Boxes! So Many Boxes! Maybe Too Many Boxes!

April 27, 2010

I’m drowning in boxes! This is actually getting insane with the boxes. There are so many boxes that the factory that was dedicated to making these boxes would be shocked that some how all of the boxes it ever made all ended up at my office. It would be an amazing reunion for the box makers and the boxes though. It would be so wonderful for a moment. It would be like a pet store owner being reunited with all the puppies it ever sold.

Imagine an old black man named Lucas Sales, who spent his whole life working in a puppy pet store.

It all started when Lucas was a young boy in middle school and he offered his services to the kind Mr. Weathersby who owned the local puppy pet store. Mr. Weathersby knew that Lucas was too young to legitimately work at the puppy pet store, but he understood that even a boy of 11 or 12 years old can understand the importance of having money in his pocket. Money that he earned through a day’s honest work. Mr. Weathersby also knew that in this town a boy can easily be corrupted by drugs and guns and it would be a shame to see another one slip into the cold world of addiction and gangs. So Mr. Weathersby decided to take Lucas up on his offer.

Lucas was put to work sweeping the floors and keeping the stock room filed away correctly. They were menial tasks, but Lucas knew that it made no sense having a 12 year old selling puppies at the front of the store. That was best left to Mr. Weathersby and his #1 salesman Bruce Colbert. So, Lucas spent his days cleaning, taking notes of the supplies, keeping the shelves tidy, and making sure to stay out of Mr. Weathersby and Bruce Colbert’s way when they were talking to customers. But that didn’t stop Lucas from listening in and learning too.

Bruce Colbert was the best salesman in town. He had a full head of hair, just above average height, quick wit, a running knowledge of current events both in the town and throughout the state, he had mercurial opinions that could be shifted and shaped to fit any willing customer who stepped through Mr. Weathersby’s door looking for a furry companion. Bruce Colbert was the 4th smartest man in town and an awful lot did not get by him. He noticed pretty quickly what Lucas was up to and it down right tickled him to think he had himself a making for a protege. It tickled Mr. Weathersby too, that maybe one day he would have two “Bruce Colbert’s”: the genuine article and Lucas Sales mirroring himself after the “genuine article”.

That’s how it went on for years. From 8th grade through high school. Everyday after school, Lucas Sales would do his job sweeping floors and arranging puppy products on the shelves, the whole time shadowing Bruce Colbert’s every move. During the slow hours of Mr. Weathersby’s puppy pet store, good natured Bruce Colbert would teach the attentive Lucas Sales all the tricks in the book: firm handshake, half moon smile showing teeth, a dash of sandlewood cologne, an intangible almost magical ability to know what particular puppy will most benefit each customer’s life for the next decade or so, which will eventually result in the destruction of the person’s life and near mental collapse when the dog does die, and a cursory knowledge of town gossip like Mayor Goodson’s Taiwanese boy whore scandal(s).

At the ripe age of 17, Lucas Sales graduated high school. Lucas was never destined for college because he spent nearly every waking hour at Mr. Weathersby’s damn puppy pet store making barely above minimum wage under the table and off the books. But Lucas sure knew everything about selling puppies and running a puppy pet store from the tutelage of Bruce Colbert and Mr. Weathersby. Like a child of a very lame and boring prophecy, Mr. Weathersby promoted Lucas Sales from his position of near “immigrant worker puppy pet store slave labor” to “Sales assistant to Bruce Colbert”.

At first, Lucas Sales was as happy as an 17 year old boy could be after working in a puppy pet store for 5 years with absolutely no future in any other area in life. But it started to dawn on Lucas Sales that his “promotion” only solidified even further what many in the town had engrained in poor young Lucas’ head, “You’ll never be as good as Bruce Colbert! Mr. Weathersby is never gonna’ need you as a salesman when the 4th smartest man in town Bruce Colbert is his #1 salesman! Who would need a gap toothed, slow talking, one leg drastically shorter than the other, near illiterate, drooling, just plain stupid, constantly with his hands in his pants, just dirty, need a hot shower forever dirty – why would Mr. Weathersby want that as a salesman!?!”

Lucas Sales may have been all those things that the towns people rightfully yelled at him as he walked to and from work, but Lucas Sales wasn’t completely stupid. He understood that the only way he would ever become a full-fledged salesman in Mr. Weathersby’s puppy pet store was if he killed Bruce Colbert! And that’s what that almost blind, deaf and dumb boy, Lucas Sales, set out to do.

The only real reference point for an elaborate murder scheme that Lucas had ever seen was from watching Road Runner and Wile E. Coyote cartoons. While Lucas had saved up a lot of money over the years working at Mr. Weathersby’s puppy pet store because Lucas had absolutely no hobbies or friends or social activities to spend the money on, he didn’t know anything about rockets, TNT, trains, cliffs and/or operating any machinery more technologically advanced than Mr. Weathersby’s cash register.

Lucas took all of his savings from the shoe box underneath his bed which was every dollar he earned minus whatever he had spent on bologna, string cheese and fizzy water from age 12 – 17, and he walked over to Dennis Hamilton’s sporting goods store on Elm street. Lucas walked in and made a direct line for the firearms. Lucas did not have a particular gun in mind, but Lucas didn’t have much in mind usually – the gun idea even being in his mind was beyond average for Lucas’ regular mental activities.

Mr. Hamilton wasn’t an opinionated man about most Constitutional amendments, but he did have a liking for that 2nd amendment. When Lucas approached Mr. Hamilton and slurred and stuttered out a sentence that rang something like “I-I-I-I-I-I w-w-w-w-waaaaanttt-ttt-tt-t a GUN!” Well Mr. Hamilton’s eyes lit up. When Lucas handed over the half-full garbage bag of $10’s and $20’s the metaphorical hair on the back of Mr. Hamilton’s completely bald head stood at attention. One thought passed through Dennis Hamilton’s alcohol soaked brain that moment, “if I sell this retarded boy a pistol for all that money in that damn plastic nap sack then I think I can finally take that trip to Tijuana. Mexican poon and liquor here comes “Dirty Dick” Dennis Hamilton!”

No more than 10 minutes later, Lucas Sales walked out of that sporting goods store on Elm armed to the teeth with 6 boxes of ammunition stuffed in his pockets and a cocked and loaded .44 Magnum in each hand. Lucas walked straight through town with a sinister lazy eyed smile while Mr. Hamilton jumped into his pick-up truck with a bearing of South by South West to Tijuana.

It wasn’t too long after that that Bruce Colbert had a series of half-dollar sized holes in him about every 8 inches apart on his body leaking blood like a broken dam. The shame of the matter was Mr. Weathersby liked Bruce Colbert, he liked him a lot and when he saw Lucas walk into his puppy pet store looking like the unwanted Devil spawn of Forrest Gump and Action Jackson he jumped in front of Bruce Colbert taking the first couple shots to his chest and then stomach.

The trial was quick. The state of Rhode Island does not execute the mentally retarded. To make matters better for Lucas, the town’s people more or less thought Mr. Weathersby was playing with fire by even interacting with the boy. Then came the news that Mr. Weathersby’s will had been updated a couple years earlier that upon his death Bruce Colbert and Lucas Sales would inherit the store. With no one else in the town willing to work at a puppy pet store or having had any prior existence working in one and that Mrs. Weathersby had been gone for 3 years because Mr. Weathersby spent all his time with smooth talking snake oil salesman Bruce Colbert and dumb ass Lucas Sales, they thought the best sentence for Lucas would be to give him the puppy pet store and make him work there for the rest of his life.

That sat pretty well with Lucas.

For 60 years now, Lucas Sales has worked at that puppy pet store. He has sold thousands of puppies and strangely enough remembers every single one of them. Lucas Sales can’t tell time nor the date nor tie his shoes, but he remembers every puppy’s face he has sold and the person he has sold it to. So imagine, Lucas Sales walking into a giant room of all the puppies he has sold over the years in the prime of their lives – imagine how big of a smile Lucas Sales would have on his 55 IQs face.

That’s kind of nothing like what it would be like if someone saw all these motherfucking boxes.

But thanks for reading.

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16 Responses to “Boxes! So Many Boxes! Maybe Too Many Boxes!”

  1. PWG said

    You’re so lucky they let you drink at work.

    • kristenstewartwantsit said

      If only.

      But it is funny that you mention that. This is stuff I write sober. Real sober. The most sober. Tons of cardboard boxes sober.

      Also, I added a sentence about Mrs. Weathersby somewhere at the end around the trial. Also, in my head I pronouce it “Cole-Burt” not “Cole-Bear”. Think about it.

  2. PWG said

    In my head, Bruce Colbert will be an amalgam of Bruce Campbell and Stephen Colbert.

  3. PWG said

    I love this story, by the way. I think “fizzy water” is where I finally started laughing in the out loud fashion.

  4. PWG said

    I felt all proud for recognizing the “Dirty Dick” Dennis Hamilton + “Dirty” Dick Slater tie-in with Twitter. Well at first I was proud, but then it morphed into an alarmed, “Maybe I actually am stalking this man” kind of realization.

  5. PWG said

    Action Jackson?! Holy 80’s flashback, Batman. And with that, I promise to stop commenting, for the love of Mike, and get back to work. In my defense, my immediate work consists of resetting the Modified date on 8GB’s worth of e-mail so it can be properly archived. That mostly consists of watching incremental numbers fly by on the bottom of my screen and it’s boring as all fuck right now and I can do it with 5% of my actual attention on the task.

  6. susanelle said

    Yes, for sure: too many boxes. O_o

  7. Lala said

    I went to school with a Lucas Sales. Ok, I’m not sure. I remember his first name was Lucas, but his last name could have been anything. But I do remember that he was really gross and he seemed a little crazy.
    Anyway, I like the story.

  8. My favorite part of the story was the middle, when things subtly went from all sunshine and lollipops to “he has no future”. Genius.

    Also, thanks for clearing up the pronunciation of Colbert, because it was bothering me. And I had literally typed out the question right when you answered it. You and PWG both have a skill for reading my mind. What a waste.

  9. AmyAlmost said

    My son really liked puppies until he discovered the words truck, bike and plane. Puppies are old news.

  10. cledbo said

    Raaaaahhhh I’d say it sounds like the boxes have sent you insane, but that would be a double entendre, and totally not my style.

    Because you don’t go back in time to read comments, I get to comment for the last week here.

    Beer is the alpha and the omega.
    I started drinking at 7:20am on Sunday. You read that right. And I didn’t stop until around 8pm, when I was well and truly shattered. The hangover on holiday Monday was not as bad as you would expect for 12 solid hours of drinking Pure Blonde. ANZAC Day is my favourite day of the year.

    “That’s kind of nothing like what it would be like if someone saw all these motherfucking boxes.”
    I love this sentence so much I might add it to my F&B list.

    Sorry for not catching a trans-Pacific flight to come see you and your friends bands on the weekend, but I had a date with Dawn Service and 12 hours of drinking and swapping war stories.
    Maybe next time.

  11. PWG said

    I like this: “almost magical ability to know what particular puppy will most benefit each customer’s life for the next decade or so, which will eventually result in the destruction of the person’s life and near mental collapse when the dog does die”

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