Thanksgiving–The RPG

September 30, 2005 at 5:20 PM | Posted in Personal | Leave a comment
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Originally published 11/25/04 at

I had been charged with a quest.
A wise old wizard had charged
that I retreive for her a newspaper. And not just any newspaper, but
the newspaper with the Christmas ads. For, you see, the day after
Thanksgiving is a magical day, a day when, throughout all the land,
crazy people get up at 3am and stake out department stores, waiting to
get in and spend buckets of money on "bargains."
I have digressed.
My wizard had indicated to me the importance of this, and however
illogical I found it to be, I would nevertheless be rewarded greatly if
I were to retrieve for her the "Golden Newspaper." Many obstacles stood
in my way. For one, I wasn’t even sure what day the bloody thing came
out. Two, we live so very far from civilization, that the appropriate
paper might not be had locally. But the "rewarded greatly" weighed
heavily on my mind, so I took it upon myself to accomplish this great
and silly task, no matter what the price. I believe it is 53 cents.
Tuesday night, or early Wednesday morning, about 4 am, I ventured out
in my steed, drove about half an hour (24 miles) to the closest
Quiktrip, and there perused the papers. It was not the golden paper,
but merely one of . . .paper. I purchased anyway, on the chance that it
might have some value, and so I could read the cartoons. I inquired of
the clerk, who passed along this sage counsel: "Oh, yeah, Dude, that
comes out tomorrow." Thusly armed with this intelligence, and a
breakfast burrito, I returned to my village.
Again the wizard
spelled out for me what the "rewarded greatly" would entail, and also
reminded me what failure would bring me. No more "rewarded greatly" for
quite some time, if ever again. No problem, I thought. I had staked out
the joint, found out when the papers arrive, and all that was necessary
was that I once again wake up at an insanely early time. But the
elements and the gods conspired against me. Apparantly, it is written,
that middle aged men such as myself are not to be "rewared greatly,"
but to only languish in the dreams of our youth, when we could be
"rewarded greatly" on a daily basis.
A horrendous, powerful
snowstorm, the storm of the century (we are in fact, only a few years
into the century, so it could be the "storm of the century–thus far.")
Deluged the countryside with a full FOUR inches of snow. I have
successfully convinced many people that four inches is an incredible
quantity, so just take that as a given and let’s move on. It was a wet
and sloppy snow, and much of it melted, leaving the roads black with
ice. My trusty steed was in great need of new tires, and I had no
weight in the back. Surely, this would be dangerous. But other items
were added to my quest. Since I was going near the place I worked, I
would need to pick up the silver stockpot. Since guest were coming, I
would also need the magic salt, to clear away the ice from our driveway
and porch. This much pressure I did not need. It was now imperative
that my mission be fulfilled.

So again, on the day of the feast,
I awoke at the ungodly hour of 3:30 am, and dressed, and set out the
door on quest. I had been down this path before, but that was only in
practice mode; now the obstacles were real, and the
danger–really,…….uh, dangerous.
Just to start up my trusty
steed and clean off the windows was a chore, the doors were frozen
shut, and I had to pull very hard while uttering several magical
phrases. I set out. Cautiously, I drove. Not another vehicle in sight.
The moon hung low in the sky, like a starlet’s cleavage, and nestled in
the clouds like an opportune nip shot.
The trail was long, and
somewhat treacherous. The roads were mostly clear, but the occasional
black ice on the roads, placed there by a random number generator, kept
me alert. Along side the highway, cars, trucks, vans, lay ominously in
the ditches, warning me of impending peril. Finally, I made it to the
Quiktrip where only the night before had I reconned. The clerk seemed
not to recognize me, and only wanted to converse with me about the
weather, and about some "bird." I knew not of what code he spoke, and I
answered carefully, lest I be forced to begin again, since I forgot to
save when I arrived. We bargained carefully, and I spent all eight
dollars I had. A bag of salt, 2 golden papers, a cup of coffee, a
fountain soda, and a breakfast sandwich.
I bade him well, and
continued on my quest. A short distance was my own shop, and, using a
cheat code, I obtained a key. I retrieved the silver stockpot, and also
a golden brown cookie, to verify that the stockpot was authentic. My
quest now was half over. Having retrieved all of my items, I now began
the journey home. I knew it would be fraught with peril, because I was
now vulnerable, having my hands full behind the wheel, and possibly
I drove home, and the dj on the radio refused to comfort me,
instead playing only music to lull me to sleep. But my twin elixars,
coffee and soda, served to save me from the perils of sleep-driving. I
arrived, finally back to my village, turned off the highway, and slid
for quite a ways, missing by only 30 or 40 feet any obstacle.
That was close! My nerves properly rattled, I made it safely home,
whereupon I felt compelled to share this story with all of you. This
story of newspapers, and salt, and "great rewards." Hit "x" to save.


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