The Rant has been to Seattle, and Seattle has become a giant bong. Apparently the new marijuana laws require you to be within fifty feet of a joint at all times. Actually, we discovered smoking weed in public is forbidden by state law, but Seattle shrugs that off like Lindsay Lohan coming out of rehab.
The Light Rail in from the airport smelled like the set of a Cheech and Chong movie. Two Dudes got on and The Rant had a sudden desire for Cool Ranch Doritos The Dudes had 99 problems, and they were all named Jaime.
Dude1: Jaime said that’s not how we do things, and I had to change everything.
Dude 2: What did you say?
Dude 1: I told Terry I was just doing what he said, and he told Jaime I was doing my job.
Terry had some mystical power that kept the Dudes from spinning into chaos: he protected them from Jaime; he spoke with their caseworker after Jaime made accusations; he kept them for getting evicted due to Jamie-related mischief that was totally not their doing. The Rant really hoped no harm ever befell Terry or the Dudes would be turned into dust by the machinations of Jaime.
When the conversation turned from what havoc Jaime wreaked upon them to why she did so, The Rant waited and hoped for the most Dude-like of explanations possible. We weren’t disappointed.
Dude 1: Jamie is totally into us.
Dude 2: No doubt.
Case closed. The Rant wanted to stand and slow-clap the performance, but we were feeling a bit dizzy from the Dudes’ Pineapple Express Body Wash and their clothes freshly laundered with Dank Pods.
The Rant had travelled to Seattle for a conference related to the day-job, and we soon found ourselves ensconced at the W, a hotel so desperate for hipster cred their crying need for approval morphs into world-class customer service to attain it. We’ll take millennials pretending to listen to us any way we can get it.
On Friday, live music played in the technicolor lobby. Pretty Young Professionals gathered to be seen and ignore the performer. Later they would pretend they were totally into it. Whitney Monge’ found herself tasked with what had to be one of the toughest gigs in town. The Rant has always found performers like Monge’ fascinating and depressing. Her fantastic voice buried 90% of popular musicians; her lack of magnetism and stage presence would doom her to a life of backup singing and W hotel stages. On an acoustic guitar, she turned “Seven Nation Army” into a slow burn only The Rant seemed to appreciate.
Somewhere during the proceedings a man strolled in that The Rant immediately begin referring to as Security Detail. SD wore an earpiece and had a suit that cost a least a grand. He may have slept in it standing up. He appeared carrying a tumbler of whiskey that magically remained full at all times.
The lobby was a split-level affair, and when The Rant stood to de-camp to higher ground, Security Detail was standing inches from our face. “How are ya?” we asked. He fave us a maniacal grin and said, “How are you?” We fled up the stairs. Seconds later, there was SD at our elbow. “See that woman down there?” he asked. “The one in the stocking cap? She’s beautiful. Denver beautiful.” The Rant laughed nervously and said, “So Denver is you ultimate standard of beauty and everything is downhill from there?”
We should mention SD had clearly consumed many tumblers of whiskey. He reached out a hand, either to shake in greeting or extract a confession. My physical therapy should extend well into the summer. “I’m Vincent,” declared SD, “I kill people for a living. Maybe I’ll kill you.” Look Vincent, that boyish come-on might work on the Tinder, but you’ll have to do better than that with The Rant. We began searching for a beard large enough to hide behind and plot our escape.
As mysteriously as he appeared, Vincent was gone. The Rant headed for the elevators, half dreading Vincent would be coiled in our closet safe, ready to pounce in our sleep. Maybe we would hear an ice cube tinkling in his tumbler.
The conference would contain the usual jargon, the feigned enthusiasm, the frantic networking of those searching for a new job. The Rant would peer into dark rooms and hallways and whisper, “Vincent?” If only we could give Terry a call.