I have been in the habit (and by that I mean, I have done this twice now) of going to Coffee Hound after my class, ordering a spinach scone (by the way, more about interesting flavored scones later…) and an iced americano with a “just a splash of” soy milk, and read my books or work on online homework. I have a spot (as of two times) right in front of Jimmy Johns on the black metal table outside. I’ve listened to some really amazing conversations. One was a man asking the outdoor janitor if he believed in Jesus Christ, our savior. What pursued was a long discussion about DNA and if evilness and goodness was in our genetic make up. Another conversation was between an 19 year old girl with a side braid and a 24 year old man who smoked cigarettes. She was making fun of him for being engaged and telling him how she didn’t believe in marriage and if she ever dated anyone for over 6 months, then he’d know she’d marry that one…..I somehow got the impression that she was in love with the cigarette smoking man, and that he really needed to go home to his wife-to-be, or else set this girl straight….but perhaps that was just my imagination. I also heard a conversation between a guy who usually takes my order at Coffee hound, and some random guy who made a joke to me while I was asking for soy milk. They were talking about ethnicity and vocabulary, and whether or not the Coffee Hound worker should go to graduate school.
Today I was lucky enough… or, well, I guess I wouldn’t use the term “lucky”. To put it in pure and simple facts: Today I was the one who was having the interesting conversation. It required a lot of patience, and I ended up experiencing a sheer and utter sense of disbelief at a lot of what was said, but also am still left contemplating about what I could have or should have said to this young man. I however, am not sure he would be able to hear much of it.
I will share with you the conversation, as I best remember it, and leave you to your own conclusions. Keep in mind that during all of this, it began to rain, people sat around us both, smoking outside, it began to rain harder, then hail, people all went inside to escape the bad weather after a tornado warning was issued, the wind blew and I got really cold, then the rain turned into a sprinkle. Without further ado….
Jarod: Hi, what are you reading?
Claire: A book called “The Cow”
Jarod: Is it for a class or something, or are you just reading it for fun?
Claire: It’s for a class. Literary Genres.
Jarod: I’m taking a class like that next year. Yeah I go toLincolnCollegenow, but I just got accepted into Wesleyan and also intoColumbiainChicago…I’m all about poetry and creative writing and all that. I actually lost my ID. I was going to go back to my apartment, I live on RABB, but then I think it might be at Kappa. I think I left it there. So hopefully I have it there…
Claire: Well I hope you find it man.
Jarod: Yeah…so what is “The Cow” about?
Claire: well it’s actually a poem…
Jarod: Oh like an epic poem?
Claire: Well, a collection of poems rather…
Jarod: I wrote a big epic poem, it’s like 30 pages long and it’s called “Disaster” and then I have another section to it that’s called “Unto Death” and then this little last bit called “Remembrance”…..yeah it’s really awesome. I’m actually going to do a standup thing at this comedy club down town. Yeah I do impressions. Like Ozzy Ozborne. I do this one…have you ever seen the reality TV show?
Claire: I don’t really watch TV at all.
Jarod: Yeah, me neither. I actually haven’t watched TV in 6 months actually.
Claire: Oh wow.
Jarod: Yeah, I just don’t really watch TV at all….I do a lot of slam poetry and stuff. I’ve also been playing the guitar, drums, bass, and singing for ten years now. Yeah I actually have a few gigs coming up, I’ve got to talk to the manager at Firehouse…yeah.
Ever since I lost a lot of weight I’ve been finding it easier to talk to people.
Claire: Why’s that?
Jarod: Well, I used to go out with this girl that started liking me when I was like, 300 pounds, and then I was like “I don’t have to settle with this girl and say huge”, so I lost a bunch of weight. She said she’s not judgmental or anything, but she broke up with me after I lost the weight. So weird.
Claire: Oh. Well, was that the reason you guys broke up?
Jarod: Well, I think there was some other reasons too. She’s a really sweet girl. I kind of talk a lot, and we’d go running together and she just couldn’t keep up.
Claire: Oh, I see.
Jarod: Yeah, but we didn’t see each other for a long time. Like a few weeks after Easter, we hadn’t had sex in a almost a month! And I was like talking to people, you know? Have you seen “Road Trip”, you know about the area code rule?
Claire: No, man, I haven’t seen it.
Jarod: It’s got that guy from that doctor show.
Claire: I told you man, I don’t watch TV.
Jarod: Oh right, no me neither really. It’s all on youtube anyway. But it’s like, you can sleep with her if she’s in a different area code. It doesn’t count.
Claire: So did you cheat on your girlfriend or something?
Jarod: No, no. I didn’t cheat. I don’t cheat. But we just broke up a few days ago. Now I’m just looking for something nice, you know? Like something really casual. Nothing serious. We got really serious and I don’t want to do it again.
Claire: Hey man, what’s your religion? Are you a Christian?
Jarod: Yeah I mean, a little bit.
Claire: You’re a little bit Christian?
Jarod: I mean, I was raised Catholic, but now I’m like totally looking in to Buddhism.
Claire: Oh yeah?
Jarod: Yeah, I’m reading a few books. And like, I can still be kind of a Christian while I’m Buddhist you know?
Claire: No man, I didn’t know that was really possible.
Jarod: Yeah, you should read this book, it’s called “Zen and Everyday” and it’s like written by stream of consciousness…I’ve been also getting into yoga too. I’m like, pretty flexible and I also do ti chi too.
Claire: Hey, that’s what I do! I teach Yoga.
Jarod: No way! Where do you teach at?
Claire: I teach yoga at the rec center at ISU.
Jarod: Yeah, but like I said, I think I’m going to produce my own album soon. Like with all my music and poetry…
Claire: You know, that’s what my fiancé does. He’s a musician, and he just came out with his first full-length album- it’s flippin stellar.
Jarod: Oh….so….you’re getting married?
Claire: Yes sir.
Jarod: How long have you guys been together?
Claire: Over 2 years.
Jarod: Well I’ll let you get back to your reading then….well….oh hey, it’s like hailing.
Jarod: Well maybe I’ll stick around till it stops then…
Claire: Jarod, why did you start talking to me?
Claire: Were you hoping I’d want to go out with you?
Jarod: I mean, I’m just trying to meet girls you know? I don’t want anything serious with them, I just, you know, I’m a very expressive person, and girl can usually tell just by the way I look at them that I’m interested.
Jarod: That girl you were talking to earlier with the chucks? Is she engaged too?
Claire: I don’t think so, but I know she’s got a boyfriend.
Jarod: But some girls man, they mistake friendliness for harassment!
Claire: Well, are you being friendly, or do you want something from them?
Jarod: I mean, if they want to give me something….
I was at Kappa yesterday and was watching this girl dance and I got out some cash to get a drink, but she grabbed it and started dancing on me. Then she kissed me! I was like woah! And she gave me her number. I don’t know…I don’t know if I’m going to call her tonight. I mean, she’s a cool girl, really down the earth, sweet, and a free spirit….
Claire: Is Kappa a strip club?
Jarod: yeah. I mean, yeah, it’s a strip club. They just, they just have really cheap drinks, and it’s something to do you know? I don’t go there all that much.
Claire: I see. I think it’s really sad that women have jobs like that.
Jarod: Well I mean, they’re beautiful girls.
Claire: Do you have sisters?
Claire: Do they work at strip clubs?
Jarod: No….no they don’t work at strip clubs!
Claire: Hum. What if they did?
Jarod:….I just. I’ve never been there before. I just went with a buddy of mine. I didn’t even know it was a strip club really. I mean, it was totally depressing.
Claire: Uh huh.
Jarod: So, since I lost all that weight lots of girls have been paying more attention to me. And like, I’m developing a sense of humor. I asked this guy, this really big security guard at Pub II, “Hey how’s the farm doing bucko?” hahahaha I asked him that.
Claire: Hey Jarod? When you ask people questions like that, or like, when you ask me a question, like about the book I’m reading…do you listen to the answers?
Jarod: Um…well yea. I think sometimes I talk too much though.
Jarod: So it’s not really raining anymore. I’m probably going to go to Kappa, but just to get my ID, cause I think it’s still there…then I’m going to go. I’m not going to call that girl. I just want something casual you know? But look me up on facebook, you can listen to my music. I might have a show at the coffeehouse too. So yeah look it up. And tell your friend that I like her chucks and if she breaks up with her boyfriend….yeah.
Claire: Okay Jarod, have a good one. God bless.
Jarod: Right…look me up on facebook…
A very strange interaction…to be sure. I walked home in the rain, getting somewhat soaked for the second time today, thinking of all kinds of new art projects and topics to write about. If I were you reader, I would be expecting some very exciting blogs coming up in the near future. I’ve also been writing a tremendous amount of new poetry, some of which I shall share with you… but for now I will simply leave you with the conversation, as if you experienced it along with me…. although I do wish I could capture the weather along with it, as the rain played a very intricate role in my presentness during this situation. Just imagine a storm going on, the light of Jimmy Johns haloing this kid’s hair, and me shivering in a skirt, listening to it, interjecting when necessary, and maybe not even then…