Walk into one my favorite SoCal Subways for the first time in over 5 months — ten minutes before closing. The place is empty.
One of the two guys behind the counter throws up his hands, “OH MY GOD! We thought you went to jail!”
I smile and wave, “I did. I went to jail… And I got some tattoos… On my butt.”
They laugh. “Good to see you, man. How have you been?”
“Good! And you?”
“Good. Just another day in paradise.”
“Indeed!” I rub my hands together, “So, I haven’t been to a Subway in a while (not since the last time I was here, actually)… Help me here. You guys make sandwiches?”
“Yeah, you used to get the egg and cheese.”
“Oh right! I did! And then I read about what your eggs are made of… And… (whispering) it’s not really eggs.”
They laugh, “So where were you?”
“Oh, I was up in San Francisco…”
“Making workout videos?” (This is funny. I’m not sure if he was serious or kidding — because I have been told I look a bit like Tony Little).
I smile, “Yes. That’s what I do. I make workout videos.”
“Well, I know you blog!”
“I do! But I was really up there just waiting for my car registration…”
“How’s your leg? All better?”
“It’s good! That’s funny. I came back to the area and a few people have asked me about my leg (at the gym) — only to remind me that I’d stopped thinking about it, which is a good sign, right?”
“Yeah! Man, it’s good to see you. We’re about to close and we saw the car drive up and we thought it was going to be some dickhead.”
I laugh, “Come on guys, you can say it. I’m a dickhead. I’m just at the lower end of the dickhead scale. I know how working with the public can be.”
“Oh, you have no idea!”
“Oh, I think I do!”
We all laugh and chat it up some more while they make my sandwich.
They ring me up and give me a 10% discount (which they used to).
When I’m done eating and about to head out, “Alright you guys! I’ll see you next year!”
“That sounds like so long.”
“I know. But it’s only just a couple hours. I’ll be out in the parking lot. You guys can help me jumpstart my car.”
“Happy New Year!”
Making good memories. It matters.