The first conversation went like this:
ME (on the way to clock out): How's it going, Mitchell?
MY BOSS: Good, good. You want to meet Fred Savage?
ME: Not really, no.
MY BOSS: Hey, Fred, I'd like you to meet someone. Fred, this is Aaron. Aaron, this is Fred. Aaron is one of our buyers. He's a big, big fan of your work.
ME (grinning hugely): Good to meet you! Wow, great stuff this time!
FRED SAVAGE* (not buying it for a minute, not even a little): . . .
ME: So. . .
FRED: I like your tattoo, Aaron.
The second encounter went like this:
ME (on the way out): S'up, MK?
MY BOSS: Hey, how's it going? Do you want to meet Idi Amin?
ME: No, I'm good.
MY BOSS: Idi, this is Aaron. Aaron, this is Idi.
ME (holding my hand out): Hi, it's good to meet you.
[IDI AMIN** stares past the proffered hand, saying nothing.]
ME (still holding hand out): Uh.... I'm one of Mitchell's buyers.
[IDI AMIN continues to ignore ME's hand, saying nothing. ME's hand falls, his smile wilts. A fissure opens up in the ground, and ME steps inside.]This is why I'll be avoiding my boss in the future.
As further proof of the world of awkward twos, two authors offered to memorialize themselves on my ass. This is a first for me which managed to happen twice in just a few months.
The first was the mighty Brock Clarke, who I've written about once or twice. He was in town for the early release of his third novel, Exley.
|I'm fucking awesome; buy me.|
We drank the night away before I realized he hadn't signed my poster for An Arsonist's Guide to Writers Homes in New England, a brilliant piece of marketing with quotes from the book set up as rules to follow when torching historic homes. I was thinking it would look lovely with my signed posters for Choke and Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet. Plus, I was going for an even fifty for things I need to get framed.
Two am was a distant memory. Brock was understandably reluctant for me to run across the street, open the locked store, grab the poster, and run back.
"I'll be back for Miami Book Fair. I'll sign anything you want, I promise."
Seeing my lack of enthusiasm for this idea, Brock offered his Ace in the Hole.
"I'll sign your ass," he said.
I worked Miami Book Fair, but my ass and Brock's pen somehow missed each-other.
A few months later, this happened:
|PHASE 1: This will be awesome - wheeeee!!! Thanks so much, Lane!|
|PHASE 2: She realizes she is the most ticklish person who currently exists.|
|PHASE 3: Lane discovers how hard it is to erase wavy Sharpie Lines from skin.|
(and if you haven't already, buy It's a Book now)
After mortalizing the bibliophile monkey inside Becky's biceps, Lane Smith was on a high. When he found out Becky and I were a couple, he turned to me and said, "How about one for you? I could put it right on your ass."
Here's what he suggested:
That, of course, is Stinky Cheese Man.
Oh Lane Smith, my favorite jackass***, you know me so well.
** Not, either.
*** His words, not mine!