austin_dern (austin_dern) wrote,
austin_dern
austin_dern

Burnt-out ends of smokey days

The scene is a storage locker, partly spilled out into the grey corridor. Two people are deep into its contents.

``I said I'm throwing this out.''

``I didn't disagree. Of the many things you're doing today, throwing that out is one.''

``You're not agreeing.''

``Why do I have to agree? It's an empty bottle of hand lotion, why do I have to decide whether to throw it out?''

``Why did we store it in the first place?''

``Probably we didn't want to decide about it.''

``What were we deciding not to decide that we kept an empty bottle of skin cream?''

``Maybe whether we liked the flavor.''

``Could it all evaporate --- the flavor?''

``You know, they don't use that logo anymore. We should take a picture for Wikipedia.''

``Wikipedia doesn't care about old logos. The flavor?''

``Some site cares about old logos. They'd want a picture.''

``If you find a camera you can take a picture before throwing that out too. Flavor?''

``Like you never picked the wrong word. I don't mean the flavor, I mean the taste.''

``Fine. A box of rolls of tape?''

``I told you we had enough tape.''

``We buy fifty rolls of tape every Christmas, we never have any, and our locker is a Comstock lode of tape?''

``The scents.''

``Yeah, 99 cents each.''

``I mean it's the scent we liked.''

``The tape gets promoted back into the house but I don't care what it smells like.''

``Tape doesn't smell like anything. It smells like ... tape.''

``What are you picturing, inviting company into the study so they can smell how we would have wrapped Christmas presents? What would they think of us?''

``That we're generous and thoughtful when the time is right?''

``What is this?''

``A couple months late for the right time?''

``It's a stale bag of chocolate chips!''

``It's two-thirds of a stale bag of chocolate chips.''

``Why do we have any thirds of a stale bag of anything?''

``Because it's wrong to waste food. Aren't they starving in Europe?''

``Yes, in 1946.''

``I don't know why it's there. I don't remember putting it in anything.''

``Garbage.''

``Honest.''

``I mean --- ''

``I know. You know, we could still use them.''

``As very sweet gravel?''

``Could use them to make heritage Eggos.''

``Heritage Eggos?''

``Didn't they used to have chocolate chips in them?''

``I think they used to, yeah.''

``So next time we have Eggos we could re-create that. Heritage.''

``When did we last have any kind of Eggo?''

``Maybe ... when did we move into the Throckmorton Street apartment?''

``A floppy disc labelled 'woodchuck'?''

``Ooh, I remember, a couple years ago. I found an actual working gopher site!''

``And this is ... ?''

``You can't find a working gopher site and not archive it for posterity. Think how future generations will value seeing that one ever existed!''

``So you archived it to a three and a half inch disc?''

``I wanted to archive it to parchment, but the calligraphy store all laughed at me.''

``Four twist ties wrapped around each other?''

``Now that is from the Throckmorton Street apartment. Remember?''

``The apartment. Not the twist ties.''

``It was the day we were moving in and we opened the closet from the second bedroom, remember, and the previous tenant left it packed floor to ceiling, wall to wall with boxes. And we kept pulling empty boxes and boxes of boxes out of that jigsaw puzzle because you said if he left anything we should try to return it. And we filled the one room we didn't have stuffed full of our boxes with a stranger's boxes.''

``OK, this I'm remembering.''

``And for all that un-tangling of Coca-Cola boxes and all this other stuff what did we get but that pizza menu and a bundle of twist ties?''

``Oh, you madeline. We called the pizza place --- ''

``And they were out of business.''

``That was funny. Funnier remembered.''

``And we kept the menu and twist ties as trophies. Until that house-sitter threw out the outdated menus.''

``I remember the menu. I had forgotten the twist ties completely.''

``Yeah, I made that up. I don't know why we have twist ties.''

``Out!''

``Yes, m'love.''

Trivia: By 1962, containerized cargo made up 8 percent of the Port of New York's general cargo, all of it domestic trade. None of the containerized trade was international. Source: The Box: How The Shipping Container Made The World Smaller And The World Economy Bigger, Marc Levinson.

Currently Reading: The Triumph Of Numbers, I B Cohen.

Tags: humor
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