Thursday, January 6, 2011

Living Near Gllen: Entry 001


This is sort of two or three Living Near Gllen stories. Bear with me.

Last Saturday Gllen and I went on a little afternoon delight movie date and saw True Grit. I dropped him off afterward, went home, and figured out what to do for dinner. I got back in the car and headed up Penn Avenue to Lund’s when I noticed Gllen’s minivan right next to me at the stop light. Gllen sat rigid and cold, hunched over the wheel, motionless. I waved. I honked. I threw a penny at his window. Nothing.

I knew there was around a one hundred percent chance he was headed to Lund’s, and I followed him there. I saw him circle around to an open spot and I timed it so that our cars would pull in nose to nose across from each other at the same time. Gllen still didn’t notice me. We stepped out of our cars and I went “CHHHCHCHKHCHKZZZZZZZZZZZZTK” about as loud as I could, which succeeded in making Gllen jump. He giggled a little bit and we walked into the grocery store. If that doesn’t make any sense, please review this blog.

On Sunday morning I ran some errands in preparation for that afternoon’s NFC North smackdown wherein the Packers gave the Bears a taste of what’s to come. As I pulled out of the BP station on 66th I noticed Gllen’s minivan lurking in my rear view. I circled around the parking lot, rolled down my window, and did a drive-by “CHKZZZZZZZZZZTKTKCHK” just as Janelle stepped out of the van. I saw Gllen’s head spin around from the driver’s side. Janelle started laughing, which never happens when we make The Noise. She explained that in the moments before she got out of the van, Gllen had been explaining how when he got out at Lund’s the night before he was sniped by a surprise “CCHCKHKZZZZZTKTKZHKZHK.”

I told Gllen and Janelle that some of our friends were coming to my house to watch the game that afternoon, and that I was making a crock pot of loose meat cheeseburgers. Since Gllen will tolerate sports to enjoy decent food I wasn’t surprised when he showed up during the game. He asked if anyone would help him move his new recliner from his van to his basement, and the boys headed across the street at halftime. I aided Gllen in finagling the chair down the stairs. It wasn’t easy but I was wearing a Clay Matthews jersey.

Outside, Janelle had explained that Gllen was pretty pleased to purchase the recliner that morning, as they have little furniture in the house yet and Gllen was hard-pressed for comfortable situations to watch movies. I surveyed the basement and saw a ragged futon mattress crumpled against one corner, lonely save for the remote and cup next to it. We headed back to my house for cheeseburgers and some high fives.

A couple nights later, Gllen and Janelle invited us over for dinner. It was a scrumpcious menu that included a salad of roasted asparagus, fresh prosciutto, poached egg and homemade croutons, as well as garlic mashed potatoes and a roquefort-stuffed pork chop that was too big for me to finish, which is saying something. Aside from getting to hear The Noise more, getting in on Gllen’s culinary meddlings should be the biggest perk of having him as a neighbor.

After dinner Janelle lamented their lack of furniture, and the plight she felt wandering through the Twin Cities’ many furniture warehouses. I asked her what her plan for the basement was.

“What do you mean?”

“Well right now it’s just one recliner down there, directly across from an entertainment center. What are you gonna do about that?”

Gllen interjects, “What do you mean? She doesn’t have to do anything about it, it’s perfect right now.”

We all went down there to take a look at the space.

“So where are you gonna sit when you two watch a movie?”

Janelle pointed at some crumpled jeans and socks next to the recliner, “As you can see, Gllen likes to get comfortable down here.”

“I probably won’t watch movies down here," she added.

Gllen smiled.