn’t where it all went wrong.
This is where it all went wrong.
One of the boxes labeled “books” didn’t contain books. It contained hardcore porn DVDs. How did I, and everyone in the house, find this out?
Because the bottom of the box broke as I was walking through the front hallway. There wasn’t a square inch that wasn’t covered by scantily-clad females with come-hither looks plastered on their faces and funny yet offensive titles splashed across the front of the DVDs. It was only later that I speculated why the bottom of that particular box was damp and didn’t have the structural integrity of the other boxes and it’s a good thing because I probably would have overdosed on hand sanitizer at the time. Instead I, like everyone helping out in the endeavor, sat slack jawed at the scene in front of us.
Who the fuck buys porn anyway? I’ve never understood it. You can get all you can eat on the internet these days. Who actually pays for it? Just Google anything and you’ll end up at a porn site that will be only too happy to show you a million clips of anything you want to see. A clip is all you need. If the clip is five minutes long that is usually four minutes more than I need. What kind of jaded fuck needs the DVD of it? I don’t even know how porn makes any money these days. The only ads on the porn sites are for other porn sites. I’ve never seen a Taco Bell pop-up on any of the sites I’ve frequented, although to be fair my peripheral vision might have mistaken a taco for something else, so I guess everyone involved in porn is now just doing it for the love of having or watching intercourse and such.
This is what was going through my head instead of leaping into action and scooping up all the DVDs before his wife and her friends made their way into the hall to see what all the silence was about.
Suddenly I’m the bad guy. I’m getting paid in beer and pizza and I’m expected to be a professional mover all of a sudden? I’m not the perv who has a box filled with all the shit that everyone else in the hallway looks at for free on a daily basis.
Didn’t matter, good intentions be damned, there were horrible words exchanged between myself and my friend and now I can’t even watch porn without momentarily picturing his wife looking down at all those DVDs. The way her eyes got all misty…
So it was totally worth it.