367. Toro Trouble


Wow, let’s start big, a snorting bull coming out of the chute, 2,000 pounds of kicking and bellowing beef pumped full of adrenaline and outrage. Boom! I am given to exaggeration, as you know already. I like words and their drama just a little too much, until I am thrown off my beautiful verbal bull and hit the hard prosaic clay of real life language.

“You need to take the trash up to the street. It’s trash night.”

Try as I might to make that green trash dumpster into a toro verde, I can’t pull it off. If I had a matador suit on with an Elvis cape, perhaps; instead I have only navy sweat pants and a fleece over flip flops. If my raven-haired wife held a crimson rose in her brilliantly enameled smile… as the crowd roared for Felipe the Matador trash man…”Keel the bull, Felipe”… I would baffle that green-eyed dumpster with cape play never seen before, leaving him exhausted by the side of the road, tamed and ready for the landfill.

In my blog world I can fling words around like celebrities toss hundred dollar bills in posh night clubs. But real life will not abide such foolishness. “That’s $2.42. You can’t use a credit card for purchases of less than ten dollars, Sir.” That’s so pedestrian, bordering on disrespectful. “Hey, kid. Do you know who you are dealing with here? These facial tissues will wipe away tears of princesses and duchesses, drag queens and drama kings. So suck it up, Buttercup, and run my card. Blog stars like me don’t carry cash. Too bulky in our skin tight yoga jeans.”

“Security. Check out line 6. Fazers on stun.”

As I go limp from the sudden blast of 50,000 volts of authorized Tazer Power, I pull the magazine rack down on top of my body, protecting my flanks with gossip mags full of rumor and vile lies about the Kardashians and Taylor Swift. The rent a cop smirks at the register jockey. “Sweet! I love that singed neck hair smell as they fall like cigarette butts into the ashtray of law enforcement.”

“You guys get to have all the fun, Sweeney. I’m applying to the rentacop academy this spring if I can pass the physical.”

“You need a 25 BMI or less, Winkie. You look like a 32 to me, if I was to guess.”

“You’re a meathead, Sweeney. I’m at 23.8, a semi-ripped BMI for males my age. Uh, isn’t that your car being towed away?”

Like a hysterical Ukrainian grandmother, Security Officer Sweeney polka waddled quickly out the automatic doors, shouting, “Stop. I’m the law here. Uncrank that lift. Release my vehicle. Do it now!! Stop resisting.” He waved the spent Tazer menacingly at the tow truck driver who responded by raising his hands in submission to the forcefully delivered yet empty threat.

Meanwhile I regained consciousness just beneath the commotion radar, so to speak. Crawling like Private Ryan across commercial grade asphalt tiles, I made my way to the impulse buy cooler and pulled down a twelve ounce can of Red Bull. In one long swig I emptied the pale red liquor and felt revived, untazed even. (Perhaps Tazers simply decaffeinate their victims.) My heart started pumping like, well, like a bull in a soccer stadium. My adrenaline surged. Heck, I was pissed off. I began to snort and paw at the slippery tile as I drew myself up on all fours. I was angrier than Al Gore in Florida, circa 2000. I just came here to buy a box of tissues, and I was assaulted by a mindless cop, faker than that whipped cheese wiz in a can. The pressure built into rage, then outrage. I could only see red, nothing above knee level. It was not so much tunnel vision as stuck garage door vision.

Across the open grand aisle a woman in a long red skirt sashayed by nonchalantly. I couldn’t explain the surge that rushed through my tense muscles. I had to charge the red blur or die trying. Mariachi bands roared in my ears calling me into the ring. An old dented trumpet warbled above the rising din.  “Hmph! Bellow!” My destiny awaited in the produce section. I charged wildly into the red.

Suddenly Winkie was back on the public address system, “Attention shoppers. We have a mad man acting like a bull in the grand concourse. Please do not attempt to subdue him. He seems to be in need of medication. Security to Produce please. All Officers. Code Mauve.”

I knew my time was short, but I could not resist the inner toro torque that welled up in me. My chest expanded and I felt a little tail pushing up and out at my rear, trying to erupt. I trotted forward, then burst into a full, vicious gallop. I had to pin that red blob against the fruit endcap that displayed ripe plums and nectarines as surely as a magnet must cling to a proud grandmother’s refrigerator door.

Just as I took my last gallop stride, the lady in the red skirt skipped backwards, leaving me to collide with the green sheet metal of the display case. A thunderous crash resonated throughout the Super Wal Mart. Witnesses later said it reminded them of the running of the bulls in Pamplona, Spain only with fruit in a Wal Mart and a bewildered woman in a red skirt and fashionable black heels.

As I turned to face the terrified crowd of midday shoppers behind their stainless steel carts, I realized that a piece of copper plumbing from the guts of the fruit display was jammed onto my head like a pair of metal horns. My moment of truth had arrived. Sweeney and his underlings encircled me with loaded tazers aimed directly at my flanks. I smelled their sweaty garlic fear above the pungent odors of cabbage and broccoli.

Sweeney, “On my command, men. One, two, three!!!”

Six rentacops unloaded their 50,000 volt tasers simultaneously at my head. Something miraculous happened at that moment. Aaaahhhhh!!!!!  The spirit of a thousand dead toreadors sang out. 300,000 volts of deadly electricity arced across my copper horn set and returned to their origin points. In a flash six rentacops were knocked backward three feet into a state of temporary syncope. It was done.

I stood, brushed myself off, and spoke into Winkie’s walkie talkie, “Wal Mart shoppers, Ask not for whom the Bull toils, he toils for thee. Have a nice day.”

 

 

 

 

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